Saturday, August 11, 2012

Sweet Rice Flour Blend with Almond Flour

metal scoop with baking flour
Since going wheat-free, I've mostly been using almond flour for my baking. I have to admit I get a bit tired of it. While it's perfect in some recipes (such as my Double Chocolate Banana Muffins), almond flour has a tendency to overpower the flavors of other ingredients. It's not ideal in certain recipes. For example, I tried making a pizza crust with almond flour and all we could taste was the crust. It completely overpowered the flavor of the sauce, cheese and toppings. Recently I tried making a blueberry coffee cake out of almond flour and I may as well not have even put the blueberries in, I couldn't taste them one bit.

I've been searching for the perfect gluten-free all-purpose flour blend that is tolerable for fructose malabsorption and that has good taste and texture. I started out with sorghum blends, but we didn't care for the flavor. I made a yeast bread that we could toast and all we could think to describe it was "smoky." I also have issues with my baked goods turning out dry and crumbly when using the sorghum blends. Even using xanthan gum. I finally figured out that I could replace some of the AP flour with almond flour and get a moist, neutral-flavored baked good.

I decided to try something other than a sorghum blend and came across this fabulous recipe using sweet rice flour. Sweet rice flour is also known as "glutinous rice flour." It is stickier than other flours and requires less xanthan gum. I like that this blend has the xanthan gum built right in. The flavor is also very neutral and it's a beautiful, brilliant white.

metal scoop with baking flour
I decided to try replacing some the the AP flour with almond flour to increase the protein and moisture contents. It works amazingly well! I found that I can replace up to a third of the sweet rice flour blend with almond flour, and it makes a wonderful baked good. For example, if a recipe calls for 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, I use 1 cup sweet rice flour blend and 1/2 cup almond flour. The touch of almond flour gives the baked good a wonderful moistness without overpowering it.

I thought about mixing the almond flour directly into the sweet rice flour blend, but almond flour has to be refrigerated and I didn't want to have this big container taking up all the space in my fridge. So my future recipes will specifically call for an amount of sweet rice flour blend and an amount of almond flour. It's important to scoop the flour into the measuring cup and then level it off with the flat edge of a knife (instead of using the measuring cup as a scoop itself). I hope this blend works as well for you as it does for me! Please note I am not taking credit for this recipe. I just want to have the recipe in my blog to refer back to it for future recipes.

Sweet Rice Flour Blend
from Carol Kicinski at Epicurious.com

Ingredients
4 1/2 cups white rice flour
1 1/2 cups sweet (glutinous) rice flour
2 cups potato starch (not potato flour)
1 cup tapioca starch (also known as tapioca flour)
4 teaspoons xanthan gum

Directions
Measure each ingredient by scooping it into a measuring cup, leveling it off with a straight edge, such as the back of a knife. In a large mixing bowl, whisk all ingredients together very well until they are evenly distributed. Whisk the ingredients slowly for at least a minute or two, making sure to get to the bottom of the bowl and turning the ingredients over and over. Store in an air-tight container in your pantry.
This recipe can easily be halved, doubled, or tripled.

4 comments:

  1. I keep "following" you blog...but for some reason it never shows up in my blog list:(

    I LOVE all of your dietary changes and the new recipes! CONGRATS on your weight loss, also!!!! I am so excited for you:) And happy that you finally figured out what was going on with your body. I bet you feel great!!

    I am going to be doing some more stalking on your blog today...to catch up;)

    Jessie

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    1. Thanks Jessie! I do feel great. The blog you did on your weight loss was a big motivator for me, so thank you for that! It feels so good to be comfortable in my body.

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  2. Hi Diane,
    Thanks for sharing, I like adding almond flour in baked goods myself because I feel like it makes it more moisty and airy. I do have a question with Carol's blend, she says in the original article that she easily uses this as a substitute for wheat flour cup for cup. It does have Xanthan Gum in it but how do you use it? Do you still add Xanthan Gum in your recipes in addition to the one already in the flour mix? Thank you!

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    1. Generally, if the flour mix already has xanthan gum in it, I don't add any additional amount. Lately I've been using a white rice flour blend that does not have xanthan gum in. I then add 1/2 teaspoon per cup of flour to whatever recipe I'm making. It doesn't take much!

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