Why make Gluten Free Bread? What is gluten? Gluten is a protein complex found in wheat and some other cereal grain flours (of the grass family) such as rye and barley. Hybrids of these grains; faro, grano, kamut, spelt and triticale also contain gluten. Flours made from these grains cannot be used to make gluten-free bread. Gluten is tough and elastic in property and enables yeast-containing dough or batter to stretch and expand as the yeasts grow and create gas. The resulting expanded framework is then baked (set) to yield pleasingly light, soft and airy-textured bread. In short, gluten is quite an asset when it comes to leavening bread.
For some people, however, gluten can be difficult or even impossible to digest. Therefore, they must minimize or prohibit their consumption of gluten. This is easier said than done because gluten-containing foods are commonly included throughout our western-world culture and cuisine. None the less, alternative flours made from gluten-free grains or flours made from pseudo-cereals (vegetable or root starch, ground seeds, sprouted seeds, or ground dried legumes) can be used in combination with other alternative ingredients to make gluten-free bread.
Gluten-free grains include; amaranth, buckwheat, corn, millet, montina, oats, quinoa, rice, sorghum, teft and wild rice. Flours made from these grains are acceptable for making gluten-free breads.
Yeast breads and batters that are made with gluten-free flours will not rise unless other forms of non-gluten leavening additives (such as eggs, baking powder, baking soda, guar gum, xanthan gum, etc.) are used. However, creating breads with good volume and soft texture using gluten-free flours and gluten-free leavening additives can be tricky because they just don’t do the job quite as effectively and reliably as gluten can. Many variables can affect the outcome of each and every batch of bread, such as atmospheric pressure, humidity, and freshness of ingredients. Therefore, a tested bread recipe (gluten or gluten-free) will not always guarantee consistent results. The best recipe for bread-making success is to practice and gain experience in working with your selected recipes. This way, you learn the subtle differences in the touch and texture of your dough as you handle them, and you learn how to slightly adjust their ingredients accordingly and with confidence.
In other words, strive to become an expert of your chosen bread. To get you started, here are some Gluten Free Bread recipes for you to enjoy and master:
- Gluten Free Cracked Wheat Bread
- Healthy Swaps Chocolate Zucchini Bread
- World’s Easiest Gluten Free Crescent Rolls
- Healthy Swaps Gluten Free Chocolate Zucchini Bread
- Apple Butter Cranberry Muffins
- Gluten Free Buckwheat Pancakes
- Gluten Free Purple Plum Coffee Cake
Chef Kelly Yorke