According to National Day Calendar, December 13th thru the 19th, it’s “Gluten Free (GF) Baking Week.
Gluten is a complex protein found in wheat, rye and barley and for some people that spells trouble.
Why Gluten Free Baking?
GF baking is one that excludes any type of flour that has gluten, which is a particular protein composite found in wheat, rye, barley and triticale.
Without becoming too technical or medical, wheat, rye and barley wreaks havoc on some, if not many individuals their digestive tract.
Gluten free baking doesn’t mean you have to give up your favorite traditional desserts. It just means modifying your desserts by using gluten free flour choices.
Gluten Free Flour Options For Baking
Creative minds have discovered ways to bake with GF flours, and such flours can be found at your local market. Let’s examine in short what some of your choices are.
Including garbanzo bean flour and romano bean flour, these flours are typically high in protein and have a distinct flavor. They are better suited for heartier recipes, such as breads.
Brown Rice Flour
This is a supplementary flour, and works great when blended with teff, buckwheat or sorghum flours. It is great for baking those sweet desserts.
This is a light in color and a drier flour than most other gluten free flours. It is best when mixed with heartier flours, like Teff, Hemp, or almond flours.
Yes, it has wheat in the title, but this flour is related not to wheat but to the rhubarb plant. It has a distinct taste, which makes it best when combined with other, more bland flours.
This flour alternative for use in muffins, cakes and pancakes. In order to work well with the dough, adding a starch would help, like arrowroot, tapioca, or a nongmo cornstarch.
Made from sorghum, which is a relative of sugarcane. It’s tender and adds a mild sweetness, but is rarely used alone.
This flour lends a pleasant flavor to baked goods. Since coconut flour absorbs moisture more than other flours, it is suggested for recipes that have at least as much liquid as flour required in a recipe.
Because this can be a tricky art, it’s suggested that as a beginner, you use recipes specifically designed for coconut flour.
This is a great choice for baking. Using almond flour to a dessert recipe will add moistness, binding, a light almond flavor, and a good amount of density to cupcakes, muffins, brownies, cookies, breads, and cake recipes.
Keep in mind that any nut flour cannot be substituted in equal quantities for flour, because nut flours are more dense and very high in protein. They can be used to replace a portion of other GF flours, such as Oat Flour, being used in the recipe.
Buying Commercial Gluten Free Flour Choices
Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free All Purpose Baking Flour
Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free is a fine blend using as its base garbanzo beans, potato starch, and tapioca, to name a few of the ingredients. See Bob speaking here about his flour choices, along with nutritional information, reviews, and GF recipes.
King Arthur Gluten Free Multi-Purpose Flour
King Arthur Flour is a blend of white rice and whole grain brown rice flours, along with tapioca and potato starch. What’s great about this product is that ‘it’s multi-purpose’ and can therefore be used for both baking and cooking, cup-for-cup, the same as any gluten flour product.
Tips For Beginners Of Gluten-Free Baking
Experiment, experiment and experiment. There is a learning curve when you first start with Gluten free baking, but once you get some practice and experience you will become an expert about what works and what dosen’t.
Stay with it and don’t get discouraged. There will be failed recipes because you have to learn which flour combinations work best, but it just takes practice and testing.
It’s best to get guidance from recipe books or online guides when first trying your hand at gluten free baking.
Begin with simple baking recipes and learn the basics.
Try some of our gluten free dessert recipes by clicking on the images above that are accompanying this article, or by clicking the links below.
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