Flour and stuff

04/14/2010 - 16:35

Please can someone tell me what I need to buy if available .... What is the equivqlent of self plain flour ? Self raising?......if it exists... Can you get baking powder? and if you can what is it called.... Bicarb of soda?...can you get it here (think yes to that )....but dont know...... Hoping to bake a cake..... ok, you guessed, am not a cook......but not a simple thing here... Any advice appreciated..


For cakes, I find "farina per torte" best. You can find it in any supermarket.  It is plain.  I have sometimes seen self-raising flour in the Di Meglio chain but not for a while. Funnily enough, though, yesterday they had a new line - "farina per torte con lievito". I got some but haven't used it yet.  Sometimes you can find baking powder in Di Meglio supermarkets, too.  In ours it wasn't with the cake stuff but with the Uncle Ben's rice!  Failing baking powder, just add the contents of a sachet of "lievito ", which you can get vanilla-flavoured or not , to your flour.  Hope this helps. Patz

In my (very limited) experience of baking cakes here, I've had the best results with flour labelled as being, as Patz says, per torte or per dolci. It's not hard to find self-raising plain flour, just look for "con lievito" on the label. Baking powder comes in little sachets and it, too, can be found in supermarkets of any size. From memory, the most common brand is called something like Pane Angelli. You'll probably find it somewhere near the flour along with cake decorating stuff, artificial colouring, flavourings and little packets of powdered sugar intending for dusting. (If you want larger quantities of powdered sugar to make icing for a cake, your best bet is Lidl.) It took me some time to see bicarbonate of soda in supermarkets, since it wasn't with the baking powder and other baking stuff. Eventually, I found it lurking near the mineral water and water-flavouring syrups. It's sold in 500 gram and 1 kilo boxes, so don't look for the little containers you see in British shops. By the way, I know it doesn't apply to cake-baking (unless you like very robust cakes), but you'll probably have difficulty finding dried yeast in most Italian supermarkets. They do, however, sell fresh yeast and it's somewhere in the chilled cabinets. If you really want dried, Lidl is again the best bet. Al

There is a full glossary in the "IL BUONGUSTAIO" CERCLE, a group which is open to everyone. If you have a look under the letter F you will have a list of different types of "farine". You will also find that bicarbonate is called "bicarbonato di sodio" and baking powder is "lievito in polvere". Many useful words there and if you know any that do not appear, you can add to the list. It is a "wiki".

Thank you all for good advice...  Bought flour with picture of cake and tart on bag.  Found some sachets of 'lievito del pasticciere' too.  Made a carrot cake that smelt good when cooking and does resemble a cake....Proof is in the eating tho'....sure the mascapone - sweetened with vanilla flavoured icing sugar will help it slip down a treat...