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A week ago we purchased a large amount of various Bob’s Red Mill flours to try out in the house. DH and I are not gluten intolerant but we wonder if we have a slight sensitivity to gluten. I once read that around 60% of Americans are gluten intolerant but just don’t get tested. So, we are experimenting with a few different types of low gluten flours and some that have none at all. I’m a serious yeast bread lover so turning over to gluten free bread is really rather hard (much harder than turning vegan and giving up my beloved cheese). Taking into consideration that Bob’s Red Mill has over 450 different types of products on the market, I’m sure we will find something that works for us. With as many options as that, I’m sure we will find something that we love and can work along better with our stomachs. At least one would hope, right?

For a week now I have been thinking about making some gluten-free artisan bread (fancy word for hard French bread). It has been luring over me though and I haven’t found any good recipes that contain only a few different types of ingredients. The two flours we purchased millet and kamut, were not 100% gluten-free but are stated to be lower on the gluten % index. Both have high levels of protein content so it is definitely an advantage to test out more natural flours that have been used for hundreds of years. In fact according to Wikipedia.org, kamut has been noted as being found in “tombs of the ancient Egyptian Pharaohs”. If it was good enough for King Tut, it’s good enough for my king.

A little skeptical of my baking skills, I used three different types of whole grain, stone ground flours. I used millet, kamut, and also regular whole grain flour that wasn’t processed in any way. Also, I tried using xanthan gum for the first time just to assure that the grains stuck together since there were a lot of ground whole grains together. Putting everything together was just like other breads until I got to the kneading, turned out to be a bit more sticky than normal but doable. It didn’t even make that much of a mess- always a plus. After baking, I was surprised that it still didn’t make a mess when slicing. It was slightly crusty on the outside and soft was pillows inside. It was the perfect marriage of flours and tastes. It’s been out of the oven for less than 30 minutes and I have already had two pieces – oops. Nom nom nom

2c kamut flour
1 c millet flour
1 c whole wheat flour
2 tsp salt
½ tsp xanthan gum
3 tbsp olive oil
*¼ c fig butter (I used Trader Joe’s Fig Butter)
1 ½ c warm water
3 tsp dry active yeast

1. Mix all the wet ingredients together in a large bowl.
2. Mix all the dry ingredients together in a medium bowl.
3. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredient bowl. Mix well and knead for about 5 minutes or so.
4. Shape the dough into whatever loaf type you prefer – I chose a “log” style loaf for sandwiches.
5. Let the shaped loaf rise for about 1.5 hours in a warm, draft free location.
6. Preheat oven to 350. Bake for about 30 minutes.

*Most recipes called for some sugar or honey to sweeten the whole wheat grain breads. As I was trying to toss everything together I instantly thought about using a natural sweetener that is also 100% vegan (some people don’t use honey since it comes from bees). Although we use honey from a friendly locally grown person we know, it would be nice to try other things. So in the spirit of using healthy, natural ingredients I thought about soaking some figs or dates and making syrup. Bread was on my mind so I made this loaf with fig butter from Trader Joe’s that is basically just ground up figs. Close enough for now… haha You can substitute brown rice syrup, maple syrup, honey, or even regular sugar. Tell me what you like to put in your breads, I’d love to know!

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