Friday, November 5, 2010

HOW TO BE GLUTEN FREE-#1

FIRST OF ALL,I WANT TO REASSURE ALL OF YOU NEWBIES AND VETRANS, THAT THIS CAN BE A GREAT NEW ADVENTURE.  I hope to lead you in the right direction and make this an easy transition.  Instead of thinking about what you can NOT have, think and make or copy lists of what you CAN have.  When you have multiple allergies, this is a good think to focus on.  There are lots of ways to subsitute foods you can't have.  I will address this later in the article(maybe #2).
     My story is that I found out the hard way that I am at least highly gluten intolerance.  I tried for over a year to go back and forth between no gluten and eating glutenous foods.  I finally decided one weekend when I was in so much pain that it just wasn't worth it.  I have been an adventurous cook for 35 years-cooking for a sororiety in Montana and then for a missionary organization. I also started  seriously baking bread in 1975(rats I just dated myself) Living in wheat country aka. Montana-I had friends that had grinders and I had a great bread cookbook to guide me.  Cooking gluten free has been my biggest adventure.  I am not fond of eating cardboard, OH i mean bread ,for the sake of saying I can eat gf bread.  I am always on a quest for great  gluten free bread.
On this blog you will find at various times different bread recipes.  I have also over the past few years developed a great all purpose flour that translates to most of your recipes that use flour.  My flour is also more high protein than most other glutenfree flours out there.  Mine is also light and not grainy.
If you have a recipe that you would like "translated" to gluten free,  comment and I will work on your recipe.
I also on the blog will at times share my favorite products out there on the market.  There are so many bad gf foods out there.  But there are some great ones and I will share that.
http://www.celiac.com/   has lots of info about what is celiac and intolerance.  **They are both treated the same.  This site also has lots of lists-what is gluten free and what is not.
1000 gluten free recipes is one of my favorite cookbooks that I get lots of inspiration from.


GRAINS AND FLOURS- You need to stick to flours and grains that are labeled "certified gluten free".  The reason is that many times gluten free grains are processed in a mill that also processes wheat and other glutenous grains and then there is a cross contamination.
The other main thing that you must understand is that rarely do you use just one flour.  To mimic a wheat flour, you must use a number of flours.  Gluten free flours do not have the stretch that glutenous flours do.  In simple terms gluten acts a glue, without it you will end up with a crumbly mess that will not hold together.  But one ingredient that mimics gluten is XANTHAN GUM. It is the glue that holds the bread together. You do not need much-Approx. 1 t. per cup of flour.  It seems expensive, but it lasts a long time and you can't do without it.  There is also gaur gum and plain gelatin that for certain recipes they are called for, that help mimic the gluten.
The main grain and flour is RICE, brown or white.  It needs to  VERY finely ground or the end product ends up grainy or gritty.  I like brown because of the added nutrients. Another rice flour is SWEET RICE flour.  It is lighter than white or brown rice.  One of my favorite rice products is brown rice pasta tinyada brand pasta.
SORGHUM is another flour used in glutenfree flour mixes.  Some mixes rely heavily on this flour.  I use it in my mix, but it is not the main one.  It has a distinct flavor, that I personally do not want to be the dominate flavor.  Others like it because it is not gritty like rice can be.
OATS are a gluten free grain.  The main problem is that except for 3 mills in America, ALL oats are processed in the same mills as wheat.  OATS need to be certified gluten free.  So that there are many checks in the journey from field to the mill to the packing plant.  Winter wheat is planted in early fall and then harvested in the spring.  After it leaves the field oats can be planted in the same fields.  Volenteer wheat often contaminates the oat fields.  The trucks that the oats are shipped in are often the same trucks used for wheat.  The same for the processing plants- wheat and oats are in the same plants.
Bobs Red Mill Gluten Free Oats  is a great product.  They also sell regular oats, so make sure it says gluten free.
BUCKWHEAT is NOT a wheat product.  It is a gluten free grain that is possibly 6,000 years old.  You can cook it up like rice and there are buckwheat noodles-soba.  But make sure they are 100%.  Lots of soba noodles are mixed whith wheat.  It can also be added to a GF flour mix(mine) that really improves texture and flavor.
QUINOA(pronounced keen-wah) is another gluten free grain that can be cooked up like rice and ground into flour.  It is nice in breads

SOY  is another gluten free grain, but I try not to use it very much, because of its phyto-estrogen qualities.  I personally do not need more estrogen.  It is also mostly a GMO grain and I prefer to stay away from anything GMO.
Corn is like soy in that it is mostly a GMO crop.  I love corn but try to not use it to much.  One of the ways corn is used in gluten free cooking - corn starch is used as a flour.  I like to substitute ARROWROOT starch or flour for the corn starch.
Other flour that are used are POTATO STARCH and TAPIOCA FLOUR/STARCH.  potato flour is NOT the same as potato starch.  You can not use it the same but it is also gluten free.
Bobs Red Mill  carries alot of the gluten free flours I use.
AMARATH is anotherGF ancient grain that can be cooked up like rice or ground up into flour.

Nut flours alo are gluten free as long as they have not been processed in the same plant at wheat.

The main 3 gluten grains are wheat, barley and rye.
I really like ALMOND FLOUR which is different from almond meal.  This flour is high in protein.  It is a fun flour to explore.  elanas pantry really explores the use of almond flour and COCONUT FLOUR.  she uses NO grains, AT ALL.  I still like using other flours with the almond flour.  The end product is lighter.  On this blog I have an Almond bread on sept. 11 that is wonderful.  It is high in protein and great for sandwiches, toast and any way you can dream it.  It is heavier that most sandwich breads, but very filling and satisfying.

In HOW TO BE GLUTEN FREE #2- iIWILL DISCUSS-
ANY GRAINS/FLOURS I HAVE MISSED
OTHER FOOD ALLERGIES AND HOW TO SUBSTITUTE.
ROTATION DIET
CROSS-CONTAMINATION
COOKING FOR A NON-GLUTEN FREE FAMILY what i do
other topics....

    

1 comment:

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