Monday, April 9, 2018

Ancient vs. modern wheat giveaway


Over two years ago, I switched our family away from all modern wheat, and went to using all einkorn flour instead. Even though we had been eating virtually 100% organic food for years by this point, which does not allow the use of GMO products, I did not realize that all wheat since approximately the mid-1800s had been hybridized and cross-bred in a form of crude genetic engineering that farmers have always practiced.

Grasses (grains) are unique in that both parent plants pass down a full set of chromosomes, which then add and 'stack up'. The original grains had 14 DNA strands. By combining two of these, the offspring plant now had 28 genes. When that was cross-bred with a third grain, we arrived at wheat with 42 chromosomes by the middle of the 19th century. Along with this genetic load came a plethora of genetic information, which by some is believed to be behind the wide-spread wheat and gluten intolerance we see today.


Einkorn is one of the original, 14-chromosome grains. Even though it contains a higher percentage of gluten than modern wheat does, the gluten is far less complex, and thus widely tolerated even by those who are gluten sensitive.

In our family, Isaac and Becca were struggling with seasonal asthma, and I would get it during pregnancy. I was also having skin issues from wheat such as itchy rashes on my arms and patches on my scalp. I did not have asthma at all with my most recent pregnancy, and we made it through the allergy season (Jan - March) that had in previous years always triggered severe asthma in both Isaac and Becca with close monitoring, but no incidents requiring a doctor's visit for either of them.

We still eat modern wheat when we go out to eat (like pizza), so it's not like we are 100% purist about it. At home, we use only einkorn. I bake all of our bread, and buy pasta and crackers ready from Jovial Foods. If it is not made with einkorn, I don't bring it into the house. But we are lax about it for eating out since none of us are actually acutely intolerant of modern wheat, it's just a way to preempt future gut and allergy issues.

I learned much of the information about modern wheat from a popular book called "Wheat Belly." It's a highly informative and easy read. I recommend it to anyone who is dealing with digestive issues, food allergies/intolerances, or wants to preempt these. Virtually all libraries have a copy of it, many even as an electronic or audio book. 

Wheat Belly does not promote einkorn, but rather only mentions it in passing. The book advocates for going grain free altogether, a step that I am not willing to take unless there were serious health concerns that demanded we cut out all grain. By eliminating modern wheat (which makes up the lion's share of all grain consumed by the average American), we prevent the digestive issues caused by modern wheat that would eventually force us to go grain-free.

Learning to bake with einkorn was rough. I consider myself an experienced cook/baker, but it took me a good two months before I was turning out bread that could be eaten rather than being good only for breadcrumbs. Einkorn is difficult to work with because the gluten is relatively weak - breads rise beautifully, only to collapse once the baking starts. The Jovial Foods einkorn cookbook is a true gem and sanity saver.

Recipes using no or quick leaven (like baking powder and baking soda) pretty much translate 1:1 for substituting all-purpose flour with einkorn, though ones that contain high amounts of fat (think: pie crusts, biscuits) are still tricky to work with because einkorn is slow to absorb fats. I haven't had much time to share most of my einkorn recipes on the blog, but there are some, such as a video tutorial for making einkorn sourdough, a recipe for biscuits, and a recipe for quick sandwich loaves.




And now for the giveaway: I am giving away

1. a new copy of "Wheat Belly", and

2. a new in the package bread proofing basket set that is used for the sourdough bread mentioned above.

These items will go to two separate people. To enter, simply leave a comment below. In the comment, please specify whether you would like item 1 or item 2, so I know which "hat" to throw your name into. Please do not say "both" just to get your name entered twice ;)

However, if you share this post through social media, you can leave a second comment for a second entry, and pick a different item than in your first comment. If you subscribe to my YouTube channel, you can comment for a third entry.



Entries accepted through midnight on Sunday, April 15th, 2018. Winner will be announced in a follow-up post here in the blog, so please check back.


If you are new to baking with einkorn, or thinking of making the switch, I highly recommend the Jovial Foods Einkorn cookbook.

 
 available on Amazon

73 comments:

  1. A proofing basket for bread has been on my wishlist for quite a while, so I'd love to be entered for #2!

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  2. #2! I ferment alot but haven't tried sourdough yet .

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  3. The Wheat Belly book entry please. Thanks!

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  4. I shared on facebook. Now for the bread proofing basket set entry please

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  5. This is so kind of you to do! I think we're dealing with gluten-sensitivity here at my house, so I'd love a chance to read Wheat Belly. So, hat 1 for me ��. This gluten sensitivity thing is difficult for me, because I have a baking certification and love bread.

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  6. I will take #1 wheat belly, really enjoy your post I learn a lot.

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  7. #2 please proofing basket ! Thank you for being so generous.

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  8. Shared it on Facebook . Now # 1 wheat belly ! Thank you

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  9. I subscribed on YouTube ! #1 proofing basket ! Thank you Ms Zsuzsanna

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  10. #1 - Wheat Belly. I've been wanting to read this! Thank you!

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  11. I subscribed to YouTube. 2nd entry - proofing basket. Thank you!

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    1. Andrea, you were drawn as the runner-up for the proofing basket. The original winner lives out of country. The giveaway was only open within the US, so it goes to you instead (assuming you are in the US). Congratulations! Please leave me a comment with your mailing address.

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    2. Andrea, could you please send me your address? You won the giveaway for the proofing basket.

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  12. The wheat belly book would be amazing! I struggle with digestive issues.

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  13. The wheat belly book would be amazing! I struggle with digestive issues.

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  14. Thank you for this generous giveaway! Enter me for #2 please. Next on my list to try is the einkorn sourdough bread, the proofing basket has been on my wishlist for a while. Also, thank you for the tip on crackers from Jovial foods.

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  15. I shared on FB and I’m a YouTube subscriber! So #1 again and #2.
    Thank you so much ☺️

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  16. Shared on Facebook (Dee Bee) for another entry! Let's go with #2 again. Thanks so much ��

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  17. I would like to enter for number two please.Thanks for the helpful tips, and the post!

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  18. Shared on Facebook as well. Please add me for #1. Was already a subscriber, so I don't think that counts.:)

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  19. How generous. Proofing basket would be awesome.

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  20. I am a youtube subscriber as well, Proofing basket.

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  21. I shared on my fb page. (Proofing basket)

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  22. I would love to enter for #2, the basket!! :)

    I am so interested to read about your journey with wheat/einkorn, because it runs so parallel to our own journey. Thank you for sharing!!

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  23. I would love #2! :) I'm already subscribed to your YouTube, can I enter a second for #2?

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  24. Wheat belly book! I was just talking to my daughter about wheats. This came on the perfect day.

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  25. Jamie VanderpoolApril 9, 2018 at 8:14 AM

    I'd like to be entered for the Proofing Basket.

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  26. #1 Please! I Shared on FB. Thank you for your generous giveaway. Will subscribe to your youtube channel as well.

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  27. #1 please. I already have a bread proofing basket! I love the einkorn wheat! So yummy!

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  28. Entry #2 please for sharing on Facebook! I really love that basket!

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  29. Entry #3 please for subscribing to your YouTube! I really really really want that basket! :)

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  30. Enter me in for #1 (the wheat belly book) please! Thank you! 😊

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  31. Thanks for doing this giveaway. I would like the #2 item. I have been using the einkorn for a while.

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  32. #2, please. I also just subscribed to your YouTube channel.

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  33. Item 2 please :)

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  34. Entry for wheat belly book. Thank you!

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  35. I subscribed on YouTube! The bread proofing basket please :)

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  36. Going totally grain free has never sat right with me either. I don't want to be entered into either item(currently down sizing) but thanks for the information about this alternative to modern wheat.

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  37. I’ve been hearing good things about the book and want to read it, i’ll enter for the book please. I am also going to share your post on Facebook and subscribe to your youtube so I’ll also enter for the second item. -Angelika Vincent

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  38. I would love to be entered for #1 please.

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  39. The book! This is so kind of you!!!

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  40. Your description of wheat reproduction doesn't make sense.

    "Grasses (grains) are unique in that both parent plants pass down a full set of chromosomes, which then add and 'stack up'. The original grains had 14 DNA strands. By combining two of these, the offspring plant now had 28 genes. When that was cross-bred with a third grain, we arrived at wheat with 42 chromosomes by the middle of the 19th century. Along with this genetic load came a plethora of genetic information, which by some is believed to be behind the wide-spread wheat and gluten intolerance we see today."

    First, you wrote 28 genes once when you meant 28 chromosomes.

    Which still doesn't make sense at all. If during sexual reproduction in grasses, both parents ALWAYS provide a full set of chromosomes, then EVERY generation would double in chromosomes exponentially. It wouldn't stop at 14, 28,or 42. Yes, during hybridization, one parent may provide one number of chromosomes while the other a different number,leading to mismatched sets, but that still is different from what you have described.

    Now,in asexual reproduction, there is only one parent and it does provide both sets of chromosomes, but again, the number of chromosomes stays the same from generation to generation (barring mutations).

    This is basic biology...

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  41. I just subscribed today to your YouTube channel. Bread proofing basket set entry again please

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  42. I would love to win the bread proofing basket.

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  43. I would like the book. Thank you!

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  44. I just subscribed to your YouTube channel, so another entry for the book, please.

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  45. Number one please, my library can't find that book.

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  46. I would love to be entered in the Wheat Belly hat (#1). We love Jovial Foods. I recently started ordering their olive oil, it is delicious with a wonderful tang. Thanks for the opportunity!

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  47. Replies
    1. Congratulations, you won the book! Please leave a comment with your address below. I will not publish it. Thank you for participating!

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    2. Viry only, could you please send me your address? You won the giveaway for the book.

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  48. Hi! # 2, please. Thank you!

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  49. #2 please and thanks for the great post!

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  50. I would love the proofing basket! I stopped doing einkorn, I would love to start using it again...honestly I’ve been liking not having to bake bread lol one less thing, but the flavor is so good.
    I’m already subscribed to your YouTube, so can I get 2 entries for the basket? 😊

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  51. #2 please, I subscribed to your YouTube channel & shared this post on Facebook as well ��

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    1. Congratulations, you won the proofing basket! Please leave a comment with your address below. I will not publish it. Thank you for participating!

      Delete
  52. #1 please. I would love to read Wheat Belly as I have autoimmune condition and was told to avoid gluten.

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  53. I just subscribed to your YouTube channel, so second entry for #2. Thank you!

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  54. I would like to be in the basket set hat.

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  55. Subbed to your YouTube, basket set please.

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  56. Shared to my fb, basket set entry. Sweet!

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  57. I would like to be entered for #1-Wheat Belly. Thank you!

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  58. Thank you for offering this. I picked the book up at our local Goodwill, but #2 would be great!
    I appreciate all your helpful blog posts on nutrition.

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  59. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  60. The bread proofing basket set (#2) would be great! :)
    I've shared this post to my Facebook, so once again (#2). I'm also a YouTube subscriber; so, my third entry... Wheat Belly (#1) please.

    Thank you for this generous giveaway and all your helpful tips, Mrs Anderson. :)

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  61. Thank you! I would love to be entered into the wheat Belly drawing please.

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Your KINDLY WORDED, constructive comments are welcome, whether or not they express a differing opinion. All others will be deleted without second thought.