The most basic of bread flours. Flour for making bread should be 'strong' ie, high in gluten which creates the elasticity required to produce a good dough. Strong white flour is generally made from hard wheat varieties and will have a protein content of 12 to 14% compared to the 10 to 12% of 'plain' or all-purpose flour. White flour has had the wheatgerm and bran removed.
Wholemeal (or whole-wheat as it is known in the US) flour is, as its name suggests, made from the whole grain, including the germ and the bran. It is more nutritious than white flour and has a textured appearance with flecks of brown. It behaves differently to white flour in the baking process.
Spelt (Triticum spelta), also known as dinkel wheat, or hulled wheat, is a species of wheat that has been cultivated for around 7500 years. It was an important staple in parts of Europe from the Bronze Age to medieval times and is undergoing a resurgence of interest due to its possible health benefits and lower glutn tan traditional wheat flour. It has a reddish colour and a slightly sweet nutty flavour. It behaves differently to wheat flour in bread making due to the higher gliadin to glutenin ratio in its gluten. This means less kneading is required and a spelt loaf may not rise as much as a wheat loaf.
Atta flour is an Indian wholemeal flour milled from durum wheat. Unlike regular wholemeal flour, it is finely milled so there are no bran flakes present, it is a pale yellow/brown colour. 'Chakki atta' is a traditional stone ground flour. Atta is used in India for traditional flat breads such as naan, puri and roti.
Ragi flour is made from the cereal Eleusine coracana and is also known as finger millet. It is widely grown in Africa and Asia. It has a protein content of between 6 and 12% and is naturally high in calcium, typically having around 350mg per 100g. Because ragi flour is gluten free, it can be incorporated into gluten-free bread recipes.