You would never know this is gluten-free. One of the most popular breads to come out of the organic kitchen I was in charge of.
1 cup (250 mL) tapioca starch
1 cup (250 mL) brown rice flour
3/4 cup (175 ml) potato starch
3 Tbsp. (45 ml) ground flaxseeds
2 tsp (10 ml) quick rising dry yeast, (instant)
2 tsp (10 ml) xanthan gum
3/4 tsp (4 ml) salt
1-1/3 cups (325 ml) milk, warmed
1 Tbsp. (15 ml) liquid honey
2 tsp (10 ml) light-tasting olive oil
1 tsp (5 ml) cider vinegar
In large bowl, whisk together tapioca starch, brown rice flour, potato starch, flaxseeds, yeast, xanthan gum and salt.
Whisk together milk, eggs, honey, oil and vinegar. Pour over tapioca starch mixture; stir until well combined. Scrape into parchment paper–lined 8- x 4-inch (1.5 L) loaf pan; smooth top. Cover loosely with plastic wrap or clean dish towel; let stand in warm draft-free place until loaf rises just above rim of pan, about 20 minutes.
Bake in 350ºF (180ºC) oven until light golden and cake tester inserted in centre comes out clean, about 1 hour. Transfer to rack; serve warm or let cool.
WHAT I HAVE LEARNED
Whenever given a recipe, I like playing with the ingredients and the process to ensure a great end result.
I found the bread rose better in the warm oven. I turn it on to 200 F while I make the bread and then turn the oven off when I am placing the bread in the pan...if it doesn't rise above the rim of the pan...don't panic as it seems temperature of kitchen while mixing affects as well.
Cutting the bread in to slices and freezing the portions to use when you want is a great way to preserve a bread that does not contain preservatives for long shelf life.
Requested Substitutes for Xanthan Gum
Chia seeds are an excellent binding agent and can absorb up to 12 times their own weight in water. They form a gel-like substance which improves the consistency of dough and locks in moisture when baking breads, pastries and cakes.
They can be ground, although this is not necessary for the binding effect to take place. Chia seeds are also extremely high in fiber and can have a laxative effect. They are popular replacements for xanthan gum because while they have a nutty flavor, it’s mild and tends not to interfere with the flavor of the baked goods they are added to.
Substituting xanthan for these is simple as you use a 1:1 ratio. Just use the same amount of chia (in weight) as you would xanthan and you’re all set!
Psyllium husk or psyllium fibre is a relatively new binding agent which is typically used as a xanthan substitute in breads. It has been scientifically proven to improve the structure of gluten-free dough and improve the texture, volume and rising of gluten free baked bread.
It is typically found as a dietary fibre supplement in most health stores and is used by athletes to lower cholesterol. A 5% psyllium fibre flour mix is best for baking breads (1 part psyllium to 19 parts of flour).
Also known as Glucomannan powder, Konjac powder is ground up konjac root which has been used in Asia as a dietary fiber for several hundreds of years. Like Psyllium fiber, it is used as a supplementary source of fiber as well as a thickener.
Its high fiber content lends it numerous health benefits which include the reduction of blood cholesterol and a lower bowel cancer risk. It also helps control blood sugar levels but its binding properties are most relevant for our purposes.
When used in baking, you can use the same amount of Konjac powder as you would xanthan gum (1/2 teaspoon per cup of flour for cakes and breads). For other baked goods like flatbreads or tortillas, you can increase the amount of Konjac you use to ¾ teaspoon per cup of four to get the desired consistency.
Flax seeds are extremely popular in baking and also as a health supplement (flax seed oil). They are a great binding agent and are easily found (because of their popularity). On top of all this, they are cheap to buy!
In their natural form, flax seeds are not very useful as a binding agent. They have to be ground first and then mixed with hot water. The water has to be boiled first and then mixed with the flax to form a gel like paste known as ‘slurry’ which is then added to gluten free flour for baking breads and cakes.
For substitution, use the same weight of ground flax as you would xanthan gum. Then mix it in twice the amount of water (2 tbsp of ground flax mixed with 4 tbsp of hot boiling water).