The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Old lurker coming in to start posting

SillyKindCuriousReal's picture
SillyKindCuriousReal

Old lurker coming in to start posting

Hi all,

I've been baking bread in one form or another for about ten years.  I worked as a pastry chef for a couple of places but I've since transitioned into a completely different career, so now I get to bake for fun!  Lately I've been making a 24 hour, ~100% hydration sourdough about once a week, just trying out some tweaks.  I'm pretty eager to get my own mill and start baking with fresh milled whole grain.  Anyone here have experience with that?

Glad to be a part of the fam,

-SKCR

Another Girl's picture
Another Girl

Being pretty new here myself I'm not the official TFL Greeter (🙂) but welcome! As a former pastry chef, you'll probably have lots of great things to show and teach us and I look forward to your posts.

There are many dedicated home millers here; the search bar can direct you to thread after thread discussing whatever aspect of milling interests you. If you can't find what you're looking for, just ask! You'll find a very generous crowd here.

pmccool's picture
pmccool

And welcome to TFL.  Lot's of people here with home milling experience.  One way to start digging into the information that is already available is the Search tool.  It's that white box in the upper right hand corner of the page.  Just type in some search terms and click the Search button.  You might try "grain mill" or "home milling" or some other such terms (note that the quotation marks are not required).

I can give you perspective on two different mills that I have used. 

The first is the KitchenAid Grain Mill that attaches to the power hub of a KitchenAid mixer.  The grinding elements are steel burrs.  It is capable of producing a range of products, from cracked grains to meals of fairly degrees of coarseness to coarse flours.  It can't really produce fine textured flours.  It's comparatively cheap; you can probably find used ones for less than $50US. 

The second is the KoMo Fidibus Classic.  The grinding elements are man-made stones.  It can produce anything from cracked grains to fine flours.  It's pricier; new versions run about $500US.  You might be able to locate a used one for less, as I did a few years back.  Part of the price differential from the KA grain mill is that the KoMo has it's own motor, where the KA mill is powered by the mixer's motor.  Of the two, the KoMo is far and away the more capable mill.

There are other mills that are every bit as serviceable.  Some use synthetic stones, like the KoMo.  Others uses natural granite stones.  Still others use steel burrs.  And then there are the impact mills, which operate on an entirely different basis.  Price points for new mills range from $200 to $2000, depending on make and model.  Manufacturers, in addition to KoMo, include Mockmill, NutriMill, WonderMill, Royal Lee, Family Grain Mill, Country Living, and Diamant. 

There's quite a lot to absorb when deciding to purchase a new mill.  It may work best if you decide what you want to do with a mill and then list the features for a mill that will produce your desired result.  That will let you select a mill based on whether it can meet your needs.

Home milling opens a lot of new possibilities (and some new challenges) for the baker.  You can pick up a lot of information here on TFL with the Search tool, since milling has been and remains a hot topic. 

Paul