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Gluten-free Bread and Cakes from Your Breadmaker: With Full Details for Dairy or Lactose Intolerance (Real Food) Paperback – 5 Aug 2009
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About the Author
Carolyn started her career at the top working as Head Chef for a restaurant but eventually switched to journalism where, in 1977, she was able to combine her love of food with her flair for words when she became Deputy Cookery Editor for Woman magazine. Over the years she has freelanced for numerous women's, parenting, education, food and lifestyle magazines as well as for PR companies specialising in food, nutrition and health. She has written over 40 books and has taught both cookery and journalism at further education level. She has written many books for Foulsham and sold over 92,000 books in 2006 alone.
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I then tried the moist loaf several times and being very exact with the recipe but for a 'large' loaf as described in the book it came out about 3" tall and did not rise much (yes, I opened a new packet of yeast in case it was that, it wasn't) it also had again a smell and taste that I can't stomach. I then tweaked it as I found it was the cornflour and the dry milk powder giving it the taste I don't like and substituted the milk powder for soya flour. Again, still no joy with that recipe.
I then went on to the sandwich loaf. Getting closer, very, very soft and the taste was much better (with milk powder omitted and no soya flour as it gave the bread a smell and taste that literally made my stomach turn! An eggy, wet dog smell and taste) . However, there seems to be a major error in the recipe with the amount of water needed as the loaf turned out very soggy and sticky and with an undercooked texture. I then remade it with 480ml of water instead of the 550ml in the recipe, put it on the gluten free setting to let it knead and rise then stopped the machine and set it to bake only for 1hr and 20mins as the 55mins longest setting was just not enough. It was cooked properly this time and had made a large loaf as there was no knock down and second rise as when using the basic setting as per the recipe but still far too much water as it was still very sticky and stodgy. This could well be my perfect loaf as I love the taste, just not the sticky, stodgy texture! If any one knows the correct amount of water please do leave a comment as I have made this recipe tweaking it with each one trying to get it right, I must have made it 10 times by now and I'm close to tearing my hair out not to mention the expense in ingredients wasted.
It's such a shame as this seems to be the only gluten free bread book for breadmakers that is suitable for a UK market, although is quite dated now, maybe an updated version from the author would be a welcome idea!
As with other reviewers, depending on your palate, some of the recipes need a more generous use of seasoning/spices, particularly if baking for someone who is sensitive to the taste of rice or soy flour. Several of the cake recipes would benefit from adding vanilla/lemon/lime or orange extract. The chocolate cake recipes are improved by the addition of chocolate extract.
I specifically bought this book because it stressed the use of a breadmaker and I'm interested in reducing my fuel bills by using the breadmaker rather than a full-sized oven as well as reducing heat sources in the kitchen over Summer. However, most of the tastier Speciality Bread recipes just use the breadmaker to mix the dough before removing the dough to shape it and finish in the oven. It's not a deal breaker but it does reduce the usefulness of the book.
Likewise, the extended title indicates that there are "full details for dairy or lactose intolerance" although there aren't. The recipes do not remind the reader to consult pg 18 for recommended substitutions and in a fair number of the recipes, the substitutions might be unpalatable as the amount of (say) soya flour would be so substantial as to alter the flavour profile. The moistness of the recipes may also depend on whether (say) cow/sheep/goat/soy yoghurt is used and it would be useful to have some notes that suggest how to test/adapt for this.
Overall, it's a useful book but be prepared to make extensive notes as you go to record useful tweaks for the next time of preparation and expect to adjust the seasoning in many of the recipes.
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