A Few Applications for a Horizontal Mixer

There are a number of applications that horizontal mixers are typically used for. They are dry powder mixing, adding liquid into powders, and cutting fat into flour, adding oils, and breaking down agglomerates. Horizontal mixers include ribbon and plough agitators with options of low shear or high shear.

Know Your Mixer

The ribbon mixer is a U trough mixer. It is designed with hygiene in mind. Designs with the capacity of 35 to 400 liters are meant for small batch applications. The larger size U trough mixers, with a working capacity of 600 to 20000 liters, can use heaters or coolers during the mixing process. They can also use steam and oil. There are midsize troughs where the length to the diameter makes for efficient mixing and is easier to clean. This size horizontal mixer requires no pre-mixing and ensures that ingredients are dispersed homogenously. The plough mixer uses an aggressive action and is a high energy, shear and speed batch mixer.

Know Your Product

There is no one choice for all mixing solutions. In order to select the right mixer, knowledge of production and product needs are necessary. The horizontal mixer has been considered the most common mixer used in bakeries. The mixer is one of the most important pieces of equipment. It is the choice of mid to large size wholesale bakeries. Selecting the right mixer becomes important to any size bakery and is the key to the production of consistently high quality products. The cylindrical barrel design can be used with several different types of mixing arms. When using the mixer however, there is a tendency to generate a lot of heat because the dough rubs against the wall of the mixing chamber. Horizontal mixers are massive in strength and capable of mixing thousands of pounds of dough at one time. After the mixing cycle, the dough is easily released from the trough and ready for transportation to its destination. Originally, the mixer was used in white bread plants. However, as the demand for other types of bread grew the use of the mixer became more popular in ethnic bakeries as well. The horizontal mixer was soon being used for bagels, pizza and the European style breads. The process of mixing the dough is
directly related to the end product. The objective of mixing is to:

1. Mix all ingredients uniformly
2. To hydrate or moisten all the dry ingredients with the flour and
3. To develop gluten

Using the horizontal mixer is a continuous process. However, the only non-continuous step in the process is mixing the dough. It is important because it cannot be undone. If the mixture is wrong, you must start the process over. Remember that good baking always starts with a good mixer.

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