This post is cautionary tale. One hot summer morning in my Athens kitchen when I was assembling ingredients to make bread, what should I see but little black bugs in the flour.
Open up a bag of flour and see little black dots! Red arrows point to the telltale signs of bugs. Any closer look would just be revolting. If want to see what the bugs look like, I suggest a google search.
It is an unpleasant story, but one that needs to be told. In hot climates, flour is prone to attract bugs, specifically several species of the Tribolium genera. Unless you look at them close-up, the different species are difficult to distinguish. Collectively they are simply called flour beetles. There is nothing you can do to prevent an infestation from happening. They can appear in older packets you’ve had in your pantry for some time, or they can appear in newly purchased bags from the supermarket.
From experience, they seem to be drawn more to wholemeal flours than to white, but that does not prevent them from infesting white flours.
So, what to do? Most web-sites recommend disposing of the packet of flour. Sifting may not catch all traces of insects – including eggs and larvae. You should also check any packets of food that were adjacent to the buggy one. Remove any infected foods and thoroughly clean the area.
A disgusting, but necesssry task done just prior to leaving for holiday!