The attractiveness of micronized wheat as a brewing adjunct lies in its low cost and the fact that its friability allows it to be milled together with malt. However, if used in large quantities it can cause problems during mash separation, prolonging the lautering process. Investigations into this problem are described. It was found that wheat proteins, denatured and rendered insoluble during micronization, undergo thiol/disulphide interchange reactions during mashing which lead to the formation of large aggregates incorporating malt proteins as well as those from the wheat. Such aggregates can form a type of gel which clogs the mash bed during lautering and interferes with wort filtration. It was further discovered that by modifying the micronization process so as to increase the final moisture content of the wheat, the extent of protein denaturation (and therefore the severity of the lautering problem) can be substantially decreased.
Keywords : adjunct lautering moisture content performance production protein wheat