What Does Sifting Do For Flour
- October 11, 2021
You’ve probably come across a recipe that asks you to sift an ingredient (usually flour, cocoa powder, or confectioners’ sugar) before starting.Back in the day, when wheat milling techniques weren’t as streamlined as they are now, flour was ground to inconsistent sizes, which lead to temperamental results.(You should, however, use a kitchen scale to ensure that your cups of flour aren’t way heavier than the recipe developer’s.).(The easiest and fastest way to do this is with a fine-mesh sieve: Invest in a large one, plop it over a big bowl, and dump the ingredient that needs to be sifted into it. .
When and How You Should Sift Flour
You may not need it very often, but it's still a good idea to have an old-fashioned flour sifter on hand.Today’s recipes usually don’t call for sifting flour, but it is still a good idea to have a sifter on hand for those few occasions when you do need it.Why You Should Sift Flour.When making baked items such as cookies and bars, your recipe instructions may tell you to measure all dry ingredients, such as flour, spices, cocoa, etc., then sift together.When You Should Sift Flour. .
Why Sift Flour and Do You Really Need To?
Most of these homey baked goods begin with a similar pattern: preheat the oven, grease a pan, round up a few dry ingredients and then sift them together.Most small clumps can be broken up with a whisk or your fingers.” But, they also agreed that, sometimes, sifting flour is an unavoidable necessity.When Is It Important to Sift Flour?Yang follows a simple protocol, “If I'm folding dry ingredients into a [delicate] batter [such as angel food cake], I generally sift.One other instance where sifting is imperative: if your recipe calls for 2 cups sifted flour (as opposed to 2 cups flour, sifted).You may never ask "why sift flour?". .
How to Sift Flour
Learn how to sift flour like a professional, even if you don’t own a handheld sifter.When your favorite cake recipe calls for sifted flour, don’t leave out this crucial step.It also creates space for the other components in the recipe to get in between the flour particles and do their work.It also creates space for the other components in the recipe to get in between the flour particles and do their work.Commercial flour has already been sifted several times, so unless the recipe you are reading specifically requires it, you shouldn’t have to take the extra step.Commercial flour has already been sifted several times, so unless the recipe you are reading specifically requires it, you shouldn’t have to take the extra step.A strainer (or sieve) is a circular gadget with a finely-woven mesh net used for straining liquids such as stocks or juice.Some sifters have mechanical blades that help push the flour through the mesh, while others don’t.As you squeeze the handle (or turn the crank) the blades are activated and sifted flour falls out the bottom of the cup.You can sift flour into a bowl, but parchment paper (or foil) makes the best funnel.If you don’t have a fine-mesh sieve, just add the flour to a dry bowl and whisk it briskly.Also, never dip, tap, tamp, jiggle, shake, or pack flour down into the measuring cup. .
Does Sifting Make a Better Cake?
Our contributor, Summer Stone of Cake Paper Party, is back today with a new baking science experiment.Similarly, when flour is sifted the grain particles are separated but to a much finer degree due to the close proximity of the wires in the mesh.To illustrate the effectiveness of either method, I added cocoa powder to the flour and left them unmixed, whisked them together, or sifted them together.I have assumed that a good period of mixing following the addition of dry ingredients is enough to evenly distribute them throughout the batter.For this comparison, I creamed the butter and sugar, added the eggs, flavoring and liquid and then divided it into thirds.It would seem that by separating all of the flour clumps, more surface area of the starch was exposed absorbing more fat and liquid making the cake seem a bit more cottony.It appears that the separation of particles, exemplified by sifting, has more effect on the cake than the distribution of dry ingredients, on which whisking proves the superior method.If moisture is more important to you, you may want to skip the sifting process or add fat and liquids to compensate. .
The Purpose of Sifting
Two major things happen when you’re sifting flour.The second thing, which is supposed to happen but doesn’t really, is that the other powdered ingredients (baking soda, baking powder, different kinds of flour, or what have you) get mixed up and evenly distributed within each other.With cake, you want enough gluten to provide structure so that the cake rises, but not enough structure to impede chewing at all.if you can spread the flour out before you mix it into the water and fat, you let the fat get in-between a lot of the flour before the water mixes with it.What the sifter doesn’t do well is mix ingredients. .
Baking 101: Must We Sift This Flour?
You’ve seen the recipes… they read something like ‘sift together flour, baking soda and salt’, or they say something like ‘3 cups sifted flour’.Second things second: now it’s time to make and bake!Things like baking powder, baking soda, and salt will likely also go with the flour.Next: we ‘sift’… with a whisk!Whisk together all of the dry ingredients.Whisking is just the aeration we need to create in our flour.What if the recipe calls for 3 cups sifted flour?plunge that whisk right down into your flour container (because you have a big one now), give it a good whisking and then measure accordingly.Should I sift powdered sugar?Powdered sugar is one ingredient that will meet your laziness with lumps. .
What does sifting flour do?
Depending on the climate you live in, your flour might also develop lumps due to very high humidity and it can even attract small bugs, and sifting eliminates both of these problems.As long as you are gentle and don’t pack the flour very firmly into your measuring cup you shouldn’t have any problems when you use it, even if the recipe calls for sifting your flour after measuring. .
Ask the Test Kitchen: Measuring and sifting flour
Why do recipes call for the flour mixture to be added alternately with the liquids?ANSWER: These are the two most commonly asked baking questions to the Free Press Test Kitchen.Sometimes recipes call for sifting flour with other ingredients such as baking soda and powder and salt.Pay no attention to this because flour settles and can pack down when it’s shipped and stored.Once the flour is mounded into the measuring cup, level it off with an unsharpened edge of a knife or wooden Popsicle stick.If you’re mixing it with butter or cream cheese to make a frosting, you don’t have to sift it.“These steps prevent the fat in the batter from separating from the liquids, breaking the emulsion and releasing the air bubbles so essential to a cake’s goo taste and texture,” writes Sarah Phillips in “Baking 9-1-1.”.Finally add in the remaining one-half liquid followed by one third dry ingredients, doing so quickly.Adding these wet and dry ingredients this way also helps the air incorporated in by creaming and bubbles that have formed keep from popping.Here’s a recipe from our archives for Sour Cream Coffee Cake to try this technique on.In a small bowl, combine the baking soda and sour cream.In a large mixing bowl, cream together the butter and the sugar for 3 minutes.In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt.Add the eggs to the butter mixture one at a time, beating well after each addition.Bake for 35 to 45 minutes or until a wooden skewer inserted near the center comes out clean. .
Should You Sift Flour for Cookies?
When it comes to successfully baking delicate, delicious sweet treats at home, you might come across a recipe calling for sifted flour. .