Wheat Gluten (food)

Wheat Gluten (food)

Wheat gluten, also called wheat meat, mock duck, gluten meat, or simply gluten, is a food made from gluten, the main protein of wheat. It is made by washing wheat flour dough with water until all the starch dissolves, leaving insoluble gluten as an elastic mass which is then cooked before being eaten.

Wheat gluten is an alternative to soybean-based meat substitutes such as tofu. Some types of wheat gluten have a chewy or stringy texture that resembles meat more than other substitutes. Wheat gluten is often used instead of meat in Asian, vegetarian, Buddhist, and macrobiotic cuisines. Simulated duck is a common use for wheat gluten.

Wheat gluten was first developed in China, and historically has also been popular in the cuisines of Japan and other East and Southeast Asian nations. In Asia, it is commonly found on the menus of restaurants catering primarily to Buddhist customers who do not eat meat.

Since wheat typically contains about 14 percent protein, roughly 86 percent of the original wheat flour may be disposed of or used as stock for soups. In industrial production of gluten, the leftover starch may be disposed of via the municipal sewage systems. Makers of gluten in towns and cities are typically charged a fee to dispose of their starch into the local sewage system.

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