FLOUR THAT’S GLUTEN AND WHEAT FREE…

With so many of us suffering with gluten and wheat intolerances but still wanting to bake it was great to see flour without either.

Oast to Host has solved this problem with its two new flour blends Cake and Pastry. They have been expertly blended to give you light and fluffy cakes and crisp pastry. They contain a little dried egg albumen, which helps with the texture of the bakes.

They start at Cake Flour £4 for 450g for 2 available online at Oast to Host. And the Pastry Flour £9 for 2 x 450g.

This wonderfully versatile flour allows you to make your favourite: CAKE/cup cakes, SCONES, BLINIS, STEAMED PUDDINGS & BISCUITS.  Everyone will be coming back for more!  Each 225g recipe will make a generous 8″ Cake. 

You can make anything from Lemon Drizzle, Coffee and Walnut, Chocolate, Battenburg or Carrot Cake!  Our new in-house favourite is Earl Grey Cake using real tea leaves! 

See how easy it is to make this delicious subtly perfumed sponge cake by watching their video. They have lots of recipes on the website.

NINE TIPS ON USING FLOUR IN BAKING…

  1. Sift your flour and baking powder together 2 – 3 times when making a cake, as it will give your cake a very light and even texture and stop air pockets from forming.
  2. Try to store flour in an airtight container as it keeps better that way.
  3. Flour in baking, a high gluten flour would be used for bread and a low gluten flour for cakes
  4. Use plain flour which has a low protein content for baking cakes, pastries and biscuits and also for thickening sauces.
  5. Always stir flour to loosen before measuring.
  6. Use cocoa instead of flour for dusting a greased tin when making chocolate cake.
  7. Get a rise out of plain flour by adding extra baking powder ( 1 teasp for every 125g flour.
  8. Never substitute coconut flour with any other flours as they are not equivalent.
  9. If a recipe calls for 1 cup of all-purpose flour, try using ¾ cup whole-grain.

DIFFERENT TYPES OF FLOUR FOR #BAKING…

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Wheat flour is the most common in the UK but there are also many different types of those. You can find out some healthy facts about wheat flour from Healthy Eating website.

The main difference between them is their protein content,– it’s this protein that when mixed with water will make gluten. Its the gluten that determines the elasticity and structure of the finished product.

A typical example is that a high gluten flour would be used for bread and a low gluten flour for cakes. Real Foods are well known for their organic range of flours but most supermarkets carry a large range to choose from.

So use flours with high protein content such as strong and durum, for breads and pasta. Use plain flour which has a low protein content for baking cakes, pastries and biscuits and also for thickening sauces.

The protein content will always be listed on the packaging.

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CHOCOLATE AND VANILLA LOAF CAKE…

choc orange cake

CHOCOLATE AND VANILLA LOAF CAKE

Ingredients

175g/6oz Low Fat Spread
175g/6oz Caster Sugar
175g/6oz Self Raising Flour
1 tables Baking Powder
2 eggs beaten lightly
½ tsp vanilla extract
1 tablesp cocoa powder

Method
Pre heat oven to Gas 4, 180C/160 Fan Oven 350F
Line or grease your loaf tin
In a large bowl add all the ingredients
Whisk with an electric whisk for no longer than 2 minutes
Put all ingredients into the loaf tin
Baking for 40 – 60 minutes or until your skewer comes clean
You can also finish with a sprinkle of icing sugar over the cake

Gas 4, 180C/160 Fan Oven 350F

EASY CHOCOLATE ORANGE LOAF CAKE…

choc orange cake

Ingredients

175g/ Self Raising Flour
175g/ Caster Sugar
175g/ Flora or similar
1 Tablesp Baking Powder
3 Eggs (beaten)
2 Tablesp Milk
Grated Rind of 2 Oranges
½ teasp Vanilla Extract

Method

Heat oven to 180C/Gas4/350F
Place everything above into a mixing bowl and whisk for no more than 2 minutes.
Pour into a greased or lined loaf tin
Bake for approx 40-60 mins, or when your skewer comes out clean

Topping
120g Caster Sugar
Juice of the two Oranges

Mix the sugar with the juice of the oranges and heat in pan until it forms a syrup. Make holes in the warm cake and pour syrup over it.

An alternative topping is a whisked carton of Double or Whipping Cream, spread on top of the cake and cover with a broken flake or chocolate chip pieces or like my picture below cover with fruit and finish with a large spoon of creme fresch.

choc/orange cake

SUGAR AND FLOUR IN YOUR DIET…

In the 1887-1890 Century the average consumption of sugar was only about 5lbs per person per year!

Cardiovascular disease and cancer was virtually unknown in the early 1900’s.

Now, our sugar consumption has increased to 135lbs per person per year!!!!!

Also between 1939- 1945, during the World War 11, when flour in England was either unrefined or less refined, there was a decline in the death rate of major diseases, such as heart disease.