What is the difference between Certified Orgainc and Certified Chemical Free (CCF)?
Wheat Montana’s certified chemical free wheat is grown conventionally using a natural nitrogen fertilizer. The harvested is then tested by an independent lab for any chemical residue, finding none, they certify the wheat as being Chemical Free. Our Organic wheat is grown on land certified by the State of Montana and does not have any type of fertilizer or other chemicals used. The State of Montana inspects our farm, bins, warehouse, equipment, packaging, etc. and then gives it the Certified Organic label.
WHEAT MONTANA DOES NOT USE G.M.O. (GENETICALLY MODIFIED) VARIETIES OF ANY KIND.
What is the shelf life of your products?
Grains: If you store the grains in a plastic pail with an oxygen absorber in a temperature stable environment, the wheat should last six to eight years, perhaps longer. See our grain storage tips here.
Flour: any other products that have been processed, such as the 7-grain flakes, various cracked grains, pearled barley, and groats should be stored in a cool place and used within a year. Nutritionally speaking, it is much better to mill your own flour. See what we consider to be the best grain mill here.
How are the pails sealed and how long do they last?
The pre-sealed pails are sealed with oxygen absorbers inside. They’re guaranteed to maintain freshness for 5 years, but many people report storing them for 20 years or more.
What is the best way to store wheat?
The way to store wheat is to keep it dry, cool and protected from insects and other critters. Take a look at our article, Successful Wheat Storage, for some practical suggestions.
What is the protein and moisture content of the wheat you grow or carry?
The moisture content of our Prairie Gold and Bronze Chief Wheat is no higher than 10%, perfect for baking and wheat storage. The protein of our Prairie Gold and Bronze Chief Wheat measures between 14.5 and 15.5%, depending on the growing season.
What is the difference between “Bronze Chief” (Hard Red Spring Wheat) and “Prairie Gold” (Hard White Spring Wheat)?
Nutritionally, both the Hard Red Spring, Hard White Spring, and Hard Red Winter varieties that we offer are the same (15-16% protein and 9-10% moisture). Basically the difference is in the end product: Bread made with Hard Red Wheat is darker and denser (more of a brown traditional look). Items made with Hard White Wheat look a little more like white bread. Hard white wheat bakes up a beautiful golden color and does not possess the stronger taste associated with the traditional whole wheat breads. More about the different types of wheat here.
What method does Wheat Montana Farms use to grind its Flour? Why Impact Milling?
Actually the first question we usually get is ‘What is impact milling and why don’t you stone grind your grains?’ The answer is simply that impact milling, we think, produces a much superior flour than either commercial roller mills or stone milling operations. The mill itself is entirely mechanical and consists of small hammers rotating at high speed in an enclosed chamber These hammers strike the wheat in mid-air with such impact that the wheat is immediately shattered into flour. Impact milling does this at an average temperature of only 94 degrees F (34 C) . High heat destroys the vital nutrients of the grain and tends to produce rancidity. Hammer milling produces an excellent quality, nutritious whole wheat flour, at low temps!
Will the grains from Wheat Montana sprout?
Yes. Grains purchased in bags will definitely sprout; they simply go from field to bag, with only a simple cleaning in between. The grain from pre-sealed pails is processed the same way and will sprout as well, however, people tend to store the sealed pails of grain longer than the bags. The longer the grain is stored, the lower the rate of germination will be.Are Wheat Montana’s grains heirloom seeds?
Yes, they are heirlooms. The grains are not modified in any way.
Which variety of wheat do you recommend for baking bread?
There are several varieties of wheat available, and each is best suited for a particular use. Take a look at our article Which Wheat for What to get an idea of which one will work best for your purpose.
Do you know of any good bread making recipe books for someone who is just learning to bake with whole grains?
The best book we know of for beginning to bake bread with whole grains is The Laurel’s Kitchen Bread Book. In it, the author walks you step by step through the process of baking your first loaf, teaching you what it should feel like, and how it should look. There are also several other wonderful recipes in it – this book is my basic bread cookbook.
Another of our favorites is No More Bricks! Successful Whole Grain Bread Made Quick & Easy. We think the title says it all.