Spelt is a grain you should know about.
Spelt is very much like wheat with just a few important differences, as a matter of fact spelt IS an ancient form of wheat. For this reason it shares many attributes with wheat, and foods made with spelt are very similar (and taste similar) to those made with wheat.
Spelt enjoyed greater popularity as a grain for several centuries, but was replaced by wheat over the last century for a number of reasons. However, spelt has recently had a resurgence in popularity primarily because of some of it’s healthy attributes.
Spelt has a great taste – although the flavor has been described as a bit nuttier than wheat, spelt is actually very wheat-like in both it’s taste and texture. Spelt has also gained a reputation for being a healthy for grain since it is often raised without the same herbicide load as wheat. Much of the spelt grain and flour found in stores is actually organically raised, eliminating the concerns that go with herbicides, pesticides, and specifically glyphosate (the primary ingredient in Roundup).
You can now find a variety of spelt flours and spelt products (bread, crackers, rolls, etc) in many of the mainstream grocery stores, not just in specialty or health food stores. Nutritional content and calorie count are very similar to wheat.
It’s important to note that spelt does contain gluten, but many people who have troubles when eating wheat do not have the same problems with spelt. This may be because of the way the spelt grain has remained largely unchanged for so long, or due to differences in farming practices. As noted previously, glyphosate (Roundup) is sometimes applied to wheat before harvest (though wheat treated this way is never labeled as such, and may be included in the flour or wheat based products you purchase). This is not the case with Spelt and may account for the differences in digestive problems or gut irritation. Find out more about spelt and consider trying some spelt products yourself. I personally bake all of my recipes that call for wheat flour with at least a partial blend of spelt flour.
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