Since I typically avoid gluten–based on everything I know about it, I really want my kids to reduce their gluten intake as well. As you know if you’ve ever tried, keeping gluten out of kids’ worlds is a difficult task–particularly if your kids don’t have any actual, obvious gluten sensitivity. Gluten abounds, and it’s what gives so many baked goods the “glue” that gives them just the right texture and chew.
I have been on the hunt for good gluten-free sandwich bread for years. I have tried all the usual brands in my natural foods store, and they’re all bland, too gummy and too dry. I persisted for about a year, but eventually gave up and switched to a nine-grain sourdough as the lesser of the evils. However, I reinvigorated my search about 6 months ago–this time, not bothering to look in stores, but instead looking for a recipe I liked so I could make my own gluten-free sandwich bread at home.
I tried several Paleo bread recipes, but most used a cup or more of cashew butter, which simply makes for an outrageously expensive loaf of bread and subsequently outrageously expensive sandwiches. Then I tried several non-Paleo, gluten-free sandwich bread recipes, and after tweaking one several times, decided that this is my favorite.
It’s surprisingly easy to make, uses yeast which makes the house smell soooo good, and delivers a great sliceable, toastable loaf of bread that my children recognize and appreciate as sandwich bread.
This recipe is adapted from ALittleInsanity.
1 cup almond milk
½ cup water
2 tbsp honey
2½ teaspoons dry active yeast
2 cups gluten-free all-purpose flour (I like Bob’s Red Mill 1 to 1 Baking Flour)
3/4 cassava flour (I like this brand)
1/3 cup coconut flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon Salt
2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar or lemon juice
¼ cup plus 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
2 large eggs
* the original recipe called for 1½ teaspoons Xanthan Gum, but since some people are sensitive to it, I do not add more.
Oil and flour a 9×5-inch loaf pan. (I like to use a Pyrex pan because I find it bakes more evenly and cleans beautifully.)
Pour milk and water into a medium saucepan. Heat over medium low until warm to the touch–not hot or cold. Stir in honey then sprinkle yeast over the mixture. Set-aside and let proof for about 10 minutes.
In a medium bowl, combine flours, baking powder and salt.
In a large bowl, whisk eggs until pale yellow. Whisk in oil and cider vinegar (or lemon juice). Pour in the milk/yeast mixture and whisk to combine. Add in the flour mixture and stir until combined, then stir for another 30 seconds until the mixture is smooth. (It will be very sticky.)
Using a spatula, spoon the batter into your prepared loaf pan. Wet your fingers and smooth the top a bit (not necessary, but it makes a better looking loaf).
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.
Let the mixture proof/rise until it’s approximately double in size (20-30 minutes depending on your room temperature.) be careful not to let it rise above your loaf pan. Gluten free breads do not maintain their structure and will flow over the pan or collapse if left to over-rise. Note: My kitchen never seems to maintain a reliable temperature for allowing bread to rise, so I turn my oven on to 475F, and stick my loaf pan full of “dough” in the microwave above above my regular oven. There’s just the right amount of heat to enable the mixture to double in size in 15-20 minutes, after which I turn the heat down to 375F and pop the pan into the regular oven.
Bake for approx. 30-45 minutes. If the crust is darkening too quickly, cover it with foil (tent open ended) and return to baking until done.
Remove loaf pan from oven and let cool for 5 minutes before turning out onto your cooling rack. Allow to cool completely before slicing.