Bread and pastries are both made from dough.
However, pastry dough is quite different from bread dough in a number of ways.
The result is a bakery product that crumbles and has a softer and less elastic texture than bread.
In this post, we are going to discuss how pastries are different from bread.
Bread vs. pastry
Pastries have more fat than bread
Pastries are made with more fat or shortening than bread
Fat interacts with the pastry dough in such a way that separates the pastry dough. This reduces the contact of pastry dough with water and makes it to form less gluten.
By reducing the amount of gluten formed when making pastries, the texture of the pastry is also affected.
Therefore, the quantity of fat used and also the way fat is used brings about a difference in the texture of bread and pastry.
Fat also makes the pastry dough easier to work with, and it gives pastry flavor.
Bread has more gluten
Glutenin and gliadin are two forms of protein that can be found in wheat products.
They combine to form gluten when they come in contact with water.
The long strands of gluten are formed as flour is mixed with water to form the dough.
Gluten gives bread its toughness and elasticity.
This toughness and elasticity in bread are not really required in pastry which has a different texture from bread.
Therefore, different techniques are used to reduce the amount of gluten when making pastry.
This can be done through several ways such as adding fat which can help in reducing the amount of gluten being formed and by using pastry flour which has lesser content of gluten than bread flour.
Both are made with different types of flours
Pastry chefs make use of a different kind of flour when making pastries.
It is a type of flour that has a lesser content of gluten known as pastry flour.
Pastry flour is milled from soft wheat varieties, and the gluten content of pastry flour is somewhere around 8 to 9 percent.
Some pastries may require a slightly higher amount of gluten such as that in all-purpose flour.
There are also some pastries that require the toughness of bread flour.
Bread makers typically make use of bread flour for bread because of its higher gluten content, the gluten gives bread its texture and elasticity.
They have different textures
Bread and pastry are also different in texture
As a result of the higher gluten content of bread, it has a more solid texture than pastries.
Pastry has a light, crumbly or flaky texture.
Even within the different types of pastry, there are textural differences, sometimes it depends on the techniques used or the amount of fat used.
Pastry usually has fillings
Most pastries have fillings in them when they are made.
These fillings add sweetness to improve the texture or to make the pastries appear delicious.
Although some bread recipes might include filling which may be exciting, traditionally, bread doesn’t have fillings
Pastry dough is made with less water
Gluten is formed when wheat proteins combine with water,
To reduce the development of gluten, pastry is made with less water than bread.
Bread typically makes use of a greater proportion of water since gluten has to be formed. The ratio of flour to water in bread could be around 5:3
When making pastry, the ratio of water to flour used is around 3: 1.
Several other techniques are used to reduce the amount of gluten formed when mixing pastry dough.
Sugar can be used to tenderize the dough and some pastry dough is mixed carefully to prevent more gluten from forming.