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Komo vs Mockmill, and Komo flour sifter

grainzzz's picture

Komo vs Mockmill, and Komo flour sifter

I have a Komo grain mill on order, along with the sifter attachment. When I placed the order, I thought the sifter would enable me to get qualitatively near commercial white bread, all-purpose, or pastry flour depending on the protein content of the wheat. But in further research, it may not work well enough to justify the cost or the longer wait.

I have the chance to purchase a Mockmill, made by the same company as Komo, and with a bit more power. But no sifter attachment. I plan to use several kilos of flour a week, and wonder if I would be just as well off with a #60 manual sifter, how well it would work, and how long it would take. I'm interested in baguette and other white breads, as well as rolled pasta and pastries. Of course I also plan to use unsifted fresh ground wheat, as well as cornmeal and other grains.


Thanks for your help!

bigcrusty's picture

Dear Grainzzz,

I tired to do sifting and spent many hours attempting to get 1st Clear (not even white) Flour.  I was reasonably close using a #30 & #50 manual sifters. Probably you are going to need something finer than a #60 sifter to get to white.  Frankly, I found it was not worth the time.  When I read the research on White flour it said I also needed to age it after I finished sifting.

"Wheat flour is separated into grades by milling. In the United States, patent flour, freed of the bran and most of the germ, is the highest grade; clear flour is the second grade; and red dog, a low-grade residue, is used mainly for animal feed. The composition of flour depends on the type of wheat and the milling processes; gluten is the chief protein, and starch the principal carbohydrate, although some sucrose, invert sugar, and dextrin may be present. On the market are prepared flours, such as the self-rising, which contains a leavening agent, and numerous cake, pancake, and pastry mixes requiring only the addition of water. Flour improves if stored from six to nine months under conditions permitting the enzyme action that gives better baking qualities. Good flour, rich in gluten, has a creamy color and adhesive quality."

..............................."Virtually all of the white flour used in North America is produced by roller mills. What follows is a greatly abbreviated description of that process. While this information may not directly help you make better bread, the better under-standing we, as bakers, have of the whole process of bread-making - including wheat breeding, farming, and milling - the better bakers we will be.


................................"Each time stock passes between a pair of rolls, the resulting milled stock is run through a purifier, primarily gyratory bolters with stacks of sieves with different screen and cloth meshes. Vibration and air flow contribute to stratification and separation of the material. The material which will pass through ("thrus") the finest (bottom) sieve cloth in the purifier is flour. Each set of rolls thus has its own flour "stream," identified by the roll the stock came from before arriving at the purifier: 1st Break, 2nd Break, 1st Midds, Sizings, etc.

The "overs" of each sieve (particles not fine enough to pass through) are directed to another set of rolls for further reduction, or to one of the residue streams: bran, germ, shorts, or red dog. None of these end up in the flour. Indeed, any part of the wheat that does not enter one of the flour streams will be one of these four "by-products." These materials, unless there is a specialty market for them, are generally sold as feedstock. 

The separation by size, grade, etc. at each stage of the milling process creates many dozens of "streams" which wind their way through the mill. In a multi-story circle, the stock is repeatedly gravity-fed down through the systems and mechanically or pneumatically brought back up to the top floor. The results can look very complex and confusing to anyone seeing a mill for the first time. Nevertheless, a visit to a mill is highly recommended and is perhaps the only way to truly understand what is described in this article.

In the end, the various streams are blended and mixed to make various grades of flour, then treated with the addition of malted barley, bleaching agents, enrichments, etc. before packaging. If all the flour streams are combined and blended, the resulting flour is "Straight Grade." 'Patent" is the flour from those streams containing the least bran and germ particles, thereby the whitest and lowest in ash. "Clear" flour, on the other hand, is from the "dirtier" flour streams. While straight and clear flours will have more protein than the patent flour from the same wheat on the same mill run, this additional protein is from the aleurone and germ, not gluten from the endosperm. 

A word about extraction: if a miller starts with 100 pounds of wheat and yields 72 pounds of flour, that flour is said to be a 72% extraction. Whole wheat flour is 100% extraction. Extraction rate can be an indicator of both efficiency of milling and of quality of flour. The more flour a miller extracts from the wheat, the better, it would seem. But beyond a certain point, even with the best milling equipment and expertise, the ash content, an indicator of bran and germ in the flour, will rise ,  bringing a change in quality, reflected in performance, color, and flavor. 

The complexities of milling have many quality and performance implications for artisan bakers. These will be the subject of the next article in this series."  


The equipment you need to do this with is expensive and when I weighed the cost vs. my time to make even 1st Clear flour neither side of the equation worked.  I only make Whole Wheat and Rye Flours with my WonderMill and buy good uncoordinated and unbromated Bread and AP Flours.

Best Regards and Happy Baking,

Big Crusty

seasidejess's picture

What's the benefit of manufacturing processed flour in your home?

I think this might be a case of doing 80% of the work for 20% of the return. White flour keeps a looooong time, is inexpensive, and is (usually) readily available. If you can't find it in consumer pack, Safeway is selling it out of the bakery dept. You'll probably pay more per pound  for wheat berries than white flour, only to end up discarding the bran. Plus, sifting is a pain, and sifting to the white-flour stage is a real big pain.

If you do decide to make kilos of white flour every week I think you're going to want a motorized setup with an array of screens. But I still think you're better off leaving white flour manufacturing to the comercial millers and maximizing the benefit of your home mill: the ability to produce truly fresh whole grain flour.

Bakermaker's picture

Hello, grainzzz,

sorry to not have a solution but a question: Whats does let you think that the mockmill is from the same company as komo? As far as I see they are very different companies in different countries? Isn't komo the famiyl owned company and mockmill the plastic mill company? now i am confused as i hope when i buy my komo i would support this company

rgreenberg2000's picture

A short document about the designer of the Mockmill (and his connection to KoMo, and other mill companies.)