Einkorn wheat, that is called "the small farro", is the first cereal to be cultivated by men and it has been used for more than 10.000 years.
This species of farro is typical of the Mediterranean area, including Italy, and for thousands of years it has been considered the basis of the diet for the farming populations, together with the Emmer wheat.
Einkorn wheat, thanks to spontaneous crossbreeds with other species of Triticum, created most of the grains that we know today (Emmer, Durum wheat, common wheat, and others).
For this reason, we can define it, without a doubt, the father of all grains.
Its cultivation has been almost left during the Bronze Age (4-5000 years ago), when farmers began to use other species of wheats easier to cultivate and with higher yields.
From a nutritional point of view, Einkorn wheat is particularly rich in antioxidants.
The antioxidant properties of Einkorn wheat
Compared to a variety of common wheat, Einkorn wjeat has:
- a higher protein content;
- a higher content of ashes and microelements (iron, zinc, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium etc);
- a lower content of saturated fatty acids ;
- a lower content of starch and a better digestibility;
- a higher content of antioxidant and yellow pigments (carotenoids, among which the beta-carotene, that is the precursor of vitamin A);
- a higher content of tocols (vitamin E);
Source: testing carried out in the research project n. 1018: "Einkorn wheat for cereal and food innovation" (MonICA).
Einkorn Wheat in cooking
Organic Einkorn flour has got excellent characteristics for the preparation of sweets, bread, pizza and other bakery products.
As the gluten is less tough than the common wheat, the dough that we get with the organic Einkorn flour is less elastic, more friable and for this reason more suitable for the preparation of pastries and doughs for buiscuits, cakes and pies.
Thanks to these properties, in order to obtain a good friable dough, you will generally need less fats than the ones you would use with the common wheat flours.
Besides, thanks to the high content of carotenoid pigments, the dough has got a marked yellow colouring.