Difference between Semolina and Durum (with Table)

Wheat is a necessary component in our diet. It can be consumed in various forms or dishes like bread, pancakes and various Indian dishes. The most common and enjoyed form for consumption of wheat is pasta.

Pasta, unknown to many, is made from many types of wheat. Two of the most common ones being semolina and durum. Though durum is more commonly used, semolina is used for a few types of pasta. Since they are both wheat flours, it can be hard to differentiate between them.

Semolina is the wheat middling of durum species of wheat. They have a course and heavy texture. The wheat flour of semolina is also coarse but makes a good dough that strengthens on heating.

Durum is the leftover product during the production of semolina wheat flour. This is the only wheat species that is tetraploid and therefore has a fine and ground texture. It makes a soft dough that is easily moldable.

The difference between Semolina and Durum is that semolina has a coarse texture that gives a dough that strengthens on heating whereas durum has a fine and ground texture that gives a soft and moldable dough.

Comparison Table between Semolina and Durum

Parameters of ComparisonSemolinaDurum
Wheat typeWheat middling of durum species of wheat.Only wheat species that is tetraploid.
Flour TextureCoarse flour, so it makes a good dough that strengthens on heating  Due to the ground texture, it makes a soft dough.
TextureCoarse and heavy textureFine texture
FunctionThe texture allows it to make thick and strengthened dough on a heatingUsually makes a soft dough that can be bend and curved easily
UseUsually used for making pasta dough like macaroni with distinct shapes.Used for making dough of spaghetti, noodles and lasagna.

What is Semolina?

Semolina wheat is commonly made from the wheat middling of durum wheat. It usually has a yellow hue to it. But this colour differs with the usage of different wheat. If the wheat type is softer than durum wheat, then the colour of semolina wheat appears almost white.

The wheat is usually coarse and heavy, making the wheat flour also coarse. The dough made from semolina wheat flour is usually held together by the coarse texture and this strengthens on heating. This is why they are used for making distinctly shaped kind of pasta like penne, macaroni, etc. and other delicacies like puddings and cereals.

Since semolina comes from durum, it takes more time to complete digestion. So this can be the perfect component of a weight-loss diet program. It is also rich in potassium and vitamin B-complex. It can improve and maintain kidney functioning as well.

As it contains gluten, it might not be safe for the one’s suffering from celiac disease or gluten sensitivity.

semolina

What is Durum?

Durum is the by-product produced during the making of semolina wheat. It has a pale-yellow appearance whereas all the other whole-wheat kinds are usually tan or brown. Unlike other wheat, the whole wheat berry is ground to give the wheat flour.

The wheat itself has a ground texture whereas the wheat flour has a fine texture. So, the durum wheat flour dough is soft. They can be curved and moulded easily. Durum flour is usually seen to be used in spaghetti, noodles and lasagna.

Since it is the only kind of wheat that is tetraploid, it is considered to be the most significant kind of wheat nutritionally. High in protein and has a low gluten content as well. They contain a much higher percentage of proteins, minerals as compared to other whole-wheat grains.

Since it is comparatively heavier than other kinds of whole-wheat, it is not used for baking bread or other baking products. Even though the gluten content is low in durum, it is still not consumable by the ones who are gluten sensitive.

durum

Main Differences Between Semolina and Durum

  1. Semolina is the wheat middling of durum species of the wheat whereas durum is a special species of wheat that is tetraploid. This is the only species of wheat that is tetraploid.
  2. Semolina flour has a coarse texture and so it makes good doughs that strengthen on heating up. Durum, due to their ground texture, makes a soft dough that is easily moldable.
  3. Semolina wheat has a coarse and heavy texture whereas durum has a fine texture.
  4. The coarse texture of semolina flour allows it to make thick doughs that strengthen on heating. Whereas, durum wheat, having fine texture, makes a soft dough that can e bend and curved easily.
  5. Semolina flour is usually used for making distinctly shaped pasta doughs like macaroni. But durum flour is used for making noodles or the dough for spaghetti and lasagna.

Conclusion

Pasta is one of the most enjoyed and consumed delicacy throughout the world. This Italian dish, having many varieties like penne, macaroni, etc., are made different wheat flours. This fact is unknown to most of them and here is how we can differentiate between the two most popular ones.

Semolina is the coarse-textured wheat flour obtained from the wheat middling of durum wheat. This gives a tough dough that strengthens on heating and is therefore used for making the dough of distinctly shaped kinds of pasta like macaroni, penne etc.

Durum is an ear of fine-textured wheat that is the only species that has tetraploid. This allows it to have a soft dough that can be bend and curved easily. Durum wheat is usually used for noodles, kinds of pasta like spaghetti and lasagna.

The difference between the two wheat and their use arises due to the difference in the texture of the wheat and the flour obtained from it. While semolina has a coarse structure and gives a rather hard dough, durum has a fine texture and gives a soft dough that is easy to mould.

References

  1. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/fsn3.83
  2. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0733521009000022