Impact of the replacement with almond flour on the adhesion, texture and flavor of traditional
Welsh Cakes
MacDonald J, Martino J, Linamen K
Almond flour is a tree nut flour derived wholly from almonds and is rich in monounsaturated fats
and Omega-6 fatty acids. Monounsaturated fats lowers the risk of heart disease, cholesterol,
controls blood sugar, and blood control. It is also rich in vitamins and minerals, such as Vitamin
E and K. When in comparison to All-Purpose flour has significantly less carbohydrates and fats
per serving and is, of course, gluten-free. Since this is a gluten-free product, xanthan gum was
added as a binding agent. This experiment used a control recipe of a traditional Welsh Cake and
two treatments with the replacement of All-Purpose flour with Almond flour in increments of 50
percent (Treatment 1) and 100 percent (Treatment 2). A sensory evaluation was conducted with a
six member untrained panel using a 9-point Hedonic scale. Resulting from the sensory
evaluation, the preferred product was the Treatment 2 in the following attributes: flavor,
mouthfeel, tenderness, and crispness. Additionally, two objective measurements were also
conducted on the control and both treatments. The Konica Minolta CR410 Colorimeter and the
Universal Penetrometer. The penetrometer values showed that the control was significantly
more dense than the two treatments. The readings for the Colorimeter exhibited that the control
had a lighter coloring and lower red to green value, whereas the blue to green value was
relatively even across all three products. Overall, the data has shown that the Treatment 2 was
preferred by panelists almost universally in all areas except for color, but difference in color was
not significant enough to affect the overall likeability of the product.
Welsh cakes are a traditional hand griddled cake that resemble a scone and are usually paired
with preserves. Because of a rising demand for gluten-free products, this experiment tested the
effect of replacement of all-purpose flour with almond flour in the traditional recipe. By
replacing all-purpose flour with almond flour, not only was a gluten free alternative produced,
but the protein and polyunsaturated levels were increased. Thus, the objective of this research is
to evaluate the impact of the replacement of all purpose flour with almond flour on the
crispness, tenderness, color, flavor, and mouthfeel. The ideal outcome for Treatment 2 was a
product similar to the control in all of the above characteristics and preferred flavor over the
control and Treatment 1, even in the absence of gluten. It was important to remove gluten from
the product because of the high intolerance rates prevalent in today’s society. It is difficult to
remove gluten in a baked product because it is the primary binding agent in a traditional recipe;
therefore, it affects characteristics involving tenderness and density. In this experiment, xanthan
gum was used to replicate the effects of the process of glutenization in the product.
2 Cups All-Purpose Flour
1Tsp. Baking Powder
¼ Tsp. Salt
6 Tbsp. Butter (softened)
¼ Cup & 2 Tbsp. Unsweetened Applesauce
¾ Cup Sugar
1 Tbsp. Whole Milk
1 Tbsp. Ground Cinnamon
¼ Tsp. Vanilla Extract
1. Sift together flour, baking powder, and salt into a large bowl.
2. Cut butter into dry ingredients with fork for 100 strokes.
3. Add applesauce gradually into dry ingredients with rubber spatula for 30 seconds.
4. Add sugar and stir with spatula for 1 minute.
5. Add milk, cinnamon, and vanilla and knead with hands for 1 minute.
6. Form dough into ball, cover in plastic wrap, and place in freezer for 30 minutes.
7. Preheat griddle on low 15 minutes before removing dough from freezer.
8. Knead dough in 4 Tbsp. flour for 45 seconds.
9. Roll out dough to 0.5 cm and cut with round cookie cutter.
10.Spray griddle with non-stick spray, and evenly place cakes on the griddle.
11.Cook cakes on first side for 3 minutes, then flip and cook for an additional 3 minutes or until both
sides are golden brown. (Optional: Sprinkle with Cinnamon Sugar.)
12.Let cool and Enjoy!
Treatment 1 : In Step 1, 1 cup of All-Purpose flour was replaced with 1 cup Almond Flour and an
additional ½ Tsp. Baking Powder and 1/16 Tsp. Xanthan Gum was added. In Step 2, only 5 Tbsp. of
Butter were used. In Step 5, Milk was omitted because of the moisture content of the Almond Flour.
In Step 9, the dough was rolled out to 0.7 cm.
Treatment 2 : In Step 1, 2 cups of Almond flour replaced the All-Purpose flour completely, and an
additional 1 ½ Tsp. Baking Powder and 1 Tsp. Xanthan Gum was added. In Step 2, only 3 Tbsp.
Butter were used. In Step 3, the extra 2 Tbsp. Applesauce omitted. In Step 5, Milk was omitted. In
Step 9, the dough was rolled out to 0.6 cm. In Step 12, the refrigerator was used to cool cakes more
Product Quality Assessment: Product quality was assessed by sensory analysis and two objective
measurements using the Konica Minolta CR410 Colorimeter and a Humboldt Universal Penetrometer
with a cone. The sensory analysis tested for tenderness, crispness, mouthfeel, color, and flavor. A
sensory panel of 6 untrained panel members used a 9 point hedonic scale to assess each of the
products without comparing them. Each product was cut using a template to create 1” X 1” samples.
Each sample was then tested individually against the hedonic scale, 9 being the most liked and 1
being the most disliked. Instrumental analysis using the Konica Minolta measured the surface color of
each sample. L, A, B values for each product was provided. L* measured light to darkness; A*
measured red to green, and B* measured blue to yellow. The values for the control and each
treatment were then compared to see how the almond flour and other changes affected the coloring of
the product. Density and tenderness were measured using the Penetrometer in order to discover exact
differences between each sample. Then all of the data from the Konica Minolta and the Penetrometer
was compiled and compared to the sensory analysis to see if the values and sensory responses were
Sensory Evaluation Discussion: The Sensory Evaluation Means graph displays the means gathered
from the sensory evaluation. This graph shows that the 100% replacement of all-purpose flour with
almond flour rated highest in all categories except color where the 50% rated slightly better during the
sensory evaluation.
Objective Instruments Evaluation Discussion: The Penetrometer and Konica Minolta values graphs
displays the data gathered from the objective measurements. The Penetrometer Values graph displays
that the control recipe was significantly more dense than the two replacements with almond flour. The
Konica Minolta Colorimeter Values graph shows the differences in light to dark, red to yellow, and
blue to green of the control and treatments of welsh cakes. The graph shows that the control had higher
L* and B* values than the two treatments with almond flour, whereas, the 50% replacement had a
higher A* value with the 100% being a close second.
In conclusion, the 100 % almond flour substitution (Treatment 2) had the greatest ratings in
flavor, texture, mouth feel, and crispness, whereas the color of Treatment 1 was slightly
preferred over 2 (Graph 1). However, Treatment 1 and 2 had no significant color difference,
Control group had higher *L rates, but Treatment 1 and 2 was the preferred product among the
sensory panelists. In addition, it increased the health benefits by providing more protein and
healthy fats per serving and is gluten free. Based on the high likeability of our Treatment 2
sample containing 100% almond flour, Treatment 2 is recommended to be sold as a baked
Shannan Bergtholdt (2013). Almond Flour Nutrition Information: Benefits of almond flour. Live
Strong Foundation.
Mayo Clinic Staff (2015). Lifestyle and home remedies: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and