Bread – One of the most historically important means of nutrition for humans across the globe. When you think about preparing and storing food, bread is something that is a given. However, do you really know what you are doing when it comes to storing ingredients needed to prepare bread?
“If you are eating whole grain flour because of its health benefits, it is important to consider the freshness of the flour as well. Within 24 hours of being milled, whole wheat flour looses as much as 45% of its nutrients to oxidation. And in only 3 days, up to 90% of the nutrients are lost.”
Yup, it’s true… Milled grains/seed do indeed lose their nutritional content when milled. Think about how long flour is sitting on the shelves of the grocery store until you purchase and bag it. Keep in mind that this is not just limited to wheat, but any milled seed. So, if you’ve been storing packs of flour and pancake mix in your mylar bags, you may not be getting the nutritional “bang for your buck”.
Buy the “Whole Grain”
We have to take on a new term for “whole grain”. When you purchase grains for storage, you indeed need to start purchasing the entire intact/unmilled kernels/seed. This will ensure you have maximum nutrient content over long term storage.
I’ve bought Hard Red Wheat, White Wheat, Beans, Corn, Oats, etc. OH, and you cannot forget about COFFEE BEANS!! I’ve bought them pre-prepared in mylar bags/5 gallon buckets, and have also made them myself.
From personal experience using a variety of vendors, I’ve actually found it to be more expensive to do a DIY 5 gallon/mylar bag of grains when compared to buying the pre-packaged option. It was somewhat upsetting as I’m a DIY’er, but it appears that big companies purchase on such a large scale that the price reduction carries on over to the customer.
I use Emergency Essentials because I could not find a better selection or price of grains at the time. Also, they have great flat rate shipping (in plain unmarked boxes if you prefer secrecy) and excellent customer service. If you price out all the materials yourself (grains, oxygen absorbers, mylar bags, buckets, labor) you’ll probably come to the same conclusion that it’s cheaper to buy pre-packaged….at least this is true for the grains.
You still need to process the grains
You can eat the wheat kernels whole by soaking them for a couple days or boiling them. However, you’ll most likely want to purchase a simple hand powered mill to crush down your grains for bread making. I cannot attest if they have the best price on the internet, but I did buy mine from Emergency Essentials during last year’s Black Friday Sale. They are super simple to use and can be used for much more than just wheat. Personally, I use mine to grind up whole coffee beans from time to time.
If you’ve already stored milled grains in mylar, just leave them be for the time being. However, as you store more food, be sure to migrate over to whole kernels. One of the best things is that it will be 10X easier to fill the mylar bags as powder will not be spilling all over the place :)
Hope this helps,