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caprissaltlick

Working With Rice Flour

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Hello, everybody! Anyone have any advice on how rice flour ought to be used in recipes? Not being gluten-intolerant myself, I went ahead and did a test run on biscuits that I thought I might feed a friend, and they turned out absolutely awful! My fault, to be sure, since I just figured what the heck and forsook recipes to just throw in rice flour and cornstarch instead of regular wheat flour, and they turned out bitter and grainy. More recently, I tried some store-bought rice pasta (penne--not the oriental kinds), and was similarly repulsed, although not quite as badly. Am I supposed to be doing something special to rice flour products to soften them up? I keep finding recipes that call for rice flour, but I'm not feeling very enthused at trying it again after my other attempts going bad. Thanks much, have a fantabulous day!

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Welcome! How nice of you to be trying recipes for a friend.

I've never had much luck with plain rice flour - especially white rice flour. You have several options - you can buy prepackaged gluten-free flour (something like Bob's Red Mill G F Flour Mix) or buy a few different flours and some xanthan gum and mix it up yourself. The xanthan gum is pretty expensive though, so if you don't think you'll be baking too much, you'll want to buy a prepackaged flour. Anyway, if you want to mix up your own, a good basic recipe is: 3 C Brown Rice flour, 1 C Potato Starch (NOT flour), 1/2 C Tapioca Starch and 2-1/2 tsp. Xanthan Gum. Sift this together 3 times and use it cup for cup for all-purpose flour. I make almost all my baked goods out of this mix and things usually turn out well.

Good luck!


Liz

Started Specific Carbohydrate Diet on 8-16-09 because son was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis and want to give him moral support.

Diagnosed with Minimal Change Nephrotic Syndrome in 2003. Discovered that going completely gluten-free put me in remission.

I would have despaired unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Psalms 27:13

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..... I just figured what the heck and forsook recipes to just throw in rice flour and cornstarch.....

Hi C,

Big mistake. I'm pretty new myself (4 weeks), but I've been gluten-free baking like mad (haven't tried making biscuits however), plus I'm somewhat of an old baker anyway, and it has been very challenging for me. Even following the recipes carefully, success is not always guaranteed. "Success" being a relative term anyway with gluten-free products, when compared to what we were used to.

There are many, many recipes on these Celiac/Glutin-Free websites. There are a few simple rules, zanthan or guar gum must be added to replace the lack of gluten that holds everything together. You don't let yeast things rise as high. For muffins, cookies, pancakes, and quick breads, You can use regular recipes, if you follow the gluten-free rules. And I'm learning more about other flours to combine with the rice flours and starches to improve the taste, texture, and especially nutrition of gluten-free bread products.

There's definately a learning curve. There's no "what the heck" or "forsooking" to this stuff (in my opinion).

That's my attempt at humor, ha ha. best regards, lm


gluten-free 12-18-06

colonoscopy, upper GI
blood, urine, stool tests, prometheus panel
positive endoscopy/positive duodenal biopsies (severe villous atrophy, high intraepithelial lympocytes)
diagnosed celiac disease by Gastroenterologist Andrew R. Gottesman, 12-18-06

"Sobriety sucks. That's why they invented booze in the first place." Denis Leary - Rescue Me

Beware the chocolate of Chiapa

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I use the same flour combination for every recipe I make and I haven't had a failure yet. I make my flour mix in bulk so I have it on hand later. I use 3 parts white rice flour, 2 parts potato starch, and 1 part tapioca starch. For every 1 to 1-1/2 cup of flour mix I add 1 teaspoon of xantham gum. Like I said, I've found this to be pretty much foolproof, at least so far. I bake A LOT! I've never found another flour blend that I liked. Sometimes I'll sub 1 part of the white rice flour with brown rice, but I don't think it tastes as good.


~Angie~

Gluten free since May 2004

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I use the same flour combination for every recipe I make and I haven't had a failure yet. I make my flour mix in bulk so I have it on hand later. I use 3 parts white rice flour, 2 parts potato starch, and 1 part tapioca starch. For every 1 to 1-1/2 cup of flour mix I add 1 teaspoon of xantham gum. Like I said, I've found this to be pretty much foolproof, at least so far. I bake A LOT! I've never found another flour blend that I liked. Sometimes I'll sub 1 part of the white rice flour with brown rice, but I don't think it tastes as good.

Excuse me for jumping into this message thread, but I am also learning how to bake with rice flour. I tried to find potato starch and tapioca starch at the health food store but only found "potato starch flour" and "tapioca flour". Are these the same thing as the potato starch and tapioca starch? If not, where can I find the right stuff? Also, next to the xantham gum was guar gum and it was so much cheaper. Are they interchangeable?

Thanks, Dianne

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Dianne: yes, and yes. (As long as your flour substitute made of potato says "starch" in it somewhere, you wil be okay. The other way to know is to check the texture. . .potato starch should be white and very very fine, it should clump easily; potato flour is a funny greyish yellow colour and looks quite grainy. Potato flour is also very heavy, while potato starch is very light. Tapioca flour and tapioca starch are interchangeable).

Caprissaltlick: you would have been fine with your cornstarch/rice flour mix, in theory. And I (having baked gluten-free for seven years) bake like that - what-the-heck, fling it all together and see what happens. . .except when I'm trying to get cake to turn out. That one, you do have to measure. If your food was really bitter and left a nasty aftertaste, one of your flours is rancid - to check, wet your finger, dip it in the flour and taste.. . .if it leaves a nasty aftertaste (I'm not sure how to describe it, but if you have baked lots previously with regular flours, you will KNOW the taste when you taste it) this is the one that's rancid, and you need to bin it (or if you bought it recently, take it back). It is now inedible.

The trick to gluten-free baking by the seat of your pants is to know that nothing changes flavourwise in gluten-free flours during baking, so always taste your batter before you bake it. . .if you don't like the taste now, baking it won't change anything. Play with it before you put it in the oven. Never try and bake just plain biscuits with just corn and rice (yuck! - you'll need to get more adventurous with your flour mix), until you are really really good at it, you need to add fruit or nuts or lots of yummy herbs. . ..sweets are much easier to get right than savouries. You may also find that your corn/rice flour mix will benefit texture- and flavourwise from a bit of nut flour (I use ground almonds. . .buy them from the shop or whir them really well in your food processor). . .about a sixth of a cup will be enough.

As for gluten-free pasta, you do need to be very careful not to overcook or undercook it. It's also gross cold - eat it hot, with a strong flavoured sauce at first. And buy a good brand - Pastato does some nice potato or corn pastas, so do Tinkyada and Rizopia. . .anything else, you buy at your own risk. If you can find it, Scotti pure rice pasta is the absolute best gluten-free pasta you will ever taste. . .it is Italian and so good my family asks to be fed it instead of "real" pasta.

Good luck! (Don't give up. . .you'll get there)

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For me personally (very new at this - only 3 weeks) I'm finding that in quick bread/sweet breads are working just fine with just a substitution of white rice flour. I'm about to start mixing with brown rice flour just to see if it resembles more of a whole wheat consistency.

I've made pancakes, brownies, cinnamon swirl bread and apple cobbler with JUST white rice flour in place of the wheat flour and it's worked great. This week I plan to attempt banana bread and chocolate chip cookies.

Now...that being said, I have not tried any traditional type breads, and know that when I do I'm going to need things like Xantham Gum and the like in order to fabricate the texture of bread. I've been too afraid to try.

As for rice pasta, we've actually been eating brown rice pasta for a while, even before going gluten free. For some reason, my eldest daughter prefers it to regular pasta (well, we always did whole wheat pasta anyway, rarely did we do "regular" pasta). I actually prefer it too, it's a bit lighter, I think. You do have to follow the directions for cooking - and DO NOT over cook it or it becomes really gummy.

I'm still learning. Hubby wants me to open a gluten free baking stall at a nearby farmers market! It sounds like fun, but I need to keep getting better before I can trust I'd be able to make it work! :D

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I use 1 1/2 cups great northern bean flour for protien, 1 cup cornstarch, 1 cup brown rice flower, 1 cup sweet rice 1 cup tapioca , and keep it on hand. I used my coffee mill to turn the beans and rice into flour, and saved a fortune. We only have a few stores that carry this rice and its very expensive. Does anyone make their own flour? I would love to here what mill you use.

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I've made pancakes, brownies, cinnamon swirl bread and apple cobbler with JUST white rice flour in place of the wheat flour and it's worked great.

That's really surprising. I haven't tried to make anything without the x-gum, as I thought it was an essential ingredient. Some of my muffins and cookies have turned out a little gritty, and I didn't know if it was the x-gum or the brown rice flour. Since I started a month ago, I've been using a mix of 1 C white rice flour, 1 C brown rice flour, 1 C tapioka starch, and 1 C potato starch. That's 1/2 flour and 1/2 starch. Don't remember now where I got that, but it's much higher in starch than what's most commonly used.

I've got just about everything under the sun now, and am starting to try new flours and different blends. I'm under the impression that white rice flour is the worst substitute for wheat flour, nutrition-wise. It has zero fiber, and is low in protein.

I made blueberry pancakes using a recipe from the best gluten-free family cookbook. They were very good but I had to add a lot of extra liquid. They have brown rice, sorghum, soy, and almond flours. And Tapioca and potato starches.

best regards, lm


gluten-free 12-18-06

colonoscopy, upper GI
blood, urine, stool tests, prometheus panel
positive endoscopy/positive duodenal biopsies (severe villous atrophy, high intraepithelial lympocytes)
diagnosed celiac disease by Gastroenterologist Andrew R. Gottesman, 12-18-06

"Sobriety sucks. That's why they invented booze in the first place." Denis Leary - Rescue Me

Beware the chocolate of Chiapa

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guess I've just been lucky.

Yes, nutitionally, I'm not thrilled with white rice flour. And once I get thru all the white rice flour, I'm going to retry all the recipes with the brown rice (because it would be a "little" better nutrition wise). And although you bring up a point about the nutritional value....I have found when making treats - the less nutrient value, the better the taste! LOL :D So far, the food I've made with white rice flour, would not be a goto food for nutrition, but would be for snacking and pigging out. Justifying, I know! :D

As I said, I'm new at this so by no means am I an expert of any kind.

Last night I did my first Gluten Free Pantry Bread mix in my breadmaker. I thought I'd died and gone to heaven. My goal now is to find a way to make bread myself to turn out that good! :D

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