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Gluten

100% whole wheat bunEver since I discovered the world's fluffiest 100% whole wheat bread, white flour has seen little use in our house.  Every week or two, I'd put in an hour or so of effort and then serve up bread which was nutritious and delicious.  Until the inevitable day of reckoning came --- the day we ran out of gluten.

Gluten was discovered by 7th century Buddhist monks, who mixed flour with water and kneaded until they extracted the protein (gluten) from the starch.  Their goal was to use the gluten as a meat substitute, but other folks discovered that if you add the gluten back into some other flour when making bread, you increase the protein content of the bread and also increase the fluff by an order of magnitude.

Of course, you can't just pour gluten into your bread dough and expect to get the world's fluffiest bread....



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