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Sweet Potato Flour

SWEET POTATO FLOUR

Sweet potato flour consists of ground sweet potatoes. It is low in protein and a good source of resistant starch which is excellent for digestive health and blood sugar management. Because it is low in protein and high in starch, it is best used in batters and coatings, or as a thickener for sauces and gravies. Sweet potato flour has a slightly sweet taste that can blend well with many foods both sweet and savory. It can be substituted up to ¼ - ⅓ of the total flour, with the lower amount used in foods with more structure, such as bread. Because the protein content is low, more xanthan gum is needed to provide structure, and less water may be needed in the recipe. Sweet potato flour can be used in unleavened baking as well as in yeast or chemically leavened baking, but more yeast or baking powder/baking soda may be needed.

The sweet flavor of sweet potato flour complements many cuisines, and the low protein content makes it more suitable for more tender baking applications such as cakes, muffins, pie crusts or some cookies. If some structure is needed such as with muffins, more xanthan gum may be needed. Sweet potato flour contains high amounts of starch and can be successfully used to thicken gravies and sauces. Sweet potato flour is a successful for batters and coatings and is especially useful in pancakes and quick breads and muffins such as banana bread.


CHICKPEA FLOUR

Chickpea flour is made by grinding chickpeas (garbanzo beans). It is a good source of B vitamins and minerals as well as protein. It is high in resistant starch, which is excellent for digestive health. It is a high protein flour and therefore most suitable for products that require a lot of structure, such as bread. The slight beany flavor can be complementary in savory foods. It can be substituted for APF in many recipes up to ¼ - ⅓ the total flour with no significant changes to the recipe except increased nutrition. If it is being blended with wheat flour in a yeast-raised product like bread or pizza crust, you may need to knead the dough a little longer to get to the proper texture. Chickpea flour can be used in unleavened baking as well as in yeast or chemically leavened baking.

Chickpea flour is often used in Middle Eastern and Indian cooking and the flavor complements the spicing of those cuisines. Chickpea flour is good for savory baking such as pizza crusts as well as crackers. It can be used for some sweet baking, but its high protein content and stronger flavor makes it only suitable for sweet goods with more structure and stronger flavor, such as sweet pumpkin bread. Because of its high protein content, more moisture is usually needed to keep the product from being dry, but the high amount of resistant starch means you will need a little less xanthan gum to help replace the gluten from wheat flour and it can be successfully used to thicken gravies and sauces as well as make thicker batters and coatings.


CASSAVA FLOUR

Cassava flour contains ground cassava root. The cassava root is harvested, peeled, dried and ground to some flour. It is low in protein and a good source of resistant starch, which is excellent for digestive health. Cassava flour has a slightly earthy/nutty taste that can blend well with many foods both sweet and savory. It can be substituted up to ¼ - ⅓ of the total flour, with the lower amount used in foods with more structure, such as bread. Because the protein content is low, more xanthan gum is needed to provide structure, and less water may be needed in the recipe. Cassava flour can be used in unleavened baking as well as in yeast or chemically leavened baking, but more yeast or baking powder/baking soda may be needed. The resistant starch in cassava flour forms a structure that is quite strong but does not typically allow for much rise (such as in cakes or breads). However, this structure is very helpful in some products such as tortillas, pancakes, or cheese puffs. One of the other products of cassava root is tapioca which has a pasty or gummy texture like cassava flour. Cassava flour can absorb high amounts of water so care should be taken to not add too much, even if the batter looks somewhat dry.

The earthy/nutty flavor of cassava flour complements many cuisines, and the low protein and high starch content makes it suitable for many baking applications. Xanthan gum may be needed to help the rise of products that are yeast or chemically leavened. Cassava flour contains high amounts of starch and can be successfully used to thicken gravies and sauces, but care should be taken to not use too much due to the texture. Cassava flour can be successful for batters and coatings and is especially useful in thin coatings such as tempura batter.


LUPIN

Lupin flour is made by grinding lupin seeds (legumes). Lupin flour is uniquely high in protein and fiber and is very low in starch, making it an excellent choice for low-carb or keto-friendly cooking. It is a good source of nutrients such as minerals and antioxidants. It is a high protein flour and therefore most suitable for products that require a lot of structure, such as bread. The slight beany flavor can be complementary in savory foods. It can be substituted for APF in many recipes up to ¼ - ⅓ the total flour with no significant changes to the recipe except increased nutrition. If it is being blended with wheat flour in a yeast-raised product like bread or pizza crust, you may need to knead the dough a little longer to get to the proper texture. Lupin flour can be used in unleavened baking as well as in yeast or chemically leavened baking.

Lupin flour is good for savory baking such as pizza crusts as well as crackers. It can be used for some sweet baking, but its high protein content and stronger flavor makes it only suitable for sweet goods with more structure and stronger flavor, such as sweet pumpkin bread. Because of its high protein content, more moisture is usually needed to keep the product from being dry. It can be successfully used to thicken gravies and sauces and is especially good in thick batters such as those used to fry fish or chicken or crisp products such as crackers and some cookies.


XANTHAN GUM

Xanthan gum is a polysaccharide (polymer of sugars) that is used in many food systems to help strengthen and stabilize the structure of food. In gluten-free baking, the xanthan molecules act to make the dough stretchy and elastic, like the way gluten does in wheat flour. It is used at very low levels (usually much less than 1%) as it is very effective. Xanthan is effective at holding in water, so it can help gluten-free baked goods maintain a softer texture even as it adds structure.