Monococcus Wheat (einkorn, little spelt)
Monococcus wheat protein content, on average 15-18%, is higher than that of other cultivated cereals and has a nutritional value higher than that of common wheat and durum wheat. The studies carried out at the Research Unit for the Qualitative Valorisation of Cereals of the Council for Research and Experimentation in Agriculture (CRA-QCE) in the last ten years have allowed to identify many peculiar and nutritionally interesting aspects of the monococcus wheat. Among the characteristics that make it unique in the field of straw cereals we have (i) the high content of carotenoids, precursors of vitamin A and natural antioxidants, which is about 5 times that of soft wheat; (ii) the excellent availability of tocoli (vitamin E), which is about 50% greater than durum wheat and soft wheat; (iii) the high content in lipids (about 50% more than common wheat), with a clear prevalence of unsaturated fatty acids; (iv) the high percentage in ash and the high content in minerals (particularly interesting are zinc, iron and phosphorus) and (v) a content in fruits about 50-70% greater than soft wheat (Hidalgo and Brandolini, 2008) ). The monococcus wheat flour, almost impalpable, has a characteristic yellow color and is excellent for the production of biscuits, snakes, flakes and other bakery products (Brandolini et al., 2008; Pollini et al., 2013); there are also genotypes with an excellent attitude to bread-making (Saponaro et al., 1995; Borghi et al., 1996). Also the pastification quality is very high, both in terms of workability of the raw material and of the quality of the finished product: the spaghetti and the monococco wheat macaroni have a good resistance to cooking and a reduced loss of starch compared to those based on commercial groats. of durum wheat (Brandolini et al., 2008). Moreover T. monococcum possesses small-sized (so-called B-type) starch granules in proportion to the cultivated wheats.