What is 00 Flour: When Should I Use It
When making your homemade pasta or dough for a freshly made pizza, knowing precisely which type of flour to use to get the best result can sometimes be hit or miss. The type of flour that you use is essential in determining the taste and texture of your pastas and bakes. With various varieties of flour available, picking the right one is crucial. So, you may want to know more about what 00 flour is and when you should use it.
What is Type 00 Flour?
00 flour is a specific type of flour that has been milled to a fine consistency and goes by the name of double zero flour. In the US, flour is categorized differently in some other parts of the world. Flours in the US are categorized depending upon how much protein is contained within them. Protein has an effect on gluten formation in your recipes meaning that different types of flours have different types of impact on your final products.
In Italy where 00 flour originates from and across Europe flour, is categorized not by how much protein is in the flour, but by how fine the flour is. Coarse type “2” flour is at one end of the scale with “00” which is powder-fine residing at the other end. In the US as an alternative to seeing numbered flours, flours are usually known by names such as all-purpose flour or bread flour. So, this will mean that many people assume that “00” flour is almost certainly low protein. However, the level of protein in “00” flour fluctuates quite widely depending on which type of wheat is used to make it. The majority of “00” flour in the US is made with durum wheat which has a mid-level of protein, similar to all-purpose flour.
There is more than one variety of double zero flour. They can have different names depending on how they are ground down and where they originate from. Certain areas across the world specialize in making their own 00 flour using locally grown wheat.
- Italian 00 flour. This type of 00 flour is an Italian style flour, perfect for use when making all varieties of pizza bases. Hard wheat is used to create this variety of 00 flour which has a slightly lower protein level than normal bread flour. 00 flour is ground entirely from the central portion of the wheat grain and this results in a very fine flour. This gives a smooth and elastic texture, which makes it perfect for the most delicate recipes where a light flour is required. Italian 00 flour is manufactured from painstakingly sourced Italian wheat, which has been very finely milled. This flour is also a good choice for making fresh homemade pasta too due to its fine texture.
- Caputo 00 flour. Caputo 00 flour is multi-purpose which can be used for a variety of purposes from making light and fluffy cakes to making light pastries. This 00′ flour also has a fine texture specifically because of how powder-fine it has been ground. This is also a 00 flour that is used extensively in Italy to make the freshest tasting pasta. The wheat which is used to make this flour is hard with a low protein level giving a soft flour.
- Tipo 00 flour. This is the finest grind 00 flour available and has 12.5 percent gluten. This means that it gives any dough that you are making lots of elasticity. Tipo 00 flour helps you to create a crust that will be chewy but not too rubbery. The flour gives the right amount of rise around the edges of your homemade pizzas, but it will not get charred in the oven. This flour is great to use if you are making tasty fresh portions of pasta or grissini due to its light quality.
When to Use Type 00 Flour
This type of flour can be found in most stores now, but it is better used for making certain things. Ground to an intense fineness, this flour is frequently used in homemade Italian pastas. This is because the fineness of the grind of 00 flour allows you to make dough that is easy to roll out to a very thin extent. It is necessary when making the best pasta at home to get the pasta dough smooth and thin, especially if you are running the dough through a pasta machine.
Likewise, 00 flour makes pizza with very thin crusts. If you are looking for a deep pan pizza, then it is best to use flour which is slightly more course. 00 flour makes for a really thin pizza base and crisps up in a hot oven quickly. Using 00 flour to bake with is also a great idea if you are making lighter cakes. It will give small soft cakes a lighter feel. If you are making a fruit pie in the summer for instance, it can give a crust a crispier bite. 00 flour can be used half and half with al purpose flour in a pie crust to get the right consistency.
It is not usually a good idea, because the grind is far too fine, to use 00 flour for making a good loaf of bread. You will not get a good enough rise to make an effective loaf. Generally speaking, you also should be using 00 flour in a really hot oven at all times too. You possibly will not want to use as much water in your recipes when using 00 flour as you would with all-purpose flour as it is easier to mix with. If you are new to using this kind of flour in your recipes, you will find that you will undeniably need to do some experimenting when trying it out.
00 flour is a delicate and finely ground flour which has many uses. As soon as you begin experimenting with this flour you will come to understand that you can make smooth pasta, and delicious pizza from home, which taste delicious.