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The advantage of milling your own flour is that you can produce a fresh, luxurious bread that preserves all the vitamins inherent in the wheat. With the proper equipment, wheat can be milled as it is needed or milled in batches.

Milling Flour

Stream Mill

Before historical records, wheat and the seeds of other grasses were stored for later consumption. The wheat berries were simply chewed and swallowed. As this was hard on the teeth, someone had the bright idea of crushing the wheat before eating it. Thus, in ancient times, flour was milled by crushing it between two stones. This was better than just chewing the berries, but doing this in any quantity was hard work and required long hours. The average person today would find the job tedious.

When woven material was invented, it was found that the flour resulting from milling could be sifted through material in order to remove the bran. This made flour that could be used to make quality breads. Later, wind, water, and horse powered mills were invented. It might be a good experiment attempting to mill bread in the same manner as the ancients. However, for most people one or two efforts should be sufficient.

Laura Ingalls Wilder, in her book, "Little Town on the Prairie", describes an episode when her family could not get flour and had to resort to grinding wheat that had been saved for seed into flour. Because there was no mill in town, Mary, Laura's sister, used a coffee grinder. But the labor was so tedious that she was constantly at it just to make enough flour to supply the family's needs. This is a good illustration of how much work is involved in crushing wheat berries.

Today, the average person has several milling options available. There are electric and hand-crank models. Once the flour has been milled you can use it as is or use a sifter to regulate the coarseness of flour you would like.

Next Page: We have several flour mills available in our store.

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