It is not safe to eat raw flour. Food Poisoning Bulletin warns that raw flour can contain pathogenic bacteria, and eating it can cause illness. Along with avoiding the consumption of any uncooked flour, it is important to treat raw flour the same as other potentially dangerous uncooked ingredients. To prevent cross-contamination, cooks should always sanitize surfaces exposed to raw flour and wash their hands after handling raw flour.
The New York Times reports that a 2009 E. coli outbreak was traced to the consumption of uncooked store-bought, ready-to-eat commercial cookie dough, and that the raw flour in the dough was likely the cause.
Dr. Karen Neil, a medical epidemiologist working for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, explains that raw flour was the only raw agricultural ingredient in the packaged uncooked cookie dough. Because it did not undergo any process to kill pathogens, it likely led to the contamination of the cookie dough. The eggs used in the dough were pasteurized, which kills pathogens, and the sugar, molasses, margarine and baking soda also went through several pathogen kill-steps during processing.
The New York Times reports that, according to a 2008 study, 53 percent of college students admitted to eating unbaked cookie dough.Learn More
Plain flour is the same as all-purpose flour. It is an combination of hard and soft wheat and generally contains 8 to 11 percent wheat protein or gluten.Full Answer >
Flour is believed to have been produced for the first time during the Mesolithic or Neolithic Eras in the Middle East. The earliest forms of flour were made by grinding grass or wheat seeds between two stones.Full Answer >
Gram flour is another name for chickpea flour, garbanzo flour and besan. It is made by grinding dried chickpeas into fine, pale yellow powder. Some people who make gram flour, roast the dried chickpeas lightly first before grinding. Gram flour is commonly used in cooking Indian, Bangladesh and Pakistani dishes.Full Answer >
To sift flour without a sifter, pour the measured flour into a fine mesh strainer, and shake the strainer gently until all the flour falls through. If the flour still appears densely packed, use a whisk or fork to further aerate it.Full Answer >