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American vs Canadian ingredients


Darienne
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prasantrin's post:

FWIW, flour in the US is different from flour in Canada, period. That's probably one of the reasons you're not getting good results. If you head down to the US in the near future, I would suggest picking up some flour there (particularly whatever flours Shirley suggests using), and trying the recipes again. You'll probably see a difference in the final product.

I found this answer from presantrin very interesting. I did not know that American flour would differ from Canadian.

However, living as we do in both Canada (outside Peterborough, ON, 100,000 environs)and the US (Moab, UT, 5,000), I have found the following...this may pertain to Utah only, or even just Moab only...

* cane sugar comes in regular large bags in Moab, both white and brown. In Peterborough, it comes in tiny expensive bags. Also little Moab carries more speciality baking sugars than we have in Peterborough.

* American butter tastes different from Ontario butter. Less salt I think.

* baked goods in Moab are much sweeter than in Peterborough. Noticed this first when buying a angel food cake in an emergency. Was astounded at the sweetness thereof.

* it's easier to find dairy products in Moab without endless 'non-dairy' additions. For instance, Cream of Weber cream contains:...cream! I have never seen anything like this in Peterborough.

A local LCBO (liquor board) staff told me that items, like Bailey's Irish Cream, have a different formula when made for Ontario and the States.

I wonder how many items there are available which might have a significant difference in outcomes in cooking and baking. ???

Darienne

 

learn, learn, learn...

 

Life in the Meadows and Rivers

Cheers & Chocolates

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It's all very subjective, I guess.

Ther are thousands of different types of wheat, and certain varities grow best in certain climates. What grows well in the praries (long harsh winters, short summers, intense August) would probably not grow very well in Utah.

Dairy can also be very regional as well. Here in Vancouver I have the choice between the mega-dairys (carangeen gum, cellulose gel, cellulose gum, 33% mf in whipping cream) or cream from a small, local organic dairy containing only cream, 35% mf. (come in a real glass bottle with foil cap and a 10 cent rufund) Both are available at most grocers, price difference is about 35% more for the smaller organic dairy's stuff. I hate salted butter with a passion and don't know what the maximum amount allowed is, I'm guessing around 2-3% by weight.

I have found, going through recipies, that the further south the recipies come from, the more sugar is in there. Any recipie I try out for the first time--and I don't care which magazine it comes from or which cookbook, however famous, I automatially cut back by 10-15% on the sugar.

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I'm American and I live in Ontario. I hate Canadian flour. Every single time I bake something with it, it doesnt come out right. I buy Gold Medal or KA in MI( its also cheaper). I like double acting baking powder without aluminum so I buy Rumford in MI.

I think the cottage cheese is different too. The one I like ( Michigan Brand) is small crud and kinda dry. Whenever I buy cottage cheese here, I find it too wet.

I also noticed when baking for xmas that the White Chocolate Chipits contain cocoa butter and the Nestle white choc. chips in MI dont( same company too).

I usually buy my unsalted butter in the States too. Its cheaper and I like the sticks.

Here is another huge pet peeve. Most of the "ice cream" in Ontario is actually Frozen Dessert( exclusing hagan daz and Ben and Jerry's). Very little real dairy involved. I ended up calling Bryers once after noticing it( after bringing it home). I was told that customers wanted less trans fat so thats why they changed it. Bullshit I say, dairy is very expensive in Canada.

I did notice that Edy's( east of the Mississippi) and Dryers( west of Mississippi)( same company) is using a lot of fake dairy too.

I cringe whenever I see the No Name Coolwhip( in Ontario). The label says " an Edible oil product". It doesnt say that in MI.

I can't think of anything else at the moment.

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I cringe whenever I see the No Name Coolwhip( in Ontario). The label says " an Edible oil product". It doesnt say that in MI.

Some things like this may have more to do with different labeling requirements than different formulas.

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I also noticed when baking for xmas that the White Chocolate Chipits contain cocoa butter and the Nestle white choc. chips in MI dont( same company too).

That one is genuinely weird. For example, Wikipedia says white chocolate is "a confection of sugar, cocoa butter, and milk solids"; in general, I have understood it to generally be cocoa butter + sugar + product. OTOH, I am Canadian :biggrin:

I usually buy my unsalted butter in the States too.  Its cheaper and I like the sticks.

Won't solve the price problem, but Loblaws does sell it in sticks.

I cringe whenever I see the No Name Coolwhip( in Ontario).  The label says " an Edible oil product".  It doesnt say that in MI. 

It may not say it, but it still is ...

In my experience, baked goods from American recipes can, sometimes, be tricky; certainly because of the ingredients, but also because clearly the taste varies. American desserts are sweet.

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Having an aunt who shuffled between Charleston, SC and Quebec City for many years (owned with her husband, a native of QC, a small hotel and in Charleston a B&B) I had many discussions about the types of pastries, cakes and etc., she either baked at the B&B or supervised baking of at the hotel.

She admitted that many things baked in the south used more sugar but she thought it was due to the belt-tightening after WWII that Canadians used less sugar. Her husband said that pre-war pastries, cakes, and etc., were much sweeter than post-war when England was on very tight rationing and it was considered patriotic to cut back on consumption too.

My aunt also felt that southerners like cakes that are more moist and one of the ways to insure this is sugar, which retains moisture easily and also retards staling.

(One of the complaints about lower sugar bakery products is dryness and rapid staling.)

I know several Canadians who routinely drive across the border to shop for certain foods in the US - Niagara for one - because they want a particular brand that is either not sold in Canada or is different in some way. One is a native of Canada who lived in Nashville for some years and developed a taste for cornbread, southern style. She can't get the brand she prefers (Bob's Red Mill) in her town so shops for it in NY. She also has a problem with buying Softasilk cake flour at home. Stores carry SwansDown but she says it doesn't work as well.

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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Funny. :blink: I didn't even know that this topic was up and functioning. My computer crashed while I was composing it and I thought it was lost in the mists of time forever.

One horrible Canadian dairy fact is the inclusion of sugar in cream and whipping cream products. Whoops I said products...I mean in the actual dairy carton.

And I too like the butter in sticks. So handy for measuring.

Also American and Canadian labelling practices are different. The States is far more strict about their labelling requirements. And this new law, concerning country of origin, evidently does not apply to Canada.

Still....when I wanted to buy dark chocolate couverture in Utah, they would sell it to me only in a case and imported from France. The man said he could not guarantee to be able to sell the rest. This love of Americans for milk chocolate.....??????? :raz: (that smilie means I don't like it, except when it's Gianduja :wub: )

Darienne

 

learn, learn, learn...

 

Life in the Meadows and Rivers

Cheers & Chocolates

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I don't get the problem with buying butter in sticks in Ontario. I don't exactly live in the Culinary Capital, but I never have any trouble buy salted or unsalted butter in sticks in any grocery store I've been in.

Edited by Marlene (log)

Marlene

cookskorner

Practice. Do it over. Get it right.

Mostly, I want people to be as happy eating my food as I am cooking it.

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One horrible Canadian dairy fact is the inclusion of sugar in cream and whipping cream products.  Whoops I said products...I mean in the actual dairy carton.

Canadian cream regulations:

===============

Cream

a) shall be the fatty liquid prepared from milk by separating the milk constituents in such a manner as to increase the milk fat content; and

(b) may contain

(i) a pH adjusting agent,

(ii) a stabilizing agent, and

(iii) in the case of cream for whipping that has been heat-treated above 100°C, the following ingredients and food additives:

( A ) skim milk powder in an amount not exceeding 0.25 per cent,

( B ) glucose solids in an amount not exceeding 0.1 per cent,

( C ) calcium sulphate in an amount not exceeding 0.005 per cent,

( D ) xanthan gum in an amount not exceeding 0.02 per cent, and

( E ) microcrystalline cellulose in an amount not exceeding 0.2 per cent.

===========================

So, if it does contain sugar in the form of glucose, it is less then 0.1 per cent. It can be difficult to obtain whipping cream that is not ultra pasteurized with stabilizers; there are some organic ones available which are *extremely* expensive.

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I don't get the problem with buying butter in sticks in Ontario.  I don't exactly live in the Culinary Capital, but I never have any trouble buy salted or unsalted butter in sticks in any grocery store I've been in.

I can get it where I live, but its 2.00 more than the block of butter. Ridiculous!!

So, its over 5.00 for 1lb of butter in sticks.

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I can get it where I live, but its 2.00 more than the block of butter.  Ridiculous!! 

Wow. With one exception (*), around here it is only 30 or 40 cents more or something like that. Still over $5 though. At least where I shop.

(*) The exception is very specific: Costco will sell salted, block butter much cheaper. If you want unsalted, you pay a lot more. If you want blocks, you have to shop elsewhere.

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One horrible Canadian dairy fact is the inclusion of sugar in cream and whipping cream products.  Whoops I said products...I mean in the actual dairy carton.

Canadian cream regulations:

===============

Cream

a) shall be the fatty liquid prepared from milk by separating the milk constituents in such a manner as to increase the milk fat content; and

(b) may contain

(i) a pH adjusting agent,

(ii) a stabilizing agent, and

(iii) in the case of cream for whipping that has been heat-treated above 100°C, the following ingredients and food additives:

( A ) skim milk powder in an amount not exceeding 0.25 per cent,

( B ) glucose solids in an amount not exceeding 0.1 per cent,

( C ) calcium sulphate in an amount not exceeding 0.005 per cent,

( D ) xanthan gum in an amount not exceeding 0.02 per cent, and

( E ) microcrystalline cellulose in an amount not exceeding 0.2 per cent.

===========================

So, if it does contain sugar in the form of glucose, it is less then 0.1 per cent. It can be difficult to obtain whipping cream that is not ultra pasteurized with stabilizers; there are some organic ones available which are *extremely* expensive.

Obviously you have all the regs at your finger tips. We now buy all our dairy products which we can from a regional dairy and and their whipping cream contains no glucose solids at all. The standard whipping creams all contain glucose in some form or other.

A few years ago, in a former life in which I hadn't had whipping cream or desserts of any kind for some years, we decided to have an old stand-by for our anniversary. Homemade scones, with strawberries and whipped cream. I blithely bought a container of whipped cream and was horrified to taste it and found it sweet without my help. That was the start of learning about what had happened to dairy products whilst I slept. :sad:

I have not been able to buy sour cream in Canada which tastes remotely like sour cream should. The Utah dairy's sour cream borders on acceptable. Their cream contains only cream. Their whipping cream is lovely. I don't know why, but I accept and am grateful for it.

Darienne

 

learn, learn, learn...

 

Life in the Meadows and Rivers

Cheers & Chocolates

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Obviously you have all the regs at your finger tips.

No, I had previously looked it up. I don't care for the taste (actually, its more of a mouth feel thing...) of the stabilizers in the common whipping cream. I was curious as to the regs and looked them up.

I blithely bought a container of whipped cream and was horrified to taste it and found it sweet without my help.

Ahhhh ... a "container of whipped cream" is a very different beast then "whipping cream" (or, as the reg calls it, cream for whipping). The latter falls under fairly strict dairy regulations; the former, being a more "finished" product, probably does not fall under the dairy regulations and can contain anything food safe. Might depend on exact wording on the container.

I have not been able to buy sour cream in Canada which tastes remotely like sour cream should.

Try Western, it seems to be better then most. It has quite a bit more flavour. Also, make sure you buy full fat; the lighter stuff tastes funny. My g/f is from Romania and is horrified by what most call sour cream here; she says the Western stuff is passable. Tis true though, good sour cream is hard to come by. Yogurt too, though the balkan stuff is pretty good.

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Western sour cream is the best thing to come along for a long time. I will go out of my way to find a store that sells it. I finally convinced the manager at Sobeys to stock it. They were stocking other Western products so I knew they could get it.

Marlene

cookskorner

Practice. Do it over. Get it right.

Mostly, I want people to be as happy eating my food as I am cooking it.

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Western sour cream is the best thing to come along for a long time.  I will go out of my way to find a store that sells it.

Their cream cheese is the best you can find at regular supermarkets too, in my opinion anyway. Wish they sold it in smaller tubs with the full fat.

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Obviously you have all the regs at your finger tips.

No, I had previously looked it up. I don't care for the taste (actually, its more of a mouth feel thing...) of the stabilizers in the common whipping cream. I was curious as to the regs and looked them up.

I blithely bought a container of whipped cream and was horrified to taste it and found it sweet without my help.

Ahhhh ... a "container of whipped cream" is a very different beast then "whipping cream" (or, as the reg calls it, cream for whipping). The latter falls under fairly strict dairy regulations; the former, being a more "finished" product, probably does not fall under the dairy regulations and can contain anything food safe. Might depend on exact wording on the container.

I have not been able to buy sour cream in Canada which tastes remotely like sour cream should.

Try Western, it seems to be better then most. It has quite a bit more flavour. Also, make sure you buy full fat; the lighter stuff tastes funny. My g/f is from Romania and is horrified by what most call sour cream here; she says the Western stuff is passable. Tis true though, good sour cream is hard to come by. Yogurt too, though the balkan stuff is pretty good.

Sorry that I did not get back to you. For some reason I am not receiving any notification from this thread although I am noted as doing so.

* When I said a container of whipped cream...I meant to say simply a waxed cardboard type container of whipping cream...the 'stuff' to make whipped cream. It was not any kind of finished product at all.

* Is Western a Canadian product and if so, perhaps they don't sell it in Eastern Canadian, my region. We always use full fat dairy ...I keep typing products...ingredients and we do use the balkan yoghurt only.

Thanks for all the input. I'll check back later and not wait for notification.... :sad:

Darienne

 

learn, learn, learn...

 

Life in the Meadows and Rivers

Cheers & Chocolates

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Western sour cream is the best thing to come along for a long time.  I will go out of my way to find a store that sells it.  I finally convinced the manager at Sobeys to stock it.  They were stocking other Western products so I knew they could get it.

Thanks Marlene,

We are off to Utah in a couple of days so I cannot check our local Sobeys but will do so when we return. For sure! :wink:

ps 1 (We live 35 minutes from the city and are not planning to go in unless obliged to)

ps 2 And I'll check on the cream cheese also :smile:

Edited by Darienne (log)

Darienne

 

learn, learn, learn...

 

Life in the Meadows and Rivers

Cheers & Chocolates

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The real reason I opened this thread this morning was to ask:

What IS the difference between American and Canadian flour? My DH thought that maybe most Canadian flour might be made from Durham wheat, a wheat specially devised to grow in our colder growing climate....but he then said he had no idea if any of that was correct. I have no idea.

Can anyone answer this question? I admit I haven't gone to Google about it. Trying to pack....

The other issue is sugar: I have written elsewhere about Canadian sugar, how it never states what it is...beet or cane...and how the prevalent thinking is that, if it doesn't say 'cane', then it is beet.

This morning I went to the Redpath website. We have always purchased Redpath. It's there, right in the center of it all. Canadian. Everywhere. In profusion.

Aha! I said. Their website doesn't say what's in their sugar. :cool: But then I went to the FAQs and guess what? Right there is print and I am pasting it in:

All of our products are made from pure cane sugar.

I have mud on my face. Or rather, cane sugar. :laugh: My apologies, Redpath!

Darienne

 

learn, learn, learn...

 

Life in the Meadows and Rivers

Cheers & Chocolates

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The real reason I opened this thread this morning was to ask:

What IS the difference between American and Canadian flour?  My DH thought that maybe most Canadian flour might be made from Durham wheat, a wheat specially devised to grow in our colder growing climate....but he then said he had no idea if any of that was correct.  I have no idea.

Can anyone answer this question?  I admit I haven't gone to Google about it.  Trying to pack....

The other issue is sugar:  I have written elsewhere about Canadian sugar, how it never states what it is...beet or cane...and how the prevalent thinking is that, if it doesn't say 'cane', then it is beet.

This morning I went to the Redpath website.  We have always purchased Redpath.  It's there, right in the center of it all.  Canadian. Everywhere.  In profusion.

Aha!  I said.  Their website doesn't say what's in their sugar.  :cool: But then I went to the FAQs and guess what?  Right there is print and I am pasting it in:

  All of our products are made from pure cane sugar.

I have mud on my face.  Or rather, cane sugar. :laugh: My apologies, Redpath!

Canadian flour differs from american by the protein levels.

Redpath and most Canadian sugars are cane - some places out west where they grow sugar beets can get beet sugar. When I wanted some beet sugar to try I had to buy european sugar from the Punjab market in Hamilton.

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* Is Western a Canadian product and if so, perhaps they don't sell it in Eastern Canadian, my region.  We always use full fat dairy ...I keep typing products...ingredients and we do use the balkan yoghurt only. 

Western Dairy actually comes out of Brampton, Ontario. I order it for my store every year for Passover. Their sour cream and pressed cheeses are great.

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* Is Western a Canadian product and if so, perhaps they don't sell it in Eastern Canadian, my region.  We always use full fat dairy ...I keep typing products...ingredients and we do use the balkan yoghurt only. 

Western Dairy actually comes out of Brampton, Ontario. I order it for my store every year for Passover. Their sour cream and pressed cheeses are great.

Liberty and Western Creamery are part of the same company - which may explain why it's so much better than the competition.

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Redpath and most Canadian sugars are cane - some places out west where they grow sugar beets can get beet sugar.  When I wanted some beet sugar to try I had to buy european sugar from the Punjab market in Hamilton.

And Rogers sugar, which is what we tend to see around here, has a beet sugar plant in Alberta that produced 150,000 tonnes of sugar a year.

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Redpath and most Canadian sugars are cane - some places out west where they grow sugar beets can get beet sugar.  When I wanted some beet sugar to try I had to buy european sugar from the Punjab market in Hamilton.

And Rogers sugar, which is what we tend to see around here, has a beet sugar plant in Alberta that produced 150,000 tonnes of sugar a year.

Ah yes, I remember the Rogers sugar from when I lived in Lethbridge. Funny when people described the yellow tinge and need to skim that you get when you boil water with beet sugar it seemed familiar - and now I understand why. I've learned a lot in the past few years - thank you eG!

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Thank you all for the excellent information. :smile:

Kerry, please. American flour contains more / less protein? So this makes what kind of difference in baking what?

Next time in Sobeys I'll get Western dairy.

Perhaps I have never used beet sugar at all.... :hmmm:

(still not getting any notification of this thread although still noted as receiving said)

Darienne

 

learn, learn, learn...

 

Life in the Meadows and Rivers

Cheers & Chocolates

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