Friday, May 13, 2011

Measuring Flour


I swear I'm not messing with you when I say a scale is important!

After I posted the recipe for my Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies (which, by the way, may be too good as I've almost eaten them all) I had quite a few people ask me the same question:

"Exactly how much flour is 315 grams?"

The answer? 315 grams! Now, I know that what people want is a cup measurement, as in 2 cups, 2 1/2 cups, 3 cups. You know. The problem is that I don't know the answer to that question in cups. I don't measure flour that way. When I say that a scale is one of my kitchen essentials, it's because I really truly rely on it. While I was working on this recipe, I measured out 400 grams of flour, and then when I was done I measured what was left so I could see how much I had used.

My measuring cups don't touch flour ever... well, until now.

I made a little vlog to illustrate why the scale is so important. As a disclaimer, I have to admit that when I see a vlog on someone's blog I generally read the text then skip it, so if you decide to do that, I'll post the gist of it after.

I talk funny. I don't know what that accent is! Also, this is like the crappiest video ever. I had to shoot it in sections and splice them all together. The important thing is this:

* a cup of flour is equivalent to 125g
* measuring flour with a scale means you get just what you want - 125g of flour
* measuring flour with a liquid measuring cup yields an actual amount of 150g flour
* measuring flour with a dry measuring cup, by scooping it from a bin yields an actual amount of 160g flour
* measuring flour with a dry measuring cup, using the "proper" scoop and level method yields an actual amount of 135g flour

So, if I tell you that you need 315g of flour and you figure that is 2.46 cups (thanks Wendy for figuring that out for me!) so you round up to 2 1/2 cups. Now, lets say you're a scoop from the bin kind of person. You just used 400g of flour which is almost 2/3 of a cup more flour than you need! Not only are you wasting flour by using too much, you're raising the probability that you're gonna get a batch of those dreaded Tough Cookies.

Even if you use the proper method of lightly scooping and leveling, you still will use about 22-25 grams too much. That's 30%!

So, when I say a scale is important, it really is. I usually figure out the conversion on recipes in my cookbooks starting with that 125g base, and then write the amount on the recipe so I don't have to figure it out again.

And that is the convoluted long answer to how much flour is 315 grams of flour. Please don't hate me if I told you to go get a scale when you asked. :)

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Blogger Jennifer said...

Awww, your accent is cute! You sound totally different than I 'pictured' you sounding. :)

Crazy the difference between the different methods, now I need to dig out my scale next time I bake!!

5:57 PM  
Blogger Maggi said...

You have a great voice! You also made a wonderful video. I got a lot out of it and will be purchasing a digital food scale tomorrow, so you've converted at least one person. :) I also learned that you need to put more videos of Bubba up here. That kid is a riot.

9:13 PM  
Blogger Becky said...

Have you ever watched Alton Brown on Food Network? He'd be right up your alley. He's all about the scale too. I have one of his cookbooks and had to buy a scale to make anything from it!

4:06 AM  
Blogger Mark, Shannon, Trey & Boston said...

lol I felt as if this was directed at me lol!

3:28 PM  
Blogger Muffy said...

I watched it-- the whole thing. It's good! I'm going to use my scale when baking from NOW ON!!!

1:51 PM  

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