Are you looking for answers on how to bake with the fresh milled wheat flour from your grain mill? My book Grain Mill Baking Get-Started Guide: Recipes and Techniques for Confident Whole Grain Baking has what you need to successfully take your wheat from berries to bread — or cookies, pizza, and many other delicious things!
This is the quick-start resource I wish I had when I bought my grain mill. It’s not a coffee table book filled with mouth-watering food photos (although I happen to love those!). It’s a guide book, intended to get you in the kitchen, lightly dusted in flour, and melting at that first bite of oven-fresh goodness.
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Replacing processed foods with whole ingredients
By the time I was ready to invest in my grain mill, I had been working to replace the processed foods in my kitchen with whole ingredients — cooking and baking from scratch instead of opening boxes or heating up frozen meals. Reading In Defense of Food and Food Rules by Michael Pollan was hugely influential for me. I wanted to drastically reduce how much I was eating at restaurants, but didn’t want to give up the enjoyment of delicious food.
Have you had these questions about grain mill baking?
When I bought my countertop grain mill, I was excited to get started grinding my own wheat, but intimidated by how different the flour that came out of it was compared to the white flour off the shelf. I had a lot of questions:
- Can I swap out store-bought flour for my whole grain flour 1:1?
- Do I need to make any ingredient substitutions?
- What will the texture of the baked good be like?
- How do I make yeast bread? Will it rise, or be a dense brick?
- How can I make my favorite recipes, or any other recipe I want to try, with whole grain wheat flour?
- Which kind of wheat berries should I buy? And where can I buy them?
- What do I do with extra flour after I’m done with my recipe?
Basically the big thing on my mind was:
“How do I use my grain mill to bake delicious things with whole grain flour?”
sharing the results of my research and experiments with this book
Through a lot of research, experimentation, and note-taking, I was able to understand the patterns of what worked better and what didn’t work so well. That’s what I’m sharing with this book.
When I started baking with the fresh milled flour, I had this fear that it would taste “wheaty” — that slightly bitter flavor we usually associate with whole wheat. The reality was not like that at all! Everything tasted fresh and wholesome, but without that bitter aftertaste. You may actually find that with time, your taste buds start to learn what the whole grain tastes like, and processed white flour tastes stale and dull.
Learning how to mill my own flour and bake with it has been such a satisfying and rewarding adventure that I want to help empower other curious bakers to jump in and get started. I’d love to see more and more people enjoy fresh and delicious baked goods made with whole grain wheat flour instead of pre-packaged flour that’s been processed and stripped of its full nutrients.
My hope for this book is to take you from being a baker with big questions and hesitation about your fresh milled whole wheat flour to an enthusiastic, confident baker who can’t wait for an opportunity to bake fresh, nutritious, delicious goodies.
Is this the right book for you?
Baking can be a time-consuming experience. You don’t want to waste your time with a book or recipes that don’t fit what you’re looking for, and I don’t want to set the wrong expectations.
This book is for you if:
- You want to learn how to bake with freshly-milled wheat flour.
- You want control over the ingredients you bake with. You want to stop baking with processed flour, and you’re looking for recipes that are 100% whole wheat (not mixed with off-the-shelf processed flour).
- You’ve considering buying a grain mill for your own kitchen but have questions about how to get started using the flour you’ll grind. You’re looking for some direction that helps you decide whether a grain mill is a good fit for you.
- You already own a grain mill, but it doesn’t get as much use as you’d like because you’re feeling stuck about how to get started.
- You want to master a few solid, building block recipes (I think of them as “classics”) so you feel more confident baking with whole grain wheat flour.
- You want to start simply, with recipes that only use wheat flour so you don’t need to stock your pantry with several different grains and make flour blends.
- You are looking for recipes that don’t require dough enhancers, conditioners, or vital wheat gluten.
- You’d like tips on adapting other recipes for your whole grain flour.
This book is not about:
- the science and nutritional data of whole grains
- the history of wheat or other grains
- reviewing or recommending different brands of grain mills
- gluten-free baking
- growing or baking with sourdough starters
- multi-grain (millet, quinoa, barley, flaxseed, etc.) recipes — although old-fashioned oats make a few appearances
- sprouted wheat
I’m also an enthusiastic learner. For me, half of the fun of making something is the process of learning how to make it. In researching whole wheat flour, I learned that there’s a lot of information out there about it, and trying to understand it all is exhausting. A lot of it is conflicting, misleading, and confusing, and I decided that the only way to truly know what’s in my flour (and satisfy my picky nature) is to make it myself.
I’m not here to preach about nutrition. I’m not a scientist, doctor, nutritionist, or dietician. But I am an avid baker, and love the feeling of making something from scratch, especially with whole ingredients. I love to experiment and learn new things, and love sharing what I learn to help others unlock their enthusiasm as well.
My path is all about seeking a way of eating that’s a balance of nutrition and health, and is also enjoyable and delicious. Since 2013 I’ve written on my blog about my baking and cooking experiences. It’s focused on recipes using whole grains or those that I adapt for whole grains, and the results I’ve found with this experimentation. Today there are more than 200 posts about my baking and cooking projects, and counting.
My food journey
I believe context plays a huge part in how a person feels about a resource such as a book. If you’d like to read more about my food journey to get a sense for where I’m coming from, visit this page.
Let’s get baking
This book will help you get your kitchen tools ready and make you excited to fire up your grain mill and oven. Learn how to make these classic recipes crafted especially for fresh milled wheat flour:
- Sandwich Bread
- No-Knead Artisan Bread
- Angel Biscuits
- Skillet Flatbread Pizza
- Sheet Pan Pizza
- Baking Stone Pizza
- Banana Muffins
- Raisin and Oat Cinnamon Spice Muffins
- Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Thick and Chewy Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
- Simple and Spot-On Brownies
- Vanilla Cupcakes
- Chocolate Yogurt Cake
- Flour Buttercream
- Pie Crust
- Plus a bonus recipe for your furry little friends: Peanut Butter Dog Biscuits
You’ll also find tips and techniques for adapting other recipes for your whole grain flour such as choosing ingredients that tenderize the flour, adjusting the amount of certain ingredients, and using slow, cold fermentation to allow the flour to fully hydrate and develop flavor.
If you’re ready to take charge of your grain mill — and taste delicious foods that in no way take a back seat to those made with processed flour — you can buy my book Grain Mill Baking Get-Started Guide: Recipes and Techniques for Confident Whole Grain Baking, on Amazon for Kindle.