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BHM's Homesteading & Self-Reliance Forum
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Go Back   BHM Forum > Homesteading > Food > Breads & Grains

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  #1  
Old 11-27-2008, 09:51 PM
Penny_Plinker Penny_Plinker is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: West Virginia
Posts: 471
Default Cheap way to Grind Flour

My MIL gave me this little electric Bruan spice grinder she got at a yardsale for $1.00. I stuck it away and never used it and then i was saying i needed to grind some coffee beans and she said where's the spice grinder i gave you???? She said it would do a great job on the beans, so i tried it and it did. Boy, i use it all the time now. You can put oats in there and make oat flour. You just push down on the button a few times and it will make it as fine as you want. I put some wild rice in there and made rice flour and also made barley flour out of whole barley. I don't bake bread, but i substitute at least 50% healthy flour instead of white flour for other baking. The granola recipe calls for wheat germ which costs $3.59 for a little jar, so i'm going to get some plain wheat and grind it a little coarse and use it instead of wheat germ in granola.

The grinder she gave me only makes a half cup at a time. I saw little coffee grinders in Walmart that do 1.5 cup at a time, and cost about 13.00. I'll be getting one of them when this 1.00 one wears out.

Penny
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  #2  
Old 11-28-2008, 09:25 AM
Shamrock1121 Shamrock1121 is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2006
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Default Re: Cheap way to Grind Flour

You're on to something, with some exceptions.... *You mentioned the first, you'll get coarse flour. *Coarse flour = coarse baked goods. *You need fine flour for "fine" baked goods, such as cakes and pastry.

Second, you can't make very much at a time.

Third, you miss out on a lot of grains/beans/seeds by only using a coffee/spice mill, over a regular mill. *

As an example, I use a lot of bean flour in baking and cooking. *You can't do beans in a coffee/spice mill. *Bean flour is how I make "instant" refried beans. *NO soaking beans, NO long cooking. *Just add bean flour to water and boil for a few minutes.

- Softer grains mill better in a coffee/spice mill than hard grains. *If making gluten-free foods, a coffee mill is a fairly good way to save money by milling gluten-free flours that tend to be really expensive. *And as always - FRESH IS BEST. *Once the bran on any grain/seed is cracked, the oils in it begin to oxidize and go rancid. *The nutrients quickly degrade. *This is the #1 reason to mill your own flour - nutrition.

Some good uses for a coffee/spice mill.... *

-RICE:
Milling rice in a coffee grinder has always been considered a good way to "clean" it. *If you add that rice flour to a cookie recipe, you'll get really crispy cookies. *Use 10-20% rice flour in the recipe. *But rice flour will also cause the cookie to be gritty, so don't use too much.

Flour made from long-grain rice is good for breading, sauces, and used as a thickener, but NOT for baked goods. *Use medium- and short-grain rice for flour. *They will do the tasks mentioned for long-grain rice, but are also best used in baking.

For 1-cup rice flour, grind 3/4 c. minus 1 T. rice.

-FLAX - I mill flax in a coffee/spice mill (or my Porkert Seed Mill - great for grinding oily seeds - sesame, poppy, flax, etc., and tiny things like amaranth and teff). *Then I transfer it to a pint jar and keep it in the freezer. *I use 2 cups every 7-10 days. *I mill a pint (2-cups) at a time. *I add it to our morning kefir/fruit juice smoothie and all baked goods.

-BUCKWHEAT:
Use unroasted buckwheat groats for buckwheat flour. *You can get a "new" flavor by lightly toasting the buckwheat in a dry skillet - just until it releases its aroma. *Buckwheat mills cup-for-cup. *One cup groats makes 1 c. flour.

-MILLET:
Freshly-milled millet turns rancid and bitter quickly, so only mill as much as you need. *Grind 3/4 c. millet to make 1 cup millet flour.

-BARLEY:
Barley adds moistness, similar to oat flour, to baked goods. * Barley is an "odd" flour. *It's light and airy after it's milled. *Flour made from 3/4 c. barley will initially measure 1-1/2 c. flour, but after several days in storage, it compresses to 1 cup. *Before measuring barley flour, tap the container on the counter a few seconds to settle the barley flour to get an accurate measure.

To make 1 c. barley flour, grind 3/4 c. lightly pearled barley (OR 3/4 c. minus 1 T. highly pearled barley OR 3/4 c. *PLUS 1 T. whole barley.

-OATS:
You can make your own oat flour by grinding oatmeal in a blender or food processor. *1-1/2 c. oatmeal (quick or old-fashioned) = 1 c. ground oat flour.

-Karen
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  #3  
Old 11-28-2008, 01:15 PM
Penny_Plinker Penny_Plinker is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: West Virginia
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Default Re: Cheap way to Grind Flour

Thanks for all that information. I can get buckwheat at the feed store. And most of those other grains at Walmart. I mostly want to use the flour to add to granola, or to make healthful protein bars or cookies.

If you grind white sugar, does it make confectioners sugar?

Penny
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  #4  
Old 11-28-2008, 01:51 PM
reyecat reyecat is offline
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Default Re: Cheap way to Grind Flour

to make confectioner's sugar, add 1 Tbsp cornstarch to one cup of regular sugar and blend for a minute or two in the blender.
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  #5  
Old 11-29-2008, 10:32 AM
grower grower is offline
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Default Re: Cheap way to Grind Flour

I recently got a hand-powered grain mill from Lehman's Hardware, but before that -- for maybe 4 years -- I used my Krupp's electric coffee grinder. I would put a handful of wheat in it and grind it twice, then put that in pancakes or bread that I was making, to "improve" on the regular white flour. But when I started grinding Ezekiel bread mix in it (which includes beans) it broke the tip off one of the little blades, so I wouldn't recommend grinding anything really heavy like that in it.

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  #6  
Old 11-29-2008, 06:54 PM
Penny_Plinker Penny_Plinker is offline
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Default Re: Cheap way to Grind Flour

Quote:
Originally Posted by reyecat
to make confectioner's sugar, add 1 Tbsp cornstarch to one cup of regular sugar and blend for a minute or two in the blender.
Cool! That's good to know. Thank you!

Penny
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  #7  
Old 11-29-2008, 06:57 PM
Penny_Plinker Penny_Plinker is offline
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Default Re: Cheap way to Grind Flour

Quote:
Originally Posted by grower
I recently got a hand-powered grain mill from Lehman's Hardware, but before that -- for maybe 4 years -- I used my Krupp's electric coffee grinder. *I would put a handful of wheat in it and grind it twice, then put that in pancakes or bread that I was making, to "improve" on the regular white flour. *But when I started grinding Ezekiel bread mix in it (which includes beans) it broke the tip off one of the little blades, so I wouldn't recommend grinding anything really heavy like that in it.
Sorry the blade broke in the Krupps. How do you like the hand grinder from lehman's and do you have to clamp it to the table. If you don't mind, how much does the hand grinder cost?

Penny
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  #8  
Old 11-29-2008, 09:50 PM
grower grower is offline
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Location: Alabama
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Default Re: Cheap way to Grind Flour

I like the grinder, except it takes about an hour of grinding to get sufficient flour to make 2 loaves of bread. *It cost around $150. *It was the "OUR BEST GRAIN MILL".

Oh yeah... I did have to clamp it.

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  #9  
Old 12-21-2008, 12:25 AM
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cubcadet Male cubcadet is offline
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Location: N.E. Pennsylvania
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Default Re: Cheap way to Grind Flour

I have a Little Ark mill and have the same problem. I motorized it, and it takes about 20 minutes to finely grind enough hard white wheat to make flour for 6-8 6"hotcakes. Hard red winter wheat takes less time. But, the quality is fantastic- very fine flour.
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