My attempt at Gluten-Free Baking

Having gone vegan for almost a year, adding back local eggs (I know the hens personally) and fatty fishes, I pondered the idea of going gluten-free. Everything I have been reading about gluten and wheat has a negative spin on it. The wheat of today is nothing even close to the “amber waves of grain” of our grandparent’s generation. On the contrary, it is dense and short and doesn’t wave at all. in fact it is dwarfed and full of what they call “super gluten”. And it is in everything. Obviously gluten negatively affects those people who have celiac and gluten sensitivity. But what about the rest of us who have no overt symptoms? Woudl we do well to do a trial of gluten-free? I think so.

So, I have been embarquing on a gluten-free stint for several months now, with not many slip-ups. But today was a new milestone for me: gluten-free baking.

The one thing I miss about gluten-free living is the poor excuse for bread. it is dreadful. And frozen. And tiny. To try to revive a slice in the toaster just so it can carry my nut butter is almost an act of God. Lazarus probably looked better after 4 days in the tomb!

I ordered The Gluten-Free Gourmet Bakes Bread by Bette Hagman. it seemed straight-forward enough. But remember, I am not a bread baker. Always wanted to be, but alas, as my sister turned out loaves in coffee cans (when coffee came in pound cans!) I just marveled at her baking prowess.

I thought about diving in head first, but fearing defeat and humiliation- not to mention wasted ingredients– I opted to start with my old friend Bob’s Red Mill’s help. He makes a gluten-free bread flour mix that is whole grain. All I needed to do was handle the yeast, mix in the eggs, oil, vinegar and water. Mix. Let rise. Bake. I felt confident that me and Bob could really pull this off.

Yes! The house smelled great, the bread was crusty, dark, and heavenly. Toastable. Worthy of homemade nut butter and coconut oil. Worthy of fresh fruit slices. I am in love.

Next weekend, we conquer a real recipe from the book. Stay tuned!

Posted by Diane on February 17, 2012
Filed under: Recipes For A Healthy Life, eating well

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