August 15, 2020 4 min read

Phew! There are a lot of options, we know. Don't worry - we've got lots of handy guides for you. Start here:

flour guide - how to choose the right flour for your kitchen

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Our neighbor Abby Jane of Abby Jane Bakeshop has made a great video for all of you:

Hey team. Abby Love here, out at Barton Springs mill. We have gotten a ton of new customers in the last couple of weeks. We are thrilled to be making flour for you. I just wanted to take you real quickly through some of our products so that you might have a better idea of what you're looking for, and then what you're getting, so that you can have wild success in your home baking.


So for starters, I want you to think about grain the same way that you do any produce or crop. It's got variety. Think about going to the grocery store, and there's just endless crates of apples. Jonagold, McIntosh, and Fuji and whatever else.

Wheat is no different. So, what we sell here at Barton Springs Mill is different varieties of wheat that we grow here in Texas.

So when you go to the shop tab on our website, what you're going to see in that dropdown menu, you're going to select wheat. And then from there, you're going to choose the variety that you'll want the flour from. 

Another important thing to remember is that for our purposes, there's kind of two main wheats that we're looking at here, hard wheat and soft wheat.

So hard wheat is gonna have a little stronger gluten structure. It's going to have a higher protein count. Basically, it's what you want to use if you're going to be making bread. Sourdough, sandwich, bread, bagels, pizza, whatever you might be baking at home. Okay? That's what you want to use hard wheat for.

Soft wheat is the other type of wheat that we grow. You want to use a soft wheat when tenderness is your goal. So, when you're looking for that kind of melt in your mouth, texture, biscuits, muffins, pancakes, stuff like that. That's when you want to use a soft wheat. Okay?

So for starters, I want to talk to you about our hard wheats.

We got Turkey Red, we got Ruby Lee, we got Rouge de Bordeaux, and we got Tam 105. Okay. These guys are the wheats that you want to choose from if you're making bread at home. Ruby Lee is kind of new to us, she's super awesome. She's an incredible performer.

So choose from those varieties if you're looking to make bread. The only soft wheat that we grow here in Texas is Sonora. It's a beautiful golden flour. But again, you want to choose Sonora when you want super tender, delicious, soft baked goods.

All Purpose flour - all purpose flour was developed commercially as a mix of hard and soft wheats so that it can be used for all purposes. So we do a mixture here it's made from, I believe it's Ruby Lee and Sonora. This is a great thing to keep in your pantry.

But I will say if you're primarily making bread, I would recommend that you choose from our hard wheat varieties. I know a lot of you guys out there are trying your hand at making your own bread now that you have a little extra time. So another section of wheats that we offer are our ancient wheats. So we got Emma, we got spelt, we got Einkorn.

These guys, we call ancient wheats because they are in fact among the oldest cultivated wheats that appeared on our planet. It's also a distinction we make, that these wheats have a kind of older, simpler genetic structure. So, they have a lower gluten content, and people that are sensitive to gluten can usually digest these a little bit easier. They are super flavorful. They have they have a very strong sort of wheaty kind of grassy flavor.

But also keep in mind that if you are using them to make bread, you want to treat them more like an inclusion rather than a one for one swap. So if you usually use white grocery store flour, just using blue tinged Emmer instead is going to end up with a delicious, and yet probably pretty flat, loaf of bread.

The other important thing for you to know is that we offer our flours in whole wheat or what we call double zero ('00'). So basically it's either the whole grain, all the wheat that comes off the mill, or we actually also do some sifting here in the middle. So we take the flour, it goes through all these sifters. We take out some of the larger particles like the bran and the germ and what results is, what we call type double zero. And that's kind of the closest thing that we offer to like a grocery store, commodity flour.

So think about what you're trying to make it home. Hopefully this little wheat primer will help you you'll want to first select the variety. And then from there you're gonna want to select what type of sift you want on your flour and then go from there. So good luck. Happy baking. Bye bye.