Also Known As Liquid Sponge
What is Flour Brew?
Flour brew (or liquid sponge) is one type of preferment methods. It needs more water added compared with traditional sponge, in which usually a little more water than flour. It usually contains about 10-50% of the total dough flour and ferments in a tank for one or two hours. The higher the flour amount, the more stable and flavorful the brew would be. Measuring pH and TTA is the traditional method to monitor the brew development during fermentation. It is important to control the system acidity in order to ensure that the correct flavor is developed.
The pH of flour brew should be around 4.6 and TTA should be around 8. Flour brew has the advantage of being pumpable compared with sponge and dough method, especially in the production of hamburger buns. Continuous flour-brew systems use a horizontal tank instead of a trough. After the fermentation completes, the flour brew is degassed, filtered and cooled down to between 3 °C (38 °F). The cooled brew is then ready to be pumped through the tank to each mix. Sanitation procedures by water rinsing are necessary between brews, and complete system CIP (clean-in-place) must be done at least once a week. To understand more about what goes on during the fermentation of a flour brew, please read our eHandbook on Dough Systems.