Measuring flour - problems!

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Joined Apr 3, 2008
So I'm making my Mom's recipe for kourambiedes, a greek holiday cookie.  The problem is my mother's way of measuring things is a little.... loosey goosey.  For example she measures the powdered sugar in saucer fulls.  That's right, saucer fulls.  How much sugar is that, I don't know.  Just stick a saucer in the sugar and whatever piles on is a saucer full.

- 1lb butter at room temp

- 1lb crisco at room temp

- 10 cups of all-purpose flour (but not real cups, she uses whatever coffee or tea cup suits her).

- 3 small coffee saucers of confectioners sugar (yup)

- 3 egg yolks at room temp

- plenty of almonds, roasted with a spoonful of butter

- a little bit of vanilla extract

- a pinch of baking soda dilluted in lemon juice

No you must understand, my mom makes the best kourambiedes!  I have used this recipe a few years ago but I don't know how I got through it.  So here's my problem.  I need to double this recipe.  But I don't even know what I'm doubling.  Can I get 20 "cups" of sugar out of a 5lb bag of flour?   The recipe also adds that the flour should be sifted but I don't know, before I measure it or after?
 
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Joined Feb 1, 2007
The short answer, KK, is no.

A real cup (i.e., 8 oz liquid) of granulated sugar comes in at 7.25 ounces. 20 of those is 145 ounces.

Five pounds comes in at only 80 ounces (5 x 16). So you'd need two of them.

However, a coffee cup is usually 5-6 ounces. So a 5-lb bag will still be slightly short.

The recipe, however, calls for confectioner's sugar (which is why it's sifted, btw) which weighs less per given volume.

That said, I think you're fingers ran ahead of your thoughts. Didn't you mean 20 cups of flour?

There are several conversion figures used. But typically, a cup of flour is considered to be 4.5 ounces. So you'd need a five pound bag plus a couple of heaping cups to achieve your goal.

It's not unusual, especially among older home cooks, to measure like that. Even not so old ones---see, for instance, Nigella Lawson. Although it's a real PITA, I have, in collecting recipes through the years, actually gone through the measuring process. Grandma uses a handful (or, to put a point on it, a saucer plate), and I stop her and measure how much that is.

I don't do candy, or even much baking other than bread. But I suspect that precision is not one of the criteria in that sort of recipe. Close enough is close enough.
 
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 Can I get 20 "cups" of sugar out of a 5lb bag of flour?
Wow I can't believe I wrote that.  My problem is that I only have one bag of flour.  I also have a whole container of flour in my pantry but I can't remember if it's bread flour or not.  Can I use a cup of bread flour to make up the difference?
 
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Joined Feb 1, 2007
I don't see why not. You're diluting the higher protein with 19 cups of all purpose. So it's not going to make a real difference.
 
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Joined Aug 13, 2006
Koukou!!!  if you can use the single recipe, you can double it really easily!  JUST DO IT TWICE!!!!!  I'm lousy with math, but this works perfectly every time!
 
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Update, the cookies came out fine.  I had to use a little bread flour to make up the difference but it didn't affect the cookies in a negative way.  Now what does one do with 8 batches of cookies?
 
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One wraps them well, puts them in a box, and ships them to Kentucky for proper disposal.
Didn't you read my above post?  I said that they came out "fine."  Now would I send you anything if it was just fine?  I don't think so.  Besides, baking is not my thing, it doesn't represent me in anyway.  I'll send you some giouvetsi next time I make some lol, now that I make real good.
 
 
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Why did you double the recipe if you didn't plan on sharing?

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mimi
 

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