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Homesteading and Livestock

Self-reliance and sustainability in the 21st century.


The Prepared Homestead Kitchen: Top Appliances, Part 3

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This week I finally broke out my Family Grain Mill (FGM) Grain-Flaker/Roller attachment, can I say that I love it? Because I do. Up to this point, I’ve been purchasing rolled oats to cook in the morning, I may continue doing that I’m not sure yet, but one thing I’m very happy about is if we are in a survival situation with no power and no way to order rolled oats I can roll my own in a jif!

This is the only attachment on our Family Grain Mill (FGM) that has gotten very little attention in the last year — the other ones have gotten many hours of use. So let me tell you all about my hand-powered FGM!

In my kitchen I keep the FGM base attached to our counter at all times, this makes it quick and easy to grab an attachment and start using it right away. Probably our most-used attachments are the ones for shredding and grating. When we want to add fresh carrot or zucchini to our spaghetti sauce or quick breads, we need only drop the vegetables in the top and crank the handle a few times.

Any type of cheese is also easy to grate or shred. For hard cheeses I uses the one with smaller holes, and for softer cheeses (mozzarella or Colby) I grate it a little bigger.  

Another attachment that is so handy and is used frequently on our homestead is the meat grinder. Since we have transitioned off of store-bought meat and solely on to meat we raise on our Permafarm we have to grind our own meat. We usually do this when we are going to use it since grinding meat decreases the integrity of the meat thereby decreasing its freezer life.

We allow the meat to partially defrost, cut it into chunks and pass it through the meat grinder giving us ground meat to use for tacos, casseroles, soups, and spaghetti.

The last attachment that is not used as often since we have an electric mill is the grain grinder. I have ground wheat by hand, but I have to be honest, it was tough! You need 3-4 cups of flour to make one loaf of bread, if you can keep your arm moving quickly that can be accomplished in a few minutes, but you’ll probably feel a little weak in your shoulder.

What we have mainly used this attachment for is grinding coffee. When the power has gone out on us we are very relieved to know we can grind our coffee beans by hand. Clean up is a cinch as well since each part disassembles into easily accessible pieces. It comes apart and reassembles quickly and easily. 

For any prepared kitchen I think a hand grinder is an absolute must and my preference is the FGM for its versatility, ease of cleaning, durability and convenience. This grinder has never disappointed us in times of need and I think you'd find it a valuable investment on your homestead as well. 

Happy Homesteading!

Sean and Monica Mitzel homestead with their family on 40 acres and are using permaculture techniques and strategies for the property. The property will eventually become a demonstration and education site where they raise dairy goats, pigs, rabbits, chickens, and ducks. The Mitzels have planted more then 50 productive trees and enjoy wildcrafting, propagating mushrooms, and raising and training livestock guardian dogs. Listen to The Courageous Life Podcast and read all their MOTHER EARTH NEWS posts here.To learn more about the Mitzels, visit: www.ThePreparedHomestead.org.


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