Reviews

Simply Flagstaff Featured on The WonderMill Review Page

Simply Flagstaff’s grain mill review is featured on the WonderMill review page here:

http://www.thewondermill.com/index.php/module/statics/action/view_listing/page/13

Thank you to all my readers and to the WonderMill company for producing such a great product!

 

 

 

 

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Preparedness and Food Storage

Today I attended a preparedness and food storage workshop.  I always love being in a group of like-minded people, it makes you realize that you are not alone in your thoughts and concerns in life.  In class we discussed everything from storing water, to nuclear fallout.  In the near future, I would like to take additional preparedness classes.  However, the internet and books can be great sources of information.

The woman teaching today’s workshop had some great book recommendations, including Making the Best of Basics by James Talmage Stevens.

This book covers basic in-home storage, cooking with food storage, sprouting & kitchen gardening, dehydrating, and so much more.

Another book that I found useful is The Complete Idiots Guide to Self-Sufficient Living by Jerome D. Belanger.

This book also covers a wide variety of topics but is not as detailed.  I suggest reading this one to find out what part of Self-Sufficiency you would like to focus on.  Once you know where you want to go or what you want to learn it is much easier to focus your energy.

I have personally found the following websites to be helpful in my preparedness journey:

Back to the Basics – Hope for the Best, Prepare for the Worst

Root Simple

Preparing Wisely

Homestead.org

The sites below are great if you’re looking to buy emergency supplies of food.  I have found Sams Club to be the cheapest supplier:

Honeyville

Emergency Essentials

Sams Club (they sell Augason Farms)

Preparing and becoming more self-sufficient can be overwhelming at first.  Often, I’ve felt there could never be enough time to complete all the projects, collect all the supplies, or lean all the trades that I thought were important.  My advice is to take a moment to put all of your ideas and thoughts onto paper.  Then take a deep breath and tackle one task at a time.  Every little thing you do is one step closer to being prepared.

Thanks for reading,

Cindy Dorfsmith

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Grain Mill Review

A few months ago, I began looking into buying an inexpensive grain mill to include in our family’s emergency essentials closet.  While looking at the low end “Back to Basics” mill, I discovered that it would work fine for emergencies but would only grind a very coarse flour and wouldn’t work well if I decided to incorporate it into daily use.  I realized that in order to rotate the wheat in our pantry I would have to buy something a step above the “Back to Basics” mill.  While rotating our pantry I would also be adding more nutrients to my baked goods and saving money at the same time.

When I started my research, I failed to realize how difficult it would be to pick from so few mills on the market.  The next mill to be crossed off my list was the “Country Living” mill, only because the $395.00 price tag was too much for my budget.  I briefly looked at electric mills but wanted something that would work in an emergency during a power outage.  That only left a couple of hand grain mills available.  The following table from the Kodiak Health website was very helpful in my decision.   (http://kodiakhealth.com/catalog/default.php/cPath/25_36)

Hand
Grain Mill
Comparison
Wonder Junior Hand Grain Mill
Wonder Junior
$199.95
Country Living Grain Mill
Country Living  

$395.00

Our Rating Best Buy Great Mill, Expensive Fair Fair Low Price, Low Quality
Warranty Limited Lifetime Limited Lifetime Limited Lifetime Limited Lifetime 2 years
Hopper Capacity 4 cups 4 cups 2 cups 2 cups 1 cup
Clean-Up Easy Easy Fair Easy Poor
Weight 10 lbs. 20 lbs. 9 lbs. 9 lbs. 5 lbs.
Grinding Speed 1/2 cup / minute 3/4 cup / minute 1/2 cup / minute 1/2 cup / minute 1/4 cup / minute
Coarseness Variations Fine flour to cracked cereals Fine flour to cracked cereals Fine flour to cracked cereals Fine flour to cracked cereals Medium flour to cracked cereals
Ease of Turning Wheel Very Good Excellent Fair Good Fair
Can be Motorized Yes Yes Yes Yes No
Nut Butter Quality Great None Fair Poor None
Clamping Power Best (double clamp) No, Must be Bolted Fair Good Weak
Outer Finish Quality Best Very Good Good Fair Fair
Stone Quality Best (thickest) No Stones Good Good No Stones
Burr Quality Best Large, Good Poor Poor Small, Poor

The most important qualities to me were ease of use, flexibility and quality.  The “Wonder Mill Junior” had the best of those qualities, and a double clamp base for better stability. I went ahead and ordered the “Wonder Mill Junior Deluxe” on Amazon for $199.95.  The “deluxe” version has two sets of burrs; stone burrs for flours and stainless steel burrs which can handle more oily grains, nut butters and coffee beans.

I received the mill a few days after I placed my order.  My first impression was the quality of the mill and how easy it was to put together.  The body is solid and has a beautiful powder coat finish.

Grinding the grain is not a walk in the park, but you also don’t need to be a body builder in order to mill a few cups of grain.

To adjust the fineness of the flour you simply turn the knob in the center.

As you probably guessed, it is more difficult to mill a pastry grade flour than it is to mill a coarse whole wheat flour.  If I am in need of a pastry four I will likely run the grain through once as a coarse flour and a second time at a finer setting.

Overall I am very impressed with the quality of the “Wonder Mill Junior” and recommend it to anyone in the market for a grain mill.  I am looking forward to grinding my own corn meal, peanut butter, oats and more.

Please feel free post any questions or comments!

Thanks for reading!

Cindy Dorfsmith