Can you freeze Atta dough?
In this article, we will answer the question “Can you freeze Atta dough?” and discuss the benefits and drawbacks of freezing atta dough and how to freeze atta dough. Atta dough is used to make chapati, a flat bread consumed in India.
Can you freeze Atta dough?
Yes, you can freeze atta dough. Freezing bread dough is a common practice in the bakery industry and has many advantages to practical life (3). Dough can be frozen unbaked or part-baked (1).
Atta dough is made with atta flour, a flour produced from common wheat by milling in stone mills, differently from the wheat flour most used in the United States, which is the durum wheat milled by roller milling (2).
However, it is preferable that you freeze the dough in the form of chapati bread instead of freezing the dough without being molded. In this way, the dough is ready to bake, without the need of further kneading after thawing.
What are the benefits of freezing Atta dough?
The benefits of freezing atta dough are (1,2,3,4,5):
Making bread requires specific abilities. Using ready-to-bake frozen bread doughs enables the bread store owners to sell bread without having the skills and the equipment to make the bread, whereas only freezers and ovens are necessary. As a consequence, a higher number of bread stores is possible.
Freezing bread dough improves the shelf life of the dough. The bread dough can be stored for many days to months with acceptable quality loss.
What are the drawbacks of freezing Atta dough?
The drawbacks of freezing atta dough are (1,2,3,4,5):
After baking the atta dough that has been previously frozen, the quality of the dough is not the same and sensory properties achieved by the baked chapati are less positive than when the chapati is made with fresh atta dough.
In addition, there are great changes in the texture. During frozen storage, the water in the bread dough migrates and the starch re-crystallizes, leading to increased staling of the bread after baking.
Other changes can occur, such as an increase of harness of the dough, the loss of springiness and an increase of brittleness, which make the chapati easy to break.
According to studies, the use of additives, such as gum xanthan and glycerol are effective in decreasing the negative effects of frozen storage and of freeze-thaw cycles of frozen bread dough.
How to make and freeze Atta dough?
To make and freeze Atta dough, you will need (6):
- 2 cups whole wheat flour
- 2/3 cup water (warm)
- 2 teaspoons vegetable oil
- 1 dash salt
Using clean utensils and after washing hands thoroughly, follow the instructions (1,6):
- In a bowl, mix the flour, water and oil with you hands till a homogeneous dough ball is formed and knead for about 10 minutes
- Cover the dough and wait 30 minutes
- Divide the dough in 6 equal parts
- Form the divided dough portions onto flat breads of about 7 inches in diameter
- Wrap each flat bread dough pieces with plastic foil individually and place them in a freezing bag
- Bring the wrapped flat bread dough pieces in the freezer. It takes about 12 hours to totally freeze the bread at 0°F (-18°C)
- Avoid opening the freezer for 12 hours. The temperature fluctuations during freezing process and during the frozen storage can increase the quality loss of the baked chapati
- Frozen chapati bread dough can be stored for 2 months at 0°F (-18°C) for best quality
Other FAQs about Dough that you may be interested in.
In this article, we answered the question “Can you freeze Atta dough?” and discussed the benefits and drawbacks of freezing atta dough and how to freeze atta dough.
- Kamel, Basil S., and Clyde E. Stauffer. Advances in baking technology. Springer, 2013.
- Yüksel, Yavuz, and Adem Elgün. Determination of the effect of high energy ultrasound application in tempering on flour quality of wheat. Ultrason Sonochem, 2020, 67, 105129.
- Yadav, Deep N., et al. Effect of freeze–thaw cycles and additives on rheological and sensory properties of ready to bake frozen chapaties. Int j food sci technol, 2008, 43, 1714-1720.
- Reddy, Jayasimha, et al. A new standard for the industrial production of high quality Atta flour. Qual Assuran Safe Crops Foods, 2012, 4, 151-151.
- Yi, Jinhee, and William L. Kerr. Combined effects of dough freezing and storage conditions on bread quality factors. J Food Eng, 2009, 93, 495-501.
- Chapatis flatbread. Myplate. United States Department of Agriculture.