One of the challenges of gluten-free baking is that wheat flour can’t be replaced by any one type of wheat/gluten-free flour. You have to use different types of flours in combination to reproduce the same taste, texture, and color of wheat-based baked goods.
There are many different kinds of gluten-free mix that you can use for different recipes. There’s a section in the Gluten-Free Quick & Easy book called “What Role Do These Ingredients Play?” The section explains how different gluten-free flours adds to the taste/texture/color of baked goods. That’s very useful information, so I’m posting a few pointers here.
- cornstarch: makes the crust look smoother and less ragged
- potato flour: adds chewiness
- potato starch: lightens dough by making it airier
- soy lecithin: binds oil and water together, makes a finer texture
- tapioca flour/starch: helps with browning and makes a crispier crust
- xanthan/guar gum: prevents crumbling, thickens the batter slightly (cannot omit in gluten-free baking)
- dairy products: smoothes the crust
- protein (milk, nuts, eggs): feeds the yeast
- eggs: help baked goods rise, binds oil and water together, improves texture
- acid (vinegar, lemon): boosts the leavening action of yeast
Understanding the properties and characteristics of these ingredients will help me (and you) to create new gluten-free recipes from scratch!