Friday, August 19, 2011

Gluten Free Artisan Bread

I really must apologize for not blogging recently.  We were out of town for three weeks, the last week with only sporadic internet availability.  Then, since getting back home, things have been a bit crazy and it's taken awhile to get back into the swing of things.

I haven't done much baking or experimenting so I haven't had much to blog about.

However, yesterday, I tried a gluten free artisan bread, and it is delicious!  Artisan bread is probably the one thing I miss most about being gluten free.  Pizza, cakes, cookies.. all those things I can do without or be quite happy with making my own gluten-free versions.  But, artisan bread is different. 

A good, good bread has always been my downfall.

Prior to going gluten-free, I was a  HUGE fan of the no-knead bread recipe found on the New York Times website.  You simply mix some flour, salt, water and yeast...let it sit around for awhile, shape it, let it sit some more, bake it.  Then, like magic you've got this delicious, crusty, mouth-watering bread that rivals anything found in a high-class bakery or restaurant! 

I was afraid that the gluten-free version wouldn't live up to the bread I remembered.  So, it took me awhile to work up to the nerve to try it.  I will admit I was a bit intimidated about trying a gluten-free version.  I'm SO glad I did.   It IS delicious! A nice crisp, crust and soft on the inside.    It's not as "addictive" as the gluten-containing version it, but it is still so, so, so good.

This recipe is from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day.  I modified it slightly to reflect my experience with this recipe and the way I baked it (the original recipe calls for baking in a Dutch oven, which I don't have).

Gluten Free Artisan Bread
make 3-4 loaves

2 cups brown rice flour
1 1/2 cups sorghum flour
3 cups tapioca flour
2 tablespoons yeast
2 tablespoons xanthum gum
1 tablespoon salt
2 2/3 cups warm water
4 eggs
1/3 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons sugar

Combine flours, yeast, salt, xanthum gum and sugar in a bowl.  In a separate bowl, combine water and oil. 

Add the eggs, one at a time into the flour mixture, and mix thoroughly.  Add 1/3 of the water/oil mix and stir. Add another third of water/oil and mix well.  Add the remaining oil/water and mix well.  The dough will be very wet and shaggy. 

Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let sit for 2 hours. 

Store the covered dough in the refrigerator until ready to use.  On baking day, remove 1/4- 1/3 (I used 1/3 since I like a larger loaf) of the dough. Using wet hands, gently shape the dough into a loaf with a smooth top.  Allow to rise for about 1 1/2 hours and during this time preheat the oven and a glass casserole dish and lid to 500 degrees.   After the dough has risen for about 90 minutes,  gently place it in the glass casserole dish, cover with the lid and bake for 20 minutes.  After 20 minutes, remove the lid, turn the oven temperature down to 450 degrees and bake for another 15 minutes.   After baking, allow the bread to cool completely before eating or serving.  The original recipe called for slashing the top of the bread before baking.  I'm lazy, so I skipped that step, and it still came out fine! 

Enjoy your gluten free artisan bread!  Try not to eat it all in one sitting!

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