Making Gluten Free Bread - An Experiment!
Why Make Gluten Free Bread?
Well I had a friend come and stay with me a couple of times recently from abroad and she is gluten intolerant. Now in the shops over here in Dubai there is really not a lot of choice in terms of gluten free items to buy - there is a lot in the way of gluten free cakes and gluten free biscuits but try as we might, we could not find gluten free bread.
But we did find gluten free flour! So we decided that we had to go back to basics and make some gluten free bread ourselves. Now I had a small problem at that time in that all I had to cook in was a small toaster oven! Although this did me perfectly for anything that I wanted to cook mealwise, it was not really any good for cooking bread! So those efforts did not go down too well.
Fast forward 6 months and I am leaving Dubai, and I know that everything in my food cupboard will be either given away or thrown away when I leave. I don't know anyone here who would want gluten free flour. So I decided that I would try again in making the gluten free bread, as I now had an oven (albeit not that great).
So here is my experiment into making gluten free bread.
Gluten Free Bread - Ingredients
So the gluten free flour had a recipe on the back for gluten free bread, which was ideal as I did not have one myself. The ingredients that were required were:
16oz of gluten free flour
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp sugar
2 tsp quick yeast
325ml warm milk
1 tsp vinegar
6 tblsp oil
Now I had all of these ingredients (to a certain extent). The oil I had was olive oil but I thought this might add a nice flavour! I had yeast but it was stuff that you had to mix with water first but I used it anyway in the same quantities. I actually halved these ingredients as I didn't think I would need as much as this and I think that was a good plan.
Gluten Free Bread - Method
So to make the gluten free bread you need 2 bowls - in the first bowl mix together the flour, sugar and salt. Now the instructions also said to mix in the yeast but as my yeast needed mixing with water I added it to the liquid ingredients instead.
In the second (big) bowl mix up the milk (I must admit that I forgot to warm mine), the eggs and the vinegar. (I added the liquid yeast here too).
Then add the flour mixture to the milky mixture and add in the oil. This will make a bit of a sticky dough. Leave this in a warm place for an hour covered over in an oiled bread tin. Now unfortunately I did not have a bread tin, the nearest thing I had was a casserole dish so that had to suffice!
Now I had another problem. Although I now owned an oven, it was a very basic one and the actual oven settings just involved the words on and off. It was a gas oven with a lower and upper outlet for the gas. The top one was more of a grill so I just usually light the bottom one when cooking anything. The instructions say to cook in a pre-heated oven for 40/45 minutes on gas mark 7. I put it in the oven and hoped.
After 30 minutes a slight burning smell was permeating the living room so I went to check on the 'bread'. Albeit it has a slight touch of brown on the bottom, the top looked nice and golden and cooked, so I took it out. I left it to cool for a short while and then cut into it. It was a touch on the wet side - I think it cooked a bit too quickly at too high a temperature, but overall you could definitely call it gluten free bread!
I sliced off a piece and had it with some butter and was altogether pleased with my efforts - it actually tasted quite good!