How many times have we been told something can’t be done and then someone who didn’t know it couldn’t be done — just went and DID IT !???
Near me is a bakery, the owner of which is an unpretentious man who had not heard that gluten-free bread could never be the same as wheat bread — so he developed a method by which he bakes bread that NO ONE could tell the difference from regular wheat bread.
I don’t think he’ll mind if I tell his story, as he told it to me.
He was raised by his grandfather who was a baker, so a bakery kitchen is ‘home’ to him.
A few years ago he was at a BBQ picnic and his little godchild was sitting on his knee. The hamburger bun was missing from her plate — she was Celiac. Turning a little pouting face up to the man holding her on his lap she whined plaintively, “Can’t YOU make me some bread?”
It became his mission — to make a gluten-free bread that was BREAD, not some rice cardboard at worst or an imitation at best.
His goal was perfection ! It took him a year and a half – but he did it !!
I tried to tell him that he had done what was declared to be impossible — that he had done what no one else had ever done !!
He shrugged, smiled and said he had no idea – he never goes on the computer.
And to my suggestion that he could get rich just making that bread and distributing it, he replied he’d rather sleep.
He has two kinds of gluten-free bread in his bakery — potato/flax seed bread and onion bread. Both are good but the potato/flax seed is my favorite! He also makes buns and other gluten-free products.
Since tasting his bread, I threw out the notion that gluten-free bread cannot be perfect bread and I have been experimenting taking into account a couple of tips he threw out. I’m not sure exact conditions can be duplicated in a home kitchen but I’m determined not to stop until I get at least close.
I have a bread that is fluffy and soft with a chewy crust . It is not perfect yet — I will adjust the recipe if I discover more ‘tricks’ but here is the recipe as it is now…
1/2 cup warm water
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp Knox Unflavored geletin
whisk then add …..
1 slightly rounded tablespoon reg. yeast (let proof until doubled)
Dry Ingredients1/4 cup white bean flour + 1 rounded tsp. (grind your own with a good coffee grinder from small white beans you buy in your grocery store — bought bean flour mixes even if they claim to be white bean have a strong unpleasant beany flavor)
1/4 cup white corn flour + 1 rounded tsp.
1/2 cup potato starch
2 tbls. potato flour
1 tsp. xanthan gum
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp. ground flax seed (or use whole flax seed)
Liquid ingredients1 egg
1/2 cup warm milk
1 tsp oil (note:Flaxseed oil cannot be used in baking, since it goes rancid when heated)
1.add proofed yeast mixture to the liquids in mixer bowl – beat lightly
2. add all at once the well blended dry ingredients
and beat on high for 5 minutes.
3.Scrap into a mid size greased loaf pan and smooth top with a wet hand.
4.Cover and let rise until at least doubled in bulk – it rises quickly.
5.While bread is rising heat oven to 350′
Prepare for the next step….
(this step was given to me in a dream … I knew that there was something to do with steam in getting the right texture to the bread… and one night before I fell asleep I asked the Lord to help me figure it out. The next morning , I awoke with a dream picture fresh and clear in my mind showing me how to do the ‘steam step’. )
Take your biggest frying pan and almost fill it with water… bring to a rolling boil on the stove top, cover it with a wire rack…. and put the pan of risen bread on top of the rack… Cover the bread and the frying pan with a large metal mixing bowl.
Let it steam for 7 minutes.
Remove the bread pan and immediately put it into the pre-heated oven to 350′.
6.Bake for about 50-60 min. (don’t underbake)
7.Remove from pan and let cool on rack.