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Whole Wheat Flour-Chef Manjit Gill

Whole Wheat Flour – ATTA, Whole Wheat finely sieved flour – MAIDA, Refined Wheat flour has no Hindi or any Indian term.
Whole Wheat flour – ATTA is from the whole wheat grain, milled or grounded with Skin or husk, Germ and Endosperm. The Bran is the outer cover and rich in Minerals, Fiber, Vitamin B and Phytochemicals. The Germ is the second layer under Bran, it is rich in Vitamin B, Vitamin E and traces of Minerals. Endosperm is the innermost part that is starchy and extremely rich in proteins and Carbohydrates. Atta is brownish in colour.
Maida – The whiter version of Atta. Traditionally it is obtained by sieving the whole wheat flour through a very fine sieve. Most of the time the Atta is sieved through as fine as the muslin cloth. Generally the term used as ” Kaparh Chhaan Atta”. It is used be used for the various kinds of breads, sweetmeats ( Mithai). Maida is as nutritious as the whole wheat flour only of less fiber. Every word does not mean same by translating into other language. We must redefine MAIDA.
White Flour – Refined Flour – It is made from the Whole Wheat grain by removing off the entire husk or skin, germ then grinding or milled almost the pure carbohydrates and proteins. It is white in colour as it called. It comes in many variations, by adding whitening agents to make it more white and its called Bleached flour. Others are All Purpose Flour, Self Raising Flour. The higher the Gluten / Protein the harder and stronger the flour, good for crusty and chew products, lower the proteins / gluten the softer the flour roties, cakes, cookies and mithais etc. even tiny bit of nutrition of the wheat grain is chemically bleached out. Then dried in the hot oven at high temperature which destroy any trace of nutrients that may remain. Many chemicals are added like bleaching agents, maturing agents to develop gluten. Common additives are mixed like Potassium bromate, Benzoyl peroxide, Ascorbic acid, Chlorine gas. Many preservatives are added like Calcium propionate, Sodium benzoate, Tricalcium phosphate, Butylated hydroxyanisole.
Whole wheat grain when refined the 80% of the fiber is lost. Whole wheat flour contain several Vitamins, including Folate, Riboflavin and Vitamin B1, B3 and B5. Maida contains all. White flour contains lower level of these,refining process destroy, such as 1/2 cup of whole wheat flour has 3 mg of Niacin or Vitamin B3 and 1/2 cup of refined flour has 0.8 mg.
Refined flour is easy, lighter and needs lesser work than whole wheat flour. Atta required more care and attention in kneading resting and leavening.
Having said this lets Redefine the MAIDA and start making in our kitchens at home or professional. Consumption of Atta and Maida has lots of benefits.

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