The broth boiled, the soles shuffled and the whip whipped the cake batter. But suddenly, it was the drama. Martine needed potato starch for her recipe and her cupboard contained only potato starch. Olalala, what was Martine going to do? Go to CurieuseCuisine obviously!
Difference of language
Starch and modified food starch means exactly the same chemical product, ie starch. This is only a distinction of language.
While for cereals, we will talk about corn starch, wheat starch, etc. The starch of the tubers and certain stems will be given the name of starch: potato starch, cassava starch … Grosso modo starch obtained from aerial parts will be called starch and that obtained from underground parts will be called starch. However, there is a small exception for rice starch often referred to as “cream of rice” because of the texture it offers when cooked.
As for Maizena, it is only a commercial name attributed to corn starch.
For Martine, the puzzle stops there. But in the agri-food industry, the story continues a little further.
The starch from the potato without processing will be called starch, but if it undergoes a treatment, physical or chemical, then it will not speak of modified tapioca starch but of modified starch of potato.
In this regard, Martine is often horrified to hear the word “modified” about food. She associates this word with GMOs that she hates … But this is not the case at all.
The modified starch can be in several ways, either physically, by applying a heat treatment or high pressure, or chemically by crosslinking or substitution. What does this gibberish mean?
Without going into technical details, applying a physical treatment can allow the starch to cook and therefore thicken the product at lower temperature, this prevents the drying of the product or its denaturation. Or for the squeezed cook, these are instant thickeners for sauces.
The crosslinking will make it possible to create links between the various starch molecules and there, make it more resistant to high temperatures or shear (tensions that break the starch network when mixing strongly). Finally, substitutions allow the starch not to crystallize too quickly once the product has cooled and thus prevents the cake from satiating too quickly, yogurt losing water and the frozen product to better react to freeze / thaw cycles.
(Modified potato starch should not frighten you, because the modified potato that has undergone heat treatment at very high temperatures is called Frite! Belgian, please!)
After this bath of acquaintances, Martine returned to her kitchen, opened her closet and took out the box of potato starch, light, light … too light. She was empty. This was the drama. Martine only had corn starch in stock. Could she replace it with starch? She looked for his answer on CurieuseCuisine obviously!
Starch resembles small grains under a microscope. Depending on the plant species from which it comes, these grains have different sizes. Those of potato are very large, those of medium and heterogeneous wheat, those of small corn and those of very small rice.