Homemade Pancake Mix-Works For Me Wednesday


singing….“Nothing could be finer than the taste of Aunt Jemima in the mo-ho-ho-rning..”

Do you remember that? I actually paused here to look on YouTube to find that commercial, but couldn’t…I’ll look later.

Back to Aunt Jemima. Or Bisquick. Or any mix. (um…Pillsbury brownies, anyone? I’m not saying I like them or anything. Ahem.)

Here are the ingredients of original pancake mix as listed on Aunt Jemima’s website: INGREDIENTS: ENRICHED BLEACHED FLOUR (BLEACHED WHEAT FLOUR, NIACIN, REDUCED IRON, THIAMIN MONONITRATE, RIBOFLAVIN, FOLIC ACID), SUGAR, LEAVENING (SODIUM BICARBONATE, SODIUM ALUMINUM PHOSPHATE, MONOCALCIUM PHOSPHATE), SALT, CALCIUM CARBONATE (A SOURCE OF CALCIUM).

I made bold the bleach, the bleach, the sugar. By the way, that’s bleached WHITE flour, in case you weren’t sure. And the other stuff….basically other than the salt and the baking soda, none of it should be added to your food.

Flour should be whole wheat, (or other whole grain), and freshly ground. I began a post series on the benefits of freshly ground flour;I didn’t finish it, but hope to soon. But read here for the first part.

A box of pre made mix costs about $2. Your ingredients cost less than that. But to make it all from scratch takes too long, you say. So…why not make your own mix? A mix is just the dry ingredients pre-combined with instructions of what to add. I can do that!

I made a pancake supper last night, and while preparing my batter, I grabbed 2 ziplocks and made 2 mix bags. Easy as pie. Or should I say pancakes. 🙂

By the way, you can do the same thing for all kinds of mixes. Makes it easier to “whip something up.”

Homemade mixes are definitely something that work for me.

This post is linked to Works For Me Wednesday.

Is Wonderbread Making You Sterile? Part 2

ENRICHMENT OF FLOUR
In the 1940s, a flour enrichment program was instituted to compensate for wartime shortages of other foods. However, in the ‘enriched’ flour only the B vitamins – thiamin, riboflavin, and niacin – and the mineral, iron, were added. Flour ‘Enrichment’ implies a loss of nutrients and should not be equated with wholesomeness. For approximately 20 nutrients, there is an average loss of 70-80% in refined and enriched flour. When you eat this, you are placing your body at a disadvantage, casting a burden on the rest of the diet.

Prosser, WA. An old grain mill downtown near Twin City Foods

ADULTERATION OF FLOUR
Flour manufacturers want to make as much money as possible. For example, removing the germ not only prevents flour spoilage, it generates profits when sold to millfeed producers and pharmaceutical companies.
For centuries, bakers have known that ‘good quality’ baked goods could not be made with freshly milled flour, because the dough lacks strength and resilience to trap gas. Until the 20th century it was common practice of storing flour for months to allow oxygen to condition it.

However, as well as storage costs, spoilage and insects caused losses. Chemical oxidizing agents or bleaches were developed to produce the same aging effects in 24-48 hours. They cause one of two effects: oxidation of the gluten to help with rising, and bleaching of the yellowish carotene pigments which could have been sources of vitamin A.

Bleaching agents did not come into use without opposition. Harvey W. Wiley, Chief of the FDA early this century, won a Supreme Court decision outlawing bleaches, but he was forced out of the FDA, and the Supreme Court order was bypassed. The approval of chlorine dioxide as a bleaching agent was also protested by U.S. Army nutrition experts.

Today, in both Canada and the US, the addition of numerous chemicals to white, whole wheat, and rye flours is permitted. These include chlorine, chlorine dioxide, benzoyl peroxide, potassium bromate, ammonium persulfate, ammonium chloride, acetone peroxide, azodicarbonamide, ascorbic acid, l-cysteine, mono-calcium phosphate. Regulations also specify the acceptable levels. In many European countries the use of additives is almost completely prohibited. In Germany, for instance, chemical oxidizing agents were banned in 1958.

Nitrogen bichloride was one of the earliest bleaching agents. After 40 years of use, it was finally found to cause canine hysteria, and was outlawed. The currently most common bleaching agent is benzoyl peroxide. It must be neutralized by adding such substances as: calcium carbonate (chalk!), calcium sulphate, dicalcium phosphate, magnesium carbonate, potassium aluminum sulphate, sodium aluminum sulphate, starch, and tricalcium phosphate.

The most common maturing agent in use is potasssium bromate, and it is added with carriers such as calcium carbonate, dicalcium phosphate, or magnesium carbonate.

In addition to the chemicals permitted to be added to flour, many more are permitted to be added to bread before baking. Chemicals likely to be found in breads include: lecithin, mono- and di- glycerides, carragheenan, calcium sulfate, calcium carbonate, dicalcium sulfate, ammonium chloride, potassium bromate, calcium bromate, potassium iodate, calcium peroxide, azodicarbonamide, tricalcium phosphate, monocalcium phosphate, calcium propionate, sodium propionate, sodium diacetate, lactic acid, calcium stearoyl-2-lactylate, lactylic stearate, sodium stearyl fumarate, succinylated monoglycerides, ethoxylated mono- and all-glycerides.

In Germany, propionic acid, sodium propionate, calcium propionate, and potassium propionate have been banned as preservatives since March 1988. This was in response to earlier experiments which found that rats fed these substances developed tumors.

In addition to all of this, grains may be irradiated to help prevent spoilage and bugs. This also affects the nutrients, and not in a good way.

Have you read enough? I know I’m tired from typing (or even copying and pasting) all those chemical names. They certainly should have no place in our diets!

So, you say, you don’t eat white bread, so you don’t need to worry about hurting your body by eating all those chemicals? Well….

Stay tuned for part 3, where I tell you what can happen even from “whole wheat” bread and flour.

Most of the information presented in these posts came from Nutritional Characteristics of Organic, Freshly Stone-Ground, Sourdough & Conventional Breads by Judy Campbell, B.Sc., Mechtild Hauser, and Stuart Hill, B.Sc., Ph.D., P.Ag.

Is Wonderbread Making You Sterile? Part 1

I LOVE bread with butter; I think I could eat it all day long. When I became more health conscious, I switched to whole wheat, like most of you probably have. But most people don’t really think about the potential nutritional value of bread which makes up a major part of their diet.

How much bread do you eat? I bet more than you think. We have 5 children. All but the new baby eat sandwiches for lunch almost every day. Add one for me most days, and that’s TEN SLICES OF BREAD each week per person, and that’s just for lunches. On Shabbat we enjoy a sweet Challah loaf (or two), and we eat bread with a dinner meal at least 2 or 3 times a week. That’s a LOT of bread.

Are all whole wheat breads the same? Is the whole wheat flour you buy at the store really better for you than the white flour? Why would anyone be crazy enough to spend the time and effort to grind his own flour? I’m going to answer questions like these and more, and you will likely be very surprised at what you learn. I know I was. (Hint: see the title)

A Little About Wheat
The kernel of wheat is composed of the outer bran layer, the germ, and the endosperm. It is rich in nutrients, many of which are concentrated in the bran and germ. It contains the entire B complex, except for vitamin B12.

Wheat germ has a very high content of vitamin E. Vitamin E increases the good HDL cholesterol. Animal studies have also shown that vitamin E protects against free radicals released by the body when it is exposed to toxic chemicals.

During the milling process, steel rollers crush the grain, and the flour separated by sifters. The bran and germ are totally removed in this process. They are used in the production of animal feeds and by pharmaceutical laboratories for making diet supplements.

Whole wheat flour is produced by recombining ground bran with endosperm flour, but the germ is usually left out, because it would go rancid.

In the next post I’ll describe what gets done to the flour, after all the nutritious parts are removed, before you either buy it at the store to bring home, or it gets baked into bread that you buy. Stay tuned!
Most of the information presented in these posts came from Nutritional Characteristics of Organic, Freshly Stone-Ground, Sourdough & Conventional Breads by Judy Campbell, B.Sc., Mechtild Hauser, and Stuart Hill, B.Sc., Ph.D., P.Ag.