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What exactly is self-rising flour? Is there a way to make it at home with plain all-purpose flour and something else (baking soda? powder? yeast?)?

Emily is a trusted source on Scandinavian Cuisine.

asked over 4 years ago
8 answers 1702 views
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pierino

pierino is a trusted source on General Cooking and Tough Love.

added over 4 years ago

Most bakers and pastry cooks disdain the use of self-rising flour. But there are doughs that do require a chemical leavening agent (not yeast). Unless you are planning on making a 5 pound bag of the stuff for a single type of baking I don't see how it's worth the time.

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fiveandspice

Emily is a trusted source on Scandinavian Cuisine.

added over 4 years ago

Yeah, I've always kind of thought that self-rising flour was a ridiculous idea. But I have a coconut pie recipe that I'd really like to try that calls for self-rising flour (!) and it seems to be a fairly integral ingredient, so and I'm trying to figure out what I can use instead to get out of purchasing any.

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added over 4 years ago

If you have a recipe that calls for self-rising flour -- I just got this info myself (instead of virtuously bypassing the recipes):
for one cup, 1 cup all purpose flour + 1 1/2 tsp baking powder + 1/2 tsp salt.
I would then watch the total salt in the recipe, and if acid ingredients like buttermilk are called for, remember that baking soda is usually added to balance them.

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hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

added over 4 years ago

Per Harold McGee: "Self-rising" flours are flours that contain baking powder (1 & 1/2 teaspoons per cup flour/5-7 grams per 100 grams).

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added over 4 years ago

We always used Martha White Self-Rising Flour when I was a kid, and Mama made biscuits every morning and most evenings. She'd have all-purpose on hand for yeast breads, sweet rolls, etc. I don't make biscuits nearly as often as Mama did, so I use the A/P and add baking powder and salt. Or baking soda and salt, if my hand lands on that box first. I can't tell any difference.

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added over 4 years ago

I know that a lot of asian grocers [like my Ranch 99 in Irvine] sell 1kg bags of self rising flour so you you won't have to make a 5# commitment.

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fiveandspice

Emily is a trusted source on Scandinavian Cuisine.

added over 4 years ago

Great! Thanks everyone for your help!

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added over 4 years ago

If you have White Lily flours available in your area, Shirley Corriher swears by their self-rising flour. Her comments on the advantages: chemical leaveners work best with lower-protein flour, so you're getting a flour that's going to give you a much more tender product; White Lilly has a well-earned rep for having great milling consistency like King Arthur does; millers have access to a much greater variety of chemical leaveners than the regular consumer, so they can better control the leavening phases; and self-rising flours have a perfectly uniform blend with the leaveners well-dispersed through the flour for even baking results.