It arrived just the other day and it is a true work of art. All metal and wood construction from Germany and it is pretty heavy duty. Even the pamphlets included were all in German with just one or two basic lines of English instructions. I had to get Cowboy to translate what he could recall of his days in German class.
For those of you asking, "What the heck is a grain flaker?" Here it is:
It's the little guy to the left of the grain mill.
So what does a grain flaker do? It flakes/rolls all sorts of grains: oats, spelt, wheat, rye, barley, rice, etc. This is how oatmeal is made from whole oat groats. You simply load the top hopper with whole grain, adjust the rollers as tight or loose (thick or thin) as you want your flakes to be, rotate the handle, and out comes the flaked grain down the metal chute. It is so stinkin' simple. Oats can be tossed into the flaker as-is, but the harder grains have to be pre-soaked. All you do is put the grains in a fine sieve, rinse well, then lay out to dry for 5hrs (or overnight) before rolling them. This softens them up so they flake instead of crack.
I didn't have any oat groats on hand but I did have hard red wheat from my grain mill. Cowboy chipped in and pre-soaked the wheat then laid it out on a cookie sheet to dry. Five hours later we took turns (because it was so much fun) rotating the handle to flake some wheat!
Red Wheat Flakes
Hot Cereal with the red wheat flakes
Wow. Wow. Wow. The cereal was absolutely amazing. The flavor was nearly the same as when we make cream of wheat using our grain mill, but instead of a "creamy mush" the flakes produced a chewier texture. It wasn't like store bought oatmeal, which tends to be more pasty and mushy. It had substance and it was delightful. Toasty homemade wheat bread flavor with a chewy grain texture. I was in heaven. I eat my hot cereal with a bit of milk and a touch of brown sugar (sometimes throwing in some fruit and nuts). This was nearly good enough to not need any sugar and that speaks volumes to me.
I am excited to try oats tomorrow as I found whole oat groats at our nearby market. Yum....can't wait.
On other news, this was what was for breakfast (adapted from Seduced by Bacon which I borrowed from the library. More recipes as good as this and I will be adding this cookbook to my wish list!)
Applewood Smoked Bacon Caramel Sauce over Pecan Buttermilk Waffles
I purchased the bacon from our local butcher shop and the buttermilk was leftover from making my own butter (yay!) from heavy cream. That was a very cool experience and I was shocked to learn how easy it was to make your own butter.
Quick instructions: Take heavy cream left out at room temperature for several (6ish) hours. Put it either in a jar with or without a marble (if you wish to do it by hand) or in a stand mixer (cheaters way). Shake or mix for a few minutes until the cream "breaks" into butter chunks. Mix a little bit more then let set for a few minutes. The buttermilk will start to separate from the solids. Drain off the buttermilk and SAVE this for baking. This is the REAL buttermilk, not the cultured stuff you buy from the grocery store. Next use either your hands or two wooden spoons and squeeze out as much liquid as you can from the solids. You can rinse the butter with a little cold water til the butter runs clear. This is important because it is the cloudy liquid that makes the butter go rancid quicker. Once you have gotten it to a consistency you like (remember it will harden significantly in the fridge), fold in some salt and put into a mold or container and store in the fridge.
That is IT!