Tips for Using Milled Flax
Recommended usage levels
Flax meal can be used to substitute for flour in baked goods. The meal contains soluble fibres, namely flax gum. The gum’s properties resemble those of gum arabic, a widely used stabilizer. The gum has been shown to improve loaf volume, oven spring, and keeping quality, and it significantly improves bread characteristics. Optimal usage levels are about 15 per cent (flour basis) or 8 per cent of the total dry-ingredient weight.
Like whole flax seeds, milled flax is quite stable. In a 1996 study conducted by the Canadian Grain Commission and the University of Manitoba, flax exhibited no deterioration in flavour, odour, or nutritional value when stored at room temperature 25°C (78°F) for up to four months.
Milled flax has excellent water-binding properties, which enhance its ability to extend shelf life in products. The water added to a formula should be increased by an amount equivalent to 75 per cent, by weight, of the flax flour added. This recommendation applies in most baked goods.
Milled flax may replace 10 to 15 per cent of the flour used in yeast-bread formulations. Increase the yeast added by 25 per cent to maintain the same proof time, texture and consistency.