What is potato starch flour ?
Potato starch drying machine
Potato starch – also known as potato flour – is extracted from potatoes. The cells of the root tubers of the potato plant contain starch granules (leucoplasts). To extract the starch, the potatoes are crushed and the starch grains are released from the cells. The starch is then washed out and dried to powder. Potato starch has been produced in the same basic way for centuries – actually even the ancient Incas knew how to make potato starch.
Potato starch contains typical large oval spherical granules; their size ranges between 5 and 100 μm. Potatoes’ starch granules are roughly twice as big as other starch granules (tapioca or grain starches) resulting in much higher water absorption capacity and better texture. Potato starch is a very refined starch, containing minimal protein or fat. This gives the flour a clear white colour, and the cooked starch typical characteristics of neutral taste, good clarity and transparency, high binding strength, long texture and a minimal tendency to foaming or yellowing of the solution.
Potato starch contains approximately 800 ppm phosphate bound to the starch; this increases the viscosity and gives the solution a slightly anionic character, a low gelatinisation temperature (approximately 60 °C) and high swelling power. These typical properties are used in food and technical applications.
Untreated starch requires heat to thicken or gelatinize. When a starch is pre-cooked, it can then be used to thicken instantly in cold water. Pre-gelatinized potato starch is starch cooked and then dried on a drum dryer or in an extruder making the starch cold water soluble. This is a physical modification of the starch. The starch remains a native starch and can be declared as such. Aloja Starkelsen SIA produces drum-dried pre-gelatinized or cold-swelling potato starch. Chemically modified starches are not allowed in organic food processing
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