Wheat Flour Alternatives for Gluten Free Desserts and More

Wheat flour alternatives
Wheat flour alternatives

Wheat flour alternatives

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’ve been experimenting with wheat flour alternatives lately and after doing some research I’d like to share a few non-wheat flours for beginners.   If you have been eating gluten for a while, you probably know there are many more alternative flours than I list here, but I wanted to put something together for people who want a few flour alternatives to begin experimenting with.

This non-exhaustive would also be great to share with someone who has a friend who can’t eat wheat and you want to make something special for them.

 If you missed my gluten free rice flour waffles post, you’ll want to check that out.   It’s a good place to start for those of you who don’t have a lot of experience with gluten free flours.   The recipe is so good, you may put it into your regular rotation even if you don’t have a real reason to eat gluten free.

Alternative flours and starches are different from wheat flour, and from each other, in their characteristics and in the way you use them.  You want to become familiar with the different characteristics and choose the flour or starch that has the best qualities for whatever recipe you are making.

To be on the safe side, always start with a recipe from a trusted source and follow it exactly before you start experimenting on your own.

Wheat Flour Alternatives

• Soy flour is generally milled from whole soybeans into one of three types of flour— full-fat, low fat
, or defatted. Full-fat soybean flour is the type usually available in stores for use in home baking. Soy flour is light yellow in color and has a strong nutty flavor. Because of its strong flavor, soy flour is best mixed with other nonwheat flours. Recipes that have nuts, spices, or chocolate help cover up  the strong soy flavor.

• Rice flour is milled from broken kernels of white or brown rice. It has a bland flavor with a slightly grainy texture. Since rice flour doesn’t really have a flavor of its own, it can be used in a variety of baked products, like these waffles.

• Corn flour is milled from white or yellow corn by the same process as cornmeal, but it is ground much finer. You can get corn at the health food store or order it online.

• Rye flour has a dark color, distinctive flavor, and a slight amount of gluten. Be sure to buy only 100 percent rye flour and not a rye-wheat combination flour. Most commercially baked rye breads contain wheat flour. Learn to bake your own bread at home so you can know exactly what goes into it.

• Oat flour has a mild flavor. You can buy it ready to use, or you can make your own by grinding dry-rolled oats in a blender or food processor. One and one-half cups of regular or quick- cooking rolled oats makes 1 cup of oat flour.

• Cornstarch is a fine, white starch made from corn.  Cornstarch is used to thicken gravies, sauces, and desserts. Depending on the recipe, you may have to mix the cornstarch with a little water before adding it to a sauce to make sure it doesn’t clump up.

• Arrowroot starch is a snow-white starch made from arrowroot, a root of a West Indian plant. Arrowroot starch thickens at a lower temperature than wheat flour or cornstarch, so it’s great for making temperature sensitive sauces, egg sauces or other sauces that should not be boiled.  Since arrowroot has no color or flavor, it’s a good choice for thickening clear glazes and fruit sauces. If you use arrowroot in a recipe that calls for cornstarch, you’ll need a little less arrowroot than cornstarch.

• Potato starch is a bland, white starch made from raw potatoes. It may be used in sauces or baked products. Potato starch works best in baked products that have eggs.  The eggs will provide  structure that you won’t get from potato starch alone.

• Quick-cooking tapioca is a granular product derived from the roots of the cassava plant. It can be used to thicken puddings.

If you have tried baking with alternative flours before or want to see more gluten free recipes on the site, let me know.

Gluten free rice flour waffles

Gluten free rice flour waffles
Gluten free rice flour waffles

Gluten free rice flour waffles

I’ve been wanting to try a recipe for gluten free rice flour waffles for a long time.  This morning, I finally did it!  The waffle was amazing.  Light and crispy.  Airy with an almost custard like interior, these gluten free waffles are giving my traditional waffle recipe a run for the money.

I have no medical reason to eat gluten free, but I did want to experiment a little with different flours to see how the tastes and textures would turn out.  These gluten free rice flour waffles will be a winner for families where only one person is G-free.

The waffles are so good, you don’t even have to worry about making multiple items for breakfast so everybody is happy.  Another good thing about these waffles in that you don’t need any xanthan gum, which is an ingredient called for in lots of g-free bread recipes.

Ingredients for Gluten free rice flour waffles

1 1/2 cups Rice flour

1 Tablespoon Baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 cups milk

2 egg yolks, beaten

3 Tablespoons buttter, melted

2 egg whites, beaten to stiff peaks

Directions for Gluten free rice flour waffles

Whisk together the rice flour, baking powder and salt in a medium sized bowl.  Add the milk, egg yolks and butter and mix until combined.  One everything is incorporated, fold in your egg whites.  This will make the batter nice and light and fluffy.  Be careful not to deflate the batter.

Bake on your waffle iron according to the manufacturers directions.  My waffles took about 3 minutes to bake.

This recipe should make enough for 6 waffles if you have a standard waffle iron like this one.  I have a  deep belgian waffle iron so I only got 3 Waffles.

 

How To Make Muffins

Don’t know how to make muffins? You gonna learn today!

One of the fastest breads to make at home are muffins.  Even though muffins are quick to make., they aren’t necessarily foolproof.  In the video below, I outline the steps to muffin making and they apply to just about every type of muffin you can think of.  I often say cooking is not about recipes, it’s about technique.  So no matter what ingredients you have on hand, with a bit of tweaking, you should be able to mix them into a basic muffin recipe.

This video footage was shot during a test run of a new muffin recipe.  The muffins didn’t turn out right.  They were gluey and pasty and I couldn’t even eat them.  I think the flour to liquid ration in the original recipe was off.  Not wanting to waste the footage, I put this video together , because the steps are still the same.

The biggest mistake people make when they learn how to make muffins is that they over mix the muffin batter.  When dealing with breads that are supposed to be soft and tender, gluten is not your friend.  When you over mix,  the gluten becomes firm and rubbery and the final baked product is tough.

If you like free stuff and you like muffins, grab this free cookbook I put together for you.  You can download it 24/7/365.

You can grab your free recipe book here.

How to Make White Balsamic & Feta Vinaigrette

White balsamic and feta vinaigrette dressing

White balsamic and feta vinaigrette dressing

This feta vinaigrette is better than off the shelf grocery store dressing.  It may be hard for you to go back to store bought dressing after trying this one. Great for people who like vinaigrette dressings  with a  flavor that’s a bit milder than traditional balsamic vinegar.

There is one ingredient that’s in this dressing that you may have never used before.  Liquid lecithin.  I like to keep things as simple as possible and I try to keep the recipes with easy to find ingredients.  So why lecithin?

Oil and vinegar don’t mix.  In order for our vinaigrette to stay together and not separate into an oily layer and a vinegary layer we need something called an emulsifier to keep it together.  That’s where the lecithin comes in.

You can use Dijon mustard as an emulsifier for your dressing, but I chose the lecithin for this recipe because its flavorless and won’t interfere with the delicate flavor of the white balsamic vinegar.

Bottom line is, use lecithin if you can get it, if not, use Dijon mustard.

Ingredients for feta vinaigrette:

3/4 cup Olive oil

1/4 cup White balsamic vinegar

1 Tablespoon Honey

1/4 teaspoon Black pepper

1/2 teaspoon Dried oregano

2 teaspoons liquid Lecithin

Directions for making feta vinaigrette

Pour all ingredients into a mason jar and shake vigorously until well blended.  Serve on top of your favorite salad.The feta cheese will settle to the bottom during storage so be sure to shake it up a bit before using.

Dressing will keep for at least a week if it lasts that long.

No Knead Burger Buns Recipe

No Knead Burger Buns

 

No Knead Burger Buns

No Knead Burger Buns

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you want to make your own burger buns, start with this no-knead fuss-free yeast bread recipe.  You may never buy hamburger buns again.  Be warned!  It’s hard to go back to store-bought buns after you’ve had them fresh from the oven.

Making bread from scratch may seem like a daunting task, but the hands on time is very minimal since I’ve eliminated the kneading step that many bread recipes call for.

Ingredients for no knead burger buns:

1 cup milk, heated to 110° F

¼ cup shortening

¼cup sugar

2 teaspoons salt

1 Tablespoon yeast

2 eggs

3½ cups all-purpose flour

Directions for no-knead burger buns:

Combine milk, shortening, sugar, salt in a medium sized bowl. Stir to combine.  Cool to lukewarm.

Add the yeast by sprinkling over the top of the milk mixture. Wait about 5 minutes or until your yeast start to get very foamy.  It will look like a freshly poured glass of root beer.

Blend in eggs with the yeast mixture and stir until well combined.

Add gradually  flour and mix until dough is well-blended and soft.  You may need to use your hands to blend in the last little bit of flour and make sure it all gets incorporated.  The dough will be very soft.  Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator for at least two hours or until you are ready to work with it.  Chilling the dough will make it easier to handle.

Divide the dough into 8 equal portions and shape  into 8 burger buns.  Let rise in warm place (80° to 85° F.) until double in bulk, about 1½ hours. This may take more time or less depending on the temp of your kitchen.

Bake at 375° F.  for 15 minutes or until buns are a deep brown color.  Brush tops with softened butter if you want the buns to be soft.  If you want crispier buns, then just don’t brush them with butter.

Makes 8 burger buns