Friday, August 20, 2010

Adventures in gluten free baking-the bread edition

First off, huge thanks to Carrie Forbes at Ginger Lemon Girl.  She has a vast collection of gluten free recipes, I've only scratched the surface on what to use to feed my son.

Anyone who's gone gluten free knows the bread is...well, expensive!  I was shocked when I went to buy my first loaf of rice bread for my child, the loaf was small.  It was really, really small, and cost me over $5.00!  I knew then and there that I was far too cheap to be buying GF bread every week!  So I started googling recipes.  I've baked bread before, it's somewhat intimidating because of all the kneading.  Bonus of GF baking?  Less kneading!  I found this recipe on Carrie's site and decided that since it had two of Paulo's favorite things, honey and oatmeal, it was a perfect first choice.  I made it last weekend.  It was really, really tasty.  The only modification I needed to make was a sub for the eggs.  Since Paulo is also egg free right now I did a little research here and found out that 1/4 cup of silken tofu can sub for one egg.  The honey oat recipe calls for two eggs so I used 1/2 cup of the silken tofu in it's place.  Karina, on Gluten Free Goddess also recommends adding a little extra leavening, i.e. 1/4 teaspoon of baking powder, if you go the tofu route. 

My first attempt at baking my own GF bread

I will say mine looked more like bread than the rice flour bread I've been buying!  The loaf did not last long, it was delicious with a little vegan butter and jam. 

I had a dilemma though.  Tomorrow I'm hosting a billion people to celebrate my son's 15th birthday.  Yikes!  15!!  We're doing the usual American fare, grilled dogs and burgers.  I've looked at the GF buns at New Seasons, I was not impressed.  They looked bland.  They're made from tapioca flour, which I've heard mixed reviews about.  And they are insanely expensive.  Over $1 per bun!  Obviously I will need something to put my baby boy's burger on so I turned back to Carrie's recipe and turned it into buns.

Isn't it cute?  Sort of looks like a cookie.

I've seen some websites that recommend you use clean tuna cans to shape the buns, I can see why.  Gluten free dough is not easily molded, at least mine isn't.  If yours is, please tell me what you're doing differently!  I allowed the dough to rise and then grabbed handfuls of the sticky stuff and try to shape it as close to a bun-ish shape as possible.  Did I mention it's really sticky!  Then I baked them at 400 F. I realized this morning, literally my first thought upon waking, that I forgot to add the extra leavening.  I wanted them to be flat though, so I'm not too worried about it.  I do find it odd that my first thought was about my buns though.
The final product just waiting for a juicy burger!
I sliced one up this morning to see how the middle turned out.  When I made the loaf above I found the middle to be a little gummy.  I suspect it's my necessary use of tofu instead of eggs.  I will try baking it a little longer next time.  The buns however did not feel gummy at all.  They're moist, which I love, but not gummy.  I'm excited to see how they work as the burger holders they were meant to be.  I will also use these I think in Paulo's lunch box next month when he heads back to school, they're a perfect Paulo sandwich size.

There we have it, diving headlong into the world of gluten free bread baking.  Indulging my inner Betty Crocker.  I love homemade bread.  I have fond memories of the bread my mother would make when we were at school.  We'd come home to big fat slices, still warm, covered in butter.  Food is love, I hope my son feels that when he eats his burger tomorrow on my homemade bun!


  1. This is AWESOME!!!! Thanks for sharing Krista!!! YOU ROCK!!

  2. I was really pleased with the breadiness of this bread. The store bought stuff is really, really dense-and really, really expensive! If we have to keep this diet for P then I will invest in those super cute bun pans.

  3. Krista - I'm so glad this worked for you! I love the Honey Oat Bread! :-) Those buns are beautiful and I bet they worked out wonderfully with your hamburgers! I hope your son had a really awesome birthday!!

  4. They worked great for the burgers and then this morning I turn them into french toast, coated in rice milk and silken tofu since he's off eggs too. He's gobbled up my stash, I have to bake some more today!


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