Sodium Stearoyl Lactylate (SSL)
What is Sodium Stearoyl Lactylate (SSL)?
An emulsifier used in bread making to strengthen the dough during processing and to keep the crumb soft during storage.
SSL is chemically synthesized from lactic acid, stearic acid and sodium hydroxide. Lactic acid is mostly derived from bacterial fermentation. Stearic acid may be derived from animal fat or the hydrogenation of unsaturated vegetable oils.
Sodium stearoyl lactylate (SSL) forms strong bonds with the flour proteins during gluten development, improving dough strength. During protein denaturation at baking temperatures, these bonds weaken and SSL is able to translocate to the starch molecules, reducing their staling rates during storage1. Has an HLB value of 18-21 (hydrophilic).
Use at 0.25 to 0.5% (flour weight) at the mixer.
SSL is made by reacting lactic acid and stearic acid with sodium hydroxide obtaining the following structure:
1. Pisesookbunterng, W., and BL D’Appolonia. “Bread Staling Studies. I. Effect of Surfactants on Moisture Migration from Crumb to Crust and Firmness Values of Bread Crumb.” Cereal Chemistry 60 (1983): 298.