31 July 2011

Multi Blend Gluten Free Flour Mix and WAFFLE recipe

This is a repost of a Facebook note that I wrote on 20 June, 2011.


As some of you know, Todd is gluten intolerant, and so in order to make it better for him to eat, I'm having a go at gluten-free cooking and baking.  Today being father's day, I made him gluten free waffles with a flour mix I found on the 'net.

It's a VERY popular mix, on many sites, including http://glutenfree.wordpress.com (where i found it first - kate is one hella-talented writer and baker!), celiac.com and many others.  This mix is touted as a great "beginner's mix"... perfect for me!!!  (and so many others too!)  As gf bakers get more confident, they rely less and less on "cure-all" mixes like this, and get more adventurous, but I'm just learnin' so I'm gonna go with this for now.  So, I'll put down the recipe for the flour mix and notes about the flour(s), and then the waffle mix, along with some notes at the end about how gf works with this recipe.

Multi Blend GF Flour Mix

1 c brown rice flour
1 1/4 c white rice flour
1/4 c potato starch flour
2/3 c tapioca starch flour
3/4 c sweet rice flour
1/3 c cornstarch
3 tsp guar gum (or 2 tsp xanthan gum)

* I tripled this recipe, and it fits nicely in an ice cream bucket.
* you can use straight brown rice flour instead of the white and brown - it's healthier actually, and in some opinion (I agree) tastes better.  white rice flour is the one that gives items the chalky, gritty taste/texture, so you want to use the white sparingly.
* you can use any combination of brown and rice flour that suits you, as well as "superfine rice flour".  i haven't found superfine yet, so that might be just an American thing.
* you can use pure buckwheat, amaranth, or quinoa flours in place of the rice flours as well.
* this mix can be used for sweets, tortillas, waffles, pancakes, etc.
* if using it for the following, add extra xanthan or guar gum PER 1 CUP OF FLOUR MIX to your recipe:
           breads 1 tsp/cup
           cakes/quickbreads   1/2 tsp/cup
           cookies   1/4 tsp/cup
*use CUP FOR CUP when wanting to replace traditional wheat flour in your recipes.
*guar gum is the least expensive, but you can also use xanthan gum. (edited to add: I've read that you when using guar vs xanthan, you want to use 1.5 times the amount of guar.  Ie: 2 tsp xanthan = 3 tsp guar.)
*I found the tapioca (68 cents!) and sweet rice flours ($2.49!!!) at Superstore in the Asian section (I'm sure Save-on would most likely have them in WL folks), and white and brown rice flours in the bulk section at Save On Foods... the remaining ingredients I got at a local place called Organic Grocer.  All told, my ice cream bucket of flour cost about $12 (and that is just an estimate, I can't remember how much I paid for the rice flours last year).  Next shopping I'm going to check out T&T Supermarket (a biiiiig Asian grocery store here in the Lower Mainland), and I'm guessing I should be able to find other stuff there too.
*this mix will take LONGER TO ABSORB your liquid, so don't panic if it's SUPER watery at first, like I did this morning. :P  I ended up adding extra flour to my waffle batter, the first thing I made with it, which it still tasted GREAT, but made for very thick, hard to pour/dish out batter.  And coming from someone who makes waffles at least twice a month, I do *kinda* know what I'm talking about. LOL  I will be trying it out on some cookies for T's lunch tomorrow.

****A lot of those notes above are a combination of stuff I've learned in some basic researching on the net regarding gluten free baking.  Some GREAT sources that I've found are:

*OLD SCHOOL* Waffle Recipe

--> I'm calling it old school because it came from one of my mum's OLD cookbooks, and my mum doesn't even remember which book I got it from (but I remember what it looked like!), and SHE doesn't remember using a recipe with shortening in it, but I do... LOL  I remember making them *myself * over 10 years ago, and have no clue where the recipe is from.  I have compared it to other waffle recipes though, and the ingredients are pretty standard.

1 2/3 c flour
4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 egg yolks, beaten
1 2/3 c milk
6 tbsp shortening, melted
2 egg whites, beaten stiff

sift dry ingredients.  beat together yolks, milk and shortening (do NOT add yolks DIRECTLY to shortening or it will cook them); add to sifted ingredients.  beat until mostly smooth (there will be lumps of shortening though - just ensure your flour is all blended in); fold in egg whites.

*I usually double this recipe, and on my Belgian iron, I get 11 waffles with a doubled recipe.  I keep the leftovers in an airtight container, and we toast them (like Eggos) and eat throughout the week.  (and the boys LOVE just having a 1/4 of a waffle for a snack. ;) )
*the first time you try these gluten-free, give your mix time to absorb - don't panic like I did and add extra flour.  Mine still turned out great, but I think they'd have been fine had I just left the flour to do it's thing for longer.

27 July 2011

Gluten Free Adventures begin...

So the man is gluten intolerant.  Not celiac, we don't think, as he doesn't get violently ill, or rashy... just that his tummy doesn't gripe so much when he's off gluten.

And maybe me too?  Maybe why I'm always so damn tired (oh wait, 'cause it's 1am right now.. :P ), bloated, cranky, eczema-ey... etc.  I'm going to a naturopath next month to get tested... who knows, maybe our whole house will end up being gluten-free....

Anyway, we THOUGHT he had issues with yeast and just wheat, turns out it's pretty much just gluten.  (Not that yeast is a good thing in excess, but he had to give up his beloved Vegemite before, now... not so much.)

The last few months have been hairy - the decision to move south to the Greater Vancouver area, the move (whoa), unpacking (double-whoa), and adjusting to life with daddy away from the house for 11 hours a day (when previously, being self-employed, he was here 24/7 to help mummy when she was going batty). And maybe a bit of fb activism regarding HM4HB thrown in for good measure too (see previous post). ;)  OOH, AND, fitting time in there to learn/research about being gluten-free. 

I've been baking a bit, trying some new recipes, as well as adapting old ones.... and tonight I did the latter.  I adapted MY banana muffin recipe.  (yes, it's truly mine, I've been tweaking it now for about a decade.)  But... I made a boo-boo.  Part-way in to baking, I realised that I didn't have enough gluten free flour blend, so rather than wasting a schwackload of time mixing up another batch of blend, I improvised using the chana flour I'd bought today.  (Boo hoo! Yeah right, I was stoked to try out baking with the chana!)  The result was this yummy Banana Chocolate Chip Flax Seed Muffin that TASTES BETTER than its' wheat counterpart!  REALLY!  Sooooo excited. :) :) :)  Pic and recipe below....

Don't they look stinkin' scrumptious????

 Dinnae's Banana Chocolate Chip Flax Seed Muffin

3 bananas, mashed
2 eggs, beaten
1/4 c oil
1/2 c sugar

1 1/2 c + 2 tbsp gluten free flour blend (recipe below)
2 tbsp sweet rice flour
1/4 c chana flour (aka chickpea or garbanzo flour - chana is the Indian name for it)
2 tbsp flax meal
2 tbsp flax seeds
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt

1 c chocolate chips

  • Preheat your oven to 350F. Spray muffin tins with cooking spray or line with muffin liners.
  • Mash your bananas; add beaten eggs, sugar and oil - whisk together well.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk together your dry ingredients except the chips.
  • Combine the wet and dry ingredients, mix well (get out all the dry lumps) but do not overmix.
  • Fold in chips.
  • Fill muffin cups 2/3 full, and bake until golden.

I used muffin TOP pans, so I baked mine for 7 min, rotated them (my oven is old-school and not even), and then baked another 4-5 min.  Full size muffins would probably be about 18 - 20 min, give or take.

This can also be baked in a loaf, but I'd probably drop the temp down to 325F and then bake for 45-60 min.


I found the following recipe at a couple of different sources, but most notably www.celiac.com and GlutenFree Gobsmacked

Gluten-Free Flour Blend

  • 2 1/4 c brown rice flour
  • 1/4 c potato starch
  • 2/3 c tapioca flour
  • 3/4 c sweet rice flour
  • 1/3 c cornstarch
  • 1 tbsp guar gum

Kate (GF Gobsmacked) uses superfine rice flour, which I haven't been able to find here in Canada, and I also adjusted it for guar instead of xanthan gum.  Xanthan is more expensive (like crazy so), and guar gum needs a bit more.  On the Bob's Red Mill site, it said that subbing guar for xanthan is ok, but generally one should multiply it by 1.5 to get the same consistency.

Alrighty then, so there it is, my first GF recipe posted to my blog.  I've posted a few to facebook (which I think will make their merry little way over here), but this is the first one I've done on here.  Yay!  Here's to more baking, and more posting yummy recipes and pics!