Einkorn now in Whole Foods

I just saw this at Whole Foods: einkorn pasta.

In my einkorn bread experience (In search of wheat: We bake einkorn bread), I was spared the high blood glucose and neurologic and gastrointestinal effects of conventional whole wheat grain (dwarf Triticum aestivum). I shared the einkorn bread  with four other people with histories of acute wheat sensitivities, only one of whom experienced a mild diffuse joint reaction, the other three not experiencing any symptoms.

Anyone wishing to try einkorn can now obtain commercial pasta from Jovial, an Italy-based manufacturer. It comes in spaghetti, linguine, rigatoni, fusilli, and penne rigate shapes.

Eli Rogosa, founder of The Heritage Wheat Conservancy, tells me that, in her experience, celiac suffers seem to not experience immunologic phenomena triggered by conventional wheat.

However, we've got to be careful here. The so-called ("diploid") "A" genome of einkorn shares many of the same genes as the ("hexaploid") "ABD" genomes of modern wheat, including overlap in the sequences coding for the 50-or so different glutens and glutenins. Most of the genes that code for the glutens that cause celiac and related illnesses reside in the "D" genome that are absent in the einkorn "A" genome. However, the "A" genome still codes for glutens. So there is potential for activating celiac disease in some people. Insufficient research has been devoted to this question. It is a question of extreme importance to people with celiac and other immune-mediated conditions, since re-exposure to the wrong form of gluten can increase risk of intestinal lymphoma 77-fold, as well as risk of other gastrointestinal cancers.

So einkorn should not be viewed as a cure-all for all things wheat, but as something to consider for a carbohydrate indulgence. Yes, indeed: It is a carbohydrate, with 61 grams ("net") carbs per 4 oz (uncooked) serving.
Should anyone give it a try, please be sure to report back your experience, especially if you have a history of wheat intolerance. If you have a glucose meter, pre- and 1-hour post values are the ones to measure to gauge the blood sugar effects of consumption. Because pasta tends to cause long sustained blood sugar rises, another value at 2-4 hours might be interesting.

Comments (19) -

  • Rob

    10/15/2010 8:14:19 PM |

    This is great!  I'm eager to hear of a commercially-available ground Einkorn wheat flour.  I don't have the means or know-how to mill my own flour but I'd really like to try baking with Einkorn.

  • DogwoodTree05

    10/15/2010 10:15:02 PM |

    Pasta is one non-Primal carb I do not miss at all.

  • Anonymous

    10/16/2010 3:42:29 AM |

    -why try to simulate neolithic foods with paleolithic-type ingredients?

    -why try to eat pasta at all?

    -is it really that hard to give up?

  • Anonymous

    10/16/2010 8:04:57 AM |

    Pasta dates back 4,000 years and has a lower glycemic index than bread, so I don't think it is such a bad thing.

  • Bonnie

    10/16/2010 11:34:16 PM |

    Here is  Einkorn flour:

    Expensive, but may be worth it.  I'd love to know if anyone gets it and has success baking with it.

  • Anonymous

    10/17/2010 1:16:50 AM |

    -4000 yrs is nothing for human evolution and nutrition

    -a snickers bar has a lower GI than pasta
    -but I wouldn't eat a snickers bar either
    -if something is bad, relative to something else that's "not so bad"....why eat it at all???

  • Anonymous

    10/18/2010 11:52:29 PM |

    Interesting recent discovery:

    Bread was around 30,000 years ago -study

    LONDON (Reuters Life!) – Starch grains found on 30,000-year-old grinding stones suggest that prehistoric man may have dined on an early form of flat bread, contrary to his popular image as primarily a meat-eater.

    The findings, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) journal on Monday, indicate that Palaeolithic Europeans ground down plant roots similar to potatoes to make flour, which was later whisked into dough


    The researchers said their findings throw mankind's first known use of flour back some 10,000 years, the previously oldest evidence having been found in Israel on 20,000 year-old grinding stones.

    The findings may also upset fans of the Paleolithic diet, which follows earlier research that assumes early humans ate a meat-centered diet.


  • Einkorn Wheat Blog

    10/19/2010 3:49:50 AM |

    Einkorn is becoming popular all across the US.  Jovial Pasta is a great product and an easy way to try einkorn.

    I have been able to secure a supply of whole organic einkorn wheat berries and make them available for sale on the einkorn blog.  

    This einkorn really is fun to cook with too.

  • Anand Srivastava

    10/19/2010 1:49:39 PM |

    Regarding 300,000years ago eating grains.

    You need to read the following article, which shows that startling papers are easier to publish. Also Medical establishment is not very good at catching analytical errors.

    Evidence of grains on seeds doesn't imply that humans were eating grains. It does mean that they were using some grains. It could be for colors for painting. It could also be that sometimes they were starving and ate it.

    Just getting some thing published in a journal doesn't automatically mean that the abstract says what the paper says or the paper reports things factually, or the paper uses the evidence correctly, or the paper does the analysis correctly. There are so many ways of getting the desired results, and the peer review only works to throw out unpopular ideas. Eating wheat is not unpopular.

  • Anonymous

    10/19/2010 4:50:41 PM |

    I came across Jovial in WF a few weeks ago. I am not wheat sensitive, so I can't comment on the that difference, but I will say it is the best whole wheat past I have ever tried- hands down not even close.

  • Anonymous

    10/19/2010 7:04:34 PM |

    Thanks Anand for pointing out the lies-damned-lies-and-medical-science Atlantic article!

  • Fred Hahn

    10/19/2010 11:42:20 PM |

    Hmmm....sounds interesting. But I worry - just because we don't feel outward symptoms doesn't mean harm us not being done.

    Now, I sound like a hypocrite since I like my tequila and wine, but Einkorn won't give you a buzz. ;)

  • Anonymous

    10/20/2010 10:13:17 AM |

    I agree - stone age man probably had a very hard time collecting seeds and "grain". Add to that the grinding and the rest of the preparation and I very much doubt that is was anything like a staple. Grains may be a means of survival when nothing better can be obtained.

  • Rob

    10/20/2010 2:26:13 PM |

    To "Anonymous" who said: "...[Jovial] is the best whole wheat pasta I have ever tried - hands down..." I wonder how you'd say this compares to Dreamfields pasta.  I realize we're not exactly comparing apples to apples, but still some sort of practical comparison would be useful.

  • Anonymous

    10/20/2010 4:17:31 PM |

    @Anand Srivastava  

    So basically, we shouldn't believe anything we read on this board?

  • Dr. William Davis

    10/31/2010 2:24:14 PM |

    Hi, Bonnie--

    Judging from my single einkorn baking experience and from what GrowSeed.org's Eli Rogosa tells me, you can bake perfectly fine bread with einkorn. It will not rise like conventional wheat flour, rising only a little.

    However, I am not trying to paint einkorn as a problem-free grain. It is just an interesting indulgence and part of a fascinating broader conversation about this thing called "wheat.

  • Kurt

    11/9/2010 3:31:37 PM |

    My girlfriend and I tried Jovial pasta last week, and the taste and texture were similar to regular whole wheat pasta, so we plan to substitute it in our recipes.

  • Salina

    4/15/2011 11:46:30 AM |

    Awesome post and Nice Information. I really enjoy This Information. thanks sharing this information and also comments Great... Now Foods

  • IllinoisLori

    3/12/2013 3:49:48 AM |

    Since no one has yet posted their baking-with-Einkorn results in detail, I will! Complete with step-by-step photos of my bread-baking experience. I think it's delicious!