Monday, 14 October 2013

Gluten-free, Grain-free, Dairy-free Bread

Before I get into my bread revelations, I have to quickly share my latest find - a fantastic new (or new to me!) fruit and vege shop that is tucked away in a little group of shops where I discovered a multitude of wonderful and different fruits and vegetables that I have dreamed of using but rarely found locally to my house. I saw a sign as I was driving by for cheap avocados. I cannot pass up an avocado deal so thought I'd pop in to grab a couple. I'm so glad I did! Not only did I find the avocado, but I got a HUGE celeriac for $3 (makes awesome mash or fries), a golden beetroot (can't wait use it!) purple carrots (the kids love carrots, and they love purple, so couldn't possibly go wrong!) and red baby kale leaves. They also had loads of other wonderful leafy greens that I will be going back for, as well as a great selection of fruits. And all really well priced. Don't you just love those great little finds - the ones where you feel like you're the only person in the world who has discovered this wonderful secret...although if you're anything like me you will find that in fact everyone in the world already knows about it and I'm just a bit slow on the uptake!

 What is prettier than a bench full of gorgeous fresh vegetables!

And now for the bread...

My belly aches from all of the bread I have been eating in the last 2 days!!!! I have been in touch with a lovely lady called Anna via email, and we have been sharing recipes. She gave me a recipe for her current favourite bread and raved about it, so naturally I wanted to try it out!


The recipe was fantastic, but being the difficult person that I am, I decided to make a few changes just to put my own spin on it and add in a few of my own healthy substitutes. What came out of the oven was a gorgeous loaf of hot, moist, light tasty bread. One of the best things about this bread is that it is bendy (but not chewy)! That is an odd description of bread, but what I mean is that you can bend it to make sandwiches or (in hubbys case) wrap around sausages! This is often difficult to achieve with gluten/grain/dairy free breads - they do have a tendency to be a little crumbly.

Hubby has been on the hunt for a good bread substitute for those times when nothing but bread will satisfy his cravings, so we are going through phases of research and experimentation. Yesterday I made 3 loaves and to be honest, although I am posting this one today, I am still experimenting to get the ultimate loaf - I have a few ideas that I am working on so watch this space! I have also been working for a few weeks now on perfecting a yeast based loaf. I know that there are plenty of people out there who have problems with almond meal due to nut allergies, not to mention that it is not ideal for school sandwiches due to nut restrictions in schools and preschools. I am yet to perfect that recipe - I keep ending up with a delicious looking loaf that is soggy on the inside....good things take time!! (and lots of trips to the supermarket for ingredients!!). Although one of my passions in life is baking of any kind, baking bread has not been something I have done a lot of in the past, and my inexperience with the science of yeast based bread is showing. I think a bit more reading and a lot more baking will eventually reveal the perfect loaf...oh my goals in life are just so inspiring!



Gluten-free, Grain-free, Dairy-free Bread


Ingredients:


1 cup almond flour
½ cup psyllium husk
¼ cup chia seed meal (grind chia seeds in a coffee grinder or small blender to make a powder – you can use flaxseed meal instead)
½ tsp salt
3 tbsp coconut flour
1.5 tsp baking soda
5 eggs
¼ cup coconut oil
1 tbsp honey
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 180C. Line a bread pan with baking paper, or grease well with coconut oil or butter.
2. Mix dry ingredients (almond flour, psyllium, chia seeds, salt, coconut flour, baking soda) in a large bowl. 
3. Mix wet ingredients in another bowl (beat eggs lightly then add apple cider vinegar. Melt coconut oil with honey if honey is hard, and add to egg mixture - ensure oil is not hot, warm at most, when you put it in as you don't want to cook the eggs)
4. Add wet to dry and spoon into bread pan. Smooth the top, and if you want to be fancy, score the top with knife to make 3 or 4 'slashes' in the top.
5. Bake for 35 minutes until browned and firm to touch.


Note: Psyullium husk will be available from most wholefood stores, and I think the Ceres Organic brand is often available in the baking section or health food section of your local supermarket.

Enjoy!

x