Why I Bake My Own Bread.
I guess this week will be update week. We bought a grain grinder from Pleasant Hills Grain Company a year ago. We also bought 75 pounds of wheat to grind into flour.
I spent ages researching and searching for the best grinder. I wanted a non electric one that would give me stronger arms. The real reason is so that I can use it with or with the electric on. I purchased a Wonder Junior Grain Mill. The thing is awesome, but let me back up.
Last May I wrote a post called Duck Feathers and Human Hair in Bread? Ewww! You can read this post here at: http://creativelylivingwithsue.com/duck-feathers-and-human-hair-in-bread-ewwww/.
It goes into the first reason I have chosen to make my own bread. I still buy store bought bread, because my husband just refuses to give up his white bread. So I do things in little steps.
There are a couple of reasons as to why I wanted to grind my own grain. The processed white flour has had so much removed from it. Removing the oils from the flour makes it a much more stable item and it can sit on shelves much longer than flour with wheat germ oil left in it. This also takes out the bran, the healthy oil, and the wheat germ. The healthy stuff goes bye, bye in the name of shelf stability. To be completely honest, the duck feather thing was the biggest factor. We raised ducks when we lived on the farm. I adore them, but they are filthy little buggers.
According to the website Foodaries, "There’s a hair in my cookie dough.” In fact there is a whole lot of hair in my cookie dough, hamburger bun, and pizza crust. The non-essential amino acid L-cysteine is a derivative of human hair that is commonly used in food production as a dough softener, flavor enhancer, and sometimes as a dietary supplement." Ok, like I said this just grosses me out. I make everything except the buns. Time to make the buns! This non-essential amino acid L-cysteine is also in lots of products including bread and human hair is not the only thing that L-cysteine is made from. It includes those wonderful duck feathers.
Not everyone can bake their own breads, or even can afford to purchase bakery made bread that is not mass produced. There are lots of factors to consider when baking bread. Do you have time to bake bread? Do you have access to a good bakery where you can afford to buy fresh baked bread? If you can't buy it, but have time to make it or have a bread maker, can you get fresh ground whole wheat? If you choose to grind your own wheat, can you get the wheat berries? Do you even like to bake?
I have time, I love to do it, I have a grinder, but I have to get my wheat berries from Wal Mart in Carterville Illinois. I can't get them in Florida so my only options are mail order, which the cost of shipping is insane or buy a few bags each time I visit my daughter. The 25 pounds of hard white wheat, which seems to be the only type of berries that are in season, cost around id="mce_marker"2 to id="mce_marker"4. The bag of all purpose flour is $8 to id="mce_marker"0 for 25 pounds. One pound of berries is equal to 1 pound of flour. 1 cup of berries equal 1 1/2 cups of ground flour.
I bake a couple of loaves every 10 days or so. This depends on how much Chris eats when it comes out of the oven or how many sandwiches I eat.
The only issue I have has been the grinder is manual. All the daydreaming in the world won't grind those berries. I procrastinate constantly about grinding the wheat berries. In fact my son in law was sweet enough to grind the last batch of flour. We decided to order the piece that will hook the grinder up to the electric, but can be switched back to manual.
To be honest this has been a great decision for us to purchase the grinder. I love the taste of the bread. I don't use whole wheat flour for everything, but it works great for breads and pizza dough. The next goal is to use it to make pasta. The only suggestion I have is make sure you have an electric grinder unless you have a helpful son in law around or a couple of energetic kids to help you.