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The Scientific Reason Potato Flakes Keep Dinner Rolls Fluffy For Longer

homemade bread rolls on cutting board
homemade bread rolls on cutting board - Nelea Reazanteva/Getty Images

Dinner rolls are the perfect addition to any meal, especially when they're freshly baked with love right in your kitchen. If you struggle with creating moist, fluffy rolls that maintain their delightful texture for days at a time, a TikTok baking clip has just the addition you need. Per the video, adding potato flakes to bread recipes locks moisture into the dough, which contributes to a lighter-than-air interior. It's all thanks to the high concentration of starch in potatoes.

While incorporating leftover mashed potatoes into bread recipes will achieve the same great result, potato flakes are much simpler to work with and require less planning ahead. Because potato flakes are essentially dehydrated mashed potatoes, all you need to do is mix them with water before adding them to your bread dough. These potato-y rolls make for a quick and easy side dish for weeknight meals, and there's even a scientific reason they're so good.

Read more: The 18 Unhealthiest Store-Bought Sliced Breads You Can Buy

Why Starch Is So Crucial To A Delectable Bread Texture

kneading dough in the kitchen
kneading dough in the kitchen - fizkes/Shutterstock

The TikTok recipe featuring the potato flake hack shows the difference between rolls baked using the trick and those baked using conventional ingredients. It also illustrates the positive impact the high starch content of potatoes can have on recipes. Consider that 18% of a medium-sized spud's weight consists of starch. You probably already know that starch is a key element in breadmaking. However, you might not be fully aware of the actual science going on behind the scenes.

Something very interesting happens when starch mixes with water and then gets exposed to heat. Small starch particles will grow bigger, which is what creates the springy, toothsome texture of the very best bread. Starch also plays a major role in maintaining the structure of bread in conjunction with gluten. Any moisture that gluten loses as bread bakes is absorbed by the starch, which helps ensure a well-defined loaf or roll. And when potato flakes increase the concentration of starch in a bread recipe, you can expect an even better texture.

How This Hack Compares To The Tangzhong Method

sliced homemade bread
sliced homemade bread - Oxana Medvedeva/Getty Images

In the TikTok video showcasing the effect potato flakes can have on bread, a commenter mentions the tangzhong method and wonders whether this hack isn't similar. For those unaware, the tangzhong method entails mixing a portion of the flour intended for the bread with water or milk and cooking it until thick. The mixture is then added to the bread recipe to enhance texture and boost longevity.

This method improves the absorbency of flour and makes it able to retain moisture all throughout the baking process. Enhanced water retention also has a positive impact on the fluffiness of the bread, as the water absorbed by the flour will generate steam to help the bread rise to dizzying new heights. Breads created using the tangzhong method can also go a little bit longer without becoming tough and stale, which means you'll be able to enjoy your fresh baked rolls for an extended period. Adding potato flakes to bread and rolls is an easier way to achieve this effect, as you won't need to perform the extra cooking step.

Read the original article on Daily Meal.