The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

how long for fresh milled grains?

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breadbabe's picture
breadbabe

how long for fresh milled grains?

Hi, I'm new to posting here, but I've been a stalker for quite a while ;-).  I own a small home-based bakery in central VA specializing in fresh milled (and therefore, whole) grains.

I know wheat inside and out. Literally. But can anyone tell me the shelf-life of other milled grains - like barley, rice, oat, spelt, etc? (we're not talking grain storage, but flour storage) Maybe there's some chart out there? I've perused the boards a bit and haven't found any full discussion on just this.

thanks in advance.  Maureen

Yerffej's picture
Yerffej

Hi Maureen,

I too mill for whole grain baking and am wondering why you would want to store flour when much of the benefit is derived from freshly milled flour. 

As for shelf life, most whole grain flours (the ones you mentioned) will last 6 months under cool dry sealed storage and longer if refrigerated or frozen.

Jeff

 

breadbabe's picture
breadbabe

Thanks, Jeff. I'm with you about the fresh milling - all of my products are made with flour less than 1 day old, most less than 2 hours.

But I've been asked by my retailers to consider cookie mixes and "baby grains". Both of these are best in a self-standing fold-down bag on the shelf. So I'm thinking about instructions: give the retailer a 2 week supply, then mark the package with a 2 month expiration date? Do I mark the outer bag with a "refrigerate after opening" statement? Since my selling is local, I would like to keep the freshness date tight - knowing that if it sits in the stock room - well, who knows what will happen to it.

maureen

 

 

Yerffej's picture
Yerffej

Maureen,

I think that you would be safe with something like a three month shelf life unless you are in a perpetually hot climate.  I would mark the bag with the idea that the mix will last longer if refrigerated, but I think that if you just call for refrigeration it may confuse people.

I store the bulk of my whole grains in a cool basement environment and mill usually just minutes prior to using the flour.  I believe that this freshness is a significant factor in the final flavor inherent in many of my breads.  Good luck with your project, it sounds like something that is quite doable and potentially fun.

Jeff