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Durum is the hardest of all wheats. Its density, combined with its high protein content and gluten strength, make durum the wheat of choice for producing premium pasta products. When combined with all purpose or bread flour, it’s also a key ingredient in some “Italian Style” breads like our awesome Sicilian No Knead Bread, or a crispy pizza crust.
Our grain is grown by family-owned and operated farms — certified organic farms that are committed to ideals of sustainable stewardship of our natural resources for those of future generations.
Durum wheat is the only tetraploid species of wheat of commercial importance that is widely cultivated today (tetraploid wheat has 28 chromosomes, unlike hard red winter and hard red spring wheats, which are hexaploid and have 42 chromosomes each). Durum was selected from domesticated emmer wheat strains formerly grown in Central Europe and the Near East around 7000 B.C.
Durum in Latin means “hard”, and the species is the hardest of all wheats. Its high protein content, as well as its strength, make durum good for special uses, the most well-known being pasta which in Italy is exclusively made from durum wheat. Durum wheat is used extensively in breadmaking. However, it is unusual in that, despite very high protein content, it is low in desirable gluten needed to form a glutinous web necessary for bread to rise. As a result, although 100 percent durum wheat breads do exist, such as pagnotte di Enna from Sicily, as well as others, in most instances bread doughs contain only a portion of durum wheat and are supplemented substantially with commercial white flours, oftentimes those higher in gluten necessary to offset the poor gluten contribution of durum flour. When durum flour is used as the sole flour in bread, substantial additions of isolated wheat gluten are necessary to effect rising. Without it, 100 percent durum wheat breads are often heavy, with very close grain, and will split easily when risen for baking.
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