Saturday 16 January 2016

Don't Forget to Stop and Smell the ....FLOURS?

Gluten Free Flour, the bane of every Celiac's gluten free life. The question I get asked most is 'What Gluten Free Flour do you use?" And the answer has changed over the years. I have tried mixing my own, I have tried every single commercial one out there and I have some favorites. To save you from spending your retirement fund on flour, I thought I would share my vast knowledge. 

The first thing to remember, is that you HAVE to add Xanthum or Guar gum to your flour. I usually add about a teaspoon or two. It doesn't have to be exact. Even if the mix HAS Guar gum in it, I still add it because it never feels like enough. Guar gum is much cheaper than Xanthum gum and I have never seen a difference. 

Another thing? Make sure it is a cup for cup replacement. That means, you can use any glutened recipe and just swap out the flour. 

Do you want to mix your own flour? Don't. Just Don't. There are lots of commercial options out there that will work much better, store better, give you a better product and be...drumroll...cheaper. Cheaper cheaper cheaper. That's what we are going for here. 

Pick your flour like you pick your hookers. Cheap but effective.

If you refuse to listen to me and want to mix your own flour, get the book "Gems of Gluten Free Baking" by Wendy Turnbull HERE. It is the best gluten free baking book out there and she has a great recipe for a GF flour mix. However, each one of her batches has to be refrigerated and costs about two dollars a cup. And that's Canadian, so like eight million for everyone else.

Are you over mixing your own flour? Good. Now get your pocket book and go to the store. Survey your options. Remain calm. Let's begin.

Option One: An organic mix like Red Mill. I like Red Mill products in general. I don't like how expensive it is and how small the bags are. Like, I am making cookies, for people, not fairies, give me a bag of flour! It works, but I find the end result to be a little tough. If you are insistent on a organic product, than this is the one for you. I figure, if I'm eating a cake, it's going to be shitty for me no matter what. Your choice.
 Option Two: Costco. Ahhhh the mecca of stocking food for the zombie apocalypse. Costco has a decent gluten free flour from Cloud Nine. I like it. It comes in a nice big bag, it's not expensive and it behaves very much like 'normal people' flour. The only thing I'm not crazy about is the coloring. I like the texture but the flour isn't white. It has this grey color to it, which is fine if you are making a cake or something but my sugar cookies looked a little sad. Overall though, a totally awesome choice.

Option Three: Bulk Barn (not pictured). I'm not mad at the Bulk Barn flour, it can feel a little gritty though. It's not my first choice, it's the cheapest though so if you are just using it to thicken sauces or in a batter, go for it. I wouldn't use it for baking cream puffs though. 

Option Four: President's Choice Gluten Free Flour. Ladies and Gentlemen, we have a winner. Slap a crown on this bitch and start taking advantage of her good looks. This flour is great. It's bright white, soft and can make damn near anything. The President's Choice Gluten Free Flour is easy to work with, and people can not tell the difference between my baking and a glutened version of it. The ONLY thing I don't like is that it could come in a bigger package, that's it. I love it.

So there you have it. Your fascinating flour review for the day. Now go bake something and send it to me. Now. Go. I mean it. Now.