Dough Problem Help needed

We occasionally see baking soda used in some of the older formulas. It has a number of affects upon the dough and finished crust. As an alkali it raises the pH (makes the dough less acid) this effectively slows down the yeast activity, then the higher pH causes the dough to brown a little faster, and it also gives the finished crust a slightly different brown color, and lastly, it changes the flavor of the finished crust to some extent. Think of the flavor of a soda cracker. I think this is where the idea of using soda originated. You always want to be careful as to how much soda you add to the dough. Too much soda can easily saponify the fat/oil that you have in the formula and you will end up with a soapy tasting finished crust. The amount normally used is about 0.5% or a little more of the flour weight. Be sure to use “baking soda” not “washing soda”, and don’t confuse baking soda with baking powder as they are NOT the same.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor