Four Letters Re: Why Store Wheat?

Sunday, May 1, 2011

James Wesley:
According to the folks at aaoobfoods.com they have a "recipe" to grow yeast on potato granules/flakes. They are out of Amite, Louisiana. They are great! Thank you, James Wesley. Sincerely, - Ron M.

 

Jim:
Yeast can be cultured at home to prolong its use indefinitely http://www.wikihow.com/Culture-Yeast

That aside people have eaten flat bread like matzoh for centuries.

Of course that pasta he spoke of is also typically fashioned from wheat. Not that everyone can make their own homemade pasta but yes it can be done by those who really wish to. Cheers, Rich F.


Mr. Rawles,
I read the note from a reader concerning yeast not being available for making bread. I bake bread with baking powder (aluminum free), sodium bicarb, and salt. This makes a light loaf, but not quite as light as yeast bread, however, it still tastes great (judging by how fast my kids make it disappear). Regards, - Mike C.


James,  
Michael wrote in asking “Why Store Wheat?” as the lack of yeast would mean only eating wheat cereal or sprouts.  There are many wonderful uses of wheat!  I’m sure he knows many of them and has simply overlooked them.  In addition to wheat breads, that wheat can be ground into flour for biscuits, mixed with corn flour for cornbread, flour tortillas, pancakes, crackers, biscotti, focaccia, pita bread, other flatbreads, cakes, crusts, pasta, dumplings, and more.  While yeast may not store forever, baking soda and cream of tartar do and together they make baking powder ( 2 parts cream of tarter to 1 part soda – 1 part corn starch can be added optionally) which can be used in many of the above.   

In addition to flour, you can also make bulgar from your wheat berries. Bulgar can be used for salads, soups, used in place of rice, or to make a sort of gravy.  It can be stuffed in sausages to stretch scarce meat supplies.  Boil your wheat with 2:1 water to wheat for about an hour until the wheat berries have swollen.  Drain and then dry/dehydrate the wheat until completely dry.  Then coarsely crack the dried berries and store for future use.   You can also make a gluten meat substitute from wheat.  Make flour and then add just enough water to make a stiff dough.  Knead for about fifteen minutes.  Put your dough in a large bowl or sink and gently wash, while kneading, in a good amount of cool water. The dough will soften with the additional water.  Pour off the water.  Repeat washing and squeezing until the dough firms up again and the water runs clear.  The stuff sloughing off into the water is bran and starch.  If you save the runoff water, you can let it settle and pour off the water on top and use the rest for making crackers or other purposes.  Once your gluten dough has finished washing you should cook it.  Steam it for 20-30 minutes or pinch off pieces and cook in simmering broth or water for 30 minutes.  After that the gluten can be sliced, cubed, chunked or ground to be used as a meat substitute in other dishes.  The ground gluten can be used as filler for meatballs, hamburger patties, sausage, etc. again to extend scarce meat supplies.  

Lastly, you can make malt from sprouted wheat and use it for sweetener or as a substitute for sugar or honey.   So, there you go.  Wheat is almost a wonder food!  And that’s just off the top of head in a few minutes.  Wheat has a very long storage life and actually provides quite a bit of variety if you use your imagination.  I’m sure someone else will contribute many more ideas. - Matthew T.


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