Daily Archives: November 7, 2011

Local (Ottawa Area) Grain Millers – YAY! :-D

So it’s my birthday. There will be tarot readings coming, believe-you-me, but for now I just wanted to squee about the fact that I’ve (finally, with a few clicks of a mouse, no-less) found grain millers in Ottawa. They aren’t grain farmers, but they mill Canadian grain (YAY) and the mills are both local.

Ottawa Valley Grain Products does a variety of grains – corn, barley, and wheat – but (alas) they don’t do wheat flour.

Watson’s Mill, on the other hand, does do wheat flour, but only the hard kind that works for bread.

I have to admit: I’m thoroughly in favour of pearled wheat flour – that’s the standard “white” stuff that I’ve been cooking with, on the cheap, for most of my life[1]. It’s incredibly easy to work with and is basically a blank canvas in terms of what flavours can be layered over it. There are plenty of folks, I know, who would see this as a down-side (or try to sell it as a down-side, anyway), but I actually really like that. I can use it to make a delicately flavoured summer tea cake and not have the blueberry (for example) overpowered by the wheat bran (which can be a little on the bitter side).

That said, I’m thinking that whole-wheat PASTRY flour might actually be okay. It’s the same whole wheat flour, but it’s much more finely ground. That means the bran is better integrated with the rest of the ground wheat berry. It’s a softer, lighter flour, but it still has the whole-grain health benefits going on. It might be a place to start.

I wonder if I can find a grain miller in my region that does whole wheat pastry flour… That’d be good. 🙂

Meliad the Birch Maiden.

[1] The economics of that preference are a whole other post – I’m a broke-ass writer. If I can get 10Kg of flour for $12, that means I can keep myself in calories for a good long time without having to break my miniscule bank to do it. The short version of said post is that it bugs the hell out of me that Good Food – food that is both ethical (by my own standards of ethics, meaning good for the land and the life it was before it was my food) AND healthy AND delicious (that last one is important, too, FYI. I am a sensual hedonist, after all) – is really hard to get ahold of in significant, body-sustaining amounts, if you’re broke. 😛 Even if your low-rent apartment is blessed with a balcony (which can be quite the luxury, and doesn’t come standard with all units), you still need to acquire and transport enough soil (and containers) up to said balcony to grow stuff in – which ain’t cheap, let me tell you – and even then, there’s no guarantee your plants will fruit under those circumstances. Anyway. I’ll rant about that another day…