The Loh Down On Science

Bubble Bread

Why do kids love squishy white bread? It's all about the bubbles.

Ever wonder why kids LOVE squishy white bread?

This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science

and on why air tastes so delicious!

Even though whole wheat is healthier, children--and consumers --prefer sandwiches made with WHITE bread. Humans prefer SOFTNESS in our sandwich bread--and white bread is the softest of all. Why?

Well, it comes down to wheat flour's unique bubbly structure. When wheat flour gets mixed with water, salt and yeast, it's only the flour that traps carbon dioxide bubbles, resulting in raised bread. But wheat flour that includes WHOLE grains contains the wheat kernels' spiky bran shell, which tends to POP those bubbles.

The result? Tougher bread -- and tough bread tastes, well, tough. White bread, however, gets made from flour that's had all the bran processed out. Nothing to burst those precious bubbles. Mmmm!

To the rescue: chemical engineer Grant Campbell at Britain's University of Manchester. Campbell and other scientists are now examining white bread's aeration structure, to mimic it in whole-grain bread, without popping all those bubbles.

But those Brits will NEVER make a whole grain Rice Krispies. That would be just. . . WRONG.


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