Hearing the words “Gluten Free” is often associated with thoughts of annoying picky eaters, distasteful food and terrible, terrible bread.
It seems the words ‘Gluten Free’ has created a lot of awareness over the past few years. Not just coeliac disease but the health benefits of a gluten free diet – but I will not go into this now. I just wanted to share my experiences and how I now find gluten free baking nutritious, really easy and delicious!
Last year I lived in France for five months and undeniably ate french baguette every single day. During this time I had no energy, I was grumpy and had a sore stomach and headache everyday. I’ve had these symptoms before but never as intense as on this daily bread diet.
I came to Sweden and went for a blood test. The test was positive for gluten and I was sent for a gastroscopy where they confirmed gluten was the problem, I was then sent to a dietitian who told me what I now couldn’t eat. Was it much help? No.
It’s quite a shock when you’re first diagnosed and you feel very limited in what you can and cannot eat. The gluten free aisle products are not very tempting as nothing is organic and it seems everything contains E numbers and modified starch.
So what is gluten? It is a protein (or rather a set of proteins) found in wheat. When these proteins are mixed with liquid the molecules interact and form the “glue” to hold your bread dough or cake mix together.
It has taken years for passionate bakers, who have been experiencing with countless different gluten free flours, to mimic the characteristics of wheat flour. They have discovered the closest thing to wheat flour is to use a mix, and the correct amounts, of many gluten free flours.
My job is to bake for the cafe at Horuddens Trädgård. I spent many hours researching how to bake gluten free and only attempted a few recipes, however I wasn’t confident enough to attempt something like gluten free “kanelbulle” or sponge cake that would be suitable for the cafe.
In order to learn more I started looking for some course in gf baking, but more on that in my next blog!