The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Grain

Towner's picture
Towner

Grain

Hello,

Thank you so much for this super interesting site. We are new to it, and we have joined as we would like to ask a question. We have grown some Khorasan wheat in an area in Victoria (Australia) that is normally considered to be too cold for reliable wheat production. Just a little half acre paddock, and it stripped really well.

But a local has said that because this wheat floats in water, it will be no good for milling for flour. She took some to try and was using the float method to clean the sample of any impurities, but said because everything floated it was no good.

We are wondering if this is so,and if so, what does it mean about the grain?

Thank you, and all the best for the new year.

Fiona and Andrew

 

 

cgap's picture
cgap

Some weird sect or something?

Khorasan is a wheat grain. From all the reading I have done absolutely nowhere does it say that if a grain floats it can't be milled. If all the grains are floating, that to me makes no sense unless by some remote chance all of your crop has been affected by bugs with legs that have eaten the grain and left just the husk which, possibly, would be the only way they would all float.

Since Khorasan is usually regarded as an ancient grain, if it couldn't be milled (or crushed) into some sort of flour then it would not have been used in the past and we today would not be still using it to make bread with.

Here is a link https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Khorasan_wheat which (surprisingly for Wikipedia) seems to give some fairly accurate information on Khorasan.

A few books which I have read state that Khorasan can be used with excellent results in %'s of up to 40%, although the average % is around 25%.

So if I was you, I would tell your local that they are a bloody idiot, and go ahead and mill your grain and enjoy using a product that you have grown yourself.

And Victoria will definitely take the wooden spoon in the Sheffield Shield.

Towner's picture
Towner

Haha! But seriously thank you for the reply. It is kind of what we thought!

pmccool's picture
pmccool

but wouldn't milling some of the grain give a clear indication of its suitability?

If the individual meant that they couldn't clean out the chaff and whatnot because the grain floated, too, that just means a different cleaning method is called for.  Winnowing comes to mind.

Just because I'm a curious sort, I chucked a teaspoon of hard red wheat into some water.  Slightly more than half went straight to the bottom and the remainder floated.  So far as I could observe, the floating kernels appeared to be the same as the sinkers.  I've milled flour from this same bag of wheat with no observable problems, for what that's worth.  

Clean a kilo or so of your grain and run it through a mill to see what you get.  Best of luck!

paul

cgap's picture
cgap

...sounds like the best bet.

It's just occurred to me that you wouldn't mill wet grains anyway.

If you wet them, you've got to dry them somehow, and wetting will encourage germination, unless that is what you're trying to do.

 

Towner's picture
Towner

Thanks so much for the reply Paul!

jimbtv's picture
jimbtv

I know that when I soak beans the instructions say to remove the floaters. Maybe the "local" is transferring the recommendations of one field product to another, and I'm not too sure that works in this case.

For what it's worth, I just chucked 100 grams of buckwheat groats into a container of water (starting the sprouting process) and they all went to the bottom. No where in any instructions I have read for sprouting grains did it indicate to remove the floaters.

Towner's picture
Towner

Thank you for the replies cgap!

 

Towner's picture
Towner

Thanks for the reply jimbtv!