I was never a big bread eater, but the bread I liked the best was sourdough, and even better, a multi-grain sourdough. Of course, when I went gluten free, I assumed those days were over. It got even worse when I realized I was allergic to tapioca flour, the go-to flour for flavorful and chewy gluten free baking.
Then a few weeks ago, the Gluten Free Goddess posted her Olive bread recipe. I was curious, and I tried it. It was . . .ok. I ate it dunked in oil, and it was a reasonable accompaniment to my dinner salad. My gf 15 yo son loved it, tho, and ate most of it. Which was fine by me.
So then I decided to take another look at a recipe I had found on the web over a year ago. I can’t find the exact recipe, but this is the closest I’ve found. I started with that basic recipe, using my sweet bread flour mix. I let it rise overnight and by 10 am, it was fragrant and bubbly and just lovely! But by the time I baked it, around 2 pm, it was flat. It didn’t rise in the oven, either. The flavor was wonderfully sour (too sour for my son), and the crust was nice, but it wasnt quite right.
I looked around the web some more, taking notes from this recipe and this one. I played around with my flour mix. And after a few tries, today I made a most wonderful bread! The flavor is complex, the crust is hard and chewy, the bread is tender but not crumbly. The only thing I might want to change is that the bottom crust seems slightly overcooked, but i cant be that picky. I LOVE this bread – so I have to share!!
- Different flour mixes require different amounts of water. I did best with a dough just too soft to hold in your hand, but stiffer than most muffin batters. When the dough was too dry, it didn’t rise as well, and when it was too wet, the bread actually seemed soggy.
- I found that beating the dough in a stand mixer for a minute or two seemed to help the rise.
- I don’t have a dutch oven, so I am using a covered casserole. I rise the bread in a duplicate casserole lined with parchment. I smooth the parchment out as best I can, but cut it long enough so that some is hanging over the edges. I preheat the other dish, with the lid, and then gently lift the dough up by the paper edges to transfer to hot pan – but trim carefully before returning to the oven.
- When I left the bread out overnight during the summer in Virginia, it rose too fast, and fell when baking. Instead I left it in the fridge overnight, and then let it rise on the counter from about 8 am to 2:30 pm. This seemed to give me the best rise. I will try leaving it out overnight in the winter, though.
- You know the bread has risen enough when the dough looks puffy and spongy, and smells very yeasty. (This dough was too wet, so your should look slightly drier)
- I havent tried, but the original recipe said that the texture would be poor if you sliced it before it was completely cool.
- 2 cups GF Flour Mix
- 1 1⁄4 tsp. Guar (or xanthan) gum
- 1 tsp. salt
- 2 tbsp brown sugar
- 1/4 tsp. yeast
- 1 tbsp. olive oil
- 1 cup water, or slightly more to make soft dough or stiff batter
- Mix all dry ingredients in a large mixer bowl.
- Add olive oil and water to the bowl; mix well and add more water if the dough seems too stiff. Beat a minute or two on high.
- Line rising bowl with parchment paper, leaving some overhang. Pour/scoop in batter and smooth with the back of a spoon dipped in water.
- Cover bowl with a light cloth or plastic wrap and let rise 12-18 hours at room temperature, until light and yeasty. Note, in summer in Virginia, I found I needed to let it rise overnight in the fridge, and then about 5 more hours on the counter.
- Preheat the oven to 450°F with a cast iron dutch oven with lid (or a Pyrex casserole with lid) in the oven.
- After 30 minutes, take out the hot pan. Lift dough gently by the paper, put in hot pan, and trim off edges. Put the lid on the pan, and put the entire thing in the oven.
- After 20 minutes, remove the lid and then bake 20 minutes more.
- Cool completely before slicing.
Notes from the original recipe (i havent tried this): For a faster version by using 2 tsps of rapid rise yeast and let it rise 2 hours. For a double recipe, turn the heat down to 400 degrees, and bake it 30 minutes covered, and then continue baking uncovered until it’s a nice light brown color.
The flour mix the recipe came with was equal parts sorghum, cornstarch, potato starch, and tapioca starch/flour. I’m allergic to tapioca AND sorghum.) The original author said she had used several mixes with success.
the flour mix I use is:
- 1/3 cup millet flour
- 1/3 cup corn flour
- 1/3 cup potato starch
- 1/3 cup arrowroot starch
- 1/3 c quinoa flakes
- 1/3 cup combined rice bran, hemp protein powder, and uncooked buckwheat hot cereal
(edited to add: really, I don’t do 1/3 cup of those last 3 items combined . . . i do 1 TB of each of those, and fill in the remainder of the 1/3 cup in more quinoa flakes .. . otherwise it’s slightly bitter)