Top Pick Of The Week

November 2, 2010

Jovial Einkorn Pasta


Einkorn wheat is naturally darker than pasta made from modern wheat. Photo courtesy Jovial Foods.

WHAT IT IS: Pasta made from einkorn, an ancient wheat.
WHY IT’S DIFFERENT: It has a different form of gliadin than modern wheat strains, so may be tolerable by the gluten-intolerant. However, it is not recommended for celiacs. Discuss with your health care provider.
WHY WE LOVE IT: It has great flavor and texture, and it’s whole grain, including the health benefits of the wheat and germ. It’s USDA-organic certified and kosher.
WHERE TO BUY IT:  Whole Foods Markets and

.Einkorn: Early Man’s Staple As Modern Nutrition

CAPSULE REPORT: After all that Halloween candy, it’s time to focus on some serious nutrition. Today it’s in the form of whole grain,  organic einkorn pasta from Jovial Foods. We’re more than jovial—we’re passionate about it.

Einkorn (Triticum monococcum) isn’t corn. It’s the first type of wheat planted by man and one of the earliest domesticated crops. It was planted from wild wheat 12,000 years ago at the dawn of agriculture, in what is now southeast Turkey.* The word einkorn, which originated much more recently, means “single grain” in German (compared with modern double-grain wheats).

*This was in the early Neolithic  Age, which saw extensive domestication of plants and animals and the rise of settlements as the hunter-gatherers decided to stop roaming after their food. Fun fact: The first known town was Jericho, an oasis near the Jordan River in what is now Israel.

Einkorn wasn’t just for poor farmers: The Pharaohs ate einkorn. It could grow in poor soil where other species of wheat failed. But by the time of the Bronze Age, more prolific and easier-to-harvest strains of wheat were being cultivated, and einkorn production decreased. Today it is a relict crop—one that was previously grown extensively, but is now found in a limited region(s).

So why should you be interested in einkorn? It’s delicious and nutritious (see the details on the next page).

Are you gluten intolerant? There is evidence that the gliadin protein of einkorn may be more digestible than modern glutens. While the arrival of einkorn in the U.S. is relatively new and it has yet to be tested and recommended for those on a gluten-free diet, if you have a gluten sensitivity you might want to try it.

You can buy einkorn berries (hulled kernels), ground flour and now, einkorn pasta. Jovial Foods’ pasta line is whole grain, GMO-free and certified OU kosher.

Read the rest of the review to learn how you can enjoy your einkorn much more than your ancient ancestors. Start with the article index below.

THE NIBBLE does not sell the foods we review
or receive fees from manufacturers for recommending them.

Our recommendations are based purely on our opinion, after tasting thousands of products each year, that they represent the best in their respective categories.

More Pasta Ideas

The Geometry Of Pasta The Complete Book Of Pasta And Noodles The Pasta Bible
The Geometry Of Pasta, by Caz Hildebrand and Jacob Kenedy. Ever wonder why there are more than 300 shapes of pasta in Italy? Learn the evolution in this guide. Learn more.

The Complete Book Of Pasta And Noodles, by Cooks Illustrated. A comprehensive introduction to global pasta: beyond spaghetti to couscous, spaetzle, ramen, etc. Learn more.

The Pasta Bible: The Definitive Sourcebook, by Christian Teubner et al. Want to make your own pasta from scratch? Here’s your bible! Learn more.


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