Thursday, July 8, 2010

Gluten Free Flour Blends

I have had it with gluten-free flour blends. My rage takes two forms: printed in cookbooks and those that line grocery store shelves. Both come with the guise of "making gluten-free baking easy" by eliminating the need to own, scoop and measure 4+ ingredients to approximate all purpose wheat flour. In theory, this is a nice idea, but in practice its the gf equivalent of having a box of Jiffy Corn Mix on your shelf for all your baking needs, corn muffins and everything else included. Its bunk. First of all, its incredibly egotistical and presumptive to declare that you have created the be-all, end-all gluten free mix. While you may have concocted a hodgepodge of flours and gums that works for some things, by no means have you solved all of my gluten free cooking and baking needs. The ones in the store I can write off as annoying, expensive and a waste of time. The ones that litter the pages of gluten-free cookbooks... WHO DO YOU REALLY THINK YOU ARE?!

So you wrote a cookbook, and developed a flour blend, so what. You think you are so awesome that I will never again in my entire history of me eating want to maybe just maybe use another cookbook?! You think that I am going to make up a batch of your product and only cook out of your book for the rest of my eating life? Wrong-o buck-o. I have nothing wrong with the idea of this, but for those who say only use your book for inspiration and then end up doing math an scrap paper all over the kitchen trying to determine how much xanthan gum is really necessary to hold pancakes together because it seems like your flour blend indicates such a small amount its really not worth doing the minuscule math for (all in British volume scoops rather than sensibly BY WEIGHT) but knowing sans gum these pancakes will never be cakes, just crepes... why do you do this to me?

If you want to make up your own flour blend, put the proportions needed next to your "so-and-so's-better-than-everyone-else's-gluten-free-flour-mix". Otherwise I am putting you back on the shelf, right next to the boxed mixes.


  1. This is a bummer, because these would make it so easy to just make a batch of gf cookies.

  2. Oh YES YES YES I so totally agree with you! I reject recipes that are not done in flours I mix, and I tend to reject ones not done by weight! I want CONTROL and I want to play with the flours I like the nutritional benefit of, thank you very kindly! I almost feel sane reading this and the "eating out" post ;) I'm 32 and don't much care for going out! Between Gluten and MSG it's just a scary world outside my kitchen domain!

  3. Going out to eat is such a joy! which I think is why I feel like I am in such a pickle about it. I think higher-end places are getting better about awareness, but I love cheap eats. Slow and steady has been my new approach, plus recreating favorites at home. (I have gotten pretty decent at making Jap Chae, since I cannot find any gf around.)
    MSG is evil! It makes my brain weep. This makes me want to tackle some gf Chinese-American food ASAP!