The Science Behind Cultured Wheat

Cultured wheat is a natural mold inhibitor and shelf life extender.

Let’s dive into the science of cultured wheat for a minute. Thanks to fermentation, an ordinary wheat takes on extraordinary powers, becoming a natural mold inhibitor and shelf life extender!

So here are three ways science makes this form of wheat awesome:

1. Fermentation

Cultured wheat is flour that’s been fermented with Propionibacterium freudenreichii, usually found in cheese and milk production. It is based on active compounds, such as propionic, acetic and 3- phenyllactic acids, as well as bacteriocins.

2. Lactic acid

In cultured wheat, lactic acid does not interfere with the functions of yeast in bread, allowing the bread to rise normally.

3. Clean label

Thanks to the two reasons above, it does a lot in your baked goods, such as:

  • Texture-building
  • Anti-staling
  • Fights bacteria, yeast and molds

And it does it all naturally, so you can replace common bread preservatives that do the same thing.

How is cultured wheat different than sourdough?

Sourdough bread is prepared from a mixture of flour and water that is fermented with lactic acid bacteria (LAB), mainly with heterofermentative strains. A mixture of lactic acid and acetic acid in the final product causes a pleasant sour-tasting end product.

Sourdough also has the antibacterial and anti-mold activities due to the production of organic acids and other still unknown antibacterial substances produced from lactobacillus. Although the production process of sourdough and cultured wheat are similar, their roles are different. Sourdough is used for flavor enhancement and cultured wheat is used as a natural preservative.

2018-12-10T05:21:15-07:00

About the Author:

Lin Carson, PhD
Dr. Lin Carson’s love affair with baking started over 25 years ago when she earned her BSc degree in Food Science & Technology at the Ohio State University. She went on to earn her MSc then PhD from the Department of Grain Science at Kansas State University. Seeing that technical information was not freely shared in the baking industry, Dr. Carson decided to launch BAKERpedia to cover this gap. Today, as the world’s only FREE and comprehensive online technical resource for the commercial baking industry, BAKERpedia is used by over half a million commercial bakers, ingredient sellers, equipment suppliers and baking entrepreneurs annually. You can catch Dr. Carson regularly on the BAKED In Science podcast solving baking problems or talking about her obsession with bread on the Pitching a Loaf podcast.

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