The main ingredient of bread is flour and there are different types of flour.
Strong white flour
This is strong flour with a high protein (gluten) content. It is used for making white bread, batter mixture, puff and flaky pastry. Strong white flour gives bread a light texture.
Plain white flour
This flour has a medium soft strength with a lower protein (gluten) content. It is used when a finer texture is required. Plain flour is used for short crust pastry, biscuits, sauces, batter mixture, shortbread and plainer cakes and scones with the addition of a raising agent.
Self raising flour
This is a medium soft to soft flour with a low protein (gluten) content. In manufacture it has had a raising agent added. Self raising flour is used to make cakes and scones.
This flour uses the whole wheat grain and is high in fibre and protein (gluten). It is light brown in colour due to the germ and the bran. Wholemeal has a shorter shelf life than other flours because it contains the untreated fat from the germ. This flour may be stoneground or roller milled. It is used to make whole meal scones, pastry and bread. Wholemeal bread is heavy because the bran and germ reduce the rise.
Wheatmeal / Brown flour
This flour is very similar in appearance to the wholemeal flour, although the very coarse bran particles are removed in milling. It is used for making pastry, scones and bread. Bread made with brown flour usually rises better.
Wheatgerm / Germ enriched flour
This flour is rich in B-vitamins because it contains processed wheatgerm. The germ is cooked first with salt to prevent the fat and enzymes present in the germ from spoiling the keeping quality of the flour. Wheatgerm flour is used to make bread.
Stone ground flour
This flour is made using traditional grinding methods. It retains the vitamins and minerals but does not keep as well as other flour. Stone ground flour is usually wholemeal although white stone ground is available.
Starch reduced flour
This flour is a very light flour and has a high proportion of the starch washed out leaving the flour protein (gluten). It is used to make bread and other baked goods.