By the time Nicole Davis reached high school, she had decided that happiness could best be found by moving away from the Prairies.
After working in the big city and travelling around the world, she found herself back home working with her parents, Cathy and Gene Davis, who operated an organic homestead farm near North Portal, Sask.
One day, she was picking up products at Scheresky Mill, where she was offered a job.
Nicole purchased the mill, founded in 1963 by Alvin Scheresky, and its four quarters of land in 2012. She first operated it with her mom or sister, Leslie, filling sacks of flour and grain to order. Today her duties have shifted to marketing and managing the business.
Her dad isn’t involved in the day-to-day Daybreak Mill business, but they share farming his 2,000 acres and her land. Her sister, Lauren, brings food to the fields.
The mill, one of only a few organic mills in Saskatchewan, sells organic grains and flours throughout Canada and the U.S.
All flours are stone-ground using the original granite stones from Europe.
Stone milling is slower but it creates the most nutritious flour, Nicole said.
Stone-ground flour goes rancid quickly but the slow sifting of the flour after grinding gives the oils a chance to emulsify back into the flour, giving it a shelf life of about eight months. The milling is entrusted to Brock Aspinall.
Nicole, who would like to see more healthy and sustainable food options available, represented Slow Food Saskatoon in Bra, Italy, at the Slow Food Terra Madre trade show in 2014.
Einkorn Mushroom Risotto
If you are busy or not in the mood to watch the pot, simply add all ingredients except peas and parmesan to a slow cooker and cook on low for about five hours. Stir in parmesan and peas just before serving.
- 3 tbsp. finely chopped shallots 45 mL
- 2 tbsp. butter 30 mL
- 1 c. einkorn berries 250 mL
- 3 tbsp. dried wild mushrooms 45 mL
- 6 c. stock, any kind 1.5 L
- 1/2 tsp. sea salt 2 mL
- 1 c. fresh or frozen peas 250 mL
- 1/2 c. grated parmesan cheese 125 mL
- 1 c. cooked lentils, optional 250 mL
Reconstitute dried mushrooms in 1/2 cup (125 mL) boiling water for 20 minutes. Squeeze mushrooms and save liquid. Chop mushrooms finely. Save soaking liquid and use it as part of the stock.
Saute shallots in butter over medium heat. Add einkorn berries and stir until coated in butter. Add stock 1/2 cup (125 mL) at a time until einkorn is al dente, about 45 to 60 minutes.
If using lentils, add them now. Stir in peas, put the lid on the pot and let the peas warm for about five minutes.
Stir in parmesan cheese and serve immediately. Garnish with pea shoots. Serves about six as a side dish. Source: Adapted from Daybreak Mill.
Gene’s Unbeatable Biscuits
I used a small ice cream scoop to make these drop biscuits. It holds about two tablespoons (30 mL). I placed one scoop on top of the other and gently pressed down into a disc about one inch (2.5 cm) thick. This method gives the pull-apart flakiness usually associated with flour biscuits.
- 2 c. stoneground red fife flour 500 mL
- 4 tsp. baking powder 20 mL
- 1/2 tsp. salt 2 mL
- 1/2 c. butter 125 mL
- 1 egg
- 2/3 c. cream 150 mL
Preheat oven to 450 F (230 C).
Whisk baking powder, flour and salt together. With your fingers or a pastry blender, cut in cool but not hard butter.
In a liquid measuring cup, lightly whisk the egg and milk.
Add liquid to dry ingredients and mix well. Make biscuits by dropping about 1/4 cup of dough for each biscuit. Gently pat into a disc about one inch (2.5 cm) thick. Place biscuits on baking sheet and bake for 10 to 12 minutes. Makes 12 biscuits. Source: Adapted from Daybreak Mill.
Sarah Galvin is a home economist, teacher and farmers’ market vendor at Swift Current, Sask., and a member of Team Resources. She writes a blog at allourfingersinthepie.blogspot.ca. Contact: email@example.com.