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Thursday, September 20, 2012

I call him Flour Sans Gluten or Sandy for short

gluten free flour

Generally I use whatever flours I happen to have on hand, but more specifically I mix about two parts combination of flours (millet, rice, buckwheat, sorghum, almond, garbanzo bean, masa harina, etc.) to one part starch (my preference is tapioca). Every kind of flour has different properties that lend themselves better to certain situations. So in an all purpose flour it’s nice to combine a few of them. Millet for instance can absorb a lot of liquid and has a flavor somewhat reminiscent of cream of wheat. It’s best to blend it with sorghum or rice flour. I like to start with rice and/or sorghum flour as a base, making up at least one part or more of the entire flour mixture. Then I pick a number of the other flours such as almond or garbanzo for flavor or texture or other properties I’m looking for (garbanzo flour tastes like beans, so it’s best used for savory dishes with other strong flavors).
Here are a couple examples of a typical flour blend I would use:

Basic All-purpose Gluten-free Flour Blends

½ cup rice
½ cup sorghum
½ cup millet
¼ cup almond
¼ cup buckwheat
1 cup tapioca starch

or

1½ cup rice
¼ cup sorghum
¼ cup potato flour
1 cup tapioca starch

Oh, Sandy. I love you’re rich, diverse character. You change at whim and with the seasons and whatnot.

Note: Be especially careful when selecting your starches and flours as the labeling can get a little confusing: for instance, tapioca starch is often called tapioca flour, but it's just starch; similarly, arrowroot flour and arrowroot starch are the same thing; however, potato starch and potato flour are sometimes used interchangeably, but potato flour is made of whole cooked and dehydrated potatoes and it definitely cannot be used as a starch in gluten free baking.

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