The Fresh Loaf

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Advice for milling buckwheat and durum wheat?

breadmad's picture
breadmad

Advice for milling buckwheat and durum wheat?

Hi everyone, 

Half a year ago I finally pulled the trigger and got myself a Grainmaker 99 and have been happily milling wheat, spelt, rye and corn every week ever since. However I now want to try and branch out a bit and my eye fell on buckwheat and durum wheat. A while ago I found a 1kg bag of durum wheat in an international supermarket very cheaply and happily brought it home, but was kind of discouraged when I read somewhere that it might not be good to grind up and use as pasta flour? I read somewhere that there were some issues when it comes to grinding durum wheat (aside from being a really hard grain to grind) and was wondering if anyone could tell me more about it or could give me some advice or information about it? It's sometimes really hard to find information on specific grains when it comes to milling them.

The same thing goes for buckwheat. I love making buckwheat noodles and since I have a grainmill at my disposal I wanted to grind some buckwheat for this purpose. I found a website from a nearby farmer that sells unhulled buckwheat and would love to support it, however I don't know if it's ok to just grind up unhulled buckwheat or if I should rather opt for buckwheat that has been hulled? I can easily find small bags of the latter in the supermarkets, so it would be good to know which of the two would be best suited for my purpose. I would love to hear all your thoughts!

 

 

trailrunner's picture
trailrunner

I use my Mock Mill to mill durum for pasta all the time. It easily grinds fine enough and makes an exceptional fettuccine or lasagna noodle. I never sift any of my milled grains. We mix the dough and then let it rest at room temp before rolling. You may find your dough is thirstier with home milled flour but that’s easily solved. 

I don’t know about buckwheat but other grains should always be hulled. c

breadmad's picture
breadmad

Thank you for reassuring me that I can just mill the durum for pasta! II really appreciate it. I just got spooked when I read that it wouldn't work, but I will just go ahead and give it a go soon. 

When it comes to the buckwheat I was just curious since it is a pseudocereal and I wasn't sure about the properties of the hull. I was wondering if it was similar/comparable to the bran or the hull of regular wheat and how grinding buckwheat with the hull would affect the flour, which is why I asked. 

Paul in UK's picture
Paul in UK

I regularly mill Buckwheat for French style savoury pancakes (crêpes). Never found the process any different from milling Wheat berries. Just be careful everything is sufficiently dry to pass through the mill. I use a Golden Grain mill.

rondayvous's picture
rondayvous

Did you grind groats or whole seeds for your pancakes?

The original poster was wondering about grinding groats or whole seeds. I know that regular Buckwheat flour is whole grain, but the outer seed is very tough ( as I've recently learned in the buckwheat community bake). I have both whole seeds and groats but have yet to try and grind either.

breadmad's picture
breadmad

I am indeed curious whether you are grinding groats or whole buckwheat seeds! But at least it is good to know that one of them makes for good crêpes, since I really love crêpes made with buckwheat flour. 

clazar123's picture
clazar123

I use Bob's Red Mill buckwheat flour and apparently, they mill the unhulled seed because my baked goods always are a lovely,dark brown color. I recently bought the hulled,whole seeds for the Community Buckwheat Bake and baked goods made with hulled seeds are a light tan color. I would say give milling the unhulled seeds a try,I thought the unhulled flour yielded a better color and better flavor than hulled flour.

A more pertinent question is-Does buckwheat have a high oil content? That might not be so good for your mill.

breadmad's picture
breadmad

(from a quick and probably not a very well informed online search) Buckwheat on average contains 3.5 fats/100g while wheat contains 2,5g fats/100g. So I am not too worried about that bit, especially since people also make peanut butter with the Grainmaker 99 (which is the one I have) and they seem to get away with it. Although I wouldn´ t want to have the task of cleaning the mill after making peanutbutter.... 

jo_en's picture
jo_en

Hi, 

I would be very interested to have your buckwheat (= soba in Japanese) noodle recipe!!

I have made soba noodle with all whole grains-60% buckwheat (40% whole wheat) was the highest percentage I ever got to.  I could not grind the whole unhulled buckwheat fine enough on my Komo grinder so I would choose the hulled grain to grind. Alternately I use Arrowhead Mills buckwheat flour (10% fiber). 

Now, in making a mostly freshly milled whole grain noodle (which includes some type of buckwheat flour), I am "sold" on using "clas" to condition the dough. I hope you will consider "clas"(=concentrated lactic acid sourdough) for soba noodle.

https://www.thefreshloaf.com/comment/514891#comment-514891

breadmad's picture
breadmad

I have so far only made buckwheat noodles and buckwheat pasta a handful of times and usually it was done by feel. Generally I used 60% buckwheat flour and 40%all purpose flour and "enough water" to make noodles. I am so sorry that I cannot provide you more than that. When it comes to sourdough I am pretty uptight about measurements, but sometimes in the kitchen I will just play it by feel, especially when I am working with unknown floursI am . I make ramen noodles and egg noodles way more than soba noodles as I am just dipping my toes in the world of buckwheat, so I can't provide you with a proper recipe that I could vouch for.

The buckwheat pasta dish that I make every so often comes from the book Pasta Grannies by Vicky Bennison (the title of the recipe is Laura's Pizzoccheri from Valtellina) . She runs a Youtube channel also named Pasta Grannies and apart from being wholesome to watch, it's sometimes a wonderful archive of recipes. Here is the video with the recipe I use. The pasta is made with 400g finely ground buckwheat flour, 100g 00 flour or AP flour, 2g salt and abou 250-300ml of water (varying quite a bit depending on the flour). The dish itself is a very hearty warming winter dish. It's quite chunky pasta so I would hardly define it as a noodle, but it's worth trying if you are looking for a bellywarming dish. 

I am very intrigued by this "clas" method of conditioning the dough. I'm somewhat surprised that I never heard of it before and I will sure deepdive into this to learn more about it! Thank you :D Always good to learn more new things like this!

jo_en's picture
jo_en

Good to meet a Pasta Grannies fan.  I can hum their tune when I knead!  I am familiar with the Italian buckwheat dish.

At thefreshloaf, there is a great list of bakes using "clas" methods (search "clas" above) 

Making clas involves a 24 hr process (little intervention) to get the sourdough. 

To make clas refer to:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=niIcAuRRxWo&t=180s

See 4:10-5:25(plastic)-7:50(midway stir)-8:40 end

Here are the instructions-

 

I use clas a lot now, especially for noodles with freshly milled unsifted whole grain flour.

I hope you'll try it. 

PS Here is a recipe for a loaf that I use to guide me through the steps:

https://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/71297/20221020-simple-100-wholewheat-bread-clas

 

breadmad's picture
breadmad

Lovely to hear that you are a fan as well! Glad to hear I am not the only one that hums the Pasta Grannies tune, haha. 

And thank you so much for your information! I will give it a go! 

shelmica's picture
shelmica

I grind buckwheat regularly and use it most in gluten free flour mixes for my husband who is allergic to both  wheat and rice.  I generally use the hulled buckwheat because I can get it in small quantities locally.  I did try the unhulled but had to buy a 50 lb bag and it took ages to use up, and really I couldn't see much difference in the flour, and also the outer coating is very hard and sometimes didn't grind entirely.  Of all the flours I mill the taste of fresh ground buckwheat is so much better, I would buy a mill just to do buckwheat.  I also use it in pancakes and French crepes, making the crepes with 100% buckwheat, and no binders are needed.  I have a Nutrimill impact mill (but am thinking of getting a stone mill so that i don't have to clean between wheat and gluten free flours.) 

Anyway, buckwheat mills easily.  I have also done it in the dry container of a Vitamix blender, but it was a little coarse, and the mill makes much better flour. 

breadmad's picture
breadmad

I think I will just try the hulled buckwheat as I can easily get my hands on some small packages and play around with it.