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Old 09-27-2011, 07:15 PM   #1
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Whole wheat flour - expiry date?

I have a bag of unopened whole wheat flour that I've had a couple of years. Does w/w flour spoil or go rancid? It seems white flour keeps nearly forever.


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Old 09-27-2011, 07:38 PM   #2
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Yes it does go rancid. As it's whole grain, the oils in the flour will turn. I recommend you keep whole grains in the freezer.

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Old 09-27-2011, 08:57 PM   #3
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Okay, lesson learned. I've always kept flax seed, brown rice, nuts, etc. in freezer but it didn't occur to me that whole wheat flour would spoil. I'll just buy smaller quantities from now on. Would the same apply to beans? Thanks for your advice.
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Old 09-27-2011, 08:57 PM   #4
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I would rec keeping ANY bag of flour in the freezer, or at least the fridge. I recently opened some AP that was in the cabinet for a few months, and it was infested, not with weevils, but with fruitflies. The AP stuff in my well sealed copper canister on the counter always seems OK.

Dried beans have an expiration date written on them. As long as I use them before that, they've been OK.
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Old 09-28-2011, 01:46 AM   #5
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From now on, I'm not buying anything unless I need it for a recipe and then only buy the quantity I need. It's amazing how time goes by and stuff just sits in the cupboard. It is stored in glass sealers with tight fitting lids to keep out insects but I guess that doesn't prevent it from going rancid. Out go the beans, couscous, lentils, short grain rice, steel cut oats, wheat (berries?). I use barley (pot, pearl, flakes) nearly every day so I know it's fresh but from now on it will be stored in the fridge, too. What about cornstarch? I buy a large container as I use a lot at Christmas to make shortbread. Will it keep until next Christmas?

It will be nice to have the extra space in the cupboards but I will lose precious fridge space. I hope dried fruit (raisins, dates, prunes) in screw top jars are okay kept in the cupboard.

There is a very good bulk food store nearby so it should be easy enough to buy in exact amounts from now on. Thanks for the nudge to get me going.
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