Rice flour is a powder made from finely milled rice.
It is known as a substitute ingredient in bread and sweets from wheat flour.
Recently, rice flour products are becoming more popular in the market due to health trends such as a “gluten-free diet”.
What is the secret of rice flour?
TYPES OF RICE FLOUR
Rice flour is made from finely milled rice which is used in any ingredients in Asian countries such as rice noodles, rice bread, and sticky rice sweets.
In Japan, there are two main types of rice flour raw materials: non-glutinous rice and glutinous rice.
Non-Glutinous Rice Flour
Non-glutinous rice flour is milled white rice mainly used to make Japanese sweets such as dango dumplings and kusamochi.
Improvements in milling technology have made it possible to obtain finely refined rice flour, which can be used for various foods such as bread, pastries, and pasta noodles.
The types of white rice differ from region to region, for example, Japanese non-glutinous rice flour is made from Japanese white rice called uruchi-mai,
Rice flour is a neutral clear flavor and is easily digestible.
Rice flour has a clear neutral flavor and goes well with a variety of ingredients, so it can be used in any cooking. It is often used to thicken soups and sauces.
Not like when using potato starch, once the rice flour is sufficiently cooked, the slurry will last long.
Glutinous Rice Flour
Glutinous rice flour is also known as sticky rice and sweet rice, which you know it as mochi sweets with its sticky chewy texture, and taste.
Although the term glutinous in the name can be misleading, both rice flours are gluten-free.
Japanese glutinous rice flour is often called sweet rice flour, to be precise, there are mainly two different types of glutinous rice flour- Mochiko and Shiratamako as the most popular.
Shiratamako is made by milling glutinous rice (mochi rice) with water together, letting the milled rice rest until the milled rice precipitates in the water, and then drying it into a powder.
It is mainly used when making shiratama dumplings.
Thus, for those who try to use rice flour-especially when you make Japanese sticky mochi sweets for the first time, it is important to know these types of rice flour.
WHY DO YOU WANT TO USE RICE FLOUR THAN WHEAT FLOUR
Rice flour and wheat flour are made from different raw materials, and the big difference is that rice flour does not contain gluten, which is a type of protein.
Wheat flour is widely used as a raw material for noodles, bread, and sweets. When adding water to the wheat flour and kneading, gluten is formed then, it becomes a dough with elasticity and stiffness.
RICH IN AMINO ACIDS
Rice flour contains more amino acids compared to wheat flour.
“Protein” is synthesized with a component called “amino acid”. Amino acids are nutritional components that are the source of life, which are made up our body of 20 types of amino acids. It is responsible for various functions of the body.
The lack of Amino acids can cause a lower immunity system, digestive problems, depression, fertility issues, lower mental alertness, slowed growth in children, and many other health issues. As long as you have a normal diet, you will not be deficient in amino acids.
However, an unhealthy diet or excessive dietary restrictions can lead to amino acid deficiencies.
Also, when exercising vigorously, certain amino acids are consumed as energy, so it will be effective to supplement amino acids after a workout.
Especially, rice flour is high in “essential amino acids” that are not produced in our bodies.
Comparing the amino acid scores of rice and wheat, white rice flour is 65 and wheat flour is 41. (*Souce; Japan Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries)
RICH IN VITAMINS, PROTEIN
Rice flour is rich in vitamins and proteins such as B6, B12, and E.
Also, rice flour is a good source of dietary fiber. Therefore, rice flour can be expected to lower cholesterol, improve blood sugar levels, and help with digestion.
LESS ABSORBING OIL
Rice flour absorbs less oil than wheat flour. When using rice flour instead of wheat flour for deep-fry cooking, the coating will be crispy easily.
INCORPORATE RICE FLOUR FOR COOKING
Rice flour is a great substitute for wheat flour.
Rice flour is a gluten-free food, so it is a great option to corporate rice flour for people who are sensitive to or allergic to gluten. They can enjoy delicious bread, sweets, or noodles.
However, depending on the product, there is a possibility that wheat flour is mixed in with additives or during the manufacturing process, so please check with the manufacturer or products with a label.
When baking bakery with rice flour, you can get delicious bakery with a moist, soft, slightly chewy texture since the rice flour has high water content.
The bakery made with rice flour likely becomes dry and harder as the times pass due to its high water content as I said, reheat them in the microwave, and they will get back nice and soft.
Additionally, by blending the wheat flour and the rice flour with your favorite ratio according to your taste of texture, you can enjoy the best balanced soft and moist texture.
In the baking process, shifting the flour is often needed to remove the lumpy powder. when using rice flour, it is generally unnecessary to shift because the rice flour is silky, smooth, and dry.
This means the counter is less messy and you can reduce dirty used utensils.
As I mentioned, not only you can reduce the absorbing oil to the coating when you use rice flour but also you can get suer-crispy coating in deep-fry cooking.
Moreover, the deep-fried food hardly becomes greasy with keeping crisp even after cooling down.
Needless to say, I completely switch the wheat flour to rice flour for deep-fry.
It is so easy to make deep-fried food crispy and crunchy despite I have been looking for a double-fry method or adding potato starch for my Japanese fried chicken recipe.
No hesitation to use rice flour if you want to get a super crispy coating without trouble.
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