The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Good replacement for Robin Hood flour...?

runelady's picture
runelady

Good replacement for Robin Hood flour...?

My mother has always used Robin Hood flour for baking. Apparently they stopped making it a few months ago and now she is using King Arthur's flour. When she made her Thanksgiving rolls this year, the rolls did not rise like they normally do. She thought it may have been another issue, so she made a smaller batch and baked them again, but the same thing happened. She is absolutely convinced that it's the flour.

Has anyone else encountered this issue? What is a suitable replacement for Robin Hood flour since King Arthur doesn't seem to be doing the trick?

idaveindy's picture
idaveindy

Which Robin Hood flour did she use?   There are several.

https://www.robinhood.ca/En/Products/Categories

 And which King Arthur flour did she try?

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I also noted on the Robin Hood web site that they add both amylase and ascorbic acid to their AP flour.  

Whereas King Arthur uses  malted barley flour instead of amylase, and no ascorbic acid.

I'll take a stab in the dark, and guess that it's the lack of ascorbic acid in the KA flour.

There are other possibilities, too.

One of the RH flours has yeast already added.  Or maybe she was using a RH "mix" and not a straight flour.

Or perhaps the protein percentage of the KA flour didn't match the RH flour.

 

runelady's picture
runelady

I'm pretty sure it was the bleached flour in the green and white bag. She's located in the U.S. She said she doesn't really see a difference with anything else she makes... just the rolls.

idaveindy's picture
idaveindy

I was hoping you could specify whether it was the All Purpose, or Best for Bread, or "Bread and Roll Mix", or "Best for Bread Homestyle."

But as Deb said, it looks like it will be back on shelves soon.

runelady's picture
runelady

It would be the all-purpose. I just called a grocery store in her area to ask them when it would be back, and they stated that they can't even order it. It "disappeared" from their ordering system.

idaveindy's picture
idaveindy

It looks like JM Smucker sold off the Robin Hood brand in the US.

You can still buy imported Canadian Robin Hood flour on Amazon.   Assuming the Canadian RH  flour is the same formulation as the American RH flour.

I checked Walmart's web site.  their online catalog is often erroneous.  But... according to Walmart's ingredient list for American Robin Hood All Purpose Flour in the white and green package, it did/does _not_ have ascorbic acid.  That info did not come from a picture of the package, it was in text, which could have been copy/pasted erroneously. 

Meanwhile, Canadian Robin Hood All Purpose flour in the yellow package does have ascorbic acid.

Ascorbic acid increases the rise.

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Whoops! I just checked the Walmart site again. American RH flour in the white and green bag is gone.  There is just a third party selling Canadian RH flour in the yellow bag.

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Bottom line: different brands of flour behave differently.  So if the amount of rise is the issue, I would recommend using a tad more yeast, perhaps a tad more sugar, or more rise time.  

deblacksmith's picture
deblacksmith

Based on online news reports there was a recall of Robin Hood All Purpose flour in the US in October but there should now be new supplies.  There was no recall in Canada and Robin Hood flours are one of the major brands in Canada.  In both cases Robin Hood is owned by the J. M. Smucker company.

All of that said I have never heard of anyone having a problem with King Arthur Flours as there are one of the top brands for scratch bakers in the USA.  KA doesn't produce their own flour - at least as far as I know it is contract milled and packaged for them but must meet their standards.

It seem highly unlikely that your mothers problem is with the flour but guessing I would bet on the yeast.

As a note, I am a descendant of J. P. Smucker a first cousin of the J.M. Smucker but I have no money connection with the J. M. Smucker company.  I am just always get ask if I make jelly.  I am an engineer by training, now retired but also a hobby baker.