After my first trip to the store when SuperDad committed to a gluten free diet I quickly realized that among other things, I would need to learn how to bake gluten free bread. Gluten free sandwich bread, to be more precise. While some of the brands available now are pretty good….they are very expensive.
After several failed attempts (did you know that failed bread attempts can be revived as bread crumbs?) I found this recipe and it is the one we have stuck with. Not only is it simple (it uses only brown rice flour instead of a combination of small portions of sixty different types of unique flours and meals), but it is quick and most importantly, SuperDad likes it! I’m still messing with the rising time (I think I’m leaving it too long and the top of my loaf keeps falling), but the recipe is so simple that I don’t feel like I’m investing a ton of time.
Ingredients for Gluten Free Sandwich Bread
- Warm Water
- Active Dry Yeast
- Vegetable Oil
- Large Eggs (or Ener-G Egg Replacer)
You can get the full recipe and step by step instructions on how to make gluten free sandwich bread at Serious Eats, but I thought I’d share a few tips that you might find helpful:
- I make this recipe in our KitchenAid stand mixer and it mixes up in about 10 minutes, but it does take a couple of hours to get a finished product. The dough needs to rise for an hour followed by one hour of bake time.
- Make sure that the warm water used to proof your yeast is between 112º – 115° F when you add the yeast. Use a thermometer to obtain an accurate temperature. The reason for this is that if your water is too cool, the yeast will not grow and if your water is too hot, the yeast will burn or “die”. Either way the end result is that your bread will not rise. Not sure if your thermometer is accurate? Read this article on how to calibrate your thermometer.
- If you are new to gluten free baking you should know that the dough has a very different consistency than “traditional” bread dough. This dough will be more of a paste, or like a very thick cake batter. There will be no kneading and you will use a spatula to scrape the dough into the bread pan. I tell you this so that you don’t continue to add flour in hopes that the dough will “ball up”. It won’t.
- If your recipe calls for you to loosely cover your dough with plastic wrap while it rises, and to leave that plastic on until the end of the rising period and the oven is at full baking temperature…..like this one does….and you use your oven to proof your dough …. like I do…. you will want to be sure to remove the loaf of bread from the oven during the pre-heating phase. I’ve heard that if you leave it in the oven as it warms up, the plastic will melt, giving your bread a shiny, shellacked surface.
Of course, I would never let that happen in my kitchen.
- The instructions call for you to take an internal temperature of your loaf at the end of its bake time to ensure that it is done. This is an important step, eyeballing it could lead to a very moist dough ball masquerading as a loaf of bread.
- This bread will go south very quickly. Storing it in the refrigerator will leave your bread cake-y. This gluten free sandwich bread does freeze well however. You will need to slice it and then freeze the individual slices. Tip: Flash freeze the individual slices by laying them on a cooling rack and setting it in your deep freeze for roughly an hour and then place the pieces into a freezer bag or other storage container.
Gluten free sandwich bread makes an excellent addition to SuperDad’s gluten free diet. He uses it for sandwiches and toast and we have successfully substituted it in various recipes that call for traditional or french breads.
Eliminating gluten from your diet doesn’t have to be as difficult as it often sounds, half of the battle is just finding the right recipes.