Some FAQs about Gluten
1) What is wheat protein/gluten? What is it made of?
All wheat flour contains 2 classes of proteins – 1) Glutenin – responsible for elasticity and 2) Gliadin – responsible for raising of the dough. In the presence of water, these two proteins bond together. This creates an elastic network of protein called gluten. Therefore, Gluten occurs naturally in atta
2) Is gluten present in any other food stuff?
Gluten naturally occurs in many cereals. Along with wheat, other cereal grains that contain gluten are barley, rye and semolina. They are also commonly found in all flour and baking products
3) Should I be concerned with the gluten content in my food?
Gluten is present naturally in many food grains like wheat, barley and rye which is consumed by millions of people. In fact, FSSAI mandates that Atta must contain minimum 6% gluten.
4) Does Gluten cause indigestion?
No. Gluten does not cause indigestion.
5) On burning, why does it behave like plastic?
Gluten is a protein and when burnt, proteins form a black residue - a phenomena which is called charring.
Charring is a chemical process of incomplete combustion of certain solids when subjected to heat. The resulting residue matter is called char. By the action of heat, charring removes hydrogen and oxygen from the solid, so that the remaining char is composed primarily of carbon.
6) How do you ensure minimum 6% wheat protein is there? What do you do if it is less than 6%?
Samples from every batch of grain are taken and sample flour is made which undergoes stringent tests. Test for gluten is one of the many tests. If any sample is found which does not meet the standard, the batch is discarded.
7) How can I find out if Gluten is present in flour?
Gluten is prepared from flour by kneading the flour under water, agglomerating the gluten into an elastic network, a dough, and then washing out the starch. Starch granules disperse in cold/low-temperature water, and the dispersed starch is sedimented and dried.
As per the FSSAI Manual of Methods on Analysis of Foods, the procedure for detection of Gluten in Atta is as follows:
- Weigh 25 gm sample into a dish and add about 15 ml of water to it and make it into a dough taking care that all the material is taken into the dough.
- Keep the dough gently in a beaker filled with water and let it stand for 1 hour.
- Remove the dough and place it in a piece of bolting silk cloth with an aperture of 0.16mm ( No, 10 XXX) and wash it with a gentle stream of water till water passing through the silk does not give a blue colour with a drop of iodine solution.
- Spread the silk tight on a porcelain plate to facilitate scraping.
- Collect the residue to form a ball, squeeze in the palms to remove excess water, transfer to a watch glass or petri dish and keep it in the oven at 105±1°C for drying.
- When partially dried, remove and cut into several pieces with a scissor and again keep in the oven to dry. Cool in a desiccators and weigh.
- Return it to the oven again for half hour, cool and weigh to ensure constant weight.
8) In the experiments in the videos that we have
seen, the other atta samples dissolve in water
while Aashirvaad Atta does not. Why is it so?
When the atta dough is washed, the starch
dissolves and what remains is an elastic network
of protein which is insoluble in water. Therefore,
no atta dough will completely dissolve in water.
In your experiments with other samples, if an atta
dough dissolves completely, it means that the
sample is not a Whole Wheat Atta dough.