Tuesday, April 9, 2013

The Neighborhood Grist Mill

In the first half of the twentieth century pretty much every southern neighborhood had a family owned grist mill.  Everyone would grow their own dent corn and when it was dry would haul part of it to the mill for grinding into meal and grits.  Going to the mill was a social occasion and a good time to catch up on the local news.

There are not many of the old mills working anymore, but it is well worth your time to seek one out.  The taste of locally grown and ground corn is superior to any bought in a grocery store.  Try to find the closest mill to where you live to ensure a fresh product.

The closest working mill to me is Bradley's Country Store in Tallahassee, Florida.  They not only grind their own corn into grits and meal, but they make and smoke their own sausage.  Their products are of a great quality.

The fresh ground grits are larger than those found in the store and take longer to cook, but it is so worth the time when you taste them.  Creamy, with a good corn taste and a bit of bite to them.  Served with a dollop of butter they make a meal unto themselves.

The sausage was nicely smoked and, even though I ordered the mild, had a bit of heat.  There was a time when just about everyone in Florida had a homemade smoker in their back yard.  Most of the people I knew had converted an old refrigerator into a smoker to smoke mullet (an oily fish) and other meats.

The foods of the past were hard work, but they had a wonderful flavor.  I am afraid that our children may grow up in a world where mediocre quality food is the norm.  It's worth it to find a mill near you, so your family can experience real food.

God bless,

1 comment:

  1. Wonderful. It's too bad there aren't more places like this today.