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Gluten-free soda bread

This batch makes 2 loaves of THE most wonderful moist bread (gluten-free bread is usually dry and unpalatable) but this is really good.
The addition of chia seeds (see below) and oil help to make the bread much more moist, less crumbly and palatable. They do have a taste of their own so discretion is needed, one can have too much of a good thing...
When making Homemade Soya milk the by-product, all that fibre, is called  Okara. It can be added raw to the bread mix to increase the nutritional content. I prefer it to soya flour which has a very distinctive, unsoda bread like taste.

Preheat oven to 220 C.
900gms gluten free flour (Okara can be used as part of the flour quotient - my preferred flour mix is listed below)
200ml oil (sunflower, olive or even for a bit of luxury sundried tomatoes and oil)
2 tsp bread soda
2 tsp Cream of Tartar
1 tbsp sugar or other sweetener like treacle which makes it look more like brown soda bread and helps to hold it together too; I have tried Mesquite and liek that too)
1tsp salt or gomasio
12 gms milled chia seeds (Source in the Dublin Food Co-op on one of the stalls whole seeds €12 kg, Down to Earth milled seeds €110 kg) needs to be soaked in the buttermilkfor at least 15 minutes to become a 'gloup'
¾ lt buttermilk or soured soya milk (more or less depending on the flour – some super dried flours soaks up more liquid than others)

Well in advance even of turning on the oven, add 12 gms milled chia seeds to some of the butter milk or soured soya milk. Sometimes some of my milk / soya milk becomes sour in the fridge and I can use that - or I add a little lemon juice to the soya milk, and shake up the bottle to make it sour. Let the chia seeds soak for an hour or so in the butter milk and become a mass of gloop.
Mix together and pour half into each of the loaf tins; bake at 200 C for about 50 minutes until a skewer comes out clean. (I invested in an oven thermometer recently, it was a revelation... worth the money. My sister suggested that some of my baking problems might be due to inaccuracy in temperature. The grim reality is that my oven is accurate up to 190C and then is erratic, 245C has been reached when set for 220C)

What is gluten free flour?
I generally have a variety of types of flour in the press, and weigh these out in varying mixtures to see what I prefer / have in stock. My current favourite is; -
Gluten-free flour mix - for 900 gms
200 gms Brown Rice flour
200 gms Corn flour or very finely milled maize flour
100 gms Gram flour
100 gms Buckwheat flour
100 gms home milled linseed
100 gms home milled sunflour seed
100 gms raga flour

It looks quite like brown bread and since I can tolerate oat fakes  ok, I have added in Oat flakes too which made it seem even more brown-bread-like. Treacle just adds that bit more of the delusion.
White rice flour and white corn flour make a very bland loaf - I prefer brown rice flour and very finely milled yellow maize flour.

Flours that are Gluten-free;
Rice, Maize, buckwheat, Quinoa, Amaranth, soya, gram, potato, sorghum, millet and ragi
It is amazing what you can find to experiment with in Asian stores. (But not all gram flours are gluten free, I'll look for a link I found and add it in.) Some genuine Cous-cous is made from Sorghum but usually what you find here in made from Durum Wheat.
I don't like Quinoa or potato, nor soya though okara is grand but can be very scouring on the bowel

Mesquite - I tried this powder in a batch instead of sugar - smells liuke chocolate when it is cooking and seems ok but I think I prefer treacle as it makes my mind believe it is eating real soda bread.

I have experimented with ragi and sorghum ad use them regularly now.
I have also been trying out sago and tapioca in stews for thickening as they are gluten free also

Upated 7th May 2010


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