What is the chemical composition of flour

Flour: a powder that feeds the world

Status: 01/21/2020 9:33 a.m. | archive
Wheat flour is the most common variety in Europe.

Flour is inconspicuous, cheap and yet one of the most important and oldest foods. People around the world use flour to make countless types of bread, flatbreads and cakes. Flour is the collective term for finely ground grain, in Germany mainly wheat and rye, but also spelled. Corn and rice flour also play an important role in other cultures.

The grain is peeled

In order to process cereal grains into flour, the shell and seedling are first removed. Only with wholemeal flour does the whole grain go into the mill. The other flours, so-called extract flours or partially extract flours, contain little or no shells. These layers around the white endosperm made from carbohydrates contain minerals, vitamins and fiber. This positive property is offset by the fact that the higher the shell fraction, the less the flour can bind and stick. The amount of protein it contains, also known as gluten or glue, is one of the quality characteristics of flour.

Constant quality required

Since these properties affect the baking result, consumers want a constant flour quality. The DIN standard 10.355 defines the mineral content for flour types. Wheat flour type 405 may contain a maximum of 500 milligrams of minerals per 100 grams of flour, type 1050 between 910 and 1200 milligrams. To determine this so-called ash content, flour is burned at 900 degrees Celsius. What remains are minerals, also known as ash. The mineral content in the natural product grain fluctuates. Flour producers compensate for this by mixing different batches of grain.

Flour in numbers

The type number describes the mineral content of the flour. The larger the number, the higher the proportion in milligrams per 100 grams of flour. These types are produced:
Wheat flour: 405, 550, 812, 1050, 1600 (Tipo 00 = Italian pizza flour)
Rye flour: 815, 997, 1150, 1370, 1740
Spelled flour: 630, 812, 1050
Whole wheat flours do not have a type number.

The different types also arise because the mineral content of the cereals differs. The most common type 405 wheat flour consists of a completely peeled flour body. In the case of rye, a similarly well peeled grain already turns into flour type 815, as the endosperm itself contains more minerals.

No flour just in case

Whether made from almonds, millet or rice: flour is international and versatile.

Not every flour is equally suitable for every type of baked goods. Wheat flour type 405 is ideal for cakes and white bread. Type 550 is suitable for yeast pastries and rolls, type 1050 for bread and savory cakes. Rye flour type 815 is used to bake light rye bread and rolls, while higher types - often mixed with wheat flour or grist - are used to make darker, hearty breads.

Whole grain special case

Whole grain flour does not have a type designation, as the whole grain is always ground, the natural mineral content of which fluctuates. Up until the 17th century there was no technique to separate the shells and endosperm. Therefore, only wholemeal flour was used. Baked goods made from white flour with no shell portion were later considered fine and elegant.

Coarse or fine

Mills can grind grain to different finishes. The finest level is referred to as flour, coarser variants are called haze, semolina and grist. There is no connection with the type number. It only applies to flour. Pasta, for example, is made from semolina, mainly durum wheat semolina.

Do not keep flour for long

Flour should be stored in a cool, dry place. Then it lasts up to a year and a half, but loses quality after a few weeks. Light flour with little shell content can be stored longer than dark or wholemeal flour, which can taste rancid after just a few months. The cause is the high protein and fat content of the seedling, which is ground with whole grain flour. Whole grains can be stored for years if they have been dried well beforehand and are stored in a dark, cool, dry place and without any foreign smells.

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Market | 01/20/2020 | 8:15 pm