As most of us know by know, Americans usually measure ingredients by volume, while most of the rest of the world measures by weight. (We just LOVE to be different, don’t we?) While I grew up using cups and tablespoons, I’ve grown more comfortable measuring by weight. It’s a more precise calculation, especially when it comes to the exacting science of baking involving tricky ingredients like flour that seem change volume at will. I’ve gotten quite good at converting recipes back and forth between weight/ volume or metric/English, over the years, so I’d like to share with you some of my learnings.
|1 cup||16 Tablespoons||236 mL|
|1 Tablespoon||3 teaspoons||15 mL|
|1 teaspoon||5 mL|
|1 quart||4 cups||0.95 liters|
|1 ounce||28 g|
|1 pound||16 ounces||454 g|
European and American flours are different, and can cause some confusion in the kitchen. The weight of flour varies greatly depending on the kind, and using flour with the wrong gluten content can have disastrous results. I put together this handy chart to save you all the stress I’ve suffered over collapsed cookies!
|Francese||Italiana||Americana||Grammi per cup|
|t 45||farina 00||Cake/Pastry flour||115 g / cup|
|t 55||farina 0||all-purpose||125 g / cup|
|t 65||farina 1||high gluten||140 g / cup|
|t 150||integrale||whole wheat||120 g / cup|
|de grau||manitoba||bread flour||130 g / cup|
|epeautre||farro||spelt||100 g / cup|
|seigle||segale||rye||Light: 100 g / cup
Dark: 125 g / cup
|sarrasin||saraceno||buckweat||120 g / cup|
|Water||1 cup||236 g|
|Butter||1 cup||230 g|
|1 Tablespoon||14.5 g|
|1 stick = 1/2 cup
= 8 Tablespoons
|Milk, Yogurt, Cream, Buttermilk||1 cup||245 g|
|1 liter||1030 g|
|Baking powder and soda||1 Tablespoon||15 g|
|1 teaspoon||5 g|
|White Sugar||1 cup||200 g|
|Brown Sugar||1 cup||220 g|
|Powdered Sugar||1 cup||120 g|
Sour cream: Whip 1 cup fresh cream to form soft peaks, fold in 1 tsp of lemon juice and 1/2 tsp of salt.
Buttermilk: Stir together 1/2 cup skim milk with 1/2 cup yogurt and 1 teaspoon of lemon juice. Let sit for 5 minutes at room temperature before using.
Brown sugar: Beat together 1 cup white sugar with 1 Tbsp of molasses. If you can’t find molasses, you can use honey and a bit of water.
Where to shop:
A lot of American ingredients can be hard to find in Italy, which is why I’m compiling a list of my favorite places to shop, mostly in and around Milan. Please send on your suggestions for stores in other parts of Italy as well!
Esselunga: Supermarket where you can find maple syrup, sour cream, tortillas, and peanut butter.
Superpolo: Carries a large variety of foodstuffs from around the world with many american and English specialties. Here you can find just about anything, molasses, sour cream, maple syrup, peanut butter, pancake and cookie mixes, cranberry juice, etc, etc.
Kathay International Foodstores: A large International foods market specializing in Asian goods, but which also carries some North American and English foods, this is my favorite place to shop in Milan, I could spend hours browsing the shelves.
Plaza Latina: Specializes in Latin American products, you can also order items directly from the website.