This past weekend I had the opportunity to teach a Gluten Free Comprehensive Class at the John C. Campbell Folk School in Brasstown, NC. I was thrilled with the wonderful facilities there and the friendliness of the staff and students.
The class turned into a Chemistry Lab when we started getting out the digital scales to make our various GF flour blends, which surprised many of the students! But our pie crust, pizza crust, muffins and cornbread all came out with perfect textures and flavors, so I think they saw the wisdom of using weight instead of volume, especially when blending various flours with different densities together.
Gluten Free Flour Blends
Here is a quick list of some of the blends I have formulated to work best for me:
All-Purpose (high protein) Flour Blend: 30% sorghum, 30% potato starch, 30% brown rice flour, 10% quinoa or chickpea flour
Bread Flour: 40% sorghum, 20% chickpea, 30% tapioca, 10% buckwheat
Cookie and Cake Flour: neutral flours such as rice, starch, gum. Cake flour has the lowest protein content and can be a little acidic. (40% white rice flour, 30% tapioca, 30% potato)
Pancakes, Waffles, and Wraps: 50% grain or grass flours, 50% starch, baking powder
Pie Crust: 30% brown rice flour, 30% white rice flour, 20% potato starch, 20% tapioca starch
Pizza Crust: Dry ingredients: 1 cup tapioca starch, 1 cup sorghum flour, 1/2 cup brown rice flour, 1/2 cup GF millet flour, 3 teaspoons baking powder, 2 teaspoons xanthan gum, (in addition to yeast and other liquid ingredients)
Quick Bread Flour: 30% White Rice flour, 30% Tapioca, 20% Potato, 20% untoasted buckwheat flour (or 10% toasted Buckwheat, 10% Quinoa flour).
This doesn’t mean that you should never buy a packaged mix, I have found several that I like (and more than a few that did not live up to my expectations!) If you know what you are looking for, you can read labels with more confidence and buy products that will behave the way you want them to!
I am looking forward to a week-long class called Gluten Free Homestyle Cooking that will feature a day on that awesome open hearth up at the Folk School in late May of 2016. Check out their website at: folkschool.org for more info!