January: After the loss of their beloved dog Annie in late 2012, Bob and Charlee Moore adopted Mandy, a 4 year old beagle. While we don’t get to see her at the Mill (it is a food facility, after all), hearing about her hijinks has brought many smiles to us at Bob’s Red Mill.
February: Bob celebrated his 84th birthday to much fanfare at our Whole Grain Store.
March: After months and months of hard work, we launched our Grains of Discovery line at Natural Foods Expo West (the nation’s leading natural food expo). While consumers didn’t hear about it until June, it was unveiled for retailers in March.
April: Among many highlights, Bob met Michael Moss, author of Salt, Sugar, Fat.
May: Let the pie baking begin! Though you may not have known why we were madly baking apple pie, we were busy testing our new Gluten Free Pie Crust Mix to have it ready for the 2013 holiday season.
June: To launch our Grains of Discovery line to consumers in June, Bob held a bash in New York for some of the country’s top media. While making his rounds in the Big Apple, Bob met Martha Stewart, much to their mutual delight.
July: To help you know more about our products and how to use them, Bob and team have been making product videos. Check out our full collection here.
August: Our Third Annual Spar for the Spurtle contest culminated in August with a cook-off of oat-y delights. Paula Todora took home the champion’s spurtle with her winning dish, Steel Your Heart Away Egg Rolls.
September: Finally, the secret is out on our Gluten Free Pie Crust Mix! Recipes upon recipes were developed and shared to arm you with the very best gluten free mix for all of your holiday pie baking needs.
October: We got back to our roots with some very fun promotions to support our oatmeal line. Toppings like “The Elvis” and “The Gilgamesh” inspired us to get creative with our oatmeal and try something new for breakfast.
November: Operations at Bob’s Red Mill halted for a few short minutes to celebrate a new cereal mixing machine. Yes, that is kind of a strange thing to celebrate, but this line allows us to make your favorite cereals more efficiently with less waste and THAT is something to celebrate!
December: It was revealed that something BIG is coming in early 2014. Will Bob run for president? No. Will Bob star in a movie? No. Will it be fun? Yes. Will it be awesome? Yes. Can I tell you? Nope. You’ll just have to wait in see. All will be revealed in a few weeks.
We’ve been hinting about it for a few months and now it’s time for the big reveal… We are proud to present the Bob’s Red Mill Grains of Discovery!
We’ve taken some of your favorite whole grains like quinoa and millet and some of the more unknown grains like amaranth and teff and filled in their back story with a bit of their cultural history and recipes reminiscent of their origins. We hope you will join us in discovering all that can be delicious about these wonderful whole grains. The full line up includes Quinoa, Millet, Sorghum, Teff, Amaranth, Kamut®Khorasan Wheat, Spelt, Farro and Chia. We’ll be featuring each of these in the coming months showing you just how easy it is to enjoy something as exotic as teff and why you want to have farro on hand for your next dinner party.
In true Bob’s Red Mill style, ok, so that’s kind of a lie, this is not true Bob’s Red Mill style… our style is a little more jeans and t-shirts… in a totally unprecedented extravaganza, we’re having a launch party to celebrate the Grains of Discovery in New York City tomorrow night. This is not just any old party, either. We’re flying out ten of Portland’s top chefs (including our very own Sarah House) to create culinary masterpieces with each of these grains and show the world just how sophisticated these simple whole grains can be.
Join us on Twitter (#grainsofdiscovery) and Facebook tomorrow starting at 6 pm (Eastern) for updates from the party with pictures of the dishes, live messages from Bob and whatever else we can come up with. We wish each of you could join us, but we hope you’ll enjoy coming along for the virtual fun.
Here’s a rundown on the chefs and their dishes. Before you read on, please know that this is the extreme end of what these grains can be, we’re going to spend the rest of the summer showing you how family-friendly you can make these grains. You don’t have to be a James Beard winner to enjoy these grains.
Scott Snyder of Levant: Dirty Kamut
Naomi Pomeroy of Beast: Vegetable Bounty Quinoa Salad with Asian Vinaigrette
Pascal Sauton of Milwaukie Kitchen & Wine: Moroccan Farro with Braised Lamb Belly and Harissa Aioli
Gregory Gourdet of Departure: Chia Granola Crusted Squab, Sweet Corn Curry, Chia Jalapeno Madeleine
Cathy Whims of Nostrana: Chilled Buttermilk and Spelt Soup
Greg & Gabrielle Denton of Ox Restaurant: Ricotta Amarancini with Octopus Fra Diavolo & Amaranth Caviar
Vitaly Paley of Imperial: Sorghum Tamale, Moxie Braised Goat & Oxtail, Spicy Sorghum Salsa, Puffed Sorghum
Sarah House of Bob’s Red Mill: Teff Pudding Cakes with Coffee & Berbere
Let’s get one thing straight, right off the bat, quinoa is pronounced KEEN-WA, not Quin-OH-ah or Keen-Woo.
I like to call quinoa the gateway whole grain. It’s easy to cook, incredibly nutritious, endlessly versatile and tastes great too! Quinoa originates in South America where it was immensely popular because it was one of few crops that could survive in such high altitudes (10,000 – 20,000 feet above sea level). It could withstand frost, intense sun and the often dry conditions that characterized the Andean climate. It was also recognized for its superior nutritional qualities. For these reasons, it was dubbed “mother of all grains” by the Incas, so much so that it came to have spiritual significance for them. Many traditions and ceremonies surrounded the cultivation, harvest and consumption of quinoa.
Quinoa is a “pseudo-grain”—actually a gluten-free seed, but used in cooking like a whole grain. This nutrient-rich grain is a wonderful source of complete protein, providing all of the essential amino acids. It is also a good source of dietary fiber. Naturally gluten free, this powerful little grain is a great addition to any diet, but is an ideal solution for those following a gluten free, vegan or vegetarian diet that are looking to increase their protein and fiber.
Quinoa is delicious on its own and the earthy flavor of quinoa makes it ideal for pilafs, soups and salads. Unlike many whole grains, quinoa takes very little time to prepare and can be substituted anywhere whole grains are used. It is a nutritious alternative to couscous and white rice in most recipes. Use it for a hot breakfast cereal or add uncooked quinoa to breads for a delightful crunch. Why be boring with macaroni salad for your next potluck? Our simply titled, Quinoa Salad is one of our most popular recipes and sure to impress your friends and prove your culinary expertise. Mix up your dinner menu with our Sopa de Quinoa, a South American soup that is sure to warm your insides and nourish your soul. No matter how you serve it, quinoa is a wonderful addition to your menu.
Watch this video to learn how to make perfect light and fluffy quinoa.
Bob tells us all about steel cut oats and shows us how to magically make more time in the day.
Ever wonder how Bob spends his day at the mill? I sat down with Bob last week to find out.
Between 6 and 6:30 am, Bob gets up and starts his day off with a bowl of one of our many hot cereals lovingly prepared by his wife, Charlee. He tops it off with half of a banana (split with Charlee, of course), skim milk, nuts, flaxseed meal and date pieces.
Around 7:30 am he arrives at the mill, where he starts his work day off with a cup of coffee (he always waits to have his coffee at the mill) and chats with people during the 8 am shift change. Then, he heads up to his office where he goes over his calendar with his assistant Nancy. There is not a day on his calendar that doesn’t have at least a few appointments and meetings. He typically spends the first part of the day greeting folks around the office and razzing whoever is lucky enough to be in his path.
At 10 am, he wanders downstairs to greet our tour guests (learn more about our tours here) and play a song on one of his two pianos (yes, we have two pianos in our mill).
From there, he walks our plant, all seven acres of it. He stops by the shop, one of his favorite places in the mill to see what they’re working on and how each project is coming along. He visits our distribution warehouse and drops by the lab. There is always something new to see and someone he wants to catch up with. Working here, you quickly learn how much he cares about each of us. He knows our names and our families. Bob knows something special about each of us, whether we like fly fishing or are working on rebuilding a car, if we just got back from an Alaskan cruise or whether we play in a band on the weekends. It’s uncanny, really.
By 12:30 pm, he’s walked the plant, visited various people, dropped in on a meeting or two and is ready for lunch at our Whole Grain Store. Nearly every day, he orders two eggs and steamed spinach with a side of corn grits. Occasionally, he’ll order a sandwich made on our whole grain bread. He talks to customers and takes pictures with their kids.
By 2 pm he’s back at the mill where he sits in on more meetings, if required, or catches up on the day’s events. A day is never complete without a trip to our Purchasing Department to learn about different issues that affect our supply of grains.
Around 4 pm, he’ll wander back downstairs to chat with folks during the shift change. He feels it is the best time to catch up with people he might not otherwise see during the day. From there, he sits at his piano with Nancy and plays a few pieces with her (and that is why we have two pianos).
He usually knocks off at 5 pm and heads home to Charlee for a delicious meal and a quiet evening at home.
That, folks, is what Bob does Monday through Friday, 8 am to 5 pm.
With all of the attention swirling around genetically modified organisms (GMOs), we’ve been getting a heap of questions about our products and GMOs. Rest assured, at Bob’s Red Mill, we are committed to providing identity preserved products exclusively.
“Identity preserved” means that the seeds that were planted to grow our crops came from a non-GMO source. We work constantly with our farmers and suppliers to ensure that the ingredients we procure are non-GMO. In fact, each of our corn, rice, soy and flax suppliers is required to sign a statement which affirms that their ingredients come from non-GMO sources.
Planting identity preserved seed is just the first step in ensuring that products are non-GMO. That is why we have recently procured state-of-the-art testing equipment that allows us to begin our own in-house testing of our products. Our goal is to implement a testing protocol that is acute and prolific.
We hope you share our enthusiasm for keeping natural foods natural. If you have any questions, please leave them in the comments section.
To Your Good Health,
*UPDATE: June 3, 2013
As purveyors of all-natural wheat, the articles published recently reporting the isolated discovery of GMO wheat in Oregon is an important issue for Bob’s Red Mill and we are taking it very seriously. Bob’s Red Mill maintains, as it has for over a decade, a strict policy which mandates that each and every one of our grain suppliers provide us with grain that was grown exclusively from Non-GMO seed. To support our policy, Bob’s Red Mill requires that each of our suppliers sign an agreement committing to comply with that policy.
In light of the report that GMO wheat was detected in Oregon, from where Bob’s Red Mill purchases only a relatively small amount of wheat, the company has begun the process of immediately contacting each of its Oregon wheat suppliers for confirmation that they only supply identity-preserved, non-GMO wheat.
When asked what his favorite whole grain food was, Bob was quick to tell me “any heavy, whole grain bread- especially if it’s toasted and has butter. The heavier the better.” Of course, as soon as he finished that thought, he started singing the praises of our bakery’s scratch buttermilk biscuits. These, he said, were a close second when topped with Marion berry jam. If you can’t get into our store, you can bake these amazing, fluffy, flaky biscuits at home!
Bob’s Red Mill Bakery Buttermilk Biscuits
Preheat oven to 450°F.
Mix unbleached white flour, whole wheat flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar and sea salt thoroughly.
Add butter and mix until evenly distributed.
Add buttermilk slowly, mixing until a dough forms that is slightly sticky.
Roll dough out on a heavily floured surface, sprinkle on 1 – 2 tablespoons of flaxseed meal, and cut with a 2-1/2 – 3 inch cutter.
Place biscuits on a baking sheet and bake in oven for 10 – 15 minutes or until golden brown.
Makes 2 dozen biscuits.
*To make your biscuits look like the picture above, omit the flaxseed meal.
From farm fields to our facility and kitchens around the world, Bob’s Red Mill guarantees the quality and safety of our products every step of the way. This commitment really shows in our gluten free protocols, which include especially rigorous purity testing and processing products in a dedicated facility.
Our commitment to quality begins at the source.
Bob accepts nothing but the highest quality ingredients and has put in place industry-leading quality assurance standards.
Each arriving shipment is thoroughly inspected, sampled and tested.
Because we’re committed to keeping Bob’s Red Mill foods natural, we built our own GMO testing lab with cutting-edge technology. Our staff scientists use state-of-the-art, German engineered equipment to test for the presence of GMOs.
We use a Farinograph to measure the performance of our flours, so we can be sure customers will have a successful baking experience.
The source of gluten free ingredients matters—that’s why we work with farmers who understand safe gluten free practices.
At our facility, we isolate our gluten free products and store them in dedicated silos.
We sample and test each gluten free shipment immediately upon arrival and continue testing throughout the entire process.
We meticulously test all products, including gluten free foods, to ensure purity.
All gluten free products must meet a standard of less than 20 parts per million of gluten.
Our quality control lab employs an R5 monoclonal antibody ELISA test to ensure maximum safety.
We regularly test samples from the packaging line to make sure customers are getting only the best gluten free products.
All gluten free goods are quarantined in a special waiting area until their safety and quality are confirmed by our quality assurance specialists.
All gluten free storage, milling, mixing and packaging is carried out in a dedicated facility used only for gluten free products.
We measure the level of enzyme activity in our finished products to make sure they will perform exactly how your customers expect them to.
Our Quality Assurance Team is one of the most experienced and knowledgeable in the industry.
Our chef tests each product to make sure it is delicious, dependable and easy to prepare.
Chef Sarah House is continually developing and refining recipes in the Bob’s Red Mill Test Kitchen.