My question is about buying grains. I’ve noticed that you are always writing about grinding your own flour. Could you give me some tips on this? I have no idea where to even start.
Grain Grinder/Where to Buy
My first recommendation would be to invest in a grain grinder. This is a very helpful step to incorporating more whole grains and fresh grains into your diet! It is an investment, so if you can’t purchase one right away, start saving, and buy small packages of whole grain flours in the meantime and store them in the freezer or refrigerator to keep them fresh and prevent rancidity. I highly recommend the Nutri-Mill (purchased through Pleasant Hill Grain Company). It is a wonderful investment! This allows you to produce the freshest flour! You can buy whole grains through Azure Standard, which is my source. You can purchase 5-25 lb quantities, and I believe they have the best price I have seen. Depending upon where you live, they also deliver to drop spots all over the NW, and Midwest. Other sources include: Bob’s Red Mill.
Start with Basic Whole Wheat
I would recommend simply starting with whole wheat flour (hard red winter wheat, and soft spring wheat). Hard red is used in making bread, pizza crust, etc as it has a high gluten content, and soft spring in making all sorts of pastries, quick breads, muffins, etc. as it will give them a lighter, more fluffy texture (very similar to white flour).
A great source for learning more about different grains is Sue Gregg’s breakfast cookbook. This is my favorite resource! She also sells a whole grain baking course that is very helpful. She explains all the different grains and teaches you how to incorporate these by starting with breakfasts (waffles, pancakes, coffeecakes, etc). If you can eliminate white flour and white sugar, that is the best step you can take! This book really helped me learn how to start including other grains, such as kamut, spelt, quinoa, brown rice, etc. The breakfast cookbook alone is a great start!
Learn One at a Time
After you learn how to start replacing white flour with whole wheat flour, my next recommendation is to start getting familiar with the other grains. I recommend learning about one at a time. Take one week to focus on one grain and learning how to cook it and incorporating it into your meals. This has been very helpful for me. I started with quinoa, since it is such a nutritious grain. I started soaking, cooking, and incorporating it in soups, casseroles, or with our breakfast cereal, etc.
It’s so fun, if you start simple and don’t try to learn about or incorporate all of them at once!