Storing Your Homemade Gluten Free Sourdough Bread
I always recommend storing your baked goods at room temperature in a sealed container, and this gluten free sourdough bread is no exception. The simple truth is that if you put baked goods into the refrigerator, they will dry out. You can put them into the freezer when they are fully cooled, but they will need to be warmed or toasted before enjoying again.
This gluten free sourdough bread is still soft and delicious after a few days in a zip top bag with the air squeezed out of it and stored at room temperature. Depending on the size of your loaf, you may need to cut it in half to get it to fit into a gallon sized bag, but other than that, its easy to just seal it up and grab a slice whenever you like!
If youd like to bake a regular gluten free artisan loaf without the sourdough starter, check out my Gluten Free Artisan Bread Recipe. And of course, my award-winning gfJules Gluten Free Bread Mix works well for any kind of sandwich bread, oven or bread machine, hamburger/hot dog bun or baguette recipe! Click on the description tab to find links to all these gluten free bread recipes or use the search bar above.
So lets get down to baking great gluten free sourdough, shall we?
What Is A Preferment
A preferment is a mixture of fresh flour, water, and some active starter left to ferment before mixing everything into a final dough. Preferments help adjust the flavor balance by making it more or less sour.
Theres a whole science to it. You can make alter the flavor of your sourdough loaf with the strength of your starter, the choice of flour you use in the levain, the temperature of the ferment, and the amount of time you let it ferment.
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Timeline For Making Sourdough
- The night before you plan to startdiscard all but about 1/3 of your active gluten free sourdough starter and feed it 100 grams of whatever flour youve been feeding it and 100-120 grams of water . Stir to combine and set on the counter until the next morning.
- The next daymix the dough ingredients together using one cup of the starter. Ive tried it in the stand mixer, as well as by hand. Ive found the stand mixer to work better, but if you dont have one you definitely can make great bread without it. Cover the dough and put it in a warm, draft-free area to rise until almost doubled in size, which could take 3-4 hours or longer.
- That afternoon or eveningplace the risen dough in the fridge. This isnt done in normal gluten baking, but for us its so much easier to shape when chilled properly. I like to let mine hang out in the fridge at least overnight, but sometimes Ill leave it go for days . The longer you leave it, the more sour it will taste, so be aware.
- The following daybaking day!!
What Is Sourdough Bread
Sourdough bread is a bread made without any commercial yeast. Instead, the yeast is substituted with a live fermented culture of flour and water, also known as a sourdough starter.
When I think of sourdough bread, Im transported to a local restaurant eating a sandwich on their freshly baked sourdough without a care in the world. Slightly tangy, chewy textured, and a nice crisp crust, their sourdough was so good I could have eaten it plain.
Could we possibly have that same taste and texture in a gluten free sourdough? All things are possible in the gluten free world now , so why not something as easy as sourdough?
After taking my first bite of my first loaf of sourdough, I shut my eyes for a minute just to savor the flavor and the chew. Its like I was back in Bakers Crust eating that same bread again. Then I opened my eyes and looked again at the bread I had just made.
I was in an alternate reality because it sure looked just like the bread from that local restaurant, not at ALL like a gluten free version. And the texture was spot on with what I remember! Isnt it crazy how memories of food we used to eat can stick so vividly in our minds, especially because we can no longer have those things?!?!
I promise youre going to love this bread, and any other breads you decide to make sourdough. Once I made one loaf, I was addicted and couldnt seem to stop baking ALL THE SOURDOUGH!!
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Alternate Version: Bread Pan
We created this recipe following a very similar process as our classic wheat sourdough. Plus, we already had all the supplies. However, gluten-free bread has a tendency to spread out and go more flat than gluten-based bread. Weve found our gluten-free sourdough boule loaves cooked in a combo cooker have satisfactory rise. If you already have a combo cooker or a Dutch oven at home, give this recipe a try and see what you think!
Yet if the open-pan boule method leaves your loaves more flat than you desire , you can also bake gluten-free sourdough in a classic tall-sided bread pan. The added structure creates a taller loaf. I am going to write up instructions for that method and post it ASAP! Essentially, it is the same ingredients, preparation, and cook time as below except the dough bulk ferments and proofs right in the bread baking pan rather than a bowl and banneton.
Reasons To Try This Vegan Gluten Free Sourdough Bread Recipe
- The slow fermentation process allows bacteria to fully break down the carbohydrates which basically pre-digests the bread making it easier to digest.
- No artificial additives, preservatives, no high starch flours or gums, no oil, no nut flours, its dairy free, soy free, refined sugar free and yeast free.
- Easy to make and easy to store for longer periods of time just throw some slices in your toaster whenever you want a sandwich.
- This sourdough starter is very easy to care for and maintain. I store it in the refrigerator, feeding it just once a week.
- Because of the acids and bacteria naturally present in the starter, sourdough breads tend to have a longer shelf life than their commercial yeast-based counterparts.
- Enjoy high quality fresh bread without causing inflammation or digestive issues.
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Step : Proof Overnight
Next, were going to transfer the dough into the proofing basket, aka banneton. Proofing is essentially the final rise. After much experimentation, we have found the best results with our gluten-free sourdough bread when the room-temperature bulk fermentation phase is followed by a long cold proof in the refrigerator. This is almost exactly how we bake our wheat-based sourdough bread, with one exception: time. Wheat is more forgiving and can sit for up over 24 hours in cold proof. On the other hand, gluten-free sourdough peaks and falls faster, so I suggest a 7-12 hour cold proof instead.
By putting the dough into a banneton, it helps it form and hold the perfect loaf shape. A banneton proofing basket is made from woven material, which allows extra air into the loaf adding to the rise. Last but not least, using a banneton for proofing makes the transfer into the hot baking pan a bit easier. If you do not have a bannteon, simply transfer the dough into a smaller bowl (a loaf-size bowl that will easily fit in the fridge.
To transfer the dough into the banneton:
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How To Turn Any Of My Breads Into Sourdough
This gluten free artisan sourdough bread is just the beginning to a whole new gluten free world. There are many other breads that can be made using a sourdough starter instead of yeast with simple steps:
- Use 140 grams of gluten free sourdough starter as a replacement for the yeast in the recipe.
- Reduce the flour in the recipe by 70 grams and the liquid in the recipe also by 70 grams. However, if adding anything else to the dough, such as nuts, seeds, dried fruit, etc, dont reduce the water content at all. I like to pre-soak my nuts and seeds overnight so they dont soak up much of the water in the dough, but I still leave the liquid content the same as some water will inevitably be lost.
- Add more time to bulk fermentation, as well as proofing. Sourdough always takes longer to rise than instant yeast.
- For more of an open crumb, add 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda when kneading the dough before shaping. Its not conventional, but we cant always do the conventional thing when baking gluten free.
Hopefully your starter is bubbling away and you can begin to make your wonderful gluten free sourdough loaf soon!
Baking Gluten Free Sourdough Choosing The Right Pan
As you can see at the top of this post, there are many different options when it comes to baking your gluten free sourdough bread. If you prefer to make an artisan-style loaf, no bread pan is needed.
For that method, I found that lining a large glass bowl with oiled parchment sprinkled with more gfJules Flour was the best way to support the bread as it rose. Once risen, I simply lifted up on the parchment and laid it out onto a baking sheet for the bread to bake.
The bread will take more of a free-form shape, but its really beautiful and impressive!
Using either the artisan or bread pan method, you may choose to dust the top of the loaf with gfJules Flour before baking for a more rustic look, or simply brush olive oil onto the top, or both. I like the look of the flour with the golden finish of the olive oil in combination, so most of my loaves pictured are done that way.
Allow the dough to rise covered with oiled plastic wrap to help keep the loaf warm and moist. I like putting the loaf into a preheated 200F oven, then turning the oven off, but turning the light on. I do this with the bread rising in either the bowl or the oiled and floured bread pan.
You can allow the bread to rise here for a minimum of 1 1/2 hours or up to one day if youre baking egg-free.
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How To Make Gluten Free Sourdough Bread
Line a 9″ x 5″ baking pan with parchment paper. If your oven has a bread proofing setting, turn it on. If it does not, turn your oven onto the lowest temperature it will register.
Mix the wet ingredients in a small mixing bowl. Measure out the dry ingredients into the bowl of a stand mixer and use the paddle attachment to mix the dry ingredients thoroughly before adding the wet ingredients to the stand mixer bowl.
Mix the dough on the lowest speed for 5 minutes. Don’t skip this step. It’s very important to mix the dough very well and this step also helps to incorporate some air into the dough. If you do not have a stand mixer use a hand held electric mixer. The batter will be thick.
Pour the dough into the pan and use a spatula to smooth the top. Cover with plastic and let rise in the oven with the bread proofing setting ON. If you don’t have that setting, at this point, turn the oven OFF.
Allow the dough to rise 3 Â½ to 4 hours or until it reaches the top of the pan.
Remove the dough from the oven. Turn the oven on to 375°F. When it has come to temperature, score the top of the loaf with a razor or sharp knife to help improve the oven spring and give the loaf a decorative touch.
Bake the loaf for 60 minutes. Remove it from the pan and parchment paper immediately. If you do not remove the parchment paper, the bottom of the bread will become soggy. Allow the bread to cool on a cooling rack completely before cutting.
What Kind Of Rise Can You Expect
Since this bread is made with a very simple, liquid sourdough starter, it will not rise like the breads in Bakes Bread. If you have that book, turn to the opening section of the sourdough chapter. Youll find a photo of sourdough bread dough that literally popped like a can of biscuits when I opened it after its refrigerator rise.
This recipe is for a batter-style bread, not our bread recipes that call for the more complex gluten free bread flour so it has only one rise. And produces a more ordinary loaf. But when youre baking with limits, like we always are, ordinary can be amazing, especially when it comes to fresh homemade bread.
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