- 1 Is All-Purpose Flour and Plain Flour the Same Thing?
- 2 Which Are the Most Commonly Used Substitutes to Wheat All-Purpose Flour?
- 3 Benefits of Wheat-Free All-Purpose Flour
- 4 Some Delicious All-Purpose Flour Recipes
Generally speaking, all-purpose baking flour refers to wheat flour that is milled from hard red wheat or a blend of soft and hard wheat. As the name suggests, plain all purpose flour is designed for all types of baked goods like cakes, pizza dough, cookies, biscuits, bread, muffins, etc.
Is All-Purpose Flour and Plain Flour the Same Thing?
The truth is that these two terms mean the same thing even though I have to admit that in the beginning, I didn’t know that. Different countries have different names for all-purpose flour, so in Australia and in the UK this flour is known as plain, while in America and in Europe, this flour is known as all-purpose flour.
Unfortunately, regardless of the name, you really can’t benefit from the use of white flour on a daily basis. If you often eat products made of white plain flour, you may experience some harmful health effects. One of them is bloating that I’ve experienced myself and it was everything but not pleasant. For this and for many other reasons, more and more people are relying on the use of the various healthy options of plain all purpose flour.
Which Are the Most Commonly Used Substitutes to Wheat All-Purpose Flour?
This flour is made from dried starch extracted from Cassava (manioc) root. It’s extremely versatile and light, allowing you to consume it without feeling bloated. It’s ideal for those of you who are intolerant to gluten but also for all those of you who want to consume pastries the healthy way. This flour has a slightly sweet flavour and lacks some nutrients so it’s better to be combined with some other types of healthy flours.
Both brown and white rice flours are made of milled rice. These flours have no gluten in their core which makes them versatile, easy to use and obtain. In other words, when out of flour, you can basically mill rice in a coffee grinder or blender and that’s it. Now, since rice is high in arsenic, it’s best if you use it in a combination with other types of flour. That way, you’ll achieve the needed balance, allowing you to use it on a daily basis for baking bread or some other pastries.
This type of flour is made from washed and dried potato starch. Just like the aforementioned types of flours, this one is also white in colour. Although it has a slightly clumpy appearance, this flour is finely milled and is great for making and baking numerous goods. Potato starch is also best to be used in a combination with other types of flour which makes it great for a gluten-free diet.
Benefits of Wheat-Free All-Purpose Flour
Each of these flours offers a unique taste and nutrient profile. You can both invest and benefit from a ready-made plain all purpose flour mixture or you can experiment and make your own mixture that suits your recipes best. Either way, you won’t be wrong, as all of these flour combos are designed for making numerous goods.
Besides being gluten-free and wheat-free, these flours are also dairy-free, soy-free, lactose-free and egg-free, making them ideal for vegans as well. Usually, these flours are naturally low on salt and sugar, which is another proof of their diverse use.
Some Delicious All-Purpose Flour Recipes
- 900 gr tapioca flour
- 150gr sugar
- 355 ml coconut milk
- 2 tbsp rice flour
- 2 tbsp melted butter
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
Grease a 20cm square baking pan and pre-heat the oven to 180 °C. In a large bowl mix the dry ingredients and then add the wet ones and mix thoroughly. Pour the mixture into the baking pan and bake for an hour, or until the side of the cake are golden brown. Once done, allow it to cool, then cut it as you wish and serve it.
Vegan Triple Chocolate Cake
Ingredients and Directions for the Cake
- 65 gr buckwheat flour
- 60gr rice flour
- 35gr tapioca flour
- 30gr cocoa powder
- ½ tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 160gr sugar
- 2 tbsp ground flax seed
- ¼ tsp sea salt
- 300 ml non-dairy milk
- 100ml rapeseed oil
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
Preheat the oven to 180 °C and grease the pan approximately 22cm in diameter. You can also add baking paper over the greased pan. Mix all dry ingredients, add one-third of the milk and mix until there are no lumps. Add the rest of the milk along with the rapeseed oil and vanilla extract. Mix really well for about 3 minutes and after that pour it into the baking pan. Bake for about 45 minutes, but prior to taking it out, test the cake with a toothpick. If it comes out clean and dry this means that the cake is ready. Leave the cake to cool down.
Ingredients and Directions for Chocolate Topping
- 75ml non-dairy milk
- 130 gr dark chocolate
- 1 tsp agave syrup
Place the milk in a small pan and heat until it starts to simmer. Remove it from the heat, break the chocolate into small pieces and ass it to the pa. Mix well until the chocolate is completely melted and add agave syrup. Allow the mixture to cool to room temperature before topping the cake.
Ingredients and Directions for Buttercream Filling
- 160 gr icing sugar
- 3 tbsp non-dairy milk
- 1 ½ tsp vanilla extract
- 30 gr cocoa
- 80 gr margarine or butter at room temperature
Add the icing sugar, cocoa and margarine or butter and carefully mix them all together. Once the margarine has absorbed everything else and it turned out white, add the vanilla extract and one tbs of non-dairy milk. Mix well at a higher speed and add the rest of the milk to get the needed texture. Once done, place the buttercream in the fridge for at least 10 minutes.
Once the cake is cooled down, remove it from the pan/baking paper and carefully slice the cake horizontally in half. Place the one half on a serving plate and spread the buttercream over its top. When done, you can add the other half of the cake on top of the buttercream, make the topping, mix once again and with the help of a knife spread it out from the centre to the sides. To keep the knife from sticking, dip it in hot water and proceed until you have a smooth finish. Allow the cake to sit for at least 30 minutes after which you can serve it.