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I'm at the point where I will completely avoid certain recipes simply because they require sifting and I find it incredibly tedious. Is there a better method? A better tool? A magic sifter?

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Related thread: cooking.stackexchange.com/questions/5273/… –  JustRightMenus Aug 17 '10 at 18:29
    
While the title of this question does use "Palatable" correctly, the word has connotations of "mmm, tasty!" Perhaps edit to say "easier"? –  Neil Fein Aug 18 '10 at 17:00
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7 Answers 7

Use a food processor to aerate the flour and mix other dry ingredients in.

As a bonus for me, the food processor bowl can go in the dishwasher. I have to hand-wash my sifter.

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I prefer to just get after the dry ingredients with a whisk for a few seconds; similar results without setting up my food processor. –  Michael at Herbivoracious Aug 17 '10 at 17:31
    
Oddly my food processor bowl is not dishwasher safe, yet my sieve is... –  Rowland Shaw Aug 17 '10 at 17:47
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I just use a strainer. Slap something over the top so your flour doesn't fly all over the place, and shake it. It's got such a huge surface area, that it takes much less time than a lot of special purpose sifting tools (those stupid little cups with the trigger handles? What the hell is that about? The crank ones are no better. What am I? An organ grinder monkey?)

The other alternative is to throw the whole mess in a blender or food processor. That'll mix and aerate it.

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You don't need to shake it -- run a spoon through it, or take something and just tap the side of it, and I've never had a mess. Well, no mess that would've been fixed from putting something over the top. –  Joe Aug 19 '10 at 10:05
    
I shake like a cracked out epileptic. Trust me, I need something on the top. I generally sift onto a flat silpat, and then shake that into whatever bowl I'm using to mix. –  Satanicpuppy Aug 19 '10 at 14:08
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I wonder if your sieve is too fine. When I sift flour I only need to pour the dry ingredient into the sieve and shake the sieve over a bowl. It takes a couple of minutes at most which I wouldn't call tedious. Are you doing something different?

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You can probably just leave the sifting step out. I'm lazy when making food for my own consumption, and often just dump the flour on top of the wet mix in the bowl and sift the salt/soda/whatnot in by hand a bit.

Most recipes don't seem to mind, but some do (some also specify a volume of sifted flour, so that needs to be compensated for as well), so best to make an experimental batch ahead of time and see if it is acceptable.

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i almost never "sift," per se -- i just whisk it really well to break up lumps and aerate it a bit.

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I also used to find sifting a pain, but got a sifter from Tupperware last year that is fabulous - highly recommended! See http://www.tupperware.com.au/wps/wcm/connect/AUS/website/productgallery/productcollections/bakebasics/bake+2basics+sift+n+stor for details.

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I've seen people use a food processor, just dump your dry ingredients in the bowl and pulse a couple of times.

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