The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Taste Test: Storebought Rye vs Home Milled Rye

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loafgeek's picture
loafgeek

Taste Test: Storebought Rye vs Home Milled Rye

I bought some rye kernels at Whole Foods Market on the cheap the other day.

I just did a test, to help me determine whether or not I wanted to invest $500 in a Komo Classic grain mill.

I threw a handful of whole rye kernels in my spice/coffee grinder (was cleaned thoroughly before grinding).   Ground them up into a powder similar to the consistency of Hodgson Mill Rye Flour (which should be actually called Hodgson Mills Rye Meal because it is pretty coarse).

I compared these two.  The freshly home ground one wins hands down:

1. Much more flavorful, nutty, aromatic etc.: that is, all that characteristic flavor of Rye one tastes is about 3 times stronger in freshly milled vs. the 5lb bag of Hodgson Mill Rye. (Have you ever eaten freshly cut chives vs supermarket chives, or freshly cut cilantro--coriander leaves--versus storebought?  Same thing.)

2. After a second or two of blandness, the Hodgson Rye flour left a bitter taste in my mouth which the freshly ground flour did NOT.  (Much like ground coffee is bitter versus freshly ground coffee beans.)

I will be purchasing that Komo, for sure now.

If you haven't done it already, it's really easy to do this test: just buy a handful of whole kernels--wheat, rye, spelt, etc.--from Whole Foods Market, your health store, or whatever market you can buy them in your city; then throw them in your spice/coffee grinder and compare.

If you've already done the comparison, please reply with your comments, thanks!

EDIT: Also, I've read that all the nutrients are protected inside the intact hull until milled--after that they deplete quickly; I don't know how true this is, but it seems like a very good added bonus.

 

nicodvb's picture
nicodvb

I found a hand mill for 65€. Maybe it's time to do an "investment".

loafgeek's picture
loafgeek

I strongly suggest buying a handful of grain and throwing it into the coffee / spice grinder you probably already own that way you can verify it for yourself before spending any money.

I kept reading how it tastes better and was nervous about buying one because I had no idea how much better it tasted.   But now that I have done the taste comparison myself, it makes the decision pretty easy for me.

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

bread the only mill you make ever need is a Krups or other coffee grinder.  I bake a couple of loaves a week and have used mine, a 15 year old used one,  for about a year now, to grind a portion of just about every loaf of bread we bake.  I try to grind only 75 g at a time and  watch the temperature and heat build up.  The longer you grind it the finer it gets - to a point.  If you do 3 - 30 second grinds the flour will be a fine as you will need and not heat up if you let it cool between grinds.  Fresh is only about 5 times better than bagged or bins when it comes to whole grain of any kind of flour. - if your berries are fresh.   

Crider's picture
Crider

The oils in many grains oxidize and turn rancid a short amount of time after they're milled, leaving a bitter flavor. Packaged whole flour just can't be milled, packaged, warehoused, shipped and then sold before the bitterness sets in. That's who so many whole wheat bread formulas call for lots of sugar or honey.

After I got a mill, I switched to lean doughs for my whole grain breads. It was a challenge at first to get good rises without the added sweeteners.

suave's picture
suave

It's not a fair comparison.  HM is about as bad a rye flour as you'll ever find.

loafgeek's picture
loafgeek

I have some expensive arrowhead rye flour I bought the other day.   I'll compare it to that and get back to you.

loafgeek's picture
loafgeek

Ok just ground up some rye kernels again and did a taste comparison between it and the arrowhead organic rye (bought refrigerated from my health food store).

The arrowhead tastes better than the hodgson mill and had a less bitter aftertaste, but bitter none-the-less.  The home ground rye kernels tasted at least twice as powerful and still had no bitter aftertaste at all.

This is all I can compare it to besides the rye flour in the bins at whole foods market.  KAF rye is not available at Whole Foods nor my Health Food Store here in Oklahoma.  I am guessing if I did order a bag of KAF rye and compared it to home ground I'd notice a difference--but this is just a guess.

Has anyone here compared the test of freshly ground rye to the KAF rye?

Thanks.

suave's picture
suave

If you have WF there why not just buy some rye flour from their bulk bin?

loafgeek's picture
loafgeek

I could do that but it would probably taste worse than the arrowhead flower.

Rosalie's picture
Rosalie

I often get compliments on the baked goods I bring to events.  It must be mostly because of the fresh-ground flour.  I can't believe I'm THAT good a baker.  I'd put my money on the home ground stuff any day.  But I don't see why you have to pay $500.

Rosalie

loafgeek's picture
loafgeek

How do you mill your flour?

Yerffej's picture
Yerffej

If you are serious about milling and baking, the KOMO is a lot of mill for the money and well worth it.

Jeff

Syd's picture
Syd

If you are considering buying a mill, this post is worth reading.