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Recommendations for good wheat-free breadmakers

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Sue Hoey's picture
Sue Hoey

Recommendations for good wheat-free breadmakers

I am looking to buy a breadmaker now that one of my young sons is wheat intolerant.  I expect to use Spelt flour - and any other flours that are easy to get hold of you might care to recommend... but actually I am wondering if anyone can recommend a good breadmaker for making wheat free bread?

 

Thanks

proth5's picture
proth5

the Zojirushi Virtuoso and although I have not used this cycle - it does have a "gluten free" cycle (and the booklet contains some recipes).  This is more oriented towards making bread that contains ingredients like rice flour and things like Xanthan gum which one typically associates with "gluten free".

Spelt handles "kind of" like wheat  and some machines (the Virtuoso included) have adjustable kneading cycles to make up for that difference.  What will be important is finding the right formulas for a bread machine that don't contain wheat flour.  I haven't seen many bread machine formulas for  spelt or 100% rye flours.  I'm sure someone else - maybe even on this board - has.

I'll make that standard disclaimer that of course, you don't need a bread machine to make wheat free bread (especially if you can use rye and spelt) - but I'll also add that I've enjoyed the heck out of mine and if you want to - you can do more with it than one might think.

Some people have had troubles with the Virtuoso - but mine has been a little champ.

Hope this helps.

GAPOMA's picture
GAPOMA

My daughter is wheat intolerant too (has been for 8+ years) and it's an odd condition.  She can have gluten, but not wheat.  I've been making a 100% rye loaf for her for a number of years now and that works fine for her.  I've tried spelt for her, but she can't tolerate it.  In fact we've tried just about every kind of flour you can imagine. :)  Like most GF bakers, I've got a pantry full of different types of flours.  We've tried a number of different GF recipes, but the one she likes the most is the 100% rye.  It seems to have the most bread-like rise, texture and moisture as compared to most GF breads.

I personally like spelt.  Since I bought a 10-lb bag, I've tried it in several "wheated" breads (wheat/spelt mixtures), and I've make 100% spelt loaves too.  I like the nutty flavor, and it handles a lot like a whole wheat/rye cross.  (Not as sticky as rye, but not as "glutenous" as whole wheat; kind of in the middle.)  

I've never tried a GF (or spelt) loaf in my bread machine; I always make them by hand.  So I'm not sure how spelt would do in a bread machine.  Also, if your son is like my daughter he may not tolerate spelt.  You'll just have to try if you haven't already.

Good Luck!!

- Greg

jcdancer's picture
jcdancer

You mentioned you make 100% Rye bread.  Is this in your bread machine?  If so,  can you give me your recipe?   I've been making Spelt bread, but would like a change.  Thanks.

Sue Hoey's picture
Sue Hoey

Hi, I would love your spelt recipe.  I don't have time/inclination to do all the trials that others suggest!!  Do you have a receipe that you know pretty much works?!

Sorry I can't help you with the rye bread request, I still haven't got round to doing any breadmaking as looking for a fool proof recipe.

Thanks

Sue

GAPOMA's picture
GAPOMA

Definitely NOT in a bread machine.  100% rye breads are ... not like making bread at all.  Someone once posted that the first thing you need to do when making a 100% rye bread is forget EVERYTHING you know about making bread.  I think this was the best advice I got for making this loaf.  It's like working with wall repair joint compound.  Very wet, almost no body, yet so sticky you have a hard time getting it off of anything it touches.  You basically have to pour it into bread pans, and the pans need to be thinner in width (like Pullman pans) to help support the bread.  When fully cooked, it comes out of the oven looking great, but without support can fall like a rock.  Mini Oven on this web site has the best recipes.

I can't imagine it would ever work in a bread machine.

mini_maggie's picture
mini_maggie

The trick is only two rises, and most bread machine cycles have three.  So you want a machine with either a gluten free cycle with only two rises or a self-program option.

This link has lots of great tips for baking with spelt, including breadmaking tips.  http://bake-with-spelt.com/PDF/Baking_with_Spelt_Tips_and_Recipes.pdf  I think I found this link on the Fresh Loaf somewhere, so my apologies to whoever the original poster was, I can't remember!  The bread machine recipe I used was NOT the one from this link, but from a bread machine cookbook, and my loaf looked WAY better than the one on the pdf - Like a normal loaf with at least some spring.

The Coles notes version is:

- only one rise after mixing your dough and one rise after forming

- allow to rise LESS than you would a wheat dough (rather than rise until doubled, allow only 1.5 - 1.75 increase in volume if you want any oven spring). 

I use whole spelt and setting the timer to allow the flour to soak overnight helps.  Using milk or yogurt also helps get a softer, less crumbly crumb.

Good luck!

jcdancer's picture
jcdancer

Your comments on Spelt Bread are very interesting.  Our family has to stay away from wheat but we can use Spelt Flour.   I just bought a new Zojirushi BB-CEC20 bread machine.  Tried making my doctor's bread machine recipe and it was so dense, that I could barely slice it and it did not rise much at all!!  Any suggestions would be really appreciated?  This bread machine does not have a gluten free setting.

Below is doctor's recipe and i was wondering if anyone had any suggestions on making this work?  I used Bob's Red Mill Spelt Whole Grain Flour.

3 1/3 c spelt flour, 1 pkg active dry yeast, 2 tbs. oil, 2 tbs. honey, 1 tsp. sea salt, 1 cup warm water.

mini_maggie's picture
mini_maggie

So you should be able to program a setting with only two rises for spelt.  Check the spelt reference I posted for suggested rise times.   Your recipe doesn't look bad,  maybe your water was too warm and killed the yeast?  If you're using whole spelt, it would benefit from an autolyse (soak the flour in the liquid for a while before completing the recipe - try using the overnight timer on your machine).

A spelt bread recipe I've had luck with, from Donna Washburn and Heather Butt:

For 2 lb loaf:

2/3 cup water

2/3 cup unsweetened apple juice

(room temp for liquids is fine, your Zo will rest/preheat before starting to knead)

2 eggs

1 3/4 tsp salt

3 tbsp. packed brown sugar - if using whole spelt can sub molasses to increase hydration

2 tbsp. vegetable oil (I use extra light olive oil)

4 cups spelt flour (light or whole - see yeast adjustment below)

1/2 cup cornmeal

3/4 tsp bread machine or instant yeast (add another 1/4 tsp if using all whole spelt - loaf will be shorter and finer textured than if light spelt used) 

I have made the 1.5 lb version of this recipe with all whole spelt in the mini zo on quick cycle (fewer/shorter rises than regular cycle) - it has a fine crumb like cornbread with whole spelt. 

I can post the 1.5 lb recipe I've tested if you want but assume with your larger machine you'd want the 2 lb recipe. 

elight's picture
elight

I have been baking exclusively with spelt for the past few years. My general recommendations:

1. White spelt will give lighter texture. Whole spelt will absorb more hydration. So I use a 50/50 mixture.

2. You can adapt most wheat recipes but cutting the hydration. Decreasing by 15% is a good starting point.

3. You can make breads easily in your stand mixer, or by hand. I would recommend trying this and seeing how easy it is before investing in a one-trick-pony breadmaker.

The usual suspects will also improve the crumb... eggs, fat, dairy (milk/yogurt/buttermilk).

Good luck!

jcdancer's picture
jcdancer

You mentioned "Check the spelt reference I posted for suggested rise times. "  However I am new using this & can't find where you posted rise times. Sorry for my ignorance. 

mini_maggie's picture
mini_maggie
jcdancer's picture
jcdancer

Mini-maggie:  The spelt reference you suggested does not give the knead or rise times for making spelt bread in Zo bread machine.  What times do you use?  Please and thank you.

mini_maggie's picture
mini_maggie

I don't have your model but the mini-Zo, so you might have to watch your dough a few times to see what gives you a 1.5x rise.  Try 14-16 min knead, 45-50 min rise, stir down, 25-30 min rise and bake.  Good luck and let me know how it goes.

Sorry I didn't see your last question - If you reply to my post I'll get email notification, if you post a new comment on the main thread I don't. 

jcdancer's picture
jcdancer

My new bread machine is Zojirushi BB-CEC20. All of the following loaves I have made so far called for 3 1/3 c spelt flour & 1 c water as I mentioned earlier.

For one of my loaves I did the following: Preheat 30 min, Knead 18 min, 1st rise 45 min, 2nd rise 25 min, Bake 62 min, and I used Bob's Red Mill Whole grain spelt flour.  Also, I used 7/8 c water. Loaf did not cave in but loaf was very hard.

Next time I used ALL White spelt flour and 7/8 c water.  These were the times: Preheat 20 min, Knead 15 min, 1st rise 35 min, 2nd rise 45 min, Bake 62. Loaf rose nicely but toward the end of the baking it caved in and crust was very hard.

With your recent info, I will try your suggested knead & rise times, but will use 1/2 white spelt flour and 1/2 whole grain spelt flour.  Thanks.  Need to perfect this as I have 20 days left on the return policy of my bread machine.

jcdancer's picture
jcdancer

Thanks mini_maggie for your suggestions.  This is what I did: Crust: Medium; Preheat: 20 min; Knead: 14 min; 1st Rise: 50 min; 2nd Rise: 30 min; Bake: 62 min.  The loaf came out great, the height of the loaf perfect, the top browned nicely BUT the bottom and side crusts were quite hard (both a little over 1/8" thick).

I am trying the loaf again but this time baking for 60 min instead of 62 min to see if that will correct the bottom and side crusts.  What are your thoughts on this, please? (I would love to send you a picture but don't know how.)

mini_maggie's picture
mini_maggie

I use and would suggest you try the light crust setting.  A spelt loaf will have a lighter top crust than a wheat loaf but it should help with the bottom and sides.

Picture posting help http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/2960/posting-photos-faq

jcdancer's picture
jcdancer

I made the Spelt bread again using your suggestions to change to Light Crust.  The crust was a little better on sides and bottom. See pic:

Spelt Bread Crust2Spelt Bread Crust 3

However, still very crummy and falls apart when my husband uses for a sandwich.  As mentioned above, I did the following:

Recipe: 1 1/3 c whole spelt, 2 c white spelt, 2 1/2 tsp active dry yeast, 2 tbs olive oil, 2 tbs. honey, 1 tsp sea salt, 7/8 c warm water.

Preheat 20 min, Knead 14 min, 1st rise 50 min, 2nd rise 30 min, Bake 60 min.

Any suggestions?

mini_maggie's picture
mini_maggie

Spelt by nature will be crumblier than wheat because the gluten's not as strong.  Additon of egg or dairy (milk/yogurt/buttermilk) will help soften and improve the crumb.  Try substituting milk for the water or add 1/4 cup skim milk powder to your dry ingredients.  If that doesn't do enough, try adding the egg.   Your dough might be a bit dry so I might just try adding the egg and see what happens - if the top falls try it again with the egg but cut back a bit on the other liquid to compensate for the extra hydration.

Good luck!

 

jcdancer's picture
jcdancer

Thanks for recommending the dairy.  I used 7/8 c milk and texture was great, not crumbly at all.  However, when loaf completed, loaf was lopsided.  In other words rather than be even all around, one end was quite low and the other end was fine.  But it did not fall! 

Any suggestions on this?

jcdancer's picture
jcdancer

Thank you mini-maggie for the reference.  When I checked Spelt reference, the following is what it says: "Bread machine baking can be very successful if you manually set your machine to have only two rising cycles before it bakes the loaf."  

With my Zo bread machine, what would you suggest for the two different rise time amounts and kneading time amounts?  Thanks.

mini_maggie's picture
mini_maggie

That's something I've heard happens sometimes with the two paddle horizontal machines like yours - more of the dough just ends up around one paddle at the end of kneading by fluke.  Not much you can do about it except check the dough at the end of the knead and redistribute it by hand if it's lopsided. 

Glad the dairy helped your crumb. 

edit to say whoops - meant to put this under your comment