Resources for whole wheat and grains, grain milling, training, and kitchen supplies

Initial Product Review of the WonderMix Deluxe

Here is the synopsis of my initial product review of the WonderMix Deluxe. Today felt like Christmas and my birthday wrapped into one as I unpacked the WonderMix Deluxe on my counter to ‘play’ with it.

When it arrived it was packed as a box within a box – very sturdy and all the form fitting cardboard one could ask for to hold things steady!

1211141413Ok so this box was inside an even sturdier cardboard box but what fun is it to see that plain thing.  :)

Now I’m not going to get into all the features of this yet (that will come in some YouTube Videos and other reviews – besides you can read the list of features here.) But I am going to go into my take on the quality and functionality at first glance and set up. So…

 

WonderMill-Header-WonderMix(1)As I took out each component and inspected it for quality and durability I was struck how ‘natural’ the components all seemed to fit together. What I mean is, most of it made perfect sense even BEFORE I looked at the user manual (which I do suggest because of the great tips and recipes). It just ‘flows’ naturally together; how it all fits together will make sense to you.

1211141419The special introductory price of this actually is lower than the Bosch Universal, Electrolux or KitchenAid Professional (like almost half the price – yeah, I’m not kidding) but in my opinion, the quality is absolutely just as good if not better than those multi-use mixers. Even the regular price of the WonderMix Deluxe beats the prices of the other mixers that have far less versatility. 

Let’s look at the parts that come with the WonderMix Deluxe, shall we?

Yes…let’s …do that. (:

First the bowl and lid.  The bowl is sturdy, yet also slightly flexible, can mix up to 5 1/2 quarts (22 cups) of mixture! That’s about 5 loaves of bread being kneaded at once! 

1211141420cThe lid has both a splash guard and an easy smaller flour guide to put in items such as nuts, raisins or more ingredients as it mixes without risking a ‘spill’ or having to stop the machine

 

 

 

 


1211141419aMost important to me is how sturdy is the Dough Hook for kneading.  This one is heavy duty and sure not to disappoint as compared to some.  Even the design makes sense how the sides differ from each other for real-life kneading.  Also included is a small item called the Divider which helps make sure the batch of dough does not simply spin in circles around the driver as it mixes.  What an ingenious do-dad!


 

1211141420The Whip and Housing fit together like clock work. No seriously, like clocks work… deep tines and teeth so as not to be stripped when mixing with that powerful 900 watt motor (the most powerful on the market). In fact, all the notches and gears on the WonderMix are deep and sturdy. I find that to be the mark of a truly well made machine.


 

1211141422aThe blender has a sturdy body, a funnel lid (smaller hole for pouring) and a very tight seal.  The tines in the base of the blender do not need to be removed for cleaning – meaning the whole thing is very very leak proof!  Also the tines are not wimpy low-to-the-base ones, but seriously make an impact upon the food (or ice snow) you’re blending up! 


 

The fine folks at The WonderMill Company have even take into account some exterior features such as the storage for the cord and the ‘no walk’ feet on the base. These no walk feet are also on the side for when using other optional attachments that fit the WonderMix such as the Meat Grinder, Slicer Shredder and more.

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In conclusion of today’s unpacking, inspecting event and review… it’s safe to say I can’t wait to play with this tomorrow!!  If you want to see reviews in action, subscribe to my YouTube Channel and you should see some soon!

I’d like to thank the folks at The WonderMill Company for giving me the opportunity to review this fantastic machine. Years ago, when they first released the WonderMill Jr. Deluxe they blessed me with the opportunity to review it and share feedback as well.  This is one company that I can fully stand behind stating that they really strive to meet and exceed the needs of the public.  So again, I am humbled and honored with the opportunity to play with… I mean, review this fantastic new WonderMix Deluxe. 

Look for more updates and reviews about the WonderMix Deluxe as I enjoy my holiday baking more than EVER this year!  :)

Best Blessings,

Donna Miller

WonderMill-Header-WonderMix(1)









WIN TWO EBOOKS PINTRESTTwo Bread Making e-Books are just the beginning, this giveaway is the kick-off to begin online classes!  So your feedback in the form below is very important.  But, why not give you a chance to WIN for sharing your input, right?  I think that’s only fair.  :)

Book #1 is my Whole Wheat Bread Making Book – which is a step by step tutorial with all the tips, tricks and techniques for a successful loaf of tasty, whole wheat bread that your whole family will enjoy (even the ones who used to snub whole wheat)!

Book #2 goes beyond! The “Supreme Bread Machine” now takes you on a taste-bud journey where you can use the techniques you learn in the other book.  It opens up 155+ varieties of bread from savory to sweet from batter to yeast loaves.  And there are great tips on storage and troubleshooting.  As a BONUS , you’ll also receive a link to my Bagel Making Video – which will help you turn most all of these recipes into Bagels too!

Enter with these quick, easy steps for your opportunities to win these two easy to follow e-Books.

Don’t forget – you can come back and “Tweet” this giveaway each day to increase your opportunity!

Also – if you want to be notified of more giveaways, perks and the upcoming online classes (well, you can see what all you get over there), be sure you subscribe to our newsletter —->

Happy Entering and enJOY the Journey!

Donna Miller

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Between the cost of a chain coffee shop frappe, the crud that is allowed to be put in one at any and all coffee shops, and the calories (a small size frappe has a range of 450-700 calories) found with a fast food frappe –  it’s no surprise that the Food Holiday of “National Frappe Day” (Oct 7) may just pass you by. Then again, for 4 out of 5 people a frappe is almost an addictive indulgence and October 7 is just like every other day of the year!

If you enjoy these, let me share some things with you to save both your money and your health on this holiday or any day of the year that the frappe craving may hit.

frappe On average most commercial frappe’s you purchase will contain one or more of the following very unhealthy ingredients:

High Fructose Corn Syrup
Artificial Colors
Artificial Flavors
Mono and Diglycerides,
Guar Gum,
Potassium Citrate
Disodium Phosphate
Carrageenan
Aspertame
 

Uhm… ewww.

 

Here’s how you can avoid all of the above chemicals and artificial ingredients and enjoy a Frappe the Healthy Way!  By the way – on a side note: Don’t be duped into thinking that those ‘coffee syrups’ are a singular or healthy ingredient option.  They are neither.

First – select your coffee.  This is very easy if you’re a morning coffee drinker (decaf or fully leaded – both work fine) simply make a few cups more and let it cool.  When cooled you can either freeze in ice cubes (for a frozen frappe) or pour in a jar and refrigerate (for a frappe on ice).

Frappe on Ice:

8 oz of Cold Coffee
3TBS Fat Free Cream or Skim Milk (Almond or Coconut Milk works too)
1 tsp Pure Extract (Vanilla, Hazelnut, Peppermint, etc – endless options!)
1-2  dashes* of Spice (Pumpkin Pie, Nutmeg, Cinnamon, etc  – endless options!) * For a Mocha use 2tsp of Cocoa Powder as the spice.
Sweeten to taste with stevia or natural cane sugar
 
Blend all ingredients together until well mixed and pour over ice cubes.
Top with REAL Whipped Cream if desired add a straw and sit back and enjoy!
 

Frozen Frappe:

2 Cups of Frozen Coffee Cubes
3TBS Fat Free Cream or Skim Milk (Almond or Coconut Milk works too)
1 tsp Pure Extract (Vanilla, Hazelnut, Peppermint, etc – endless options!)
1-2  dashes* of Spice (Pumpkin Pie, Nutmeg, Cinnamon, etc  – endless options!) * For a Mocha use 2tsp of Cocoa Powder as the spice.
Sweeten to taste with stevia or natural cane sugar
 
Blend all ingredients together in  a blender (may need to add 2-3 TBS of water to thin) until a frosty mixture is combined to the right consistency.
 
Pour in a tall glass.
 
Top with REAL Whipped Cream if desired add a straw and sit back and enjoy!

 

These may seem simplistic – but the pay out of enjoying real food at a real reasonable price can help you enjoy a little indulgence without feeling the guilt of it all later!   After all, playing with your food helps you to enJOY the journey!

Happy National Frappe (the Healthy Way) Day!
Best Blessings,
Donna Miller of Millers Grain House









What’s the best grain mill & how do I store grains?

Confused Grain MillI am often asked the questions: “What’s the best mill for me?” and “How do I store grains?”  These are great questions and the answers differ depending upon your needs and your storage space.  I have a two free things to share with you to help you answer those questions.

First – as much as I wish I could come to every town, visit each home and spend time teaching all over the place – until time travel or teleportation is invented – there are only so many hours in a day and miles one can make to do what I’d love.  So, in light of that – I’d like to invite you to sign up by clicking here for ->THESE FREE ONLINE SEMINARS.<-    You may or may not be interested in all of the ones offered – but I hope you’ll come to the ones that do interest you and – especially the one I’m hosting on July 17th (Thursday at 9PM Eastern)on the topic of Home-milling & Grain/Dry Goods Bulk Storage.

Here’s what you’ll learn:

  • Why store whole grains vs. flours or meal?
  • Why would I mill now…doesn’t it take a long time?
  • What’s the best mill for my needs?
  • Three top rules for grain & dry goods storage.
  • Mylar, Gamma, CO2 Packs, oh my! Let’s make it easier.

It’ll be FUN!  Like we’re in a class together.  I’ll be there LIVE and able to take your questions at the end and help you personally.  But you’ll need to -> sign up for the whole thing early enough <- so you can get in on that date.

Second - in order to help you with more detailed information to answer the questions: “What’s the best mill & how do I store grains?” I’d like to offer you this  FREE Grain Mill Comparison Chart.  If you’re a detailed person when it comes to making decisions and gathering information, this chart has it all in spades!  Compare speeds, sound, quality and more with a quick glance across the lines.  The grain mills on the chart range from manual to electric and ones that can be both!  So no matter which ones may interest you – you can make comparisons!

Don’t forget that we are always available to help you by email and phone too!  So feel free to contact our office via email or call 828.536.4988 during business hours. Mon – Thurs 9:00-5:00, Fri 9:00-4:00 Eastern Time  (Closed Sat & Sun)

We would be honored to help in any way possible.   Plus, we may have some savings for you too when you contact us!

Summer of Survival 2014









Partially due to my Native heritage and partially due to the fact that June 27 is National Indian Pudding Day, I just had to dive in to making this today and wanted to share it with you.

This was a great new taste!  I thoroughly enjoyed it and it was so easy!  I will admit though, that being a warm pudding and using these particular flavors, I will be adding this dessert to our Thanksgiving menu.  I’m not sure why the National Food Holiday for this one falls in June anyway?  I’d be glad to hear from you if you know…so please feel free to leave a comment below.

Hope you enjoy!

For daily updates of what food holidays there are (every single day of the year) please visit and ‘like’ my Facebook Page.

2013-06-27 20.20.20

This recipe for Indian Pudding is a warm, crock-pot version with simple whole grain and wholesome sweetening ingredients that were most available during the time of the indigenous Americans and early settlers.
2013-06-27 08.31.45

Ingredients

  • 3.5 c. milk (or use almond or coconut milk for dairy free option)
  • 1/2 c. freshly milled cornmeal
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/4 c. light brown sugar (or succanant)
  • 1/3 c. molasses
  • 2 tbsp. butter (or use coconut oil to make dairy free)
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp. allspice
  • 1/6 tsp. ginger
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup chopped dates or chopped raisins
Instructions
  1. After assembling all ingredients and before starting the actual mixing lightly grease crock-pot. We like to use coconut oil for this.
  2. Preheat it empty on high for 20 minutes while you’re doing the next steps.
  3. Meanwhile bring milk or nut-milk, cornmeal and salt to a low boil. Boil, stirring constantly, for 5 minutes.
  4. Cover and simmer on very low an additional 10 minutes stirring occasionally to make sure it doesn’t stick. The mixture will become thick.
  5. In a large bowl, combine eggs, brown sugar, molasses, vanilla, butter or coconut oil, and spices. Mix all together until well blended.
  6. Temper this mixture by spooning in and well incorporating about 1/4 cup of the hot cornmeal. Do this step twice to increase the temperature of the egg/spice mixture.
  7. Now gradually beat the tempered egg/spice mixture into hot cornmeal mixture; whisk until smooth.
  8. Stir in raisins or finely chopped dates. Pour into your pre-heated/oiled crock and cook on high for 2 to 3 hours or low* for 6 to 8 hours.

Other tips and topics to this recipe:

2013-06-27 08.33.40Grind the corn (popping corn works too) on the coarse setting in the Wondermill.

2013-06-27 08.44.16Be sure to stir continually because dairy and nut milks will stick and are easily scorched at the bottom of the pan.

2013-06-27 18.08.48Pudding will produce a skin on the top, but it works into the pudding just fine with no affect of the texture.

If you try this and/or tweak this recipe for Indian Puddling – I’d sure love to hear how it came out for you!  Please share in the comments below.

Thank you and Best Blessings,

Donna

 

* See this blog post if you have issues with your low setting on your crock pot being still too high.  http://www.millersgrainhouse.com/blog/how-to-fix-a-crock-pot-that-gets-too-hot/









Giveaway: Green Cycler Kitchen Composter

A Compost Starter is such a useful tool for your garden, which leads to healthier eating and a better managed grocery budget.  How much better would it be if you could get a compost Starter for FREE?  Well, that’s what we hope to offer one person with this Giveaway!

Would you, or someone you know, love to win an Green Cycler – Kitchen Compost Starter, Bin & Shredder, Black?

This is your chance because we’re giving one away!

Green CyclerGreen Cycler

This Giveaway runs from June 23, 2014 12:00AM EST to June 29, 2014 11:59PM EST. Must be 18 years or older to be eligible.
No purchase necessary. The winner will be randomly selected.

Our Friends at “The Dollar Stretcher” have reviewed this item and are happy to share their findings with everyone.

Read more about it HERE

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Full Disclosure: We hope someone from our blog is the winner. However, if you don’t win or perhaps you happened by after the giveaway was over, please consider clicking shopping through the Amazon links below if you plan to buy this composter. Your purchased support of our recommendation is much appreciated and the minor affiliate income we gain helps to keep us, testing, reviewing, sharing and blogging – and we hope – encouraging YOU. Thanks ever so much!
Be Blessed!
Joseph & Donna Miller









Whole Wheat Bread-sticks with a Twist

Breadsticks1 (7)“Light bulb” moments and “happy accidents” are my favorite things. (:  Let me share one with you… and it comes in the form of a recipe.

One night I made double my regular Whole Wheat Pizza Crust as if I were feeding the whole army of Millers (don’t know what got into me, I guess I was waxing nostalgic thinking I had little kids at home…but I digress)… then I realized that only two of us were going to eat that night and we had a road trip the next day!

Typically I would make the extra pizza crust and freeze it (in a turkey basting bag – because they’re huge)…but this time I thought I should make some snacks for the road from the crust.  And boy did these Whole Wheat Bread-sticks with a Twist hit the spot!  Portable and filling!

So I share this happy accident with you!

Hope you enJOY, get creative and keep playing with your food!

Best Blessings,

Donna Miller of Millers Grain House

_____________________________

After making the pizza crust.  Roll out dough in a rectangular(ish) shape and begin the creative process. To avoid too ‘gooey’ of a bread stick you won’t want to use much sauce or liquid toppings, but as the example below shows we made one half has Parmesan, mozzarella, peperoni and oregano. The other half has pesto, olives, feta and some dried onion flakes. Breadsticks1 (1)

Then we used the pizza cutter to cut into strips.

Breadsticks1 (4)

After we cut the strips (and made garlic knots out of the ends that were missed with the toppings), we folded the good stuff inside, lengthwise and then gave each bread-stick dough a little twist while putting it on the cookie sheet. See the pesto, olive bread- stick below:

Breadsticks1 (5)

Bake these Whole Wheat Bread-sticks with a Twist on cookie sheets at 350 degrees F.  For about 15-18 minutes and cooled on a wire rack before bagging.

These are great served warm (of course we had to taste test them!) or once completely cooled can pack in a baggie for an easy take-along snack.

Breadsticks1 (7)

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Please visit Millers Grain House for your kitchen needs.

When you create a new customer account, you receive a coupon code to save on your first purchase!









old-radioDavid Letterman may be retiring, but I’ve got my own “Top 10″ to share with you.  It’s a little more useful than it is funny, but I hope you enjoy it.  To get the full effect, hear the little nuances, tips and tricks plus enjoy the tongue-in-cheek approach I tried in order to make frugality a bit more entertaining, you’ll want to click the audio bar under that radio pictured to the left and listen to a recent show of mine (Surviving On Shoestrings on the Survival Mom Radio Network).

To follow along and get a hint of what I break down in the show, here is a basic list of  my “Top 10 Frugal Tips & Thrifty Kitchen Habits“:

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

  • #10 – Get Organized.
  • #9 – Do a Weekly Purge.
  • #8 – Grow Something (Garden)
  • #7 – Cook from Scratch.
  • #6 – Make your Own Condiments and….
  • #5 – Portion Control from the Beginning
  • #4 – Pack Snacks & Lunches…
  • #3 – Shop Sales & Use Coupons Wisely…
  • #2 – Plan a Weekly Menu…based on….
  • #1 – Buy Extra & Buy Bulk!

Email or Call if you Live in our area of WNC and want Bulk Foods!  828.536.4988 – Support@MillersGrainHouse.com

 

Now if you listened all the way through, you know that the list is only the framework, the tips and ideas and ways of looking at our kitchen habits differently are what can help encourage you

Bonus contest!

Leave a comment and answer: How many times did I say the odd phrase: …. “Not to mention….” ?

The first one to get it right…I’ll send you a copy of my first e-book: Supreme Bread Machine Cookbook

Who knew that I said that many times…? It got kind of annoying…now that’s a new habit that I need to break!

 

Best Blessings and enJOY the Journey!

~ Donna Miller









Prolong Produce: Dehydrate Bell Peppers

Maybe it’s not quite time for those special summer treats to come out of the garden, but it’s never too soon to practice how to prolong the harvest!  But bell peppers (red, yellow, orange or green) are so expensive out of season!  And what if a recipe only calls for a portion of a bell pepper? Then what do you do? Throw the rest away?  No.  But freezing them turns them to mush (and sometimes can make the freezer smell a little peppered).  The answer is to dehydrate them.  It is so easy and takes almost no time at all.

2014-01-28 13.50.03Although I like bell peppers just fine , they can become overpowering, so even when they are in season, I tend to use only about 1/4-1/2 of what ‘s called for in a recipe.  Leaving me again with a surplus of these easy to grow summer veggies.

But out-of-season produce is always far too rich for my blood.  So….

Enter my ‘out-of-season-go-to plan’ for most produce.  When produce is in the grocer and it is not the season for harvest in your area, it’s getting trucked in and was picked “a long time ago, in a galaxy far far away”. This is one of the reasons you pay a premium price on produce out of season.  But if you look for the pre-cut items that are marked down from their usually higher price tag (this one pictured usually runs $3.48 for the half pint) you can save a step and a buck or two at the same time.

2014-01-28 13.52.25I bring them home and rinse and check them in a colander.  They are, after all marked down, I want to be sure that there’s nothing funky hiding in the midst.

Since these are already sliced, like most packaged produce, in uniform widths, they are primed and ready to dehydrate with ease.

I let them drain for just a few minutes while pulling out my Excalibur 9 Tray Economy Dehydrator.  I have to admit – that this one appliance has not only paid for itself by putting back items from the garden, but has helped me by prolonging the life of produce that was on sale and keep from throwing out food that has been in the refrigerator a while. 2014-01-28 13.55.52

Bounce of any clinging water from the colander and pour out on to the dehydrator tray.  There may be a need for multiple trays depending upon how big of a stash you were able to snag at the grocer when they were marked down.  Just spread these beauties out equally and give them some breathing room!

Now, if you want them to remain a LIVE food…dehydrate them below 115 degrees F.  The enzymes will stay live (not the bacteria but the enzymes that help with digestion) and just keep drying until desired dryness is achieved. This may take up to 24hrs.

However, if you’re going to put these into recipes later, or chop up little bits for meatloaf or sauces…crank them on up to 130 and you’ll be done faster!  Likely you’ll have dry peppers ready for storage wtihin 8 hours.  So it’s an ideal over night project.

Remember the Excalibur 9 Tray Economy Dehydrator costs about 1 penny per hour (often less) of electricity to use.  So either choice you make for drying purposes does not really cost you that much more to prolong the produce you dry.

2014-01-30 10.09.08

As soon as they are dry to your liking (hint: they dryer they feel the longer they will last) let them cool to room temperature and place in a jar or other air tight container.  They must be cooled to avoid sweating, but also cannot be left out too long to pick up any moisture from the air.  Inside the container place a desiccant packet.   Especially if you’re going to use these over the next few months, the desiccant packet will be fine enough. There is no need for an oxygen absorber unless you plan to ignore this food indefinitely.  If you have a food-saver you can remove air with the jar sealer attachment to remove more air in between the times you open and close the jar to use your pretty little peppers (or whatever produce you’ve dehydrated).  The desiccant packet removes any moisture thus keeping the food dryer longer. Just be SURE when you purchase or use desiccant packets that they are marked clearly for Food Grade Use like the ones we have selected as examples below.

 

I hope that you’ll use some of these tips on more than just the bell pepper and try to prolong produce of many kinds. Until next time, keep playing with your food and enJOY the journey!

Best Blessings,  Donna

In full disclosure, yes we do make our living from the sale of items (which we also use personally and can in good faith recommend) such as these desiccant packets and the Excalibur Dehydrator. If you like what we share with you, please consider purchasing your needs with us at Millers Grain House. We promise to treat you like family. (:









Another chance to win Whole Wheat Bread Making eBook

Easily enter below for a chance to win this helpful eBook!

Why feed your family processed, dead and tasteless grocery store bread (that has little to no nutritional value and that is often loaded with unhealthy chemicals and preservatives) when you can easily make your own healthy, whole wheat bread from home for a fraction of the cost?

  • Maybe you think home-made wheat bread is too heavy and dense?
  • Maybe you think it’s bitter and doesn’t taste good?
  • Maybe you think it’s too difficult to do or that your family won’t like it?

Let this ebook show you how that list above is totally wrong!  You can do it, it will taste great and your family will love it (and be healthier too).   Here’s a peek inside:

Hopefully you can see how I’ve broken down the steps and techniques and you’re interested in learning more.  But for a while…there’s an extra perk!

  • Enter below through December 10th and you could WIN it this eBook !

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But if you don’t win – you can pick up a copy of the Whole Wheat Bread Making eBook  or there is a Paperback version if you prefer the real deal in at your finger tips.

Best of success to you in the giveaway and the kitchen!

Donna Miller









A message from Donna...

Hello & Welcome!
Thanks for stopping by. Please make yourself at home, and be sure to let me know if I can assist  in any way.

If you are looking for whole grains, classes, grain mills, sun ovens or other kitchen appliances, be sure to stop by the store:  www.millersgrainhouse.com/store