So, Rachel and I went to a class last weekend where we’d hoped to learn how to grow your own wheat and learn how to make it into flour. Well, when we got there, Mark had some bad news. His wheat crop failed this year due to some rain we got in June. So, instead we got to learn a bit about how to make bean flour from beans. I’d wanted to know how to do this just as well, so we were happy to stick it out and learn all that we could
Prior to our class, Mark pulled the bean plants from the farm and had them laying out to dry. After the beans have dried, the next step is to thresh them. Basically, this means, get the largest stick you can handle and beat the heck out of the dried plants.
After the beans have been dislodged from their shells, you sort of have a mess that looks a bit like this.
Now, it’s time to sort it all out and get them ready to winnow.
This took us right up until lunch time. So after they were sorted, it was winnow time. This is how it looks – oh and since we were short on wind that day, Mark was kind enough to lend us some wind from his fan.
This wasn’t easy for everyone, so for some, winnowing looked a bit more like this. Perhaps a slower method, but just as effective.
Once we were all done there, it was time to wash the beans and let them dry.
With everyone participating we were now ready to let the beans dry.
And now for the workout of the day – or at least the workout of the afternoon. It was time to grind them up into a flour. There were several methods to choose from. This was my favorite method.
Others preferred the old grind-it-with-a-stone method.
Either way, we all ended up with some beautiful looking flour that we could take home and make breads, pancakes, waffles or whatever else we wanted.
It really was a perfect day and a wonderful class. Keep an eye on Fairview Gardens for many great classes in 2012!