Tuesday, September 23, 2014

"Julie's Flour Blend" Gluten Free (and bread/bun recipe)

I have been working at coming up with an all-purpose flour mix that I could trust.  I have finally come up with a blend that I am really happy with. It is so much easier to reach for ONE flour container instead of several.
I will be offering updated and new recipes using my flour blend.

Here is  "Julie's Flour Blend" 
  • 1 cup millet flour
  • 1 cup white bean flour (grind your own navy beans (small white beans from grocery store) 
  • 1 cup brown rice flour 
  • 1 cup potato starch 
  • 1 cup tapioca starch 
  • 1/2 cup white rice flour 
  • 1/2  cup cornstarch 
  • 3 tbsp. potato flour 
  • NOTE --  I did not include xanthan gum because the amount needed is not the same for bread as it is for cakes and different again for cookies. So I prefer to add it in each recipe.  

I worked until I had a blend that was perfect for bread - and this one is.  I also worked with every tweek and trick I could come up with to ensure a fool-proof loaf of bread that I, along with everyone else could enjoy eating. I have made this bread countless times - it turns out the same every time and has never failed.
It rises well, has a mild wheat-like flavour, has a nice crumb (not cake-like)  is springy like wheat bread,  has a soft texture and is not at all gummy - just a wheat-like chewy.

My Winner's Bread - a basic bread -slices/toasts/freezes well 

  • 1/4 cup milk 
  • 3/4 cup water 
  • 1 tsp sugar 
  • 1 tsp unflavoured gelatin 
  • 1 1/2 tbsp reg. yeast (not quick rise) 
  • 1 egg 
  • 1/8 cup butter (trick - cut 1/4 cup off a pound of butter then cut it in half diagonally for 1/8 cup butter)
  • 1 tbsp honey 
  • 1 1/2 cup Julie's Flour Blend 
  • 1 tsp xanthan gum  (too much xanthan  gum can make bread fall) 
  • 3/4 tsp salt 
  • 2 tsp powder egg replacer 
  • 1 tsp baking powder 
  1. Heat milk and water -- I find 50 sec. in my microwave brings it to a perfect temp. -- if you have chlorine in your water do not use it for yeast baking - it hinders the yeast from rising. 
  2. Add mixed sugar/gelatin/yeast to warm fluids and let proof 
  3. Add room temp. egg and honey and softened butter to mixer bowl and mix. 
  4. Stir proofed yeast and add to liquids. 
  5. Add mixed dry ingredients, stir until blended 
  6. Beat on high for 6 minutes  -- dough will look smooth and stretchy 
  7. Line glass loaf pan with parchment paper (don't have to line ends) 
  8. Scrape dough into pan and  wet your hands under warm water to smooth top of loaf. 
  9. Let rise on range top beside a steaming pan of water. 
  10. It will take about 1/2 hour to rise over the top of the pan so make sure you allow time to pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees. 
  11. When loaf rounds top of pan, place loaf in microwave on high for 60 seconds,  then straight into pre-heated oven. 
  12. Let bake for about 40 minutes.   Remove from oven, remove loaf from pan and paper and let cool completely on wire racks before slicing. 



 We were planning a family wiener roast and I wanted a nice hot dog bun.
Because GF dough is much softer than reg wheat dough you cannot just shape buns on a pan so I
created little boats out of parchment paper.   I cut the parchement paper 7 1/2" x 4 1/2 " - folding it in half lengthwise, then the long edges to meet at the centre, then folded up the ends and stapled them in place. (I have contacted/corresponded with someone who designs/manufacturers baking pans to see if he will make a hot dog pan according to my specifications )  In the meantime I found my parchment trays worked well and can be reused several times.  Make sure you tuck them up against each other in a pan - I found that 6 fit snug in my glass cake pan (11 1/2" x 7 1/2". The ends will hold, its the sides that will spread with the rising dough if not tucked up against each other.

One bread recipe makes 6 hot dog buns.



The buns were enjoyed by both gluten-free and wheat eaters ... See how springy the bun is?


My grandgirls love pizza buns and these worked great. I sliced them, lined them up on parchment paper on a cookie rack and spread them with our favourite pizza sauce and grated cheese.  



 I bought a Whoopie  Pie pan  and tried it for baking buns.  The indents are not very deep but deep enough to keep the bun rising each in their 'space'. The bun size would be perfect as mini hamburger buns or anything else you choose to do with them!

One bread recipe makes 12 buns - 1 tbsp. in each space and dough smoothed with wet hand to fill indent.




NOTE :  I would suggest that you try this bread/bun recipe exactly as is before you try to change it -  adding or substituting ingredients.   The margin between success and fail in GF yeast baking is very narrow - I know this recipe works !   If you make changes and are happy with the results post a comment and let the rest of us know.


40 comments:

  1. This is just what I needed today! I have one question though...do you use a glass pan solely because you need to microwave the loaf? Or are there other important reasons to use glass only? Thanks.

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    1. Yes... I use the glass so it can go into the microwave ... but I have found that GF bakes nicer in glass and also does not stick to it.

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  2. What if you have no microwave(by choice)? Can this recipe still work?

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    1. yes... you can leave out the microwave .. I just find its one more trick to ensure a good rise and hold it.

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  3. Thank You - Thank You! How much corn starch please?

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    1. Oops .. my error ... I've add the 'cup' to the recipe --- thank you !

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    2. Thank You again! I can't wait to try this!
      Judy R

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  4. Julie, I am just so impressed by the time and effort you have made to test and retest these GF recipes and to come up with your own all purpose flour is so cool. GF food has come a long way in the last little while and we have people like you to thank for that. Bernice J

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    1. Awww... thank you, Bernice ! my heart is warmed by your words .. and if I can help anyone else on this journey, then that makes me happy.

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  5. What time and effort you put into this. Thank you so much!

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  6. This looks wonderful. Do you happen to know the nutritional facts for it? Watching our carbs as well as cutting out the gluten. ~KD

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    1. I don't have a broken down nutrients value chart - but know this flour mix is healthier than white wheat flour --- the bean flour of course adds protein to the loaf.. And the millet flour is also very healthy .. here is a link listing 12 health benefits
      http://www.care2.com/greenliving/12-health-benefits-of-millet.html

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  7. Has anyone used real eggs verses powdered egg replacement?

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    1. If you notice there is a real egg in the recipe. The powdered egg replacement is more for leaven and lift than for 'egg ingredient' - it is just one more 'encouragement' , working with the yeast for the gluten-free dough to rise well and hold itself.

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  8. What can I substitute for white bean flour. I find that I cannot grind the white navy beans fine enough for a flour.

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  9. Do you mix up a big batch of this and keep it on hand? I'm wondering how long it will keep, and if it would need to be in the fridge or freezer for longevity. Thank you!

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    1. Yes... I mix up a 'recipe' -- could be doubled /tripled if you bake a lot. I find it keeps well in my cupboard. If I was going to keep it longer than a couple of weeks or a month at the most, I would keep it in the fridge or freeze it. hope that helps !

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  10. Other than a mill, is there any other way to grind navy beans?

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    1. Yes.. a coffee grinder works just fine... grind and using a fine sieve, grind/sift until there is no gritty feel when you rub the flour between your fingers.

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  11. Can an egg be used instead of the egg replacer?

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    1. Egg replacer, baking powder, yeast, as well as the egg are all ingredients that work in different ways to give the bread rise and ability to hold the rise so the bread does not fall. .
      You can try leaving out the egg replacer and add another egg.

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  12. Is there another flour I can use instead of millet flour? I can't get it locally.

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    1. You could use sorghum or buckwheat or whatever flour you like to use -- just not a starch.

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  13. Do you use this flour blend as an all purpose flour blend (with the appropriate xanthan gum added) or only for bread? Have you used it muffins and cookies specifically?

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    1. Hi Nicole ... yes, I use it as an all-purpose flour blend, with appropriate amounts of xanthan gum added... I have been converting my recipes to use this flour blend and have had really good success. For example, you can find my pastry recipe here http://www.mennonitegirlscancook.ca/2014/11/pie-pastry-gluten-free.html .... non-gf people say...'THIS is gluten-free??" So yes, go ahead and use it as an all purpose flour. Let me know how you like it!

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  14. My daughter is on a gluten free and dairy free diet. Can I subsitute rice milk, water, etc. in place of the milk in the bread recipe?
    Thanks for all your efforts. Your family and others are the benificaries of your hard work in perfecting and making tasty gluten free bread, etc.

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    1. Yes, definitely substitute what you usually use as a milk substitute... rice milk, or unsweetened almond milk, or coconut milk. and Thank you for your comment and kind words - I appreciate them !

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  15. Hi: I cannot use eggs in my baking as well as dairy. Could I use the egg substitute for the egg in this recipe?
    Thanks. Dorothy

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    1. Hi Dorothy ... There is only one way to find out .. try it ! I have not done it myself so I don't know what the difference would be ... but I don't see why it wouldn't work. Let me if it does, it would be good to know.

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  16. For the Julie Flour Blend is there a replacement flour I can use instead of white bean?

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    1. You could substitute any gf flour of your choice - brown flour, chickpea or your 'go-to' flour.

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  17. do you need a heavy duty coffee grinder to grind the white beans

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    1. Heavy duty works better, of course... but I have used the cheapest ones as well. Grind/sift/grind/sift until there is no gritty feel when flour is rubbed between fingers. And not grinding a lot of flour at a time also keeps the coffee grinder from over heating and 'dying'.

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  18. Julie- Thank you so much!!!!! I've tried this GF flour mix and your bread recipe and it is so much better than the GF breads the stores offer.
    I've made it a couple of times so far and recently tried to bake some in ramekins for a bun which offered me a chance to have a GF Egg McMuffin this am. It was Delicious.

    Do you have a recipe for Banana muffins or bread, or could I just use this four mix in lieu of flour and add 1/2 or 1 teaspoon of xanthum gum? I am not sure what to do and would appreciate your guidance or any tried and true substitutions that you've found along the way in your own journey.
    Jane, A gluten free girl for 7 weeks now.

    ejaneemerson@yahoo.com

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  19. Can this flour mix be used as a cup-for-cup replacement in any GF recipes? How do I know how much xantham gum to add to my recipes?
    Also, I noticed on your website that there is another GF flour mix called "My All-Purose GF Flour Mix'. That one has egg replacer and xantham gum in it.
    I am confused which flour mixture to use for what. can you clarify? Thank you.

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    1. Hi Rose ... I have had great success with my Julie's Flour mix as a cup for cup replacement in GF recipes -- and it also works well in many reg. recipes, except that I always use a little less gf flour than the wheat flour called for. As a general rule I use 1/2 tsp xanthan gum per cup - not more, rather less for cakes, muffins or cookies. Breads need more xanthan gum than other baked products. My Julie's Flour mix is my 'perfected' mix that I now use for almost all my baking, the other GF flour on our blog is an earlier mix. I hope that helps... don't hesitate to ask if you have more questions.

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  20. Your recipe looks awesome! Unfortunately I have sensitivities to many things in addition to wheat (dairy, eggs, potatoes). I can manage mostly by rotating and by using alternatives, but was wondering if the potato starch and flour can be replaced with other starches (arrowroot or additional tapioca or corn starch)?


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    1. Try substituting arrowroot flour for the potato starch and just eliminate the potato flour. Hope that works for you !

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  21. After trying other recipes for pasta, and not liking the results, I tried just making my usual pasta but substituting this flour blend for the flour called for in my recipe. While not tasting exactly like my usual noodles, this came the closest. Now I use this flour blend for my recipes that call for flour. Not yet for cakes, etc., but other uses. Thanks for your recipes!

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