Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Gluten-Free Holiday Dinner Rolls

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

For topping:
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.


Marysol said...

Well, fancy seeing you here :) I've missed you.

The rolls look light and delicious. And I'm suddenly feeling 'carby.'

grace said...

these look really good, sophie--one would never guess they were gluten free!

kristin said...

What a fantastic looking roll! One question, with the white rice flour, is that the standard white rice flour (such as Bob's Red Mill) or is it the sweet white rice (sometimes called glutinous white rice)?

Sophie said...

Marysol: Good to hear from you :)! Yes, I've been gone for awhile. My first baby kept me busy then I had another one this past August :).

Grace: Thank you, wonderful compliment!

Kristin: It is Bob's regular white rice flour :). Thanks for stopping by!

Susan W said...

These look yummy. I have everything but the corn flour. Could I use cornmeal? Possibly run it through my magic bullet? Thanks!

Sophie said...

HI Susan,
I've never tried it but it sounds like it may work :). Corn flour is very fine and light, about as fine as rice flour, so that's the texture you're looking for (I like the flavor it imparts, gives things more of a sweet than savory flavor). Good luck! Let me know how they turn out :).

Susan W. said...

Thanks Sophie! I'm going to try them this afternoon.

Susan W. said...

I think I'll give it a try today. I'm thinking a big pot of soup and these rolls for dinner.

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for your posts! My husband is gluten free, and I am trying to create a gluten free thanksgiving.
I tried making the rolls today with C4C, and it did not work so well. Could you (or anyone) tell me how many cups of flour to use, and if I still need the xanthan gum?

Also, do you think they would work being made in a muffin tin?

Thanks do much, I am new to the gluten free world, and really wanted to make these and show my family and friends that you can have it all!

Susan W said...

Hey Sophie, I found that I had masa flour which is very fine so I used it in the rolls. They turned out perfect! When I ask my husband if he tried one he said "No, I ate two! It's a keeper." Guess they were a hit! Thanks so much!

Sophie said...

Susan: Thanks for letting me know :). Glad it worked out.

Anonymous: What do you mean by C4C? Cup for cup? Did you use a special flour blend? I've never tried making these with any other flour (if using just one). Sorry it didn't work out that way! I know it can be kind of overwhelming baking gluten free, but I've found that compiling a stash of different types of flours really helps. Some health food stores sell these flours in bulk, so you can buy just a little of each one and figure out which ones you like best.

Sophie said...

Anonymous: Just looked up C4C. I had no idea it was a gluten-free flour blend :). Must be new? Anyhow, I'm not sure how this recipe would work with that. It looks like it was made to be used with substituting all purpose flour? I'm assuming it has xanthan gum in it, but I can't find what other flours it contains. I've found that a lot of these types of flours contain some combination of tapioca starch (sometimes expandex), potato starch and white rice flour. I've tried making rolls using just those flours and they come out a little heavier/with a different texture. Also, it's likely that C4C also already contains some kind of gum (xanthan or guar gum). Hope that helps!

Oh, and I don' see why making these rolls in a tin wouldn't work. Good luck!