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Home Grain Milling Q & A with Traditional Cooking School
We compiled all the most frequently asked questions about home grain milling and asked Wardee Harmon of Traditional Cooking School to give us her expert answers.
…and realize how milling your own grain can be part of everyday life.
You asked, we answered!
We’ve received so many questions about milling your own grain at home that we asked the expert! Wardee Harmon of Traditional Cooking School is sharing her years of wisdom with home grain milling using the Mockmill 100.
She’s answering questions from the ease of use of a grain mill, the health benefits as well as the cost savings that come with home milling grain.
Why should someone grind their own grain if they already buy organic flour, or even organic sprouted flour?
- It’s healthier – Flours that have been sitting around a while, the nutrients degrade, the fats oxidize so you can end up with rancid flour. It’s much healthier to buy your grain as you need it.
- The whole food is present – Freshly grinding your own grain means all three parts of the grain are present: Bran, Germ and Endosperm. (White flour, even organic white flour isn’t a whole food since the bran and some of the germ have been removed.)
- It’s lighter – If you do fresh milled flour you get a better result because it hasn’t sat for a while. It’s the same effect that sifting gives to your flour. But you don’t have to sift, only run it through your mill as needed.
- It tastes better – we’ve confirmed over and over if we make flour ourselves, we end up with a much tastier result.
- It’s more frugal – When you’re buying organic flour it can be quite expensive, so if you start with the best whole grains you can put that money toward organic whole grains from farms you agree with and your money is going to go much farther if you purchase whole instead of paying for the service of the milling.
- You get better control – with a mill like the Mockmill, you can adjust the coarseness of the grind which you don’t get when buying store bought flour.
- Easier to store – If you start with whole grains, they’re easier to store and store longer. If you buy flour, you’re going to have to get much more creative with storing your ground flour in the freezer. Storing grains is much easier than storing flour.
- The Mockmill makes it SO EASY – Nearly as easy (sometimes easier) than scooping flour from the bag for your recipe.
What is your response to someone who says, “I’m just too lazy to grind my own grain.”
We all have those things in our life where we think, “I just can’t handle that right now.” So there may be a mental hurdle to get past by asking yourself if you can even see yourself grinding your own grain.
But if you had a bucket of grain in your basement, it’s so much easier to just grab some of that and dump it into your Mockmill when you need it. Rather than going to the store, grinding your grain, or buying a bag of flour and keeping it fresh by storing it properly at home, and making sure you have a constant supply of fresh flour. Which much of the flour you buy at the store is already rancid!
If you’re lazy, it’s actually easier to grind your own grain using a Mockmill.
What makes grinding your own grain so much healthier for you?
- Whole Grains – The whole grain has all the nutrients God put into that seed, the enzymes, the germ the bran the oil and you grind the whole thing, so nothing is lost and you have all those nutrients for your nourishment. If you grind them on the spot then, especially the fats are in their best form. If they sit around then they go rancid. So grinding it and using it within a few days is far preferable, health wise, than using flour that’s sat around for a while.
- Then, if you want to be even more healthy, you can combine them with traditional cooking methods. Sprouting, or using fresh milled flour for recipes that call for sourdough, then you’re making it even more nutritious and digestible for your body, so you just can’t lose in that scenario.
- It is the healthiest possible scenario for your baked goods when you have fresh milled flour and traditional methods.
Once flour is ground, how quickly do you have to use it?
- Use within 3 days of grinding at room temperature – however, do realize that once its ground, it does start the oxidation process.
- Refrigerate it up to 7 days.
- Freeze it for up to 6 months.
- Sprouted flour would be used similarly. 3 days room temp, 7 days refrigerated and 6 months in the freezer.
How much grain should I grind to get 1 cup of flour?
- Generally speaking, to get 1 cup of fresh milled flour, you grind about ½ cup grain.
- But to bake with this, you’ll actually need to grind slightly more than half the called for amount, then add about 1-2 Tablespoons more flour per cup in the recipe.
- However, if you’re doing a recipe that calls for white flour and are using whole grain, such as Einkorn or Spelt, you might not need to use more for the recipe, you might be just right with the fresh milled flour. Because the whole grain parts of the flour absorb more water, the recipe might end up just right.
- It’s best to know the overall consistency you’re looking for whether it’s a muffin recipe or cookie recipe, etc.
- Also, if you think your batter is soupy, give it 5-15 minutes to see if the flour absorbs the excess water before adding more flour.
Will fresh milled whole grain work 1:1 in recipes that don’t call for fresh milled flour?
- If original recipe calls for white flour, the equivalent fresh milled whole grain might work perfectly.
- If original recipe calls for whole grain flour, you may need to add 1-2 Tablespoons per cup extra to make the recipe have the right consistency.
How do you store whole grains to make sure they stay fresh?
- If you have access to a chest freezer, you’ll want to freeze the whole grain for 10 days to kill any bugs, eggs or critters on the grain.
- Then, remove from freezer and store in a large storage bucket with an airtight lid.
- You can even add a mylar bag and oxygen absorbers to keep it fresh.
- Unless it’s going to be used up within 6 months, then I don’t worry about the bags or oxygen absorbers.
What does grinding grain at home entail?
- Assuming you’ve already frozen your grain for 10 days after bringing it home from the store, then it doesn’t tremendously change your workflow.
- Instead of retrieving flour, you retrieve your grains, put them in the hopper, put your bowl underneath the spout and grind your grain.
- You might find you’re using your Mockmill multiple times per week.
- The Mockmill is super because you could make a cracked grain porridge and just crack your grains the night before, soak them overnight and then eat breakfast the next morning.
Does the Mockmill work well for grinding gluten free grains as well?
- Yes, as long as it’s not a severe gluten allergy, you can use the mill for both gluten free and non-gluten free grain.
- If you’re not extremely allergic to gluten, you can just clean the mill out in between uses by grinding some white rice. Then continue grinding your gluten free grain. (If you do have a severe allergy, we recommend a dedicated Mockmill that’s strictly used only for GF grain.)
- Grinding your own gluten-free grains can save a lot of money, even over buying individual flours and mixing them yourself.
- Allows you to grind the grains you prefer. Some of the store bought gluten free flour blends are heavy on starch (such as arrowroot or cornstarch), so grinding them at home can be even healthier.
If anyone is shopping for a mill, why would they want to consider the Mockmill?
- It’s attractive – made from recycled material which makes it more affordable for home grain mills.
- I’ve used products in the past like the Vitamix and NutraMill, however the Vitamix doesn’t get as fine of a grind and makes the grain really hot. Although the NutriMill does grind the grain pretty fine, you can’t crack grain or grind pepper in it like you can with the Mockmill.
- Because it’s a stone mill you have so much more versatility than other grain mills.
Want to learn more about Traditional Cooking?
If you want to learn more about Traditional Cooking, or are curious about the different courses Wardee offers, check out Traditional Cooking School.
Special Offer from Mockmill
We hope you enjoy our interview, and we also hope you take advantage of the special offer Mockmill has given Full of Days readers!
Until Monday, May 21st you can enjoy $20 off the cost of a Mockmill 100 and you’ll also receive a FREE grain mill package worth $62 dollars!
- 2.5 lbs. Einkorn Wheat Berries from Ancient Grains
- Sourdough Starter from Breadtopia
- Flour Power (paperback book) – Classic guide to modern home grain milling, authored by Marleeta F. Basey.
- Everyday Sourdough (eBook) – Easy sourdough recipes for the everyday baker, by Full of Days.
- The Mockmill Recipe Guide – Get ready to discover flavor-filled favorites from some of today’s top food and healthy-eating bloggers… all the way through to professional artisan chefs who’ve discovered the taste-infusion fresh flour makes to breads and baked goods.
- Farm Directory & Grain Milling Guide – This easy-to-follow Mockmill guide will introduce you to the abundance of clean grains you can buy from small family farms across America.