Wheat is the world's most important agricultural commodity. In Europe, where wheat is the main staple, bread wheat (Triticum aestivum) covers the majority of land on which wheat is cropped. Wheat breeders and technologists have contributed greatly to the continued success of bread wheat and its products. The bread-making quality' of a wheat variety can be described in relation to the processing its kernels must undergo to make a good bread. Bread wheat kernels must be suitable for proper milling into a flour that can produce a dough capable of becoming fine bread. The type of bread varies depending on local bread-making practices.
Part I of this book contains a study of the anatomy and chemical composition of wheat kernels, and of the fundamental difference between soft' and hard' kernelled varieties. It relates these characteristics to the processes of milling, dough-making and manufacturing of bread, and to biscuit and pasta making. The genetic basis for these characteristics is illustrated, and assay methods for characterizing wheat varieties - ranging from Saunders' chewing test to the most recent developments in glutenin and gliadin research - are evaluated.
Part II briefly describes - country by country - how bread-making quality has been integrated into wheat-breeding programmes throughout Europe, and how breeders have attempted to resolve the conflict between yield and quality. It describes how quality wheats travelled' around the world - from their endogenic source in Eastern Europe to North America, and back again to Europe. This explains how specific genetic material can appear in the pedigrees of varieties grown in a wide range of agro-ecological zones.
In addition to giving an interesting historical survey, the book points the way forward for breeders' efforts in the future. Bread-Making Quality updates and interprets knowledge in a way that makes it particularly accessible for food t...
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