Even if preparing biga seems easy, there are a lot of moving parts to consider. Biga is a starter made with just flour, water, and yeast. It’s used to make any kind of leavened product to provide a better taste and fragrance to your dough. A traditional biga requires 44% hydration with 18 to 20 hours of maturation at 18 to 20°C. However, those conditions are not always achievable. If one of the parameters changes, the maturation time will be completely different if you want to get a similar result. The maturation period could vary anywhere from 14 to 40 hours. How do you know how long to proof your dough? What is the perfect recipe? These questions could only be answered by trial and error until a few months ago when a new tool was released: the MasterBiga app.
What is MasterBiga and how does it work?
MasterBiga is the first app that can help pizza and bread makers create the perfect biga. The user has to provide a little input data such as the ambient temperature and the desired hydration, then MasterBiga provides the right maturation time. If the user inputs when the biga is going to be prepared, the app will provide the date and time when it will be ready to use.
The core algorithm of the app has been developed with a long monitoring campaign in a controlled environment. Then, a predictive function was created to calculate the maturation time and embedded into the app. In addition, a dosing calculator for the final product helps simplify the job. The MasterBiga can be downloaded for free in the digital stores for Android and iOS devices.
The MasterBiga is composed of three main sections with the tools and information required for the preparation of a biga-based sourdough:
1) A Complete Guide with description of how a biga should be prepared. Following that guide is important to obtain a perfect biga and to use MasterBiga correctly. A video tutorial is available in the guide section to support the user.
2) A section with Tools: a “Manual Mode” where the user inputs the temperature and hydration and the app provides the maturation time; a “Water Calculation” mode where the user inputs only the environmental temperature and the app provide the optimal hydration and maturation time. All these functionalities are complemented by a “Full Recipe Calculation” function to provide a dosing calculator that takes into account the ingredients of both the biga and the final product.
3) A section with News & Tutorials with an updated collection of short articles about the leavening preparation, tools and techniques. This section also includes some recipes and video-recipes for the preparation of sourdoughs with biga (pizza, bread, etc.). You can find this same information at www.masterbiga.cloud/news.
The MasterBiga Team
The MasterBiga team is composed of highly experienced Italian professionals in both sourdough and IT. Paolo Spadaro is a flour technician specialized in leavened products with more than 30 years of experience. Vincenzo Angelucci is a pizza maker who was the first to come up with the concept and test the algorithms; Marco Arnesano is an engineer, researcher and university professor with experience in measurements and simulation. Arnesano’s task is to take care of technical development.
The unbeatable team recently created the startup MasterBiga the company that will take care of future developments. MasterBiga is available for free for Android and iOS devices in three languages (English, Italian and Spanish).