The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Wheat germ: is it glutinous?

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Symmetry's picture
Symmetry

Wheat germ: is it glutinous?

I love to use wheat germ when I'm cooking, but I haven't added it to any breads yet. Does anybody know how it reacts when added to bread dough (other than adding that wonderful flavor, that is)? Does it retard or accelerate the gluten development? Does it, in fact, have any effect at all?

Also, please share any breads you particularly like wheat germ in! It's super-healthy, and I love the taste of it.

isand66's picture
isand66

I have used wheat germ in many recipes as a small % of the overall flour.  It adds a wonderful nutty flavor to my breads.

I count it as part of the flour and it works out great.

You can check out some of my posts where I use it.

I recommend you give it a try and just substitute some flour for wheat germ in your recipe.

Good luck.

Ian

Symmetry's picture
Symmetry

I will make sure to look through your posts when I have some more time (as right now I'm insanely busy).

I'm glad to hear that it hasn't given you much trouble. Do you use it toasted or plain more often, and how do those affect your bread?

I'll be experimenting with my next few loaves until I figure out the 'feel' of the ingredient - if you understand my meaning.

Thanks,

Nigel

 

nicodvb's picture
nicodvb

Hi, you can safely ignore any eventual trace of gluten in the germ. You can safely consider it like bran, in all respects: if it's toasted it's harmless and contributes only to taste (it can even carry some rancidity if it's old), if it's untoasted... don't exaggerate or the enzymes in the germ will seriously affect the structure of the gluten, weakening it. It's a well known additive used when the dough is too rigid.

Symmetry's picture
Symmetry

I'll keep those tips in mind - especially using it to soften over-rigid dough, like my anadama bread turned out!

Since it weakens gluten, should I add some vital gluten if I want the untoasted flavor but a fluffy loaf? About how much would equalize the loaf - half weight of gluten vs. germ (ie 100g germ, 50g gluten) sound about right?

I'll experiment. I'm still in the early stages of learning and making 4-5 batches a week, so I will play around with my next few loaves and see how they turn out.

isand66's picture
isand66

I have used it many times and when used in small batches I have never noticed any weakening of the gluten.  I'm not saying this may not happen to you, but I have never ever experiences it by adding wheat germ to my flour mix.

Symmetry's picture
Symmetry

Ah, I see. I'll make sure to keep my usage of it small, then. Luckily a little bit adds a lot of flavor anyway.

nicodvb's picture
nicodvb

Unfortunately I can't help, you'll have to make some experiment and see how the bread comes out. Mind that added gluten will render the crumb gummy if used in excess. I would never add more than 5% gluten (with respect to flour) to make a plain (not rich) bread.

Symmetry's picture
Symmetry

Thanks! If I'm making a richer loaf, does the added gluten make bread gummy sooner or later?

Actually I'll just read some more. I've got Bread on the way, and I already have a few Reinhart books (BBA and ABED). Between those, I should be more or less covered, right?