How can I reuse or recycle out of date flour?
When I left my last but one job, I was given a juicer as a leaving present. Since I abhor fruit in its many evil forms, we swapped the fancy be-tapped blender for a breadmaking machine since we love bread and thought it would be a darnsight more useful.
Oh, we had such good intentions. We made bread at least twice a week and made pizza dough too. We made quick white bread and long slow wholemeal. We used the timer so we’d wake up to nice fresh bread in the morning. Ah, happy days.
Then after about a six weeks, like I guess about 95% of people that own a breadmaker, the novelty wore off and suddenly we just had an unused appliance taking up half the worktop and a couple of big bags of buy-one-get-one-never-use flour in the cupboard.
Then, recently, I found I had a bit more time on my hands and I decided to make a pizza base-esque garlic bread. I turned to our good old flour mountain with glee. Our now out of date flour mountain. Our now out of date with ick, some tiny crawling things in it. The glee wore off and I learnt a good lesson about buy-one-get-one-free products and novelty devices.
I’m not obsessive about best-before dates but I draw the line at cooking with tiny crawling things. So what non-culinary uses are there for old flour?
- Reduce: A bay leaf in the flour bag (or even better, clean, dry, airtight jar) apparently helps deter the little creepy things.
- Reuse: Freeze the flour to kill the creepy things then use the flour to make salt dough or paper glue.
- Recycle: Flour can be composted – just don’t dump it all in the bin in one heavy layer as that will cut down the necessary airflow. Fork it through the other material instead.
- See the comments below for more suggestions and ideas
(Photo by melaniemar, c/o www.sxc.hu)