I received three emails this week asking which was the best bread machine for gluten free breads, so this must be on your minds. This is a photo of the Gluten Free Pantry Favorite Sandwich mix made with my old Breadman machine:
First I have to admit that I do not use my bread machine that often. With my new bread recipe only taking 30 minutes to rise, I find it just as quick and easy for me to make bread "the old fashioned way." However, I am a stay-at-home Mom, so I realize it is easy for me to be around to watch to make sure it does not rise too high and turn the oven on. What if you can't be at home? Or better yet, you are not as nostalgic as I am about watching bread rise. That is where the bread machine comes in.
My first bread machine was the Breadman - it worked fine with standard mixes like the Gluten Free Pantry Favorite Sandwich Bread Mix, but because all of the cycles on it are automatically programmed (in other words, you cannot set the rise and knead cycles yourself), it did not work well with some standard mixes such as those by 'Cause Your Special and other recipes that I wanted to try.
The main benefit of this bread machine is that you can program the cycles so it will work with a vast array of gluten free mixes and recipes. It also makes some fancy automatic adjustments to get the dough to rise and bake correctly that are based on things such as the humidity in your house and the ingredients in your bread.
Buying the right bread machine from the beginning will save you time and agony and the expense of buying a second machine, but this is just the start. For a detailed guide to making gluten free bread in a bread machine, I recommend Annalise G. Roberts book Gluten-Free Baking Classics for the Bread Machine. It has everything from great recipes, specific directions on how to set your bread machine and tips for when things just don't go right (and they will not go right at times, it is almost guaranteed so use that bread for bread crumbs!).
I'd love to share Annalise's recipe with you, but I think she might prefer it if you buy the book! I'd share one of my own, but have not developed one yet, and in all honesty Annalise has spent much more time perfecting bread recipes than I have, so I am sticking with hers for now.
We have slowly but surely moved away from mixes, but we still like the Toro White Bread Mix and the Gluten Free Pantry Favorite Sandwich Bread Mix (although this one is moving down on our list of favorites). You can purchase both of these from .
Th is and That Gluten Free - More Gluten Free Options
Just a few more details to add this week:
**Starbucks: You may have heard this already, but Starbucks is going to start selling a gluten free Valencia Orange Cake for $2.25 at it's US stores in May!! Love you Starbucks for catering to our special diet!
** Bi-Aglut Pasta: Our favorite Bi-Aglut pasta is back for sale in the US. We love this pasta for its taste first - it just taste like wheat pasta. And for its texture second, it is not starchy at all, holds up great in pasta dishes like macaroni and cheese. It may seem pricey, but we can get two meals out of a bag of bi-aglut spaghetti while a bag of de boles spaghetti was not enough to give my family one meal. You can order it from .
Another fun source is Quattrobimbi which imports gluten free products from Italy. Italians have been gluten free much longer than us, and they seem to have an upper hand on the gluten free products. If you order from Quattrobimbi get the ZeroGrano crackers. They are so much like wheat crackers you will not believe it. Perfect with tomato soup.
** More Gluten Free Cereals from General Mills:
Thank you for contacting General Mills with your inquiry. Along with Rice Chex, General Mills is reformulating the following Big G Cereals to gluten free status:
o Corn Chex
o Honey Nut Chex
o Strawberry Chex
o Chocolate Chex
o Cinnamon Chex
Production for this cereal has begun and you should begin seeing these cereals available on store shelves soon. All products listed should be available by June 1st, 2009.
As with any reformulated product, both products may be on the store shelves at the same time so consumers are encouraged to read labels/packaging carefully. Consumers should carefully examine the product packaging to ensure that the cereal inside the box is in fact the new, gluten free product. Look for "NOW GLUTEN FREE" or "GLUTEN FREE" on the front/side/back panels. We hope you find this information helpful. Please let us know if we can help you again.
** Smoothies R My Life blog: Lastly, looking for something different for a snack or for breakfast. Then you should try a smoothie.. Actually, I am not sure how you could be gluten free and not have an occasional smoothie as they are a great breakfast item and a perfect snack. Check out Smoothies R My Life blog that list a new smoothie every day. As far as I can tell, they are all gluten free. Dairy free? No problem, most are dairy free as well. Try # 39 - it taste just like a pina colada. (Ok, I am still day dreaming about Kauai).