Author Topic: High Gluten Flour in a grocery store?  (Read 13550 times)

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Offline ihavezippers

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High Gluten Flour in a grocery store?
« on: January 18, 2006, 05:59:31 PM »
Can I find High Gluten Flour in a regular grocery store?  I live in the NW(Seattle) so my options are Safeway, QFC, WinCo?  We also have speciality (i.e. rich people's) grocery stores like Trader Joes.

I would prefer to not have to mail order ingredients for making a good pizza...my wife already questions my infatuation with my weekly pizza labratory.  I think she will cut me off once I start mail ordering...
Thanks for your suggestions...the cheaper, the better (for those of you who know what WinCo is, you see why I included it in the list).
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Offline Pete-zza

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Re: High Gluten Flour in a grocery store?
« Reply #1 on: January 18, 2006, 06:54:29 PM »
ihavezippers,

It is highly unlikely that you will find high-gluten flour in ordinary supermarkets. However, where you are in the Seattle area, you may be able to find a Pendleton Mills high-gluten flour in a local Smart & Final outlet. In this regard, you may want to take a look at Reply #3 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,2293.0.html. If you can locate the Pendleton high-gluten flour, it will ordinarily come in a fairly large bag. But its price should be quite reasonable on a per unit basis.

There is also a Dawn Foods location in Seattle. I have purchased the King Arthur Sir Lancelot high-gluten flour (in a 50-lb. bag) from Dawn in the Dallas area, for less than $13, but not all Dawn Foods locations will deal with individuals on a cash-and-carry basis. If you go to this link and check the distributors section under Washington, you should be able to get a local telephone number for Dawn if you are interested in pursuing the matter further: http://www.kingarthurflour.com/professional/.

If all fails, you can always add vital wheat gluten (VWG), which is found in many supermarkets, to bread flour to increase the gluten level of the bread flour to approximate that of high-gluten flour.  However, the results won't be identical, and some people don't like the results from combining VWG with bread flour.

You may also want to check out this link for other possibilities: http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,1907.0.html.   

Good luck in your hunt.

Peter

Offline ihavezippers

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Re: High Gluten Flour in a grocery store?
« Reply #2 on: January 18, 2006, 08:14:38 PM »
Thanks...I'm waiting to hear back from Dawn Foods.  If nothing else, it looks like there are several Smart & Final outlets nearby, so I can get the Pendelton.  I've been using regular flour now for 6 months, trying to figure out why my crust always tastes so bad.  I just discovered this site today, so I am really looking forward to improvement in the crust department.

Offline Steve

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Re: High Gluten Flour in a grocery store?
« Reply #3 on: January 18, 2006, 08:38:54 PM »
If all else fails, use a good quality bread flour... you'll have excellent results!
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Offline scott r

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Re: High Gluten Flour in a grocery store?
« Reply #4 on: January 18, 2006, 09:53:32 PM »
ihavezippers,

The difference is subtle, but I am starting to prefer the texture of the crusts I get with king arthur bread flour over the king arthur high gluten.   This is definitely the case when I make high temp (750 degree) pies, but I might even prefer it at normal (550) temps.  The king arthur bread has a protien content at about the same level of some other manufacturers high gluten, so it is in effect a high gluten already.  The good news is that if you look around you should be able to find it in a normal grocery store.

Pete-zza, you seemed surprised when I mentioned my preference for the bread flour before, so I have been wondering if you disagree? 
« Last Edit: January 19, 2006, 02:38:51 AM by scott r »

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: High Gluten Flour in a grocery store?
« Reply #5 on: January 19, 2006, 09:46:02 AM »
scott,

I was a little bit surprised because the King Arthur Sir Lancelot flour has for many of us on the forum become the holy grail for the NY style, and for me it took so long to find a source of the flour in the 50-lb. bag that I pretty much cast aside other flours for the NY style. But you are entirely correct that the protein content of the King Arthur bread flour is higher than competing brands and equivalent to what others call their high-gluten flours. As you know, I have made the Lehmann dough with bread flour alone and also as supplemented with vital wheat gluten (VWG). I was happy with all of the doughs I made, and wouldn't hesitate to use any of the three flours for a NY style. In fact, whenever I find myself without the KASL, as when I at someone else's place, I use the KA bread flour, or I supplement it with VWG, which I am able to easily find at local supermarkets wherever I am.

As you may also know, I am on a mission to have our members find the KASL in the 50-lb. bags so that they can wean themselves off of mail-order of dinky and over-priced 3-lb. bags from KA itself.

Peter


Offline ihavezippers

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Re: High Gluten Flour in a grocery store?
« Reply #6 on: January 19, 2006, 12:17:21 PM »
When you all mention NY-style, I am getting the picture of the few pizzas I ate in NYC, all of which were very thin-crusted and crispy, if not hard-textured.  I am more interested in replicating the commercial style crusts I grew up on from Papa Johns/Little Caesars/Pizza Hut.  I've seen previous posts where people have gotten very close to replicating these crusts with KA, but your mention of the NY crusts scared me a little as I am set to go buy a 50-lb bag of the hi-gluten.

Scott, if I see the KA bread flour, I will try that first...I went to our WinCo last night and didn't see it however.

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: High Gluten Flour in a grocery store?
« Reply #7 on: January 19, 2006, 12:58:24 PM »
ihavezippers,

I believe you are referring to Randy's American style dough recipe. If memory serves me correct, Randy's preference was for high-gluten flour, although he did post a bread flour version also (see Reply #19 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,1698.0.html). I recently made a thin version of Randy's American style using all-purpose flour, and I recall that one of our members reported on using all-purpose flour in Randy’s original recipe, with good results.

Among the majors, I'm not sure what flour Papa John's is now using. According to Randy, they used high-gluten flour at one point, but now their website talks only of using a high-protein proprietary flour. According to Tom Lehmann, a dough and pizza expert, “...most delivery and carry-out pizzas are best served by a lower protein content flour, say in the 11.5 to 12.5% protein range. This prevents the finished pizzas from becoming objectionably tough and chewy at the time they are delivered to the consumer.” That suggests that Domino’s and PH may be using bread flour or a similar flour in terms of protein content.

The King Arthur all-purpose flour has a protein content of 11.7% and the King Arthur bread flour has 12.7% (both are higher than for competing brands).

Peter

Offline ihavezippers

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Re: High Gluten Flour in a grocery store?
« Reply #8 on: January 19, 2006, 01:14:56 PM »
Thanks Pete-za,
I am interested in the old-school commercial pizzas, not necessarily their recent innovations.  I am looking to about ten years ago and even before, when I was a teenager.  That's when I fell in love with pizza, and I believe thats when Papa Johns and Little Caesars were at their very best.
 I wish I could try out the high-gluten flour before I bought a 50lb bag of it, but judging from the pictures I've seen, it looks like the result I want to achieve.  Honestly, anything is better than the ordinary bleached flour I am using now. :-X

Offline ihavezippers

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Re: High Gluten Flour in a grocery store?
« Reply #9 on: January 19, 2006, 01:17:13 PM »
By the way Petezza, is there an original version of Randy's recipe floating around?  I've seen modifications and posts mention it frequently, but I have not seen the original recipe.


Offline scott r

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Re: High Gluten Flour in a grocery store?
« Reply #10 on: January 19, 2006, 01:47:40 PM »

Scott, if I see the KA bread flour, I will try that first...I went to our WinCo last night and didn't see it however.

I found it at whole foods when I was in California.  There may be areas of the US that don't have it.  I know that on my quest for trying as many brands of tomatoes and cheese that I can find I have been surprised at how many different grocery store chains were in my area.  At first I only knew about three or for, but within a short driving distance I was able to find double that amount.  Each store carries totally different brands of flour/cheese/tomatoes.

Your best bet is probably to look in the phone book and call ahead.  I was also surprised at how willing some of these stores were to go take a look on the shelves and save me the trip.  I have also had excellent results contacting manufactureres of the cheese etc. and finding out from them where it is sold in my area.

In the end I am confident that you will be happy with either the KASL or the KA Bread, so your best bet is probably to call around the foodservice distributors in your area and just pick up a 50lb bag which will save you a lot of money.

Offline scott r

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Re: High Gluten Flour in a grocery store?
« Reply #11 on: January 19, 2006, 01:57:06 PM »
scott,

I was a little bit surprised because the King Arthur Sir Lancelot flour has for many of us on the forum become the holy grail for the NY style, and for me it took so long to find a source of the flour in the 50-lb. bag that I pretty much cast aside other flours for the NY style. But you are entirely correct that the protein content of the King Arthur bread flour is higher than competing brands and equivalent to what others call their high-gluten flours. As you know, I have made the Lehmann dough with bread flour alone and also as supplemented with vital wheat gluten (VWG). I was happy with all of the doughs I made, and wouldn't hesitate to use any of the three flours for a NY style. In fact, whenever I find myself without the KASL, as when I at someone else's place, I use the KA bread flour, or I supplement it with VWG, which I am able to easily find at local supermarkets wherever I am.

As you may also know, I am on a mission to have our members find the KASL in the 50-lb. bags so that they can wean themselves off of mail-order of dinky and over-priced 3-lb. bags from KA itself.

Peter



I am surprised that you found the need to supplement the KA bread with the vital wheat gluten.  Again, I just haven't noticed that big of a difference between the two.  I am going to have to do some more serious side to side comparisons.  I do prefer a softer crust which probably explains my affinity for the Neapolitan style pizza. I guess the KA Bread might be a little closer to the texture of those high temp caputo crusts.

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: High Gluten Flour in a grocery store?
« Reply #12 on: January 19, 2006, 02:23:49 PM »
ihavezippers,

Somewhere along the way Randy's original recipe was removed. However, I had included a baker's percent version of the recipe in the opening post at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,1707.0.html. I did not include the specific instructions at that post, but if you go to Reply #5 in the same thread, you will find Randy's instructions that I excerpted from another post.

Peter

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: High Gluten Flour in a grocery store?
« Reply #13 on: January 19, 2006, 02:37:55 PM »
scott,

I had been long aware of the possibility of supplementing flours with vital wheat gluten (member giotto and I went back and forth on this a long time ago), so when I started all the experiments with the Lehmann dough formulation, which calls for high-gluten flour, I applied what I knew about VWG to that formulation so as to approximate the protein content of high-gluten flour but using bread flour. It didn't at all seem strange for me to do it because I had read countless posts at the PMQ Think Tank in which Tom Lehmann suggested using VWG to do the very thing I was doing with his dough formulation. I believe I mentioned in one of my posts at the Lehmann thread about doing a side-by-side comparison of bread flour and VWG-supplemented bread flour, but never got around to actually doing so.

Peter

Offline pizzageek

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Re: High Gluten Flour in a grocery store?
« Reply #14 on: January 19, 2006, 08:57:15 PM »
I have found King Arthur Bread flour at Whole Foods, Larry's and sometimes at Albertson's in the Seattle area. I have never been able to track down KASL flour at a retail location in the Seattle area. So, I just use the bread flour...

Offline scott r

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Re: High Gluten Flour in a grocery store?
« Reply #15 on: January 20, 2006, 01:12:18 AM »
Pizzageek, a lady at King Arthur told me that there was no Sir Lancelot available at the retail level.

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: High Gluten Flour in a grocery store?
« Reply #16 on: January 20, 2006, 08:13:31 AM »
I once called and spoke to a technical person at Bay State Milling about using vital wheat gluten to supplement flours (he thought it was a reasonable approach), and in the course of our conversation I asked him why high-gluten flour wasn't sold in supermarkets like all the rest of the flours. He gave me a knowing laugh and said that it would never happen. He explained that high-gluten flour is a baker's flour and bakers would never go to a supermarket to buy "little bags" of flour at inflated prices when they could get 50-lb. bags for not much more.

I subsequently attended a King Arthur baking demonstration outside of Dallas and raised the same question in a Q&A session. The fellow who answered my question was sympathetic with my plight (especially when I told him that it cost me close to $10, with shipping, to buy a 5-lb. bag of KASL from King Arthur), but the only solace he could give me was to ask supermarkets to carry the KASL. When I tried that, just out of curiosity, all I got was funny stares from people who had no idea of what I was talking about. I was told that they had never gotten a request like that before. The squeaky wheel doesn't always get the oil.

Peter


Offline Trinity

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Re: High Gluten Flour in a grocery store?
« Reply #17 on: January 20, 2006, 12:17:09 PM »
Should I get a bag and start shipping it out to you guys...


I could ya know.... :pizza:
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Offline sadiamond

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Re: High Gluten Flour in a grocery store?
« Reply #18 on: January 20, 2006, 12:29:58 PM »
Thanks guys. This site is excellent! Unfortunately you have created a novice fanatic, and my wife is getting really tired of pizza. Last night I made my first dough ever (after three previous consecutive nights trying Trader Joe's premade doughs). Tasted great, although I had trouble shaping it into a circle. Sort of ended up as a distorted elementary school rectangular pizza. Here are my questions:

1) Regarding what I did last night, I used a Type "0" flour purchased from A.G. Ferrari and Sons, a Bay Area Italian market (http://www.agferrari.com/index.php/item/department/Flour/item/5833.html?sid=M97UYSBvbQUMnt4l). Question, is this Italian flour essentially a hi-gluten flour? If not, what the heck is it, and are there recipes suitable for it? The recipe that came with the package was hard to follow. Could I use a recipe that calls for unbleached white, for example? I prefer my crusts thin and crisp, although not necessarily cracker crisp. I have a stone, peel, cook at 500 degrees, etc., etc.

2) I could not find hi-gluten flour at Whole Foods. For that matter, I couldn't find bread flour there either. They DO have something called "Gluten Flour," but when I asked the bakers there if that was similar to Hi-Gluten flour, they said they didn't know. It appears the answer is "no." Their "Gluten Flour" contains 23 grams of protein and 5 grams of carbs in one cup. Could one use this flour in a typical pizza dough recipe (if there is such a thing)?

3) I notice a lot of Sir Lancelot fanatics on these boards. So tell me, is it REALLY worth spending $14 in shipping to buy $10 worth, or 12 pounds of flour? Yes, I know it works out to be about the same price as that Type "0" flour I purchased from Ferrari.

4) I see recipes that call for 1 packet of active dry yeast. How many teaspoons or tablespoons does this come out to? I've seen some equivalents at 2 1/4 teaspoons, and a few at 1 tablespoon. Is the difference of 3/4 of a teaspoon significant?

Thanks!
« Last Edit: January 20, 2006, 12:59:12 PM by sadiamond »

Offline enob

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Re: High Gluten Flour in a grocery store?
« Reply #19 on: January 20, 2006, 01:11:06 PM »
I was able to find some Congra High Gluten flour at Costco in Chicago which i have been using which is not too bad(not sure if it's the flour or receipe or the procedure at this point, But i have the same question is All trumps and KASL REALLY worth the additional costin my case to produce  "NY style pizza".
« Last Edit: January 20, 2006, 01:14:18 PM by enob »


 

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