Background and Objectives: Protein and gluten content and composition are important for the baking quality of wheat flours. Our aim was to provide a comprehensive characterization of 82 wheat flours to analyze the influence of protein composition on rheological and baking quality parameters. Findings: Protein composition, starch gelatinization behavior, as well as rheological (microfarinograph, gluten aggregation, extensibility), and baking parameters were determined. The correlation matrix showed no significant correlations between gluten composition and loaf volume. Parameters of the gluten aggregation test allowed a prediction of gluten, gliadin, and glutenin content with an absolute root mean square error of cross validation of 7.5, 6.0, and 3.2 mg/g, respectively, using partial least squares regression. Starch gelatinization temperature had an effect on gluten aggregation.
Conclusions:The gluten aggregation test was suitable to predict gluten, gliadin, and glutenin content. The lack of correlations between protein composition and loaf volume indicates that baking quality is the result of a complex combination of different parameters. Significance and Novelty: Our study is the first to comprehensively analyze 82 wheat flours, especially in terms of gluten composition. We show that flour blends can reach excellent baking quality even if quality indicators like crude protein or extensibility are comparatively low.