Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Updated Boule Bread Recipe

This is a re-post of the 2-lb Boule Bread Recipe that I have updated with a better method for superior flavor and browning.

For those who have been following my gluten-free bread recipes, I'm giving you another in the series.  This one is very similar to the Traditional Round Loaf recipe, but you get a larger loaf, about a 2-lb.  This recipe uses my Bread Flour mix, or the Rustic White Bread Flour blend, which are pretty simple to make.  

Gluten-free Bread Recipe - Large Round Loaf

makes one 2-lb round loaf
Mix time: 10 minutes
Rise time: 2-3 hours
Cook time: 35-45 minutes

Mix in the bowl of your stand mixer or whisk together by hand:

490g (about 2 to 2 1/4 cups) warm water, 110-120 degrees
30g whole psyllium husk (or 20g ground psyllium husk)

Add to the bowl:

400g GF bread flour (reserve an additional 50 grams for later in the recipe)
2 Tbsp sugar 
1.5 tsp yeast

Mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until everything is completely combined and a sticky dough forms.

Let the dough rise in a warm place for an hour or two, or until it has almost doubled in bulk and a dent made with your finger stops filling in right away.  
Punch it down.

Knead in with your hands or the dough hook of your mixer:

50g flour 
1 1/4 tsp salt
4 tsp apple cider vinegar

Knead the dough mass a few times with your hands to create a cohesive ball with the seam of your kneading tucked over on one side.  Remove the dough to a banneton seam side up or simply place the dough ball seam side down on a piece of parchment paper and spritz the top with a little bit of water.  Cover, and let rise 45 minutes to 1.5 hours in a warm place. 

While the dough is rising, place a dutch oven or a pizza stone and an oven-safe pan large enough to cover the bread in the oven and turn it on to pre-heat to 450° F for about half an hour before cooking. When the bread has risen and and a dent made with your finger stops filling in right away, gently place the dough seam-side down on your lightly floured work surface, trying not to deflate it.  Lightly flour your hands.  Gently run your hands along the sides of the dough, tucking the sides under and turning the loaf around as you go to get all edges tucked under.  The top will be more rounded than before and stretched a bit more tightly.  

When the oven is ready and the dough has been formed, score the top with a sharp blade about 1/4 inch deep in whatever pattern you want.

Carefully place the bread in the hot dutch oven or on the hot pizza stone.  Spritz the inside of the dutch oven (or the surface of the pizza stone) with water several times (careful not to spray any glass lids - they can shatter!) and cover.  Cook for 25 minutes, then uncovered on the rack until the crust has a hollow sound when tapped on top, usually another 10-15 minutes.  Remove to a cooling rack, or for a crisper crust turn off the flame and cool in the oven with the door propped open.  Let the bread cool completely for easier slicing.

Enjoy some traditional gluten-free bread!

Friday, December 20, 2013

Last-minute Holiday Gift Ideas

Do you have a gluten-free person on your Christmas list?  Here are a few ideas on what to give them - or any foodie on your list - for the holidays:

At the Book Store

I always like Joy of Cooking.  It's an invaluable reference for every kind of thing you can imagine cooking.  Many of the recipes in this blog are adapted from recipes in this book.

I also love The Penguin Companion to Food.  It's a great reference for food nerds.  Do you want to know how pectin works?  Do you love terms like polysaccharide chain?  This is the book for you.

Gluten-free Girl Every Day.  If you don't already have it, get it for yourself or a loved one!  It's available here in Portland at Powell's, among other places online.  It's a useful recipe book to have.

At the Kitchen Store

For my Portland readers I highly recommend Kitchen Kaboodle.  They have a great selection, helpful staff, and they sell everything in their stores at 10% off MSRP.

These magnetic measuring spoons are the best!  Have you ever gone through a recipe and tried to measure out the sugar after you used the spoon for a liquid?  Then the sugar sticks to the spoon?  That drives me crazy!  This set has a side for the liquids and a side for the dry ingredients so you don't get the sugar stickies.

This year I have been loving my silicone spatulas.  They are perfect for managing sticky doughs.  This Le Creuset set would make an awesome gift.

Pullman Loaf Pan.  This style of bread pan is ideal for making Gluten-free sandwich loaves because it gives you bigger slices.  My dad gave me one for Christmas two years ago and I've gotten a lot of use out of it.  I created my Teff Sandwich Bread recipe in it.

Want to get something memorable and impressive?  Try this Chantal Copper tea kettle.  It's a timeless classic.

Do you want something even more memorable?  This is the best present I've ever gotten:

I also loved this griddle:

And I always covet enameled cast iron pans like these:

Monday, December 9, 2013

Sale - Free Shipping!

ENDS 11:59 December 15th.

Gluten-free Gourmand is offering free shipping on any order of $25 or more for the next week!  Use Coupon Code SHIP25 for free shipping.

Have a gift basket shipped directly to a friend!

We can even personalize the tag for you if you leave me a comment at checkout.

Use Coupon Code SHIP25 at checkout for free shipping!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Gluten-free Scones

Scones are what got me into this mess.  They were like a gateway drug to gluten-free baking.  Now I can't stop.  Where will it end?  I'm up to long-ferment gluten-free sourdough bread.

I have a feeling I will keep looking for more challenges.  But it all started with the simple scone.  The scones were so popular that I decided to sell a scone mix.  It can be made with the traditional recipe, the vegan recipe, or the cream scone recipe.

I ran across this Pinterest board on the topic the other day and thought it was genius.  In honor of the gluten-free scone I'd like to highlight a few scone recipes, old and new.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Cyber Monday Sale! 30% Off Everything!

This Monday and Tuesday only, get 30% off a your entire purchase at Gluten-free Gourmand!  Check out our new gift baskets - a perfect idea for the holidays!  You can have the gift tag personalized and ship right to your friend or family member.

Use discount code CYBER30 to get 30% off your order.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Gluten-free Gravy Tips and Recipe

I am a gravy lover. I get asked all the time what I do about gravy for the holidays, and I assure you that I don't go without.  If you like gravy but you have never made it gluten-free, here's what to do.

  • Use a standard recipe like the one below or any from the Joy of Cooking - no need for a special technique, just sub out the glutenous flour for something safe.
  • When selecting a GF flour for the recipe, be sure to avoid flour blends that already have thickeners like guar gum, xanthan gum, psyllium husk, flax seeds, or chia seeds.  These thickeners will clump up your gravy and make them much too thick.  I use my No. 1 All-Purpose Flour for gravy because it doesn't have any thickeners or additives, and can be subbed out cup-for-cup for "regular" flour.
  • You can use a single flour like corn starch, which is a classic used by gluten eaters.  However, keep in mind that using a starch like corn starch or tapioca starch will give you a transluscent gravy.  A good blend like the No. 1 All-Purpose Flour will mimic regular flour in texture and look.
  • To avoid lumps, whichever flour you are using, blend the flour with some water or broth to make a smooth paste before adding it to the gravy pan.
  • If you are not the one who is cooking the turkey or making the gravy, either make a batch on your own and bring it with you to the meal (a roasted chicken is perfect for a smaller batch of gravy) or offer to help make the gravy for everyone and bring some GF flour with you to the gathering.  If you haven't made gravy before, keep in mind that it has to be made in the critical moments after the turkey is out of the oven and before everyone sits down for dinner.  Try to plan accordingly so you pose the least inconvenience to the host.
The recipe I use is a mix of how my mom taught me to make gravy and some tips from the Joy of Cooking, which I have adapted slightly for my own tastes and routine.  This book is a great resource for me on Turkey Day.  I reference it for everything from cooking the turkey to making the pie.  It also has a section on gluten-free cooking that I found very useful when I was first starting out.

Classic Gravy Recipe

Makes about 12 servings from a medium-sized turkey

While the turkey is cooking, use the giblets to make some stock for the gravy.  Combine in a saucepan:

Giblets from turkey
about 5 cups water

Simmer until needed, or about 2-4 hours.

When the time approaches to make the gravy, or even before the turkey is out of the oven, combine in a bowl until smooth and set aside:

6 Tbsp No. 1 All-Purpose Flour
1/2 cup water or stock

After removing the turkey from the roasting pan, pour all the liquid drippings into a fat separator like this.  Put the pan over two burners on the stove and pour in about:

4 cups stock

Use chicken stock if you don't have enough giblet stock.  Reserve some if possible.  Turn on two burners under the roasting pan on medium-low.  With a wooden spoon, scrape up any brown bits off the bottom of the pan.  When the stock is simmering and the brown bits are worked into the stock, slowly pour in 1/ 2 of the flour mixture a bit at a time, constantly stirring the gravy as you do.  By this time the fat and the juices from the pan should have separated in your fat separator.  Pour any juices into the pan, retaining the fat in the separator as much as possible.  Keep stirring the gravy and assess what you might need next.

  • If the sauce looks like a delicious, silky gravy, congratulations!  You may be done.  Taste the gravy to see if it needs salt or pepper.  If not, it's ready.
  • If the gravy is a good texture but much too salty, add some water and some more of the flour mixture, stir to incorporate, and taste again.
  • If the sauce looks separated and greasy, don't fret.  This is normal.  Just add some water or soup stock a bit at a time, and stir to incorporate.  The sauce will come together like magic.
  • If the mixture seems too dry or is sticking to the bottom of the pan, turn down the heat, scrape the pan again, and add more soup stock if needed.  Keep stirring until everything smooths out.
  • If the sauce seems too thin, turn up the heat a little and add a bit more of the flour and water mixture, then stir until you get the desired consistency.
  • If the gravy seems fine but the flour got lumpy, then turn down the heat and use a whisk to break the lumps apart. A silicon flat whisk helps me quickly get the gravy smoothed out. 
When the sauce is perfect, scrape it into a gravy boat and serve hot.  Now enjoy your gravy!

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Crispy/chewy Gluten-free Pizza Dough Recipe

Last month I posted a recipe which shows how to make gluten-free pizza on the BBQ.  Well, what if you want to make this same pizza in the oven?  If you want that same crispy or chewy crust using a bread recipe, you can get that in your home oven with a gluten-free bread mix.  

Pizza Dough Recipe

Prep time:5 minutes
Rest time: 60 minutes  
Cook time: 13 minutes
Makes two 10 to 12-inch pizzas

Ingredients and other things you will need:

225g GF Bread Flour Blend
1 TBSP sugar
1/2 tsp salt
15g whole psyllium husks (or 10g ground)
240g Warm Water
2 tsp. Apple Cider Vinegar
1 TBSP olive oil
1 tsp yeast
extra oil
pizza toppings

If you have a pizza peel, you will feel very professional, but it's not necessary.  You can simply slide the pizza off the stone using the parchment paper.  No need to take the pizza off the paper until you serve.

In a mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, place:

240g Warm Water
15g whole psyllium husk (or 10g ground psyllium husk)

Whisk together just until all the psyllium is wet.  Place in the bowl:

2 tsp. Apple Cider Vinegar
1 TBSP olive oil
1 tsp yeast
225g GF Bread Flour Blend
1 TBSP sugar
1/2 tsp salt

Mix all the ingredients together with the dough hook of the stand mixer, or with a silicon spoon, until everything is thoroughly blended.  The dough will seem wet and sticky, but it should feel like a wet bread dough.  It will firm up as you go.

Let the dough rest in the bowl for 30 minutes, punch it down, and and re-mix, either by kneading or with a the dough hook of your stand mixer.

Divide the dough in half.  Place a piece of parchment paper down on a flat surface.  Dust half of the dough generously with flour,  put it on the parchment paper and flatten it out into a disk with your fingers.  Roll the dough out to a circle, 8-10 inches for chewy crust, to 12 or more inches - or as thin as you can get it - for crispy crust.  Lightly oil the top of the crust to prevent it from drying out.  Repeat with the second half of the dough (or refrigerate it or freeze it for use later).  Cover the dough with more parchment paper or a clean towel and let the pizza crust rest for 20-30 minutes.  Put your pizza stone in the oven and pre-heat to 500 F.  While the pizza is rising, prepare your toppings.  

Once the pizza dough has risen for about 30 minutes, take the pizza dough by the parchment paper and slide it onto the hot pizza stone.  Repeat with the second pizza if they both fit at once, or alternate turns in the oven.  Cook the dough for five minutes, then take it out of the oven and top it.  Put it back in the oven for 8 minutes, or until done.  When the cheese is melted your pizza is ready.  Let the pizzas rest for a few minutes, then enjoy!

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Ciabatta Bread

For years I've been trying to develop the best possible hamburger bun.  I tried lots of combinations of eggs, flours, milk, water, oil - you name it.  Then I decided to create a ciabatta recipe, and realized that it's 2-in-1.  This ciabatta bread makes not only perfect panini, but also perfect hamburger buns.  And there's no milk or eggs!

Now, I realize that "real" ciabatta is made from a much longer, more artisan-style process, sort of like a sour dough.  This recipe is just a simple double-rise yeasted bread dough.  I may try to develop a recipe for a more traditional process, but that will come down the road.  This version is simple and effective, and anyone can accomplish great bread in about an hour and a half.  

This bread recipe gives you the best hole structure and the most open crumb of any of my bread recipes.

Ciabatta Bread Recipe

Makes four 4-inch square ciabattas

For this recipe you will need:

225g gluten-free bread flour 
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 TBSP sugar
- warm water
- apple cider vinegar
- extra flour - I recommend potato starch

In the bowl of your stand mixer, whisk together:

260g (1 1/8 C) warm water (100-115 degrees F)
2 tsp apple cider vinegar


15g whole psyllium husk or 10g ground psyllium husk

Whisk the psyllium husk into the wet ingredients until the mixture begins to thicken, 1-2 minutes.  Add:

225g gluten-free bread flour 
1/2 tsp salt
1 TBSP sugar
1 tsp yeast

Mix the dough until well blended.  Cover and let rise for 30-60 minutes.  Punch the dough down, then knead for a few minutes, making sure that all the bubbles are out of the dough.  Place the dough on a sheet of parchment paper.

Flour the dough generously.  With a dough scraper or the side of your hand, cut the dough to divide the into four equal parts.

You can simply pat the dough into the shape you would like, or you can roll it out to form ciabatta shapes.

Be sure to brush off any excess flour on the inside of the folds.  Fold your rolled-out dough like a letter then flip it over to place it seam-side down on the parchment paper.  Press each shaped loaf with your fingers to get rid of any air bubbles. Dust each loaf with a little flour if desired.

Cover the bread and let it rise for another 30 minutes.  In the mean time, heat up your oven to 450 degrees.  If you have a pizza stone, place that in the oven to heat up.  If not, just use a regular baking sheet - no need to heat it up.

Once the bread has risen, move it to the baking sheet or pizza stone by using the parchment paper to convey it - no need to take it off the paper.  Bake for 20 minutes.  If the bread hasn't browned to your liking, you can brush each loaf with a little oil and turn the oven down to bake at 350 for another 2-5 minutes or until browned.  Cool the bread on a baking rack, then enjoy as sandwiches, buns or slice for snacks.