Spelled flour: characteristics and properties

Spelled flour: characteristics and properties

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Spelled is increasingly in fashion, especially the spelled salads instead of rice salads, or as an ingredient for doughs. That's why it's interesting to go and find out how the spelled flour and what characteristics it has. One wonders if it is fashionable because it is niche and makes us seem to eat in a more natural way or if there are actually any benefits related to this food.

Spelled flour: types

Let's imagine spelled as a kind of wheat because it actually is or at least both belong to the same species, that of Triticum. Wheat and spelled therefore show very similar botanical characteristics, there are those who combine spelled with barley but in fact there are many more differences between the two.

There are generally three types of spelled even if not all are in the same way available on the market and usable. There are the small, medium and large variant, we call them variants even if in truth they are three different species, which belong to the genera Triticum monococcum, Triticum dicoccum and Triticum spelta, respectively.

The largest type is also the most cultivated, thanks to its “cheaper” dimensions, moreover this variety of spelled tends to have more kernels per ear so it is definitely the most productive of all three species. There small variety of spelled it is very difficult to find around while the average is more available, especially when the beans remain whole.

Spelled flour: characteristics

Spelled despite being similar to wheat it is much less used and it is not a matter of taste, the second has spread much more for the higher yield while spelled is one of the cereals with the lowest yield ever. Each ear produces a few grains.

It goes without saying, therefore, that spelled flour is one of the most expensive flours that we can find on the market, it is considered particular and sought after and in recent years it has come back into fashion. I say “it's back in fashion” because to tell the truth spelled was very well known and also widely used in antiquity. The Romans used it to prepare their dishes but they did not start cultivating it.

Returning to the present day, we see why spelled is so unproductive and its flour so expensive. In addition to producing a few grains per ear, the spelled has external casings which do not separate easily from the grain so it is difficult to obtain a “clean” one ready to be used in various ways. For the production of the flour it is in fact necessary to subject it to grinding but to prepare something else there could be several industrial processes in the program. The spelled grain must be "prepared" earlier and with more effort, with wheat everything is much easier.

Here is explained the main reason why spelled is today one of the least cultivated cereals, in Italy and beyond. In our area it is grown mainly in Garfagnana, a mountainous area of ​​upper Tuscany, here it is even a product recognized as IGP (Protected Geographical Indication).

Spelled flour: properties

To obtain the flour you need the grinding process, always, not only for spelled, but in this specific case it is not enough because, as we have seen, some processes of preparation of the grains are necessary which are not required with other cereals. Let's see how it goes. First of all there is the peeling. In this phase, we proceed with removing the outer wraps from each individual grain in order to make them usable, otherwise the risk is that the flour may contain too much fiber.

Just to be clear, the spelled after it has been peeled is brown, we find several brands on the market, and it has a more "wholemeal" and characteristic flavor compared to other cereals but also compared to the spelled itself after it has been pearled. Let's go and see what happens when the pearling. As for rice, also for spelled, pearling consists in the complete removal of the entire outer shell until obtaining a grain very similar to a grain of wheat. Consequently, pearl spelled flour is also very similar to wheat flour.

Spelled flour: recipes

More than original recipes with spelled flour we can take others and modify them by characterizing them with this ingredient instead of normal flour or in addition. This is the case of the "Buchteln with jam ", balls of yeast dough sweetly scented with vanilla and lemon zest and filled with jam. This dessert is typical of the German-speaking areas, in Italy we find it in South Tyrol including, but it is also eaten in Eastern Europe.

We can make a variation to the original recipe by inserting the tasty spelled flour in the dough. To prepare the leaven we use 100 ml of milk, 1 teaspoon of dry yeast, 100 g of Manitoba flour and 1 teaspoon of honey. For the dough and the filling you need 100 gr of spelled flour, 50 gr of Manitoba flour, 1 vanilla bean, 2 tablespoons of sugar, 1 egg, 1 lemon zest, 25 gr of cold melted butter for the dough, 10 grams of melted butter for brushing, half a teaspoon of salt and 150 grams of jam.

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Video: Ayurveda u0026 Spelt - A Good Alternative to Wheat? (May 2022).