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TEXARKANA, Ark. –
Flour is flying off the shelves in grocery stores. I was shocked when I went to buy
some because I was low. My thought was “do people not keep flour at home?” Maybe my
no-knead and artisan breads that I shared a couple weeks ago caught on and everyone
is making them.
If so, you know there is probably no better aroma to fill a house than that of fresh
bread baking in the oven. It is one of the smells that pleases the senses and most
likely brings back fond memories of childhood.
The more you know about flour, the happier you will be with the end product.
The quality of wheat used, the milling process, blending, testing and matching a specific
flour type with a recipe all work together to produce consistent results time after
time, recipe after recipe.
Flour is typically a raw agricultural product that hasn’t been treated to kill germs.
Bacteria are killed when food made with flour is cooked. That’s why you should never
taste raw dough or batter even if it doesn’t contain eggs.
Flour usually means wheat flour, made from the most widely distributed cereal grain.
Wheat is the only cereal grain that can be made into cohesive, elastic doughs when
mixed with water. Flour is the major ingredient in bread and bakery products, proving
unique textural and visual characteristics.
You probably already knew that the wheat kernel is the seed from which the wheat plant
grows. Each tiny seed contains three distinct parts (endosperm, bran and germ) that
are separated during the milling process to produce flour. The nutrients in the kernel
are essential to the human diet. The endosperm is the source of white flour. Bran
and wheat germ are included in whole wheat flour and can also be purchased separately.
There are numerous types of flour on the market today. Flour types you will find:
white or all-purpose, bread, cake, self-rising, pastry, and whole-wheat. All types
have different purposes in baking. Know what type of flour you need before beginning
your baking project.
Bake up a batch of Blueberry Muffins. Serve with fresh fruit and milk, and your family
will think you went to the bakery.
Yields 1 dozen muffins; 195 calories per muffin.
*If using self-rising flour, omit baking powder and salt.
Contact the Miller County Extension Office, 870-779-3609.
By Carla Due County Extension Agent - FCSThe Cooperative Extension ServiceU of A System Division of Agriculturecdue@uada.edu