It’s fall baking season…we’re seeing a steady flow of cookies, pies, cakes and breads. In our baking and cooking classes, I’m often asked about using bleached versus unbleached flour. My answer is “would you purposely ingest chlorine or peroxide?” That is how bleached flour is made.
Why chemically bleach flour in the first place? Well it happens much faster than the naturally occurring desired whitening of flour which over time happens naturally. Natural takes time, and well time = $$ = profit loss. Unbleached still has more viable protein and nutrients in it and therefore has a somewhat shorter shelf life. However that bleached stuff lasts, and lasts.
FYI–bleached flour has been outlawed in Europe and many Asian countries because ingesting chlorine and peroxide may cause cancer and is poison to the human body. Chlorine also can inhibit the ability for yeast breads to raise to their glorious potential because it is known to kill yeast, the very fungus needed to raise those glorious breads.