Gluten-Free Baking Experiment

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Now, I like to think of myself as an improvisational cook. Most of the time my food works out great with this method; however, baking is more of a science—screw up a ratio and the whole thing goes flat. Gluten-free and vegan baking somehow seem easier, so I’ve been using some of my down time this winter to play baker. My gluten-free banana chip muffins are a weekly event and now I know the recipe by heart and have tweaked it to perfection. (50/50 GF Flour and Almond meal, 1/2 cup apple sauce, 2 bananas and 3 tsp baking soda are the tweaks!)

The teff sandwich bread was a different story. The recipe looked easy but I couldn’t seem to get the bread to properly rise, resulting in a dense, albeit tasty, bread. This weekend I gave it my 3rd and last shot after doing a little bit of baking research. I wondered why my non-yeast muffins rose wonderfully, yet my yeast teff bread refused to rise. Had I let it get too cold, or had I made it too hot and killed the yeast? Could I combine baking soda and powder with a yeast recipe? Not really, I learned.

Two things I was doing wrong in my recipe. First, I neglected to mix my warm water yeast mixture with my honey, oil and flax. 20130316-183435.jpgSecond, I wasn’t keeping my bread at the right temperature to rise. So, I heated 2 kitchen towels for 1 minute in the microwave and then covered the bread under and over like a blanket and closed the microwave door for 1 hour. The result was a much more fluffy loaf that was still dense but very tasty–especially with a smear of hummus!

I’d probably make this bread again but I would buy a smaller loaf pan to maximize my chances of getting a more ‘sandwich-friendly’ square. However, I’ll still probably be making the muffins regularly since they are so darn easy and good!

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10 thoughts on “Gluten-Free Baking Experiment

  1. Gluten free breads or deserts are in such high demand these days in upscale restaurants, this is really great stuff you’re working on here and sounds tasty.

    1. So true! And funny, it’s not that hard to elminate the flour mostly but I think restaurants are scared. Both of these recipes (and all I make) are friendly to non-GF (meaning they don’t taste like dirt!). Oddly, in Europe this is less of an issue–very often there were GF breads available at all levels of restaurant. Thanks for stopping by!

  2. I’ve yet to try teff but just recently found a GF bread recipe that calls for it. Thanks for sharing the recipe & tips!

    1. No problem! I love this type of soup—I make a Curried Coconut Butternut Squash soup that is similar. Next time you’ll have to double the recipe and freeze some for another day—-I know I have a hard time making only a few servings. 🙂 Elizabeth

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