What is Flour?
Flour is a common cooking ingredient that is used in many different types of food. It is most easily recognizable as a white, powdery substance that is used to create dough or thicken sauces. Flour has been used for hundreds of years and is the main ingredient in the staple bread. It comes in a range of varieties such as whole meal, plain, self-raising, gluten free, high fiber etc.
Where Does Flour Come From?
Flour is made from cereals or other starchy food sources. Most commonly flour is produced from wheat but can also be made with rye, barley, rice, maize (corn), millet, potato, nuts, seeds and other grains and grasses. Wheat is said to have originated in Southwest Asia. Farmers grow crops that are especially for the production of flour. These crops are then harvested using large machines called combines. The combines collect the seeds from the head of the grass. The grain is them emptied from the combine into large trucks where it is either taken to grains storage bins on the farm or driven directly to a flour mill.
Once at the flour mill the grain is passed through a machine called a separator. This makes sure that any foreign objects are removed from the grain. Then the grain goes through the second cleansing stage. The next machine called and aspirator sucks up any matter that is heavier than the grain. The grain is then washed and dried ready for milling. The grain is passed through large rollers which separate the bran from the germ. The germ is then ground up with large steel wheels. Once the flour has been milled to the right grade it is bagged and shipped to companies and distribution warehouses.