Another Flour Question

Baking By cupcakequeen Updated 25 Jun 2005 , 6:28am by auzzi

cupcakequeen Posted 17 Jun 2005 , 3:35pm
post #1 of 16

I know this has probably been asked (sorry).
Is cake flour the same as self-rising flour? I ask because a recipe that I want to use calls for half all purpose and half self-rising.
Now, I have cake and pasrty flour that doesn't say self-rising on it. BUt, at the grocery store last night, I saw a different brand and it said "self-rising cake and pastry flour" so......I don't know! icon_smile.gif

15 replies
jg556a Posted 18 Jun 2005 , 6:02pm
post #2 of 16

I use "Presto Cake Flour", on the box it tell you how to substitute their flour for other flours. I don't know of any other brand that does this, but this brand also has baking powder already in it. I hope this helps, if not maybe someone from your area will have better ideas.

SquirrellyCakes Posted 20 Jun 2005 , 4:37am
post #3 of 16

Well yes you can subsitute sometimes successfully, but it is nearly always best to use what is called for. Many Australian recipes call for plain flour (all-purpose), self-raising flour and cornstarch (they call it corn flour). There is a reason for that combination, it affects the way it rises and the tenderness of the cake. So if a recipe calls for a self-raising flour, stick to the ingredients to get the most accurate outcome.
Hugs Squirrelly Cakes

SquirrellyCakes Posted 20 Jun 2005 , 4:59am
post #4 of 16

Meant to add, regular cake or cake and pastry flour is not the same things as self-rising cake and pastry flour as the self-rising has leavening added to it. Leavening is baking soda or baking powder.
Hugs Squirrelly Cakes

auzzi Posted 21 Jun 2005 , 11:43am
post #5 of 16

All-purpose flour is intended for general household baking. The flour depends the wheats available in the region, and is made from a blend of hard wheat flours or sometimes a blend of soft and hard wheat flours. 9-12% protein content

Self-raising flour is all-purpose, cake or pastry flour with baking powder and salt are added. When making a homemade substitute, refer to the instructions on the baking powder container [ratios of flour to baking powder can vary]. 9-11% protein content

Pastry flour contains more protein than cake flour but is still low. It is a soft wheat flour. 8-9%

Cake flour has the least amount of protein [gluten] and is milled from soft wheat. 5-8% protein content

Cornstarch/Cornflour is sometimes added to cakes to give a firm texture or to reduce the gluten content of the flour mix.

To influence the gluten content of a recipe/product, different flour strengths are blended.


1 1/2 c butter
1 c self raising flour
1 c plain flour [all purpose]
1 c cornflour [cornstarch]
1 c sugar
4 eggs
4 ts rum
milk [opt]
Sift flours together.
Separate eggs.
Cream slightly warmed butter and sugar.
Add the eggs one by one [add 2 tb flour mix if curdles].
Stir in flours. If mixture seems stiff add 2-4 tb milk.
Put the mixture into the greased floured 9" bundt tin 180oC 60 MINS

SquirrellyCakes Posted 21 Jun 2005 , 2:18pm
post #6 of 16

Heehee and to further confuse the issue, in Canada, there is all-purpose flour or cake and pastry flour, it is not called cake flour here the way it is in the U.S. Corn starch is only used as a thickening agent in gravies sauces and such and in shortbread cookies but not in cake baking or regular baking.
It is all very interesting how different countries have different methods. The flour is quite different from one country to another also with the gluten count varying to some degree.
Hugs Squirrelly Cakes

cupcakequeen Posted 21 Jun 2005 , 9:22pm
post #7 of 16

Squirrelly's right. Here in Canada, they don't sell pastry flour seperate from cake flour. The package actually says "Cake AND Pastry Flour" icon_razz.gif
And then there is another brand that sells "Self Rising Cake AND Pastry Flour"!!! Driving me brand that sells just "self-rising flour". I am assuming that both our all-purpose and cake/pastry flours have both.
But, I thought someone out there might've known the answer to my original question.

aunt-judy Posted 21 Jun 2005 , 9:46pm
post #8 of 16

yes, indeed, my canadian sisters, our flour is stronger than their flour! icon_lol.gif our all-purpose (AP) flour is "stronger" (has a higher protein content) than AP flour that you can buy in the states. in fact, the bread flour that you buy in the US is more like our AP. the protein content is responsible for the strength (glutenen) and the stretch (gliadin) of the gluten that gets developed when the flour meets water and gets mixed up. stronger flour gives you a tougher (stronger and stretchier) dough that can handle things like leavening from yeast and still maintain its structure and be light and fluffy or dense and chewy, like with various breads. a softer flour (cake and pastry) gives you a "weaker" structure that gives you a nice tender cake or cookie product. as you can imagine, cornstarch (flour) and rice starch (flour) have very low protein content and thus make lousy bread, but because of their low protein they make the WONDERFUL, delicate, melt-in-your-mouth shortbread (cookies). i will consult my books tonight -- i know that at some point i made some notes about what to add to 8oz of plain (AP) flour to make it "self-rising". thumbs_up.gif

cupcakequeen Posted 21 Jun 2005 , 10:52pm
post #9 of 16

Wow! Thanks aunt-judy icon_smile.gif

CIndymm4 Posted 21 Jun 2005 , 11:40pm
post #10 of 16

To make self rising flour add 1 1/2 tsp of baking powder and 1/2 teaspoon of salt to 1 cup of all purpose flour.

SquirrellyCakes Posted 22 Jun 2005 , 2:19am
post #11 of 16
Originally Posted by SquirrellyCakes

Meant to add, regular cake or cake and pastry flour is not the same things as self-rising cake and pastry flour as the self-rising has leavening added to it. Leavening is baking soda or baking powder.
Hugs Squirrelly Cakes

I did for in Canada, anyway, self-rising flour has a leavening agent in it and is cake and pastry flour here with leavening. Then they also sell regular cake and pastry flour with no leavening in it. Use what is asked for, if is asks for self-rising flour, you are getting the self-rising cake and pastry flour.

SquirrellyCakes Posted 22 Jun 2005 , 2:24am
post #12 of 16

Cupcake Queen, where is the recipe from? That is the most important thing you need to know in order to know what product they mean. Recipes that are commercial or from various countries have different meanings for ingredients.
It seems to me I have also seen Self-rising All Purpose flour at the grocery stores here in Canada. Our flour is slightly different than the flour in the U.S. and the flour is milled from Canadian wheat, the brands are totally different too.
Hugs Squirrelly Cakes

cupcakequeen Posted 22 Jun 2005 , 4:41am
post #13 of 16

thanks for all the insight! icon_smile.gif The recipe is from the States, so I will have to adjust it accordingly. It's good to know all this info when making up my own recipes!

aunt-judy Posted 22 Jun 2005 , 3:09pm
post #14 of 16

weighing flour is a more reliable method of measurment than using cups (though there's nothing wrong with it, it's just not precise and consistent).

here's the notes i made for myself a few years ago to turn regular cake/pastry flour into the self-rising variety (now if i could only figure out that water-to-wine trick):
for every 8 oz (227 grams) flour add 1 1/2 tsp baking powder, plus 1/4 tsp salt. sift together several times to ensure dispersement. you will need to weigh the flour, but if you make up a batch first you can then use cup measurements if that's what your recipe gives you.

good luck! thumbs_up.gif

SquirrellyCakes Posted 22 Jun 2005 , 6:05pm
post #15 of 16

Well, American recipes are pretty much the same, if they are domestic type cookbooks. Most of our Canadian cookbooks will have the metric measurements and the conversions. You have to remember that 1 cup of flour by displacement in a measuring cup is not at all the same thing as eight ounces of flour by weight even though one cup has 8 ounces. Heehee, you also have to remember in any of the larger recipes that if the cookbook is American, their quart is only 32 ounces and ours is 40 ounces.
Even though there are ways of making subsitutions, I would tend to buy the product called for.
Also if the recipe calls for 1 cup flour, it doesn't mean 8 ounces by weight and vice versa.
Personally, I stick with whatever measurements are called for in the recipe. I weigh flour and such for commercial recipes and measure for domestic recipes. Otherwise you would have to take all of your regular domestic recipes, weigh out the common measurements and convert and then put all of the changes on the recipe. I find this a lot of work for nothing. An accurate baker's scale is extremely expensive here in Canada, you cannot just use a standard kitchen scale, they are not calibrated or accurate for this purpose.
It is true that weighing ingredients is the most accurate way and this is why it is the method used by commercial bakers. But for regular recipes out of regular cookbooks, I really don't see the slight variance as a problem. The recipes are written up to take this slight variance into consideration.
So your first clue that a recipe is commercial is when they call for 4 or 8 ounces or such of flour. When you use European recipes, they use some measurements that we do not use here. The Australians have slightly different cup and tablespoon measurements.
Hugs Squirrelly Cakes

auzzi Posted 25 Jun 2005 , 6:28am
post #16 of 16

In Australia:

Cake flour is a "speciality" flour, ie $$$$, so I worked out what produces a "softer" flour from local flours, and use that for it.

To make self-raising [rising] flour add 2 tsp of baking powder and no salt to 1 cup of plain flour. An adequate substitute but it is better to use self-raising and not plain flour and leaveners -don't ask what the difference is but there is one.

I was thrilled to purchase an American measuring set on Friday - now I have sets from Europe [decilitres], England [imperial and UK metric] and US [imperial] with, of course, Australia [old Imperial and Australian metric]. NO MORE calculating and approximating with international recipes!

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