Maida flour is a variety of flour used to make Indian breads such as paratha and naan. It is also used in Central Asian and Southeast Asian cuisine.Maida is a refined product of wheat. It is extracted from the inner white portion of the wheat after the outer brownish layer is removed.After the flour is ground in a flour mill (Chakki), it is passed through a fine mesh (600 mesh per square inch) to obtain maida.
Though sometimes referred to as "all-purpose flour" by Indian chefs, it more closely resembles cake flour or even pure starch. In South India, Maida flour is prepared from ground Tapioca. Tapioca is also called Kappakizhangu or Maravallikizhangu. In India, maida flour is used to make pastries and other bakery items such as bread, biscuits and toast.
Western-style "plain" or "general purpose" wheat flour (which includes part of the brown outer layer known as bran) is often considered healthier than maida flour as it contains a higher level of dietary fibre (around 2-3g per 100g as opposed to 0.3g in maida flour).