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Friday, December 5, 2014

Weighing Gluten Free Flours

I have had questions about substituting various gluten free flour blends for wheat flour in recipes, and tonight I am going to do my best to explain how I do it.
In some recipes, like coatings for meats, measuring by cup works just fine, but when you want to substitute a gluten free blend for wheat flour in a baked good, it is a whole new ball game.

Enter the digital kitchen scale...
Do you see my scale saying hello? That scale is one of my best friends when it comes to baking gluten free. I purchased this particular scale for less than $20, and it is worth it's weight in gold to me.

The important thing to know about baking with gluten free flours, is that they all have a different density, so they all weigh differently, and it is imperative to know the weights if you want your baked goods to turn out properly.
Before I figured that out, I tossed a few projects, which was beyond frustrating, and we won't even mention the cost of gluten free flours tossed out.

When I started weighing my flours, and writing down the weights of the different flours and flour blends, baking became a breeze.
I am about to drop some gluten free knowledge on you, and promise that you will be happy that you didn't play hooky today.

1 C of all-purpose wheat flour weighs 125 grams
1 C of my home made GF all-purpose blend weighs 140 grams
1 C of Krusteaz all-purpose blend weighs 125 grams
1 C of King Arthur all-purpose blend weighs 120 grams

Do you see where this is going?  If you have a scale, and know the weight of wheat flour, you can substitute a GF blend fairly easy.
Say your recipe calls for 3 cups, (375 g) of regular flour...If you are using King Arthur's blend, you would use 360g.
You put a container on your scale, tare it out and measure your flour.
If you want to figure out the weight of your own custom blend, measure and weigh it at least 6 times, and go with the average.

You also want to add xanthan or guar gum, as it binds everything together. Xanthan gum is expensive, but it will last a long time.

For pizza and bread dough, you would add 1 tsp. xanthan gum per cup of flour.

For quick breads, muffins and cakes, add 1/2 tsp. per cup of flour

For cookies and bars, add 1/4 tsp per cup of flour.

I am going to try to come up with a chart with all of the flour weights.
I have them written down inside my cooking notebook, but if I took a picture, you probably couldn't read my chicken scratch.

Does this make any sense to you?  I hope that it helps.

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