Benefits of Stone Milling
What is a stone mill?
Stone mills are the oldest type of mill there is.(A few years ago, we saw an 11th century
Cistercian water mill in operation in France). Stone mills have two circular grinding stones,
with one stone remaining stationary, while the other grinds against it. Grooves are cut into the
stone, radiating out from the center of the stones to the ends. These grooves become shallower
until they disappear at the outer edges. When the grain is ground, it falls through a channel
into the center of the two stones. As the stone rotates, it pulls grain out through the channels
where it is ground. The flour falls out the outer edges of the two stones.
There are several advantages to stone ground flour. With stone milling, the endosperm, bran,
and germ remain in their natural, original proportion (unless you sift out some of the bran,
as we do in two of our flour products). Since the stones grind slowly, the germ is not exposed
to excessive temperatures which cause the fat from the germ to oxidize and become rancid. Oxidization
and rancidity then destroy much of the vitamin content. With stone milling there are also less nutritive
losses due to oxygen exposure as stone ground flour is usually coarser. Bakers who buy our stone ground
flour have told us they like its sweet, nutty flavor.