is one of my most favorite foods.
A slice of toast completes me…
…Well completes my meal!
Before I found out about my wheat/barley/rye (gluten) allergy I had to exercise some serious self-control in regards to my flour intake. I am not talking about a “low-carb diet”, just not wanting to gain excess weight thus controlling my love for breads by limiting my intake. Breads, Crackers, and Pretzels are easy grabs and great tummy settlers when your having digestive issues. Go figure…being allergic. I felt a HUGE LOSS when being diagnosed with all my food allergies like my world had ended. I KNEW I was destined to starve and live a sad food life.
I COULD NOT HAVE BEEN MORE WRONG!
The key to eating “alternative” Allergy Friendly foods (“alternative” to what people consider the norm, free of the common food allergens: milk, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, fish, shellfish, soy, wheat, etc.) is changing your understanding of foods, flavors, combinations, and food possibilities. Once you cancel out all pre-conditioned ideas of food and open your mind to the NEW, you will be amazed at all the options you actually have. You step into a world of food that just keeps on giving…Giving You More NEW that is. I don’t think it’s possible to step into this world and immediately realize all its benefits at once. One thing I LOVE most is how I keep stumbling onto new ideas of allergy free substitutions, intriguing ingredient combinations, and tantalizing palette pleasers!!! The more I find, the more options I realize I actually have, and the reality that food is far from boring, especially living with food allergies, propels me to learn more.
How can something as simple as finding a great bread recipe bring such joy into my life?
How can it not???
I said, I LOVE BREAD!
Finding a delicious Gluten Free Bread Recipe has been one of the biggest challenges I have faced on this new food journey. Everyone says THEY have the best recipe. There are actually a wide variety of Gluten Free bread options available in your local grocery stores, but some of them are just plain disgusting and have been one of the many reasons the Gluten Eating Community sees Gluten Free as Taste Free. Now that I live a Gluten Free Life, I feel it my responsibility to reconstruct the image of what Gluten Free means. Call me the “Gluten Free Hall Monitor” …HAHA! Ok, maybe not the best term, but it’s what popped into my head. Let me dream! Lol!
My purpose as a GF Hall Monitor:
To successfully convince the Gluten Eating Community how DELICIOUS GF Foods can be;
To liberate the food allergy newbies from the food prision we are pre-conditioned to know
and show them a whole new food world; To teach others (as I am learning) to ENJOY food again
and have it LOVE you back!
With all that being said, let me introduce you to my Ever-Being-Perfected Gluten Free Bread Recipe. My Gluten Eating Husband and Kids LOVE my bread, which has been a huge part of fueling my desire to fulfill my “new purpose” (as GF Hall Monitor…LOL)! I will keep perfecting a recipe until I have pleased the Gluten Eating Community. I MUST convince them that GF can be DELICIOUS. I’m not trying to match the same taste as something with Gluten. Wheat tastes like Wheat and other Grains taste like other Grains, but that does NOT mean that those other grains can’t offer their own superb tastes. You don’t eat an Apple and expect it to taste like a Burger. You just expect each one to offer their own great taste. I just want to offer a great taste to others as well as myself. I LIKE FOOD TOO!!! One Thing To Note: I find when baking Gluten Free Bread the key to quality texture and taste is the blending of grains. Rice Flour is one of the most common GF Grains used as a Flour Substitute for Wheat. You will find it as the base flour in most GF All-Purpose Flour Pre-Mixes. Rice Flour along with the other added ingredients can create delicious baked goods, but with bread I find blending the Rice Flour with another Grain Flour helps the bread hold up better and produces a more quality bread. I am still experimenting with other grains that I can use for blending or alone. The more I learn, The more I will share.
MY GLUTEN FREE SANDWICH BREAD
(this recipe yields 2-3 loaves depending on the size of your loaf pans)
1-1/2 Cups Brown Rice Flour 1-1/2 Cups Sorghum Flour (brown rice flour can be sub’d here) 2 Cups White Rice Flour 2/3 Cup Potato Starch 2/3 Cup *Corn Starch (*Sub corn starch for 1/3 tapioca starch+ 1/3 potato starch) 4 Tbsp Brown Sugar, packed 2-1/2 Tsp Salt 9 Tsp Xantham Gum
2 Large Eggs 2 Cup Almond Milk, warmed at 110-115F (any dairy or non-dairy milk can be used here) 1-1/2 Cup Water, warmed at 110-115F 1/2 Cup (1 stick) *Butter, melted 2 Packets (4-1/2 tsp) Active Dry Yeast Butter Sub: Earth Balance Coconut Spread
(*I use a Kitchen Aid Stand Mixer to make my breads. I would not recommend using a Hand Mixer as the dough is thicker than cookie or cake batter and could burn out the motor or climb up the mixer all over your hand..I have done this! Lol!)
- Pre-heat Oven to 200F and then turn OFF.
- Lightly grease 2 or 3, 9×5 in. loaf pans with cooking spray (You can use Pam Grilling because it is Soy-Free, or I lightly rub a Cold-Pressed Oil such as Olive Oil, Grapeseed Oil or Coconut Oil in the bottom of the pan. A great tip is to get a fine mist spray bottle and use that to spray your oils)
- In a medium bowl, whisk together dry ingredients.
- In your *Kitchen Aid bowl, combine water, milk, and yeast until yeast is dissolved. Cover with a kitchen cloth and let stand 5 minutes to activate yeast (if you’re yeast is active it should bubble & rise in the bowl, if it doesn’t than you’re yeast is dead & the bread will not rise properly when baked). Remove cloth and add eggs (room temp or run under warm water to take off the chill). Whisk until eggs are incorporated in the liquid mix.
- Using the flat paddle attachment on your mixer begin adding the dry ingredient mix a little at a time, mixing at low speed. Once all the flour is incorporated increase speed to medium high and mix for 5 minutes. Your dough should be soft, thick, and sticky. The dough will not form a cohesive ball.
- Use an oiled spatula to remove any excess dough from the paddle and off the sides of the bowl. Using the spatula, separate the dough in half or in 3 sections. Oil your hands and a section of your counter using one of the cold pressed oils mentioned above (I usually pour oil on the counter & then use my hands to spead it around so my hands get oiled at the same time). Pick up one section and round out in your hands rolling around the counter to form a very loose oblong ball shape to fit your loaf pan (here’s the FUN part: I roll the dough around, pick it up & slap it back on the counter a few times before my final shaping). Gently place the dough in the loaf pan and cover with a lightly oil sprayed plastic wrap piece. Gently lay the oiled plastic wrap on top of the pan. Do Not place on tightly or it will be hard for the bread to rise.
- Place covered loaf pans into warmed oven for 40-45 minutes. If oven is too warm leave door propped open for 20 min to release some of the heat. This is the perfect warm and draft-free location to help the yeast activate and achieve a consistent rise in any kitchen environment or elevation. Check on the bread every 20 or so minutes to adjust plastic wrap in case it’s not allowing the bread to rise. NOTE: The bread should rise to close to double the size. The rise time is different with GF Baking then when using Wheat so feel free to give it more time if you want a higher rise, just remember that the bread continues rising while baking too & gf bread doesn’t rise as high as wheat. If your bread does not rise, you may have inactive yeast and need to purchase fresh yeast.
- Leave pans in the oven, remove the plastic wrap, and set oven to 350F.
- Bake for 45 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 208F (with GF Baking it can be hard to tell if its done) If the crust gets too dark, cover with foil and allow to continue baking until you have reached the temperature. You shouldn’t have this problem, but everyone’s oven is different.
- Take bread out of the oven and let cool in the pans on a pot holder, or counters that can handle high heat for 20 minutes. Then turn the bread out on a wired rack to cool completely.
- Once completely cooled, store in an airtight container on the counter or freeze. (You can also refrigerate, but not for an extended time – maybe 2-3 days max – because it will build up unwanted moisture creating soggy or crumbly bread). When freezing, I like to pre-slice my loaves before hand for a quick grab of a slice, instead of thawing out the whole loaf, although it does thaw out nicely! You can even place sheets of wax paper in-between the slices to ensure they do not stick together while freezing. You can also freeze 2-4 slices in a Ziplock Baggie and microwave then for 30-40 sec to thaw. You can Toast the bread or eat it as is. This recipe lasts on the counter in an airtight container or doubled bread bag for 2-3 days at max and remains moist enough to eat alone or as sandwich bread. In the freezer it can last for up to 30 days, but I doubt you will have refrained from eating it that long. 🙂