It's a little over a week before Thanksgiving. Now's the time to search for reliable gluten-free holiday recipes. Only issue is, they're not always easy to come across! Honestly, this recipe is reliable. I've made these rolls about 6 times already. If you're worried about your non gluten-free friends disapproving, fear not. I baked them again last night to accompany a tasty butternut squash soup, and my husband (who is usually on the paleo diet) broke his diet yesterday and ate 3 of these in under 10 minutes!
Yes, this recipe calls for quite a few different flours, but that's the secret. The combination works perfectly to create a moist dinner roll that isn't heavy and dry, like some gluten-free baked goods can be. I've tried substituting things here and there, and the only thing that really works is using teff flour in place of almond meal.
I've discovered that using too much sorghum flour produces a funny after taste. Using too much almond meal (or rice flour) creates a gritty texture. Too much potato starch and you've got a really heavy roll, that probably won't roll ;). Too much starch, actually, also creates a heavy roll, which is why I don't use both tapioca starch and potato starch here. I've also tried using just flax seed in place of xanthan, but the dough doesn't rise as nicely and the texture is sticky. Can you tell that my kitchen doubles as a chem lab? Baking gluten-free really does make me feel like a mad scientist sometimes. Throw a rambunctious toddler and a 3 month old who won't nap into the mix, and you can add emphasis to the mad part ;). It gets pretty crazy. But that's half the fun ;).
Next...a traditional gluten-free stuffing that uses these rolls.
OH, and if you're feeling really carby, double this recipe and use half the dough to make cinnamon rolls! Totally works (I tried it). Actually, I first got the idea to use corn flour for these rolls after trying The Gluten-Free Girl's cinnamon rolls (yum!).
(Large) Bowl 1:
1 cup white rice flour
1/4 cup sweet sorghum flour
1/4 cup almond meal
1/2 cup brown rice flour
1/2 cup potato starch
1/4 cup corn flour
1 3/4 tsp xanthan gum
1 tsp sea salt
2 tablespoons maple syrup or honey
3 whole eggs
3 Tbsp olive oil butter (you can substitute all oil if making casein-free; I've tried it, it works!)
(Small) Bowl 2:
1/4 cup and 1/8 cup warm water (microwave for 30 seconds)
1/2 cup warm apple cider or cloudy apple juice
2 1/4 tsp yeast (fast acting)
3 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon melted butter
1/2 tablespoon honey
sprinkle of bob's rice cereal or gf oatmeal
Start off by combining everything dry. Stir well. THEN create a well in the middle of the flour where you can add the rest of the wet ingredients listed under "Bowl 1". Set aside. In a smaller bowl, combine the apple cider, sugar and warm water. Add the yeast, let sit for 5 minutes. Lastly, combine everything together, fold together until uniform.
Get a bowl of warm water, set this aside. Line a cookie sheet or casserole dish, coat with butter. Now begin shaping the rolls, using water (or melted butter, yummy) to wet your hands before and between shaping the balls of dough (this works better than flour, helps the rolls turn golden).
Use a pastry brush to brush with melted butter/honey (you can also use maple syrup), then sprinkle with cereal (also tasty left alone without the cereal).
Let rise half an hour in preheated 200 degree oven (the oven should be off while they're rising though :).
Finally, bake for 20-25 minutes at 375, no preheating, just turn the oven on while they're still in there after rising.
Makes 16-20 rolls.