Just had an interesting facebook "conversation" about gluten with a couple of chefs. The basis of one argument was that while gluten comes from wheat, barley, rye, etc..., it is only developed through kneading. I quote:
"Kneading, develops gluten by stretching out the proteins, & increasing the rate at which, the molecules collide and the reaction occurs. Kneading also forms an ordered cohesive mass. The reaction remains essentially, a chemical reaction. The virtue of kneading is the mass is very uniform and the gluten can be developed very extensively (homogenous and extensive cross-linking) to give very strong loaves - which will rise spectacularly and have good mechanical strength so you can make free form loaves fearlessly. Most straight dough recipes develop all the gluten by kneading."
Is this true? Because if it is, then eating raw (not that anyone would)wheat would mean you wouldn't actually have to deal with the gluten issue. (I know there are other things that we're avoiding in wheat, and it's not just gluten, but I'm just curious here about the science)
Anyway, I know it's not a terribly important deal, but I have never really thought about this before and didn't know what the correct answer actually is. I was always under the impression that gluten was one of the ways that plants managed to keep on developing their species (anti-predation proteins), but I would be wrong if gluten doesn't present until it has been kneaded.
Alright, that was an annoyingly long way to phrase my question. Oy.