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Gluten free bread help

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Has anyone had success making gluten free bread in a breadmaker?

I'm having trouble getting it to rise and it being of the right consistency. I know GF bread won't rise as much as white bread, but I'm ending up with housebricks.

Also, it doesn't seem to form a proper dough ball at the mixing/kneading stage, even if I add a bit of extra flour.

I'm following the recipe in my specific breadmaker's instructions which is as follows:
350g warm water
1.5 tbsp  olive oil
0.5 tsp salt
1 tbsp sugar
400g wholemeal GF/wheat free flour
1 tsp yeast

Things to note: I'm putting the ingredients in in the right order and also using the GF programme on the breadmaker. But still, no luck.

Does anyone have any ideas for tweaks I could make to the recipe to get it a bit better? Would using white GF flour  instead of wholemeal help? My normal bog standard white loaf came out fantastic.

try making a sponge with the yeast, about a quarter of the flour and, some of the water, and a little extra sugar to give the yeast something to eat right away.  Remember that wholemeal flour still has the bran covering on it and so the yeast may take a little more time to eat it up.

If you start with a sponge, you are basically starting with more yeast ready to nom on the flour and give you a lot more rising power.  Another thing you can try is to replace some of the water with a whole egg or egg whites.  Gluten is a protein, so adding some protein back into the recipe may help give the structure of the bread a bit of a lift.

I normally use a breadmaker  for making bread (only to make dough -- I always bake in the oven), but gluten-free bread is a law unto itself. I have made gluten-free bread a couple of times, for a friend, and it is essential to use a specific recipe for gluten-free bread (the one I have includes strange things like milk and vinegar), since it does not behave as ordinary flour with yeast, which are basically reliant on gluten. I didn't use the breadmaker, since it doesn't involve any kneading, and the timings are all different. My result did not look or smell like regular bread, but my friend was absolutely thrilled with it.

PastryGoddess: I'm really new to this, so I'm afraid I have no idea what any of that means about making a sponge... All I can do at this stage is plonk the ingredients into the pan and press a button :)

How much of the water should I replace with an egg? The dough seems to be very wet as it is. It won't make a dough ball at all, even though I'm following the recipe exactly (the white bread made a perfect dough ball with the addition of a sprinkle of extra flour, so I know it's not the machine).

The other thing is that it tastes really, really bitter. It's got a horrid aftertaste. Maybe my GF flour is a bit old, it's been in the cupboard for a while.

veryfluffy: the recipe I'm using is the specific GF bread recipe in the breadmaker's instruction leaflet. I was surprised that it didn't have any vinegar in it, because all the recipes on the GF flour packets I've seen do. But I was a bit afraid to deviate from it.

For a really good laugh, here's how the latest batch turned out:

You can all laugh now  ;D

Things wrong with it:

1. It hasn't risen at *all*.
2. There's a big hole in the middle of it where the paddle mixed it- the hole goes from top to bottom, it's like a donut
3. It's got peaks all over the top of it
4. It's really, really heavy. Seriously, it's like a housebrick
4. It's got a bitter taste to it.

Does that give any pointers as to what's wrong with the recipe?

The recipe you used is essentially the ordinary bread recipe, but using gluten-free flour...I have a feeling the breadmaker people were being clueless.

Here's a breadmaker recipe on the website of the brand of gluten-free flour that I use:

vinegar, lots of oil, eggs...etc. There is also a recipe for wholemeal.


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