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I would like to make a (dry) pancake mix in a large batch, and then store it in the fridge. I have done this before with no problem, and would now like to do the same thing, but add dried buttermilk. I was wondering if the dried buttermilk will store well with other ingredients, while stored in the fridge.

The other ingredients include oil. The full ingredients are:

4 cups King Arthur white whole wheat flour
1 cup King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
3 1/2 cups old-fashioned or rolled oats
3 tablespoons sugar
3 tablespoons baking powder
1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon baking soda
1 cup vegetable oil

The source for this recipe is: http://www.kingarthurflour.com/recipes/homemade-whole-grain-pancake-mix-recipe

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2 Answers 2

up vote 5 down vote accepted

No, it will not react. There is a bit of theory behind it.

The reaction in batter is a reaction between a base and an acid. For this type of reaction, you need ions swimming freely in water. In dried substances, your ions are stuck to other ions to form molecules, or ion gitters, depending on the substance. They cannot react with anything, just like a pen with a cap cannot make a stain on your clothes if you keep it in your pocket.

For this reason, you can add the oil without a problem. Oil is a nonpolar liquid and it will not separate the ions from their molecules/ion gitters. There aren't many reactions which can happen in the oil.

From a food safety point of view, there are bacteria which can live under oil given the right conditions, so you cannot keep just anything under oil. Any fresh plants are dangerous. But your mixture looks safe. The dried oats should not pose a problem, as there is no moisture in them, same goes for the flour. Just make sure that you are indeed using oil - even the small amount of water in butter is enough to make butter/flour mixtures perishable.

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The reason I suggested not adding the oil is the big clumpy messy... erm... mess you woudl get, not because of safety reasons or because it would help activate the baking soda reaction. In fact, the only reason to keep it in the refrigerator is because of the whole wheat flour. –  SAJ14SAJ Mar 13 '13 at 12:13
    
I could see the oil making a mess. In this case though, it isn't. I've done the recipe with the oil (without buttermilk), and stored it in the fridge before. The oil is a small enough component that the clumps it creates are very small. It isn't messy. –  Caleb Mar 13 '13 at 16:34
    
I agree, don't put the oil in until you're mixing. It's easy enough to add the oil later. –  GdD Mar 14 '13 at 9:18

The baking soda and acid from the dried buttermilk should not react in any significant amount until you hydrate the mixture, so it should work. Remember, baking powder is acid and sodium bicarbonate in the same can, and there is little except acid and reactant; your mix will have a lot of buffer ingredients as well.

I would not add the oil to the dry mix though until you are ready to make the pancakes, along with the water.

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