Wine & Dine

Gluten free oatmeal muffin bread

November 18, 2013 | 3 comments


 

I love bread. Freshly baked baguettes. Cinnamon-raisin bagels. Ciabatta. Naan. Pita bread. We’ve had a long stable relationship bread and I (or so I thought). Then I found out that we were not compatible at all. I’m still not quite over our rough breakup.

So far, I have found two brands of gluten free bread I can eat that actually taste good. Many brands taste like cardboard. Most are far from worth buying. The exceptions are Udi’s and Rudi’s. (Not sure if the names are a coincidence.) Of the two, I prefer Udi’s. I think the consistency of their bread is more like regular bread. Rudi’s works but every time I eat them I wish I had bought Udi’s instead.

Hands down, the best bread is Udi’s bagels. I could eat these every day and be perfectly happy. The problem? A bag of 4 bagels costs around $10 here. I’m not kidding. I simply cannot afford that on a grad student salary. (Well, not if I want to eat any other food.)

So why don’t I just bake my own bread?

I love to bake, but since removing gluten from my diet, it has felt like a scary task to attempt. I know baking with gluten free flour isn’t that different from regular baking. You just have to find a recipe and follow it. Religiously.

People who have never attempted gluten free baking might think that you can just take any old recipe and substitute the flour. I wish it was that easy. Rice flour doesn’t behave the same way as regular flour. Things tend to get either really dense or crumble to pieces. (And yes, I know about xanthan gum. I even have some in the cupboard. I just haven’t used it yet.)

(For those who have never heard about xanthan gum, it basically does the same thing as gluten, i.e. making things stick together. My recommendation; don’t read the information about what xanthan gum comes from. Then it might end up in the back of you cupboard.)

You can’t just substitute a cup of wheat flour with a cup of rice flour and expect it to work. One of my favourite gluten free bloggers, Nicole, explained it very nicely: “Searching for a gluten-free flour blend that can literally substitute cup for cup in conventional baking recipes is like searching for unicorns”.

Usually you have to adjust the ratio of flour to liquid. In theory, it should be possible to make a gluten free version of any recipe (and still make it taste as good!). There are lots of online resources and conversion charts, but I still think that gluten free baking is a much bigger project, with more uncertain outcome, than regular baking.

A few weeks ago, I was finally brave enough to seriously try and master one simple object: the muffin. I was on such a food high from making the omelet and potato lunch bites that I just had to continue with the pinterest-inspired food project and try these delicious looking things from Roni. She calls them banana oatmeal cups with chocolate chips, but I modified the recipe and turned them into a mixture between muffins and banana bread. I am a big fan of oats (I use the Bob’s Red Mill gluten free quick cooking rolled oats) so I am stoked about these wonderful muffins.

Blueberrymuffins           Applemuffins

I’ve made two versions; Banana Blueberry and Apple Banana. My favourite is definitely the apple banana. They are delicious! And perfect for breakfast or as an afternoon snack.

For detailed instructions and the original recipe, visit Roni’s blog.

wkendcooking For more food-related posts, visit the Weekend Cooking linkup over at Beth Fish Reads.

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