Flour in India
Hi everyone. I live in Delhi, India, where we don't generally get good flour for bread baking. I have seen a few posts about it on this site. What we usually get is maida, and it's called all-purpose flour, but it seems to be somewhat different from it too. The brand I usually buy states it has 10-11% protein.
I used to live in the Philippines where we get [what I assume is American-style] bread flour, all-purpose flour, etc. I used to bake there (mostly with bread flour) where I got pretty good at baking different types of breads with instant yeast. It seems to me that the regular store-bought flour here is such that I can't play around with it much. The only thing I can do is make soft breads that many times have more than a little oil, butter, yogurt, eggs, etc. I've tried baking with atta (Indian whole wheat flour) too, and the outcome is really not that great. I like soft breads but I also like to make a variety of breads and don't want to eat soft bread all the time.
Anyway, here, there seems to be a secret about the bakers about where to get good flour for baking. I have spoken to some bakers who bake and sell sourdough breads, and I was told that there you can get good baking flour here. I found a company who does sell what they call T55 and T65 flour (not Josef Marc.. they just add gluten and call it T55/T65.. how is this allowed?), but it has a strange and very distinct floral fragrance... no matter how I bake it. I don't get that nice aroma of freshly baked bread with it. It's also really expensive, so I'm not too happy with it.
Now I'm not sure where to get better flour or if it's only available at the industrial level - from millers who sell 25 kg sacks at a time. It seems to be a secret that no one wants to divulge, maybe only if I take expensive baking classes... I am hoping there is an Indian here who may know about the flour issue and situation here and have some information for me.
Thank you so much!