What really works when baking non-gluten breads? Best recipes?
I ate some millet bread in DeLand Florida, on a recent visit there, and it was shaped into bagels and really tasted good and light, a little onion-y and garlic-y. It was made, according to the ingredients, only with millet flour. So, unless there's a local store that produces such breads, I'd love to bake-it-myself. Any of you chowhounds have experience with this kind of thing? I'm evidently allergic to wheat and yeast and sourdough and this looks like a good way out of that allergy. I live in Southern California in Orange County but, of course, if I'm baking it myself, it doesn't matter where I reside, does it? I tried using oat and millet flour with corn meal and baking powder and soda but it didn't come out very well. I look to you guys for guidance here... TYhanks in advance...
hm...the yeast free thing does make it harder...i've been gluten free for about 10 years now, and have done a lot of experimenting with flours, though. Corn meal is tough in breads because its so grainy. I've never ground my own like the very ambitous lgss here. The cookbook lgss recommends is good. I would also start with some of the blogs like glutenfreegirl.com and www.heythattastesgood.com with some folks who have done a lot of the trial and error for you. I also have a cookbook called "delicious gluten-free wheat-free breads" which i think is ok. its not great, but it does provide a good foundation for experimentation - its like teaching you to bake "the way grandma did". And for each recipe it provides a quickbread (no yeast) formula as well as a yeast-risen version.
Have you read gluten free girl's guide to working with gf flours? I find that a helpful start. It will give you a good idea of what each flour is like, and what it is used for.
also betterbatter.org used to have a posting about how to get the proper ratio for gf flours. I just tried to find the link, so i'll sumarize the notes i have written down in my recipe book about it for you.
There are 4 parts to each gf flour blend (which is why when you look at the popular mixes they have so many kinds of flour in them.
The ratio is as follows, but can be modified for specific applications. I mix it up in big batches in a glass jar.
2 cups bodifier, 1 cup modifier, 1/4 cup potato flour, 1 Tablespoon extender (i keep the extender out of the blend and add in as I bake - one teaspoon per cup of flour)
1. Bodifier - this is the body/ main ingredient in the blend. I ususally break this up to balance cost flavor and nutrition. These flours include: rice, sorghum, teff, bean (garbanzo, fava, etc), soy, millet, etc.
2. Modifier - These are soft, finely ground flours and startches that help to neutralize strong flavors and make the texture less grainy. They include: tapioca, cornstarch, potato starch, arrowroot.
3. Moisturizer - the modifier starches tend to dry out the dough so modifiers help balance this out. Potato starch (count it above as a modifier in the ratio, but if you add too much it will actually end up overmoistening the dough) and Potato flour.
4. Extender - This is the sticky thing that helps bind and simulate gluten in breads. Xanthan gum is the most common, and the only one i've used. I've had good luck with it, but you should also feel free to try guar gum or others.
I hope this helps!!!