My mother bought a new Vita Mix a little over two years ago. I was in love. It’s like a blender on steroids! When I started grinding my own grain, I would go to her house and use her Vita Mix. I couldn’t afford one myself, nor could I afford a grain mill. But I was happy just having freshly ground flour.
On the way to the chiropractor one day, I stopped at a local thrift store. In the kitchen section was (gasp!) a Vita Mix! Not as new or as beautiful as my mothers, but a Vita Mix nonetheless. It was priced at $18.
I didn’t have $18 with me. I knew it was worth that, so I asked the lady if she would hold it for me so I could run to the bank. There was an ATM about five minutes from the thrift store, so it wouldn’t have been a huge trip. She said no. She explained that they “didn’t hold things for customers anymore.” I drove to the ATM, praying the whole way that the Vita Mix would still be at the store when I returned. Ten minutes later, armed with cash, I walked back to the kitchen area of the thrift store. I’m sure I sighed audibly. The Vita Mix was right where I left it. Let’s just say I had quite the praise be to God session after leaving the store! Continue reading Grinding Grain with a Vita Mix
The reason why I soak my grains is explained in “Is Your Flour Wet?” a free e-book available from Kitchen Stewardship. I’m not going to take the time to re-write the whole explanation now. Suffice it to say that soaking your grains/flour begins the process of breaking them down so our bodies can better use the nutrients available in the grains.
When I make bread, I really make bread. I soak enough flour to make about 9-10 loaves at a time. My newest plan is soaking my flour, then separating 3 cup portions into individual loaf pans and freezing them. Before, I made the dough into loaves after the first rising and froze those loaves before the second rising. When I want bread, I thaw one portion per loaf on the counter. I allow it to come to room temperature, then proceed with adding the yeast mixture. I will first give the recipe that I follow. At the bottom of this post I will put a smaller recipe. The pictures show exactly how things should look. If you haven’t made bread before, DEFINITELY make the smaller recipe first!!! Continue reading Soaked Flour Whole Wheat Bread (Recipe!)
Two years ago, my aunt invited me to a bread seminar. A local group of women showed a video lecture by the BreadBeckers and baked various breads for the guests to try. The video taught me a lot about grain, whole wheat flour, and white flour. (You can get a free cd from the BreadBeckers’ website!) This lecture launched me into the world of buying grain, grinding my own grain to make flour, and cooking with whole grains.
Before I go anywhere near the buying, grinding, and cooking, you need to have a basic understanding of why I spend this much time and energy on grain.
A wheat kernel – sometimes called a grain of wheat or a wheat berry – is a seed. Each kernel has three parts: the endosperm, the bran, and the germ.