The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts


siuflower's picture

where in Dallas, Tx to buy bulk flour (50 lb), good quality whole wheat and bread flour?



copyu's picture

Can you really tell bleached from unbleached flour?

March 7, 2010 - 4:07am -- copyu

Hi all,

I hope this topic hasn't been 'done to death' already, but I was wondering...Can any of you guys actually see (or taste? or feel?) a difference between bleached and unbleached wheat flours? My search of this topic on TFL yielded lots of cries for help that usually start: "My recipe calls for unbleached APF, but..." and the usual responses are to visit KAF online.

mcs's picture

Ellison Milling Company

February 15, 2010 - 5:51pm -- mcs

Hey there everyone.  I'm wondering if anyone in the Northwest U.S. or Southwest Canada has any experience with flour from the Ellison Milling Company out of Lethbridge, Alberta.  If so, which of the flours have you tried, and can you make any comparisons to more 'mainstream' flours that I might know?  I've heard good things about their products, but not from people who make artisan type breads.  It'd be nice to hear some feedback before I buy a 50# bag of their stuff.  Thanks.


Erzsebet Gilbert's picture

Sifting your troubles away?

January 9, 2010 - 8:03am -- Erzsebet Gilbert

So, in my past few weeks of baking, I've begun to sift my flour before adding it to the mix - I've only been making loaves I've made many times before, by the way.  I started doing it in an attempt to make my measurements more exact, but it seems that the crumb has improved since I've started to sift.  Am I only fooling myself here, or does sifting it really make a difference?  Just curious.... thanks!

Mason's picture

Stollen--All purpose or bread flour?

December 22, 2009 - 10:48am -- Mason

I'm about to make stollen for christmas, and see many recipes using all-purpose rather than read flour.  

With all the dough goes through in adding fruit, I would think that a strong bread flour would help it still rise well.  Is there any reason that one should use all-purpose flour rather than the bread flour I am inclined to use?    

ApplePie's picture

I'm a compulsive baker.  When I'm in a grocery store, sometimes I walk down the baking ingredients aisle, even if I don't need anything, just to look.  Pulling a freshly baked apple pie or loaf of bread from the oven, with its aroma wafting through the house with the promise of deliciousness to come, is one of the most enjoyable experiences in life, in my opinion.

I'm also an engineer who needs to understand how things work.  Baking fascinates me.  The transformation of simple ingredients - flour, water, yeast and salt - into a living piece of dough, and then nourishing loaf of bread that feeds the soul as well as the body is the fascinating intersection of science, the senses, and the spiritual.

Lest anyone think I'm an expert baker, let me assure you I've had plenty of duds:  gloppy underdone pies, bricks for bread, sourdough cinnamon rolls that were so sour they made my mouth pucker - and not in a good way.

So I'm here, and you're probably reading this, because I want to understand and apply the secrets of good baking, one of which is quality ingredients.  Now you can make a decent loaf a bread from store bought flour; I've used King Arthur and Gold Medal Better for Bread in the past.  But in an effort to bake healthier breads, I wanted to find a full-flavored whole wheat flour that wasn't bitter.  That's challenging since whole wheat flour is more perishable due to the oil in the germ.  References from the Fresh Loaf and from Artisan I and Artisan II classes at SFBI point to Central Milling, who produces Whole Foods' 365 Organic Unbleached All Purpose flour.  They also sell unbleached white flour at Costco, under the Central Milling label.

I contacted Nicky Giusto at Central Milling to ask about ordering whole wheat flour directly from the Utah mill.  To my surprise, he said I could swing by Petaluma (in the SF bay area) and buy directly from their warehouse!  I met Nicky yesterday just after he returned from delivering some flour to the Culinary Institute of America in Napa.

Nicky Giusto

Nicky, 4th generation in the flour/baking business, set up and is running this west coast warehouse, which has been in existence for less than a year.  Nicky was very helpful, freely sharing information about the different flours and which ones to use for what you want to bake.  We talked about the business, the wheat market, and the quality of their flour, starting from the seeds they supply to the farmers.

Although the Petaluma warehouse doesn't stock every type of Central Milling flour, they still have quite a selection. This picture shows a depleted supply, deliveries having been made throughout the week.

Central Milling Petaluma warehouse


It was good to hear how Central Milling keeps a close connection to the farmers who grow the grain.  In fact, the photo in the Central Milling logo is of Farmer Brown, the great great grandfather of the Washington farmer who now grows grain for their Organic Whole Wheat Acme Hi-Pro Fine flour.

Central Milling logo

And they do sell a lot of flour to Acme:

Flour for Acme

I ended up w/ 2 50lb bags of flour plus a little extra:

  • 50 lbs Organic Whole Wheat Acme Hi-Pro Fine: High protein, especially good for pan breads. Although you can make a 100% whole wheat loaf with it, Nicky suggested mixing it with some white flour, I think for some softness.
  • 50 lbs Artisan Bakers Craft white flour w/ malted barley flour. This bag he threw in for free, since the bag had gotten a tear (which they taped up) and so couldn't be sold commercially.
  • 2 bags of pancake mix, regular buttermilk and whole wheat buttermilk, just to try.  You may notice that the pictures used on these packages of pancake mix are the same pictures to be found on Whole Foods 365 brand of pancake mix.

Central Milling pancake mix

In the future, I'll probably be coordinating with others to split 50 lb bags of flour.

If you are interested in buying flour from the Petaluma warehouse, contact Nicky via phone - his number is shown at the top of the Central Milling products webpage - to arrange your visit.  Although they aren't set up to sell to a high volume of people, Nicky is quite happy to sell to enthusiasts on an occasional basis.  Just be prepared to take your flour in 50 lb increments.  If there's a bag already opened, he is willing to sell a smaller quantity.  Working on the website is on Nicky's To Do list.

I have no affiliation with Central Milling - just an enthusiast looking for quality flour.




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