Saturday, April 14, 2007

And Then There Were Two

I had been living with two celiac roommates this year and so I've been encouraged to bake a lot of gluten-free treats lately. This really isn't a problem for me because I have been interested in experimenting with GF baking from scratch for a while now. And, I had guinea pigs for my experimentation.

I know I say this almost every time I bake anything GF, but most GF baked goods out there are terrible. Grainy, dry, tasteless or way too sweet, dense, depressing, obviously different, boo, boo, boo. I don't see a reason for it. I don't think that GF baking is so out of touch with food science that all a celiac should settle for is a dry, coarse, grainy, dense, overly sweet piece of cake. Or cheesecake with no bottom.

And so there was experimentation. And successful experiments, too! Just do a tag search for gluten free and it will all come up.

And then one day it happened. One of my roommates fell in love and decided to shack up with the boyfriend.

But, what about us? Just kidding. We are happy for her. We just miss her, that's all.

We decided to have a last supper, so to speak. My other roommate makes a killer lasagna based on her Grandmother's recipe from the Old Country. We ask for it all the time. So our little dinner together consisted of the killer lasagna, some fresh spinach for roughage, and this no-knead sorghum bread that I had baked.

GF dinner with the girls

April 7, 2007
Name of bread: No-Knead Sorghum Bread
Occasion: The Last Supper
Constituents: pretty self explanatory

I have been a recent fan of The Gluten-Free Girl's blog. I have her in my feed and I read her every time she posts. She lives up in Seattle, recently got diagnosed with celiac disease which prompted her into figuring out how to cook or herself, which awoke a deep love for food and cooking that led to her meeting The Chef and getting a book deal. In a nutshell.

She often posts recipes for the foods she has been cooking and the treats she has been baking, and as I was looking through her archives last month I found she had figured out a GF recipe for the no-knead bread.

Did you all hear about or try the no-knead bread? The story and the recipe hit the New York Times back in November 2006, and the baking world was a buzz.

The One and Only Rose Levy Beranbaum chimed in with her thoughts and a month later, her version.

Breadbasketcase made a version of it in December, and another in January.

So when I saw the GF no-knead bread recipe, I thought it was high time I try it.

I am not much of a bread baker, because I have no portion control with really good bread. I CANNOT have all this fresh bread that I made myself lying about the apartment. Even if I freeze most of the loaves, they will all be there, in my freezer, begging for me to pull them out, toast them up, and eat with butter and jam. Or cheese.

There is just no winning.

So I am not a bread baker.

This bread, however, I could bake because there would be two other people eating it along with me.

It was a really easy bread to put together, and because there isn't any gluten, you really don't have to let it rise for very long. The little lumpy dough got dumped into my Le Creuset pot and 30 minutes later, there was a little lumpy loaf of bread.

GF sorghum bread--sliced

The bread was better the next day, which isn't what The Gluten-Free Girl thinks. She advocated eating it all up right away, as it doesn't hold up well after a day. We found that to not be true. It was more dense than we were hoping, and very whole-wheaty tasting, and really good with butter and honey. It did the job, but we were hoping for something a little more similar to a glutinous bread.

GF sorghum bread--sliced

The dinner with my roommates was yummy and decadent. The three of us can talk till the cows come home about our hopes, dreams, and hearts. The boyfriend came over and the four of us split one of those tiny GF apple pies from Whole Foods, with whipped cream and Zetta's caramel sauce. Good times were had by all.

GF apple pie from Food Whole