“King Arthur Flour recognizes that consumers want to know where their ingredients come from; and we agree, it’s extremely important,” Katie Walker, a company spokeswoman, told FoodNavigator-USA.
That is why the company says its new Identity-Preserved White Whole Wheat Flour is made from certified white winter wheat seeds that are selected through field and baking tests.
“By providing certified seeds, we are able to provide transparency to the consumer as they obtain where and how the wheat was grown,” she said.
For example, the seeds are traceable to farms where growing practices are monitored with comprehensive field-data documentation. This allows the company – and consumers – to know the seeds come from farms that use sustainable practices, such as rotating and covering crops to replenish nutrients in the soil, using no-till practices to boost soil’s beneficial organisms and water retention, and using less irrigated water, according to the company.
Likewise, the certified hard white spring wheat seeds “are chose because they exemplify our high quality standards and are optimal for providing the best baking results, including flavor,” Walker said.
She explained that white whole wheat “is 100% whole wheat and not a mixture of white and wheat flours, so you get all the nutritional benefits of classic red wheat,” but with a milder flavor than the traditional bitter taste of traditional whole wheat.
It also produces lighter-colored baked goods, similar to white flour, while maintaining the nutrition of 100% whole wheat.
Some reformulation required
The flour behaves differently than traditional white flour, so some recipes and formulas need to be tweaked, Walker noted.
“Different varieties of flour are not identical and they have different properties, most notably protein content. An angel food cake, which has a light texture and is high rising would not be a good match for whole wheat flour. Any lighter-colored baked goods (sugar cookies, white sandwich bread, lemon muffins, etc.) will be slightly darker when baked with whole wheat, and may not rise quite as high,” she explained.
She noted, however, that the Identity-Preserved White Whole Wheat Flour can be swapped 100% for recipes calling for whole wheat flour and in selected all-purpose flour recipes that already are darker or heartier, such as banana bread. For recipes calling for all-purpose flour, substituting 50% White Whole Wheat works well without affecting the flavor, and for light-colored baked goods, such as cake and traditional bread, a cap of 25% is best.
The flour is available in grocery stores nationwide. While King Arthur does not currently sell white whole wheat in bulk, Walker said the company would have no problem introducing it in bulk if the demand was there.