No bread is an island

...entire of itself. (With apologies to John Donne!)
I live and breathe breadmaking. I’m an evangelist who would like everyone to make his or her own bread. I want to demystify breadmaking and show it as the easy everyday craft that it is. To this end I endeavour to make my recipes as simple and as foolproof as I possibly can.

I call my blog 'No bread is an island' because every bread is connected to another bread. So a spicy fruit bun with a cross on top is a hot cross bun. This fruit dough will also make a fruit loaf - or Chelsea buns or a Swedish tea ring...
I'm also a vegan, so I have lots of vegan recipes on here - and I'm adding more all the time.

Monday, 12 October 2015


I ordered some Bob's Red Mill gluten free bread flour from my local Health Food Shop - and was astonished to find it cost £5.99 for 450g! [faints] Won't be buying that again, I'm afraid.

Stiil, I was curious to see how it performed using vegan ingredients. Here's the resulting first attempt:
Made two small loaves

 Good look crumb and a nice rise!

225g Bob's Red Mill gluten free bread flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
200ml almond milk - warmed to handhot
90ml egg replacement* - (2 tbsps gram flour + 4 tbspns - 60g - water)
1/2 teaspoon vinegar
10g fresh yeast**
30g olive oil


Mix all the dry ingredients together in a mixing bowl, scrape the flour to one side a little and crumble the fresh yeast into the gap. Add the almond milk, the gram flour mix, the vinegar and olive oil. Stir (paddle) the yeast initially, with a table knife, to dissolve it before mixing in the rest of the flour. If you’re using dried yeast I’d dissolve it in some of the almond milk in a cup before adding it to the bowl - as soon as it is dissolved, it acts exactly the same as fresh yeast.

[Try as I might, I'm unable to put that paragraph into the correct font! :( ]

Using a stiff palette knife (or a table knife), mix the dough quite vigorously into a fairly sticky dough then transfer it to the worktop. Knead it for a couple of minutes to distribute the ingredients throughout – adding a little flour if necessary to make it easy to handle, but keeping it slightly tacky.

Oil or line a small loaf tin (I used 2 very small tins, since I wanted to give one to my friend and keep one for my son), shape the dough into a log shape about as long as your tin and place it in the tin. Cover with a dry teatowel and leave on your worktop to rise. Or, place it in the oven or the microwave with a dish of hot water (and without the tea towel).

When the loaf has risen to a centimetre or so above the tin, or when you judge it has more or less doubled in size, bake in a hot oven (200/220C or gas mark 7) for around 20 minutes, turning it once after 10 minutes. The loaf should be brown on all sides.

Leave to cool on a wire rack – or position it across the loaf tin until it cools.

When slicing a loaf, especially a fresh loaf, let the knife do the work – don’t force it.

*Next time I'll simply add the gram flour with the rest of the flour, and add 60g of water with the milk. (Actually, I shall try halving the almond milk and using water instead - not sure just what the milk does in this recipe.)

**Fresh yeast can be found at a baker's shop - if bread is made on the premises. Sainsbury's will sell you 50g for 20p - at Morrison's packs can be found in the chiller cabinets and it's often given away at Asda. Tesco's (at least here in Taunton) don't want to know.

Much more gluten free info here.

1 comment:

  1. Hello, Paul. Not sure you will remember me, but you and I corresponded via email in January 2007 (New Year's Day, to be exact) about salt rising bread. You tried (with success) making it, but decided upon trying it the second day that you didn't like it so much. Have you tried making it since then? I am writing a book about salt rising bread which will be out in June 2016. Was just wondering if you would consider writing a short blurb about salt rising bread for us to put on the inside cover of the book? I hope all is well with you and that I will hear from you soon. Best regards, Susan (Brown)