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10 things you need to know about flour

When you say flour, you'll probably recall white powder or semolina - a raw material for fragile and fluffy pastries. How is it today with flour and gluten content? Which mill products are specific to us and how they differ from the rest of the world? What role do flour products play in our nutrition? How to know good quality flour?

The most widely grown and most affordable food in the world are cereals. The main cereal in Europe, America, Australia and West Asia is wheat. Eastern and South Asia and some African countries dominate rice, Australia, South and Central America, and the rest of Africa with corn.
"We also meet with rye and also with oats (for production of flakes) and barley, which is the main raw material for the brewing industry,"
Pavel Filip, an expert from the Association of Industrial Mills of the Czech Republic, told the web

The importance of flour in nutrition

Some people, due to the allergy to gluten contained in some cereal products, can not consume such foods. However, this commodity serves as a source of readily available energy in the form of starch, which is easily and quickly digested. A large part of the cereals is also grown for feed purpose. Without them we would not have animal products such as meat, milk or eggs.

Grain fiber

In common wheat flour, the fiber content is very low. However, in whole wheat flour, the fiber content is higher. The cereal fiber has its characteristic composition and its specific properties. It consists mainly of non-starch polysaccharides (cellulose, hemicellulose, pectins, vegetable gums, mucilages and β-glucans), oligosaccharides (fructo-oligosaccharides, galactose oligosaccharides), resistant starch, modified starches and lignin.
Especially important are barley and oat β-glucans and rye arabinoxylans occurring predominantly in the packaging and similar layers of cereal grain.

How flour is produced

Flour and mill products come not only from cereals, but also from cereals and oil plants. However, we will deal mostly with grain flour. "The milling process lies in its essence in the art of separating the individual parts of the grain from one another. They have different user and nutritional contents, " explains the expert. "These parts - except for wholemeal flour - are finalized on finished products. The mill technology is gradually grinding and sorting. The properties of the resulting products mainly depend on the properties of the processed raw materials. "

What is specific for mill products in the Czech Republic

An important Central European rarity is the production of rye bread and boiled dumplings. Typical for us is also the preparation of desserts based on fried and whipped dough. This requires rough and semi-thick flour. "In comparison with the mill in the world, we produce in the Central Europe wheat flour, coarse and semi-thick flour. On one wheat line, we receive up to 9 products at the same time - coarse and fine semolina, flour and semolina flour, smooth, semi-dark and flour, flour and bran. In the world, only light smooth or smooth flours are normally produced, " explains the expert.
Other milling products include millet, sprouts, cereals for direct consumption, instant milling products, mixtures of cereals, rice and muesli.

What products are produced from each type of cereal

From wheat - flour smooth, semi - rough and coarse, semolina coarse and fine. Depending on the grade, the flours are also labeled as bright, semi-dark and dark. Dark flours have a higher fiber content.
Of rye -
bread flour and whole grain
From oats -
processed mainly for flakes
Of barley -
made of hazelnuts of various sizes
Of barley and oats -
flour and semolina
From corn -
groats for extrusion, but also gluten-free flour
Buckwheat -
mainly hazelnuts, groats and gluten-free flour
From the pros -
Among the mill products are peeled seeds of other cereals, legumes and oilseeds. Rice is also processed here. Thanks to the great demand, the production of special cereal products, including their mixtures, is increasing.

"Flourish" trends

The best-selling and the most popular type of flour is the so-called bivalve - smooth wheat flour, which should contain more quality gluten for baking. On the contrary, the consumption of raw flour, which is used for dumplings, is decreasing. Its position keeps the flour rough. Housewives use it for home baking mainly because they are softly hard to process, dough to stick them.
"At present, the world trend is very smooth smooth light flour. They need modern baking technology, but the technological advantages of such a flour can only be enjoyed by modern dough and yeast preparation technology. It can not be used for example in cooking and other cooking, " says the expert. "We can also produce deglutenised wheat flour. New products with high content of soluble fiber - b-glucan are new, "says Pavel Filip from the Association of Industrial Mills of the Czech Republic for the web site

Grain products and glycemic index

For the mill industry, new nutritional requirements are present for cereal products, which usually have a high glycemic index value.
"White bread, white bread and common pasta reach 70-80, but wholemeal or yeast bread already has a favorable glycemic index value of 56. That's why the technologists deal with processing processes that can influence the glycemic index, eg by cooking and fermentation, by increasing the fiber content and proteins, " adds Filip Filip.

Flour and gluten

The most widely grown cereal processed for food products is wheat. Its unique technological properties guarantee gluten. But this has been criticized in recent years because parts of the population are causing health problems.
"Intoxication of gluten, celiac disease, we suffer from about 1-1.5% of the population, and the next percent of the population suffers from gluten allergies," says the expert. "However, the mill and bakery industry has responded to this situation and innovating some products into gluten-free alternatives. At the same time, due to obesity, the starch content was reduced, which helped the fiber. "
The fiber content of the flour can be recognized according to the declared nutritional values ​​that the manufacturer usually lists on the package. In the past, the type of flour used was a thousand times the content of non-combustible parts in the dry matter (900 degrees Celsius combustion), and it can be said to express the fiber content. For baking, grain kernel flour is best suited for the best quality gluten needed to reach the bread volume (eg extra 00, T500).

What all must be flour packaging

Even for these products, their labeling must be in accordance with current legislation. "The name of the group and sub-product of the product as defined in Commodity Regulation No. 333/1997 Coll. for milled cereal products, pasta, bakery products and confectionery products and dough, as amended. Further composition, weight, nutritional value, recommended storage conditions, manufacturer's name, date min. the shelf life of the product as well as the allergen component, " says Pavel Filip.

Sensory characteristics of flour

Flour should have a balanced color and granulation. When you touch it, you should not smell any more. The hue of the flour differs according to the type of grain produced.
"Wheat flour has a white color with a yellowish shade. Dark flours are a little darker and their hue is yellowish gray. Whole-grain flours have a brownish or reddish hue, rhizomes are gray-white with a greenish-blue shade. Quality flours have been awarded in the form of quality labels, such as Klasa, which can be found on their packaging, " Pavel Filip of the Association of Industrial Mills of the Czech Republic adds to the site

Source: tz, edited editorially

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