Color me surprised

27 Apr

Gummi goodness does make a difference when you bake without wheat.

I was resistive to trying a gum in my baking. It’s on the expensive side. Besides, do you know what xanthan gum is made of? It’s a fermented byproduct produced by the bacterium Xanthomonas campestris. No spank you.

Now guar gum is pretty much the ground endosperm of guar beans. Okay, I don’t mind beans as long as they are not green beans, so I figured I could try that. But, back to my first point of resistance: the expense. So, I shrugged it off.

I felt bad about my family not being as excited about wheat free goods I am. I make both types, but with time being of essence lately, I’ve leaned toward making more wheat-free items when I bake. Admittedly, the texture does not match a fine wheat product.

The investment in the guar gum is worth it. I made the yummiest drop biscuits tonight, using a recipe I used last week. We’d all liked them, although they were on the heavy side. The single teaspoon of guar gum radically changed the texture of the biscuit. They were lighter and fluffier. They didn’t crumble as much. Hey, hey, hurrah! In the 8 ounces of gum I picked up (and by the way, it seems odd to call a powder a gum, but I guess it’s how it binds that counts), there’s a bounty of single teaspoons. It’ll last a while.

If you’d like to replicate the biscuits I made, here’s the framework. Notice the recipe states to use 2 cups of gluten free all purpose baking mix. I decided I didn’t want to get into the whole parts scenario of the baking mix recipe, so I made it easy on myself. Plus, I don’t have all the ingredients called out in the baking mix recipe. I used 1/2 cup masa harina, 1/2 cup corn starch, 1/2 cup dehydrated potato flakes and 1/2 cup flour of choice (last week I used white rice flour; tonight I used garbanzo bean flour). I subbed soy milk and cider vinegar instead of buttermilk, per the framework. I cut down the butter smidge, but not too much. Tonight I added some sesame seeds to the dough, right before forming the drop biscuits. Paired with home made chicken-rice soup, they hit the spot.

2 Responses to “Color me surprised”

  1. Sunni April 28, 2009 at 10:24 am #

    I’m glad the guar gum worked out for you! Binding and texture are perpetual challenges in GF baking; and I found no way to resolve them with just flours.

  2. rosie_lew April 29, 2009 at 4:01 am #

    That sounds really yummy, and let me tell you, I am looking forward to gluten free food this summer, I’m sick of all the Americano at my school. Honestly, no one needs that much meat!

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