Sunday, 13 November 2011

Oh my loaf, its Gluten-free!

Firstly, I must just say how much I like Mary Berry, the doyenne of home baking and cooking.  Having just read an article about her, not only does she not fuss about all her buns being the same size or a little bit of cracking in her pastry, she starts her day.......every day...... with toast and marmite.  All hail Mary Berry!

So, back to the point...... this weekends challenge - Gluten-free baking! Spurred on by conversations with a Ravelry friend in Sweden I thought I would venture into the world of non wheat / non gluten baking.  I have no reason to do this (other than eating to much shop bought bread makes me swell up like a hot air-balloon....too much info, yup!), but me likes a new challenge.  Not one to do things by half measures, I tried bread and cake!  But why do I always do it when I am time poor!

Friday saw me attempt a gluten-free bread recipe that I doctored from the Gluten Free Goddess blogspot.*  Going via Waitrose on the way home, I was on the lookout for gluten free bread flour.  I had normal plain gluten-free flour in the cupboard.  But my rather stupid Friday evening brain forgot to comprehend that gluten-free really means no gluten.  And strong bread flour, rather than plain baking flour has lots of gluten.  So basically making gluten-free bread is rather like baking a cake. 

The mixture has a consistency of a thick cake batter, not the lovely doughy texture you get from a bread dough, it requires no kneading and only a short rise of about 45 minutes.  It proved to be quite an expensive experiment as the flour I purchased was twice the price of the perfectly usable one I had in the cupboard already.  Oh well.  All I can say is it tastes nice with marmite.....if a little cake like in texture.

 It won't be my go-to bread recipe, but at least it didn't turn out like a burnt brick.

Yesterday my Mum came over for dinner and about 30 minutes before she was due to arrive I remembered I had done no preparation.  I blame Miss Marple!  She is very distracting.  As well as trying a new pork recipe, I also had a go at River Cottage's Gluten-free Lime & Coconut Cake.  Its a rather heavenly drizzle cake. 

Made like a regular cake, baked like a regular cake.  Just gluten-free.  Ignoring the sugar and butter, I felt very virtuous eating it and urge you to give it a go.  As you can see Mum seems to like it :)

I like the idea of having of having a few "free-from" recipes to hand, just in case I need them.  Good thing a copy of The Gluten-free Baker just happened to drop into my Amazon shopping order.  I am looking forward to salivating through that one.

On the crafty front I have finally finished these lovely Embossed leaves socks that have been on the back-burner for a while.   A few more pressies are on the knitting needles, but if I put them on here you might see what you're getting.

That Christmas is a good incentive to get things finished.

* I used 3 cups of Bobs Red Mill G/F baking flour rather than a variety of flours, dried active yeast which is re-activated in the warm water rather than my usual fast action yeast and 1 egg (why would I use egg substitute?).  Otherwise as per the "not using a bread machine" recipe, baking at 180c in a oiled loaf tin.


  1. Nice job on these socks - I am just finishing a pair of mittens from Interweave Knits Holiday Gifts - covered in hearts, with recipient's initials on the thumb!

  2. Thanks Jenny. Now those mittens sound like a cute idea. I may have to check them out!