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Flour Mixtures and Raising Agents

Flour mixtures are made by using flour as the main ingredient. Other ingredients may be added with liquids determining the consistency as either stiff or dropping.


Types and Functions of Raising Agents

A raising agent is air or substance which is used to make flour mixtures light. The agents include air, steam,and carbon IV oxide. Raising agents all work in the same way by raising the flour mixtures. When the agents are added into moist flour mixtures and subjected to heat, the agents become lighter and rise, stretching the gluten strands in the flour. On further heating, the flour mixture sets in an expanded form.


A cake rising in the oven as it bakes

Objective

By the end of the lesson, you should be able to explain how raising agents work.

Methods of Introducing Raising Agents into Flour Mixtures

Different raising agents are introduced into flour mixtures using different methods. These are:


1. Mechanical


2. Physical


3. Biological


4. Chemical

Objective

By the end of the lesson, you should be able to explain how raising agents work.

Quizzes




 

Mechanical

Mechanical Methods of introducing raising agents into flour mixtures include:


1. Sieving


2. Rubbing-in


3. Creaming


4. Beating


5. Whisking

Sieving

Air as a raising agent is introduced into flour mixtures mechanically by sieving it.



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Rubbing in

Fat is rubbed into the sieved flour using the finger tips. It should be raised above the bowl to incorporate air.


Creaming

Fat and sugar are creamed together in a bowl using a wooden spoon. A damp cloth is placed under the bowl so as to keep it steady on the work surface.


Beating

Air is introduced into flour mixtures by beating using a wooden spoon.


Whisking

This is introducing air into a flour mixture by whipping eggs using a rotary whisk, balloon whisk or an electric mixer.


Physical

Steam raises mixtures by a physical action. Steam is produced when water in a mixture reaches boiling point. As steam forces its way up through the mixture, the gluten strands stretch and set, holding the mixture in that raised form. For steam to be effective as a raising agent, high temperature and a high proportion of liquid are necessary.


Biological


In this method, yeast cells are used to produce carbon IV oxide. When yeast cells are exposed to sugar, warmth and moisture, fermentation occurs. As a result, carbon IV oxide and alcohol is produced. During cooking, the carbon IV oxide raises the flour mixture while the alcohol escapes.



Loaf of bread made using yeast

Chemical

When sodium bicarbonate or baking powder are incoporated into a moist flour mixture and subjected to heat, a chemical reaction occurs producing carbon IV oxide.

Food Items Made from Different Flour Mixtures

Flour mixtures can be used to make a variety of food items. These include: pancakes, drop scones, banana fritters, cakes, pastries, chapatis, bread and bread rolls, doughnuts, mandazi, biscuits and cookies.

Objective

By the end of the lesson, you should be able to explain how flour mixtures can be used to make a variety of food items.


Pancakes

Pancakes are made from thin batters. They can be used as tea accompaniment.

Ingredients

  • 120g Plain Flour
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 Litre (250g) milk/ water
  • 1 table spoon melted fat (Optional)
  • Fat/ oil for frying

Method


Preparation Tips

Pan cakes can be both sweet and savoury. Sweet pancakes can be sprinkled with sugar, honey, syrup, treacle sprinkled with a few drops of lemon juice, then served with tea or any other hot beverage. Savoury pan cakes can be filled with cooked minced meat, fried eggs, mushrooms, tomatoes, grated cheese and served as a snack.

Drop Scones

Dropscones are made from their thick batter. They can be used as a tea accompaniment and as a snack.

Ingredients

  • 200g baking flour
  • 2 tea spoons baking powder
  • 2 dessert spoons suga
  • 2 eggs
  • 250ml milk/ water
  • Pinch of salt
  • 30g margarine/ butter

Method


Cakes Mixtures

Cakes are used as desserts, for special occasions such as birthdays and accompaniments to beverages.

Rubbed-in

Ingredients

  • 200g Plain Flour
  • 2-2 1/2 level teaspoon baking flourOR
  • 200g self raising flour
  • 100g granulated sugar
  • 100g margarine / butter
  • 1/4 level teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • About 5 tablespoons milk/ water
  • A few drops of vanilla essence

Method of Baking Rubbed-in Cakes

Creamed Cakes

Ingredients

  • 200g Plain flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 100g butter/ margarine
  • 100g sugar
  • 2 level teaspoons baking powder
  • 2-4 tablespoons milk/ water

Method of Baking Creamed Cakes

Meat Pies

Meat pies can be made using the short crust pastry.

Ingredients

  • 200g plain baking flour
  • 100g (/2 cooking fat/ 1/2 margarine/lard)
  • 1/2 level tsp salt
  • 8 tbsp water

Filling

  • 100g minced meat
  • 1 onion
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 bunch dhania
  • Seasoning

Oven temperature 200C (400F) or Gas no. 6

Time 25minutes-30minutes

Method


Preparation of the filling

As the pastry relaxes, prepare the filling as follows:


Doughnuts

Doughnuts are made from yeast mixtures.

Ingredients

  • 200g plain wheat flour
  • 2 tsp fine sugar
  • 2 tbsp margarine
  • 2 tsp yeast
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tbsp milk/water
  • Deep frying oil

Method


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