“The most complex things are the simplest.”
The ‘Wholeistic’ View of the Wholegrain Bread
“The most complex things are the simplest.”
I never could quite digest that. Even the thing that I could digest easily earlier is not simple anymore. Before it gets complex, let me make things simple for you. I am talking about bread. Today when we walk into a bakery, there is a huge array of breads lined up & it seems quite foreign to a lay man & he can’t for the life of him understands what the whole fuss is all about. It is just our old, humble loaf of bread, isn’t it? But that’s where you are mistaken. It’s not so humble anymore. It is still, however, an integral part of our daily intake so why not undertake a journey into the world of the new age whole grain bread?
Be “wholed” before buying:
With all us wanting to jump in to the latest band wagon of becoming size zero, we tend to get carried away by the latest diet in the market. For example, the south beach diet. Its secret lies in intake of the “good carbs” rather than reducing the intake of food containing less carbohydrates .We immediately think of switching to healthier option for our milk & bread. But how do you pick what’s right for you? While buying your whole grain bread, don’t get fooled just because it’s brown as not all Brown breads are whole grain breads. They might have used the coloring agents to make it so .Neither you should get duped by tags like ‘Wheat Bread’ as it just means that they might have used a combination of wheat flour & white refined flour or ‘Multigrain Bread’ which may only imply that it is a concoction of several grains. It doesn’t always guarantee that those grains were whole ones. Your best bet in this scenario would be to look for the word “Whole” in the list of the components that make your product before you put it in your shopping cart.
The wholesome grain of truth:
What exactly do we mean when we say whole grain? A whole grain is the grain in its entirety which comprise of the germ, bran & the endosperm. (Yeah! like that’s easy to understand! so much for simplicity!). In simple words. The part which provides the grain with nourishment & is replete with Vitamin E, antioxidants, B vitamins, & unsaturated fats which are beneficial for the body is the germ. The outer covering which is high in B vitamins, fibre, phytochemicals & trace minerals is called bran. And last but not the least is the endosperm, which is the biggest part of the grain. It consists of complex carbohydrates & protein. This all adds up to make the whole grain in the whole grain bread.
Why, you ask? The main component in the white bread is the refined flour which is sans the bran & germ part of the grain since, yes! No points for guessing! It has been refined. The refining process casts away most of the Vitamins, fibre & antioxidants making the bread not so wholesome anymore. With the intake of whole grain bread your body gets the nourishment of the bran, the germ as well as the endosperm & therefore its nutritive value increases making it a far preferable alternative to the white bread. What’s more, the whole grains are also a great source of insoluble & soluble fibres. The benefit of soluble fibre is that the absorption of glucose becomes slow & as a result it is a great help in making the blood sugar level stable .On the other hand, insoluble fibre aids in prevention of diverticulosis, constipation& haemorrhoids. In its long list of benefit is also prevention of colon cancer. In addition, whole grain bread is a great choice for people looking to lose weight as it satiate your appetite faster & that too for a long time.
So when the urge to eat something nutritious takes you over the next time, saunter down to the same bakery, whose array of breads used to perplex you & pick up what you need but this time with the whole grain of truth.
(Nutritional value per 100 g)
White Bread Whole Wheat Bread
Iron: 2.7 mg Iron: 4.9 mg
Protein: 11g Protein: 12.1g
Phosphorus: 121mg Phosphorus: 355mg
*Fat: 0.9g Fat: 1.7g
Calcium: 23mg Calcium: 48mg
Fibre: 0.3g Fibre: 1.9g
Energy: 348k Energy: 341k
Carbohydrates: 73.9g Carbohydrates: 69.4g
How to make bread at home :
Recipe for Whole Meal Bread
250 g refined flour
750 g cracked or broken wheat, whole meal flour
5 g (1/2 tsp) Soya flour
30 g broken wheat
25 g fresh yeast
2 g (1/8 tsp) bread improver (optional)
20 g sugar
20 g salt
20 g fat (margarine or vanaspati)
600 ml water or milk, plus a little more for sprinkling
Mix the plain flours & the whole meal in a bowl & form a well in the middle.
In that well, pour a little water or milk.
To that, add yeast with a tad of sugar & mix slowly.
Pour the rest of the water or milk with the leftover sugar.
To the dough, add the fat in which the salt is mixed.
Work the mixture for about ten minutes or more till it takes the shape of smooth & elastic dough.
Take the bowl & cover it with a damp cloth.
Next leave it in a warm place to rise for a period of approximately 45 minutes (which means till it has doubled).
Place the dough on a well floured board & knead some more for a couple of minutes.
Ball the dough up again & put it again to rise for 10-15 minutes.
Mould, scale & place in a greased loaf tin.
To pack the mould use your hand & firmly press down the dough.
Also smoothen the surface as evenly as you can.
Let it rise till it almost reaches the surface.
Gently sprinkle a little water & garnish with broken wheat.
As soon as it poufs up above the mould, set the temperature of the oven to 200ºC or 400ºC & place the loaf tin in the preheated oven.
After approximately 30 minutes or until its done, invert the mould on a cooling rack.
NB: You may not get the desired quality with the whole meal flour readily available in the markets so it is advisable to add either gluten or refined flour (use a pinch per kg of flour)