A new study has found a quicker and cheaper way to produce gluten-free bread.
People with Coeliac disease who rely on gluten-free bread know that it doesn’t come cheap, with gluten-free varieties often more than double the price of regular wheat-based bread due to higher production costs (from both energy and water consumption).
But there is some hope for reduced prices in the future as scientists have discovered a way to produce gluten-free bread that is both quicker and cheaper.
According to a study published in the journal Food and Bioprocess Technology, ohmic heating is an emerging technology that distributes heat rapidly and uniformly, as it occurs volumetrically rather than relying on conventional heat transfer based on conduction, convection, or radiation.
Using this technology, fully expanded gluten-free bread can be produced in just minutes, with scientists saying ohmic heating was a “suitable and promising” development in producing gluten-free crustless bread.
“Compared with conventional baking, OH has shown many advantages in terms of improved bread quality and reduced baking time,” the paper said.
“Furthermore, OH might even reduce processing costs, as baking is known to consume most of the energy (around 40%) during bread making.
“Although energy expenditure of OH in industrial scale cannot be transferred directly from the pilot scale equipment and remains unknown, it might provide economical advantage over conventional baking methods.
Although further research is required to better understand the behaviour of the batter and its components, such as starch and protein, during ohmic heating, scientists believe these breads were comparable or even superior to gluten-free breads baked in a conventional baking oven.
With further research and refining the technology and baking process, it could be good news for gluten-free bakers and consumers with lower production costs in both energy and water that would hopefully be passed down, as well as several additional health benefits.