Both baking soda and baking powder are leaveners that cause baked goods to rise and give them a light texture. Baking soda is pure sodium bicarbonate, an alkaline. When combined with acidic ingredients, such as buttermilk or sour cream, there is an immediate release of carbon dioxide gas; this causes baked goods to rise. The soda also neutralizes acidity; which tenderizes cake or bread. Batters and dough’s that only use baking soda as a leavening agent should be baked immediately to keep the texture light and ensure proper rise.
Baking powder is a mixture of baking soda; an acid, such as cream of tartar; and a moisture -absorber, such as cornstarch. Double -acting baking powder is the most readily available type and is used in most recipes. Double-acting baking powder produces carbon dioxide gas in two stages: when mixed with liquid and when heated, causing baked goods to rise.
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