Bluebird Grain Farms

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Q: Would you please tell me if there is anyone that is using your products to make whole grain bread and/or whole grain crackers?

A: We have lots of loyal customers who bake whole grain breads and crackers with our products. Here are just a few Bread Recipes that will get you started. All of our flour is 100% whole grain because we believe in keeping the nutrients in! Keep in mind that whole grain flour is much denser than processed flour. You will find that it absorbs moisture and you may have to add a little more moisture than what your recipe calls for. Also, when baking quick breads (biscuits, pancakes, etc.) make sure to use an acid such as buttermilk, yogurt, or lemon juice. This helps give whole grain breads a lift.

Q: We were told that Farro flour makes a superior pizza crust. It is apparently widely used in Naples. My husband usually uses Caputo “00” flour. I am not sure if the Farro flour is too dense for pizza dough and will need more moisture because of the composition of the grain. What do you think?

A: Emmer Flour performs differently than Caputo 00 Flour.   Caputo 00 is a highly processed, refined flour, generally made from high protein wheat such as  hard white. The “00” refers to the size of the screen on the mill.    The germ and the bran is extracted from 00 flour and it is milled into a fine grind.  Our Emmer Flour is whole grain flour, it contains both the germ and the bran because we believe in keeping the nutrition in our grains.  Generally when baking with Emmer Flour more moisture is needed, for every 1 cup of water recommended I usually add 1/4 cup more.   Emmer Flour yields a flat bread pizza crust that reveals a rich nutty flavor. If you want your dough to have some rise to it you can combine Emmer Flour with the “00” flour. My favorite combination for pizza dough is 2 cups of our Pasayten Hard White Flour and 1 Cup Emmer Flour.

Q: I am new to heirloom wheat and don’t have any idea where to start. What I do know is I have always thought that something is “wrong” with the regular wheat that is in the bread I eat in the US because I feel bloated and sick. On a recent trip to Turkey, I was able to eat the bread there without that same feeling. What is the best heirloom wheat to use to bake bread, cake and other pastries?

A: I would recommend starting with our Emmer or Einka flour. It is very nutritious. When baking with our Emmer flour be aware that it is very dense. You may need to add a little more moisture to your recipe. The Emmer flour is wonderful in denser baked goods such as coffee cakes, brownies or as an additive to breads. Einka flour performs similar to a whole wheat pastry flour.  It is a soft flour, low in gluten with a very mild flavor.  We love it in crepes, cakes, cookies, and muffins.  For a classic “whole wheat loaf” I would recommend starting with our Hard Red Wheat. Our Hard White Wheat is great for cookies and cakes. All of our flour is whole grain flour, which means the germ and bran are in the flour (the nutrition). All of our flours can be used for breads.

Q: Could you advise me which of your flours would be most suitable for baking basic bread in a bread machine?

A: All of our flours can be used in a bread machine. Our Methow Hard Red Wheat and Pasayten Hard White Wheat flour both have the highest gluten content and used most commonly for yeasted breads. Our Hard Red is most often used for breads but our Hard White is also just as useful. The Hard White is in a fine grind so it’s a little more versatile than our Hard Red, which is in a medium grind. All of our flour is 100% whole grain flour – meaning the germ and bran are in the flour and it is minimally processed to garner the nutrition.