Monday, January 28, 2008

How I Grind Grain The Old Way With Handheld Grinding Stones

I have a pair of very old grinding stones that I use from time to time to grind parched corn, bulgur (cooked and dried wheat berries), and other such things. Grinding raw wheat into flour by hand is hard work! Grinding dried field corn with it is easier, and grinding millet and parched corn is easiest of all.

My larger grinding stone is about the size of a car's steering wheel, with a depression hollowed out caused from years of use. Eventually, the action of the smaller handheld stone grinding all
the grains, acorns and whatever else against the larger stone formed a handy hollow in the larger stone, making the job easier than if it were just a plain flat rock...

If the stones are reasonably hard, and not apt to bits crumbling or flaking off as you work, any two stones with a slightly rough texture should get the grinding job done. From a bit of trial and error, I learned that a gentle thud with the handheld rock smacked against the grains (that are sitting in the little hollow in the larger stone), then a pushing or dragging action of the smaller handheld stone against the larger one, with the grains inbetween the rocks, does a pretty good job of rendering any grain to flour...

My old antique grinding stones are of Native American origin and were originally used to grind softer stuff than wheatberries...such as dried acorns that had the tannins leached out, and wild grass seeds, corn, and certain roots. That's what I use them for, and they do the job well!

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Sheree said...

I have to say that I am really enjoying your blog! Its full of wonderful information. Thankyou!!!

PureCajunSunshine said...

Thank you!

pshaww...'tis just that the old ways are good, is all.

Sorry for the belated thanks, I just accidentally found out how to reply to you on this here internetwebbie blog thing.