Wednesday Wisdom: 11 Tips To Make Gluten Free Bread
Thank you very much everyone for appreciating the latest installment of Gluten Free Sandwich Bread which was recently shared. I have been regularly sharing with you all my experience with gluten free bread baking and there are different recipes that can be found on the blog to pick from according to the available ingredients. There isn’t just one perfect recipe or bread that would work for everyone so I keep on trying new recipes in pursuit of a better version. Sometimes there is one ingredient in the recipe that doesn’t suit someone and it is ok because everyone responds differently to a certain ingredient and it doesn’t mean that the recipe is flawed. So the main aim is to find a recipe that is safe for a patient. Here are a few tips to bake a better loaf of gluten free bread:
- First step is obviously finding a recipe. A perfect recipe would be that one that includes ingredients suitable for a gluten allergic person. Like some patients are sensitive to milk or corn or some particular gum. Pick a recipe that is suitable.
- After narrowing down the search and finding a recipe, it is important to have all the ingredients. Baking is different that stove top cooking and once batter is inside the oven, there is no way one can adjust proportions. If the recipe is calling for a “gluten free bread flour blend” make sure you have it rather than making a home blend of flours.
- Do not tweak a gluten free recipe. Like never. Although it applies to baking in general but for gluten free it is completely out of the question. If there is no potato starch in the pantry, for instance, don’t skip it or substitute it with other starch. A recipe is formulated after a chain of experiments and there is a reason for each and every element to ensure good results.
- Once there is a good, doable recipe and all ingredients are available, pay attention to measuring units. Usually gluten free flours are measured by weight like in grams because it is a standard way of measuring ingredients for baking plus different gluten free flours have different density and texture so it is important to weigh them properly and correctly.
- If ingredients are measured in volume, like in cups or spoons, please make sure to use proper measuring cups and spoons instead of relying on a common tea cup or regular cutlery. Do not scoop out. Fill measuring cup with spoon and then level it off with a knife. Do not over measure. Do not tap the measuring cup on the counter to make more space.
- Bring all the ingredients to room temperature before mixing them.
- Be sure you understand the method of mixing all ingredients.
- Always use correct sized pans as required for the recipe.
- Gluten free flours require more liquids or moisture to get combined and the duration of mixing is there to ensure that everything is well mixed and properly moistened. Do not over beat the batter as it will make bread denser and dry.
- Follow baking instructions properly including oven setting, baking duration, watching browning process and rotation of pan during baking. Each recipe would have different sets of instructions so it is equally important to pay attention to them.
- Once bread is baked and out of the oven, take it out of the pan carefully. It is a bit tricky to handle hot loaf but if left in the pan, steam might get collected at the bottom of the pan and make the base of the bread soggy. Some recipes may call for cooling in the pan for a little while for easy handling so follow the directions.