Grain Mills: Jimmy Cracked Corn
Actually, the Jimmy cracking corn is my 4 year old grandson Matthew. He of course has assistance from Grandpa, who has him standing on a chair to crank the mill.
Choosing a good grain mill that would last the test of time and wear was important for us. We wanted one that was easy to use and maintain. We also wanted one that did not require electricity.
Our focus has been to remain sustainable without relying on power shortages or outages that could possibly occur.
The grain mill we had in mind was not hard to find online. We could not find any sort of grain mill in any store where one could look them over. We also could not find one that would have actually been made in America. We found that a bit disappointing since we are the type of shoppers who prefer to touch and feel an item before making a purchase. Who would have ever guessed that living in the land of corn, that we would not manufacture our own mills.
With all that being said, we decided to take a chance on a mill from Weston Supply. It is a heavy duty cast iron cereal and grain mill that looked and sounded like what we needed. There are other companies in which to choose from that carried similar mills. I'm not advocating for any specific company. This just seemed to be the one we went with. The cost was a mere $39.99 and the shipping was free.
If you are looking for a mill that will make a soft powdery flour, then this mill is not for you. You will need to shop for a flour mill, which is a totally different item from a grain mill. I can say though that if you are growing your own grains, you will need a grain mill to prepare your harvest for the use of a flour mill. A flour mill would simply not be able to crack your corn or other grains down to proportions capable for a flour mill to handle.
Our grain mill has proven to be able to mill our corn into corn meal fine enough to prepare and bake cornbread. We also are able to cook and prepare corn grits. Both are Southern favorites. We can grind it fresh as needed quite easily.
Since we raised our own poultry, the grain mill can crack the corn into nice size pieces to supplement their feed.
For the love of gardening and processing your own food, the whole experience from beginning to end is remarkable. Sharing it all with my grandchildren is a treasured dream and one that I hope will carry on into their own lives.
As there are many lost and forgotten arts, some I hope can still be preserved and passed on to our future generations.
If you might be interested in growing your own heirloom corn that is becoming close to extinction, I invite you to share our journey. In a previous article I've written about “The Beauty of The Native American Garden” sharing tips and techniques to help you get started.