April 16, 2009
Wonderful French Bread
This bread truly hits the spot. It satisfies any bread cravings you may have, and you can make it in under an hour. My recipe is adapted from Carol Fenster’s recipe in Gluten-Free 101. It’s a small book, but contains some great bread recipes and is well worth the price. She also has some recipes on her site Savory Palate. One important part of baking this bread is a trick that Carol discovered—putting the dough into a cold oven and turning it on to bake. The dough rises as the oven warms and produces a nice French bread crust.
I love Carol’s original recipe and only decided to vary it because I was out of her flour mix. Since I was going to play with the flour ingredients, I decided to also make it dairy free. I think you could play with the flour mix yourself and get good results if you follow the instructions. Being in a hurry and having several interruptions when I made this, I’m not sure it turned out as well as it could have. One loaf in particular ended up with some very large air pockets which I did not have with the original recipe. However, the flavor was terrific.
A French bread pan is required to give the loaves their shape and help them bake properly. When I finally bought one, I wondered why I had waited so long. If you don’t find one at a store, you can find French bread pans at Amazon.
Gluten-Free French BreadIngredients
- 1 c. sorghum flour
- 1 1/2 c. potato starch
- 1/2 c. tapioca starch
- 1 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1 Tb. sugar
- 1 tsp. xanthan gum
- 1 tsp. guar gum (or xanthan)
- 1 1/2 Tb. instant yeast
- 1 Tb. olive oil
- 3 large egg whites
- 1 tsp. cider vinegar
- 1 c. warm water (105 – 115 degrees)
In the bowl of your mixer, combine the dry ingredients. Add the olive oil and egg whites and mix to incorporate. Add the vinegar and most of the water. Beat for 2 minutes, adding the remaining water if needed to make a soft dough. (I added the whole cup, but a little less might have been better.)
Spoon the dough onto the pan and carefully shape with a spatula. Because the dough is soft, it will go through the small holes in the pan. Don’t press hard when shaping. If you like, you can brush the top with beaten egg white. Use a sharp knife to cut several slits in the top of each loaf. Place the pan in a cold oven on a middle rack. Turn the oven on to 425 degrees and begin timing for 30 – 35 minutes. Cool the loaves on a wire wrack before slicing. It’s okay to slice them while warm, but not when they are hot.
View Printable Recipe
This recipe is linked to Slightly Indulgent Mondays at Simply Sugar & Gluten Free.
Labels: bread recipes
@FreshGinger on Twitter (where I saw your post)
Thanks so much for participating in Slightly Indulgent Mondays!
Any tips for cleaning the pan?
Thank you for a wonderful website!
Loved it (as did my daughter)!!
Oh my gosh...this is the first time in years that I have had bread that was chewy like that, but soft on the inside. I used to love the artisian bread at Italian recipes - tearing off chunks and dipping it into the olive oil/spice mixture they give you.
I gave one to my friend to try - she thought it was really good too - said it tasted like gluten bread to her! (she is not GF - but she tastes alot of what I make - I am always curious as to what a non-GF person says).
While I am content with the rolls (so easy to use an ice cream scoop to portion) - I will one day try the french bread and use my pan.
mmmm mmmm yummy!!!! Thank you for sharing!
I saw this recipe and I have been wanting to make french toast with french bread (that's the way my husband and I have always made french toast, even before going gluten free). I wanted to make the bread on the bread machine, so I combined this recipe with one that came with the bread machine to make a recipe that would work on my machine. It turned out great! I used to bread to make corn flake crusted french toast! So yummy!
I was very careful when measuring the ingredients. I used Bob's red mill for everything and some of the items are labeled a bit differently (I'm new to GF baking so this could be the problem). Both the Potato & Tapioca are labeled "Finely ground flour" not starch as in the recipe. They have the texture of starch, so I used them.
Anyway, my dough came out very thick and lumpy and gluey and I kept having to add more water to even get it to hold together. Then it was very hard to spread in the pan and still very lumpy and gluey. Not at all like the description in the recipe.
I cooked it for the full 45 minutes and it was VERY brown on the outside but both loaves fell immediately and were still basically raw on the inside -- that same gluey consistency.
I was very disappointed because I have been CRAVING bread ever since I read this recipe a little over a week ago and I really want to make some bread that tastes like real bread again. Can you give me some hints? I did use 2 tsps of xantham gum instead of xantham/guar gum combo it calls for.
Thanks for the help.
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