Gluten-Free Bread and Challah Rolls Recipe
Posted on 7th of September, 2011 by Lévana
Gluten-free Bread and Challah: Since there seems to be an inexhaustible demand for it, here’s my two cents. Let me start by saying I am constantly tinkering with this recipe, and as delicious as it is, it is still a work in progress.
There’s no way commercial gluten-free bread offerings will hold a candle to your homemade gluten-free bread preparation, made with much more valuable ingredients than the insipid and nutritionally worthless ingredients contained in most commercial gluten-free bread offerings (who needs them?). So this is not just gluten-free bread, but delicious and nutritious as well.
This gluten-free bread recipe is quite elastic, and might well be the solution to your gluten-free bread cravings. This is quite a place to include some super foods ingredients your children might ordinarily resist if they were offered in recognizable forms. Here’s all I ask if you want to pull this off perfectly: Don’t shape the dough into loaves until you get more experienced. Rather, shape into rolls. There will be much less room to end up with a dried-out bread.
There’s plenty of room to explore with quality gluten-free flours. Here I go all out with the wonderful gamut of flour, only the best: Oat flour is especially delicious and hearty; almond flour, coconut flour, rice flour, fine cornmeal etc…. Teff flour and Buckwheat flour will be good but extra dark and extra pungent, I would say use them in combination with the more delicately flavored flours just mentioned. Also, whatever flour combination you end up with, be sure to include the tapioca, as it is a great emulsifier.
If you intend to explore with gluten-free baking more often, I urge you to look into Xanthan Gum: An emulsifier that will do in great part the job the gluten won’t be doing. Easy to use, dependable and widely available in health-foods stores and online.
The addition of flax meal is optional, but makes this bread much more nutritious and more deeply flavored and satisfying. Likewise, replace some or even all of the warm water with warm milk or dairy-free milk (or part coconut milk)
This is a nice large batch, enjoy it now and freeze the rest, sealed very tightly, for later use.
This gluten-free bread recipe needs only a little tweaking to adapt to gluten-free challah. Scroll down for instructions!
Attention fellow frequent Gluten-Free bakers friends: Gluten-free flours can err on the expensive side in health food stores. Explore online, and do as I do: Order 5-pound containers of any gluten-free flour at a much more reasonable price. You will do much better making your own Gluten-free bread flour mixture: Explore, mix and match with different gluten-free bread flours, taking good note as you go along, then when you arrive at the perfect keeper, make a large batch of your very own favorite delicious nutritious Gluten-Free Bread flour for future gluten-free bread batches.
I was very happy with my last batch: equal parts almond flour, fine corn meal and oat flour. So, 4 cups of each. For nut-allergic diners, I recommend replacing the almond flour with brown rice flour.
GLUTEN-FREE BREAD ROLLS (OR WATER CHALLAH ROLLS)
6 ½ cups warm water (or part milk or dairy-free milk)
1/4 cup dry yeast
1/4 cup sugar, agave or honey
12 cups gluten-free flour, packed, alone or in any combination (oat, rice, millet, quinoa etc… If you are using almond, coconut, cornmeal, buckwheat or teff flour: use in combination with the first flours mentioned)
2 cups tapioca flour
3/4 cup flax meal (health food stores) optional
1 cup olive oil, vegetable oil, or coconut oil
1/4 cup xanthan gum
2 tablespoons salt
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Mix the water, yeast, and sugar in a bowl and let the mixture foam. Add all remaining ingredients and knead about 5 minutes, in a dough mixer or by hand. Let the mixture rest about 30 minutes. The dough will rise a respectable size, albeit less than regular dough.
Shape small rolls and place on cookie sheets lined with foil or parchment (you will get about 3-4 dozen) or in muffin molds. Bake, one sheet at a time, about 30 minutes, until golden.
GLUTEN-FREE EGG CHALLAH:
Again, until you get more practice, you will do much better making rolls or small loaves than making a whole challah, since this dough will rise less than a regular flour bread dough. For Shabbos bread, use all oat flour (it is the only GF flour you make HaMotzi on. Same dough as above, with 4 to 6 eggs added, 1 less cup liquid, a little more oil, and a little more sugar or honey, to taste. Brush with egg wash, and top with sesame or poppy seeds if desired.
FOCACCIA AND HERB LOAVES:
Play with your dough, as I do: no exact amounts. Practice makes perfect, your bread will and taste better with each batch. Take some of your risen dough, and add some goodies. Add your favorite seasonings, short and sweet selection: minced onion, zaatar, rosemary, minced olives, minced sun-dry tomatoes. Incorporate your selection thoroughly in your piece of dough. Shape into a flat thin rectangle, poke all over with a finger, brush with oil , and bake in a preheated 425 degrees for about 30 minutes, or a little longer. Or shape into a flattish round loaf, sprinkling the bottom and the top with GF flour for easier handling, score all over with a sharp knife, and bake in a preheated 425 degrees for about 30 minutes, or a little longer, until firm on top and on bottom.