As crazy as life is at the moment, it sure hasn't stopped me from having fun in the kitchen. While I know some women feel stressed and overwhelming with kitchen duties, I find them therapeutic. When I am feeling anxious, time spent quietly in the kitchen is quite comforting (perhaps it's because I often pray as I move back and forth between the stove and the counter top…or because I eat a lot of what I make).
Regardless, I do enjoy spending time in this wonderful kitchen of ours.
Last week, I had a new experiment that I was anxious to try. And though it hardly involved any time spent in the kitchen at all, I do consider it one of those “kitchen things”. I've chalked it up as one of those tasks that will need to be done once every couple of months or so. Why? Because time is limited some days.
Did that just confuse you? An extra kitchen task because time is limited?
Let me explain.
As all my regular readers are well aware, here on the Homestead, we soak and pre-treat all our grains. This involves using a lot of sourdough or allowing our flours to soak for 12-24 hours before we use them. On weeknights when we're in a rush, this can be a challenge because if I don't think ahead and soak (for example) dinner rolls, then come dinner time there are pre-treated rolls. Dangit.
This is where sprouted flour comes in.
You see, if you soak and sprout the grain before you grind the flour, then the flour doesn't need to be pre-treated. All the phytates have been broken down already. Ya, baby!
Let me break it down for you:
– Sprouted flour needs no soaking
– Sprouted flour can be used just like regular flour
– Last minute baked goods can be baked with this sprouted flour without the worry of phytates
– Mama can forget to soak and still provide nourishing goodness
While I'm not planning on replacing our soaking and sourdough methods anytime soon, when we're in a pinch, I am thankful to have this sprouted flour. It's also great to have around for recipes that don't exactly lend themselves to soaking.
If you order sprouted flour online or find it at your local health food store, you'll notice it's expensive. Way too expensive for this Mama. So instead, I opted to make my own. For less than .50 cents a pound (and that's even with organic wheat!)!
The method is quite simple. Literally, about ten minutes of active work time.
Add wheat berries (or grain of choice) to a bowl and cover the berries with filtered water. Allow the berries to soak for 6-12 hours, then dump off the extra water (I use a small strainer to make this step easy).
Twice a day, run fresh water over the grain and then strain off the excess water again. Allow the berries to remain on the counter (covered) for 3 days until the berries have sprouted little ‘tails' that are about a quarter of an inch long.
Once the wheat berries have sprouted, throw the grains in your dehydrator for 12-ish hours, or until completely dry. You could also do this on a baking sheet in your oven on the lowest temperature.
Grind into flour and you're ready to go! I then store mine in the fridge or freezer until I'm ready to use it.
If you don't have a grain grinder, you can also grind the grain in your coffee grinder. Since most recipes don't call for more than a few cups of flour, grinding in the coffee grinder can be pretty efficient.
This doesn't need to be one of those tasks that stresses you out with ‘one more thing to do' – it's so passive, you hardly even realize you're doing anything! Make a big batch and store the excess in the freezer – you'll only have to do it every few months if you want!
Or, if you've got the means, purchase sprouted flour! All the benefits of soaked and sprouted grains with none of the work. Booya.
Oh. And thank you for your prayers. G-love is back to her enjoyable, playful self. I'll blame these last few days on teething.
And that's all I have to say about that.
For other great meal ideas, no matter what your dietary restrictions, check out the meal planning service I use: Real Plans.