You probably know the name White Lily as the go-to flour Southerners swear by for the most tender biscuits.
Now that Southern institution has introduced its first new flours in 130 years.
Partnering with Shepherd’s Grain, a group of wheat growers in the Pacific Northwest, White Lily has created three new flours: Wheat and Red Grapeseed Flour Blend, Wheat and White Grape Seed Flour Blend, and All-Purpose Wheat.
The non-GMO wheat is grown sustainably. You can even plug in a code printed on each bag of flour into the Web site to find out information about the farmers who grew the wheat for your specific bag of flour. For instance, I tried a sample of the Wheat and Red Grapeseed Flour Blend, which was made with wheat grown by Cherry Creek Ranch in Washington, Spokane Hutterian Brethren Inc. in Washington, and RattleSnake Ranches in Idaho., all of whom have operated for generations.
Grapeseed flour is gluten-free, but of course not when it’s mixed with all-purpose flour, as is the case with these blends. But what’s great about the blends is that they have been formulated so that you can use them 1:1 in place of regular all-purpose flour in any recipe. Grapeseed flour also is purported to be high in antioxidants.
I was most eager to try out the Wheat and Red Grapeseed Flour Blend because of its subtle purple color.
I remembered a great-sounding Gourmet magazine recipe that I’d always been meaning to try. “Individual Grape and Vin Santo Cakes,” originally published in January 2009, sounded like the perfect treat to showcase that flour. After all, the cakes are studded with red grapes, and this flour is made of the seeds from Cabernet Sauvignon grapes. (The Wheat and White Grapeseed Flour Blend features grapeseed flour made from Chardonnay grapes.)
I substituted the 1 1/2 cups plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour called for in the recipe with the same amount of White Lily Wheat and Red Grapeseed Flour Blend.
The cakes, baked in jumbo muffin tins, emerge from the oven quite tender and moist. The tops get crisp and extra sweet from a sprinkling of sugar before baking.
You can really taste the fresh orange zest that’s stirred into the batter. The sweet wine lends a honeyed taste. The grapes are a hidden, plump, juicy surprise inside. And the red grapeseed flour blend gives the cakes a darker hue as if they had whole wheat flour in them, but without the added density and heaviness.
Individual Grape and Vin Santo Cakes
1 1/2 cups plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour, divided use
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 stick unsalted butter, softened
2/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar, divided
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon grated orange zest
2/3 cup Vin Santo or other sweet wine
1 1/4 cups seedless red grapes (7 ounces)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees with rack in middle. Generously butter a jumbo pan with 6 large cups, and dust with flour, knocking out excess.
Whisk together 1 1/2 cups flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
Beat butter with 2/3 cup granulated sugar using an electric mixer at medium speed until light and fluffy. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in zest.
Add flour mixture in 2 batches alternately with wine, beginning and ending with flour and mixing until just incorporated.
Toss grapes with remaining tablespoon flour, then fold into batter.
Divide batter among muffin cups. Sprinkle with remaining 2 tablespoons granulated sugar. Bake until golden and springy to the touch, 18 to 20 minutes. Cool in pan 5 minutes, then loosen with a knife and remove. Cool to warm, 5 to 10 minutes more.
Note: Cakes can be baked in 12 (1/3-to 1/2-cup) muffin cups. Baking time will be slightly shorter, 16 to 18 minutes.
From Gourmet magazine, January 2009
More Grape Recipes: Minute-Oatmeal Puffs with Anise and Grapes