The first week I started eating gluten free I tried at least 10 different gluten free bread mixes. Some would seem promising during the preparation, a nice dough and balanced yeasty flavor. Others failed even before the baking process began. Unfortunately everything I tried gave me a less than desirable final product. Heavy, bricks of gluten free “bread.” (using the term bread very loosely)
I decided to give up on mixes and started trying different recipes from scratch. I finally found a delicious Almond Bread recipe that Mireille from Delphi forums had recommended. I have included that recipe here, but I also have recently discovered a french bread mix that lived up to all of my expectations.
I made Mona’s French Bread mix during my last trip home. I don’t think I have ever enjoyed the beautiful taste of butter melting on a piece of crusty warm bread so thoroughly. My Mom, the bread expert proclaimed “Wow, Cat this is really good, I would have NO idea it was gluten free!”
So don’t give up hope on gluten free bread if you’ve had a few unsuccessful attempts – you have options – it sometimes just takes a little experimentation to get there.
Gluten Free Almond Bread (From Mireille at the Delphi Forums)
1 cup Asian rice flour
1 cup tapioca flour
1 cup almond flour
2 3/4 teaspoons xanthan gum
2 3/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
2 teaspoons of sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons gelatin (replace with agar-agar if you can’t use gelatin)
1/2 teaspoon egg replacer (can be found at most health food stores – I use Ener-G Foods)
1/2 cup good quality grated Parmesan cheese
3 extra large eggs room temperature
2 Tablespoons honey
3 Tablespoons oil
1 teaspoon gf cider or reg. vinegar
1/2 teaspoon gf almond extract
1 1/4 cup warm water
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit
To proof the yeast and make sure it's active, add the yeast to 1/4 cup warm water (between 110 and 115 degrees F) and stir to dissolve. (Make sure that the water is just barely warm. If it feels uncomfortably hot, it will probably kill the yeast.) Add the two teaspoons of sugar and let the yeast sit for five to ten minutes. When the yeast is foamy and smells like bread, it's ready to use.
Mix the dry ingredients in a large bowl or stand mixer. Add the eggs, honey, oil, vinegar, almond extract and mix on medium speed for 2 minutes. Add ½ cup of the water and the yeast mixture and beat for 1 minute. Continue to add water and mix until the dough is slightly thicker than a cake batter. Pour the mixture into a greased bread pan and let it rise, covered in a warm place. Don’t be tempted to let it “over-rise” – just let it rise ½ inch.
Place the pan in the preheated oven and bake at 375 for about 45 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cover with foil after 20 minutes to keep the top from burning.
Serve warm with butter or preserves. Enjoy!