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Reverse-Engineering Udi's Bread

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Rice Guy,

Round 8

I made the white again today. I used the egg white powder instead of the egg whites. I used 1/4 cup water. Everything else the same.

This loaf did not taste good. It seemed to be done inside, not overcooked, but VERY dark, almost like pumpernickel. I think I am giving up on this one until someone who is an accomplished baker perfects it.

The texture was good, although still pretty short:(

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Rice Guy,

Round 8

I made the white again today. I used the egg white powder instead of the egg whites. I used 1/4 cup water. Everything else the same.

This loaf did not taste good. It seemed to be done inside, not overcooked, but VERY dark, almost like pumpernickel. I think I am giving up on this one until someone who is an accomplished baker perfects it.

The texture was good, although still pretty short:(

If I understand what TrillumHunter has been doing, the 1/4 cup water would be when using fresh egg whites, as they make up the difference. The results are apparently much better when whipping the egg whites first too. My guess is that either powdered or fresh eggs will work equally well, as long as they're whipped first.

If Udi's is using powdered egg whites, that might also explain why the water is first on the list of ingredients.

So, I think your total of 1/4 cup water would also explain why it didn't rise well.

Thanks for your valuable contribution to this project! I'm sure we'll have enough of it figured out soon, and you'll be able to get decent results.

Although I can't eat this bread with the ingredients it has, I am going to experiment with some ideas of a similar vein. Hopefully, it will reveal some useful information.

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If I understand what TrillumHunter has been doing, the 1/4 cup water would be when using fresh egg whites, as they make up the difference. The results are apparently much better when whipping the egg whites first too. My guess is that either powdered or fresh eggs will work equally well, as long as they're whipped first.

If Udi's is using powdered egg whites, that might also explain why the water is first on the list of ingredients.

So, I think your total of 1/4 cup water would also explain why it didn't rise well.

Thanks for your valuable contribution to this project! I'm sure we'll have enough of it figured out soon, and you'll be able to get decent results.

Although I can't eat this bread with the ingredients it has, I am going to experiment with some ideas of a similar vein. Hopefully, it will reveal some useful information.

I used the powdered egg whites, which called for 6 tbsp of water, plus added 1/4 cup water. I am continually confounded by how some loaves are white and pretty and some come out mud brown :blink:

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Tweaked the recipe a bit:

increased yeast to 1 1/2 tsp.

increased baking powder to 1 tsp.

decreased water to 1/4 c. (used fresh egg whites)

It rose somewhat but not alot, baked @ 350 for 35 mins. & it tastes good with golden brown bumps but came out relatively flat, maybe 1.5" tall.

Baked the multi-grain bread from Roben Ryberg's book at the same time & it came out tall & fluffy. But her bread recipe ingredients are markedly different from Udi's ingredients. No yeast, alot more baking powder, more sugar.

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Thanks for that report Maggie Mermaid!

I have found that the amount of water in gluten-free bread dough can be very critical. Although some flours seem more forgiving than others. Too little, and it just can't rise. Too much and it falls and/or is soggy in the middle. I suspect this may be why gelatin is sometimes used, because it can draw up extra moisture, but will not dry out the dough. But something tells me the egg whites should suffice in that regard.

It sure looks like whipping the egg whites has a definite advantage, and seems logical that Udi's is done this way.

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Here's my next two results.

Tried folding the whipped egg whites into slightly risen dough. It didn't rise much, but it tastes nice. I wouldn't count on it for sandwich bread.

Second loaf--I dumped in all in the mixer. I used 2 t egg white powder and 1/2 c water. Wow! It really rose high--too high in fact. It collapsed when I took it out. But I'm going to cut back on the water and see what happens. It is really fluffy and soft.

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Here's my next two results.

Tried folding the whipped egg whites into slightly risen dough. It didn't rise much, but it tastes nice. I wouldn't count on it for sandwich bread.

Second loaf--I dumped in all in the mixer. I used 2 t egg white powder and 1/2 c water. Wow! It really rose high--too high in fact. It collapsed when I took it out. But I'm going to cut back on the water and see what happens. It is really fluffy and soft.

That's what happened to almost all of my loaves, when I used 3/4 c water, 1/2 c water. Delicious for sure, but awfully flat. Trillum Hunter, it's in your hands now :D I can't take the rejection :lol:

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Round 2

Changes to the recipe:

To increase volume (knowing it changes the calories & weight):

Increased Tapioca starch from 1/2 c. to 1 c.

Changed Brown Rice flour from 1/4c. + 1/2 TBSP to 1/3 c.

Increased Potato starch to 3 TBSP to 1/3 c.

Increased egg whites from 3 to 4

Increased Xanthum gum from 3/4 tsp. to 1 tsp.

Decreased salt from 1/2 tsp to 1/4 tsp.

Changed water to 1/3 c.

Bloomed yeast in warm sugar water.

Whipped the eggs & oil until frothy. Alternately added dry & yeast mixture. Baked in glass loaf pan @ 350 for about 35 mins.

Finished product: 2 1/4" tall, somewhat dense but fluffier than Round 1, golden brown color, tasted good although the decrease in salt was noticeable.

*sigh* Well, one of my cookbooks mentioned that ascorbic acid (or vinegar) will help with the rising. 1 tsp. rice or apple cider vinegar to 4 c. gluten-free flour. So, onward to another try!

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That's an interesting attempt. I think you'd need more xanthan for the amount of flour however. Probably around 1-1/2 tsp. Also, how much yeast did you use, and how far did you let the dough rise?

Whipping the egg white and oil together would never work though, if you're trying to get a meringue type of result. Next time whip the egg whites without the oil.

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That's an interesting attempt. I think you'd need more xanthan for the amount of flour however. Probably around 1-1/2 tsp. Also, how much yeast did you use, and how far did you let the dough rise?

Whipping the egg white and oil together would never work though, if you're trying to get a meringue type of result. Next time whip the egg whites without the oil.

Hm, will note that amount of xanthan for future reference. Is there a rule of thumb of how much to use per amount of gluten-free flour?

Used 1 tsp yeast. Let the dough rise for about 2 hours (covered in microwave with container of hot water because house is too cool to let it rise in the kitchen). It rose up to maybe half the size of a typical Udi's loaf. Would more yeast make a difference? Or more rising time?

Thanks for the tip on the egg whites. I tried whipping them with oil because another recipe had a similar step & was curious if it'd make a difference or not.

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Okay, I'm jumping in here. I couldn't resist trying to see if I could help out. It turns out that I made a successful loaf of bread after tweaking everybody's commented on loaves here. I was majorly impressed with the loaf, I could have sworn it was freshly baked white bread. Kudos to those who started the process, your reverse engineering is pretty darn amazing. It resulted in a bread dough that was about 1/2 of a normal size loaf pan as dough just mixed, rose to about 1/2 inch to the top of the pan before baking, and had a middle peak about 2" taller than the rest of the loaf. It was really brown around the edges of the loaf (where it touched the pan) but wasn't as brown on top. But neither of us cared that much about that.

Anyway, here's my recipe:

(I mixed the bread by hand, but I whipped the egg whites with an electric mixer. You need a pretty big bowl to do this.)

1 c. potato starch (I was out of tapioca)

1/2 c. rice flour (I use a 50/50 mix of white and brown)

1/3 c. corn starch

4 1/2 tsp. egg white solids

2 tsp. xanthan gum

1/2 tsp. salt

1 1/2 c. water

2 tsp. yeast

1 1/2 tbsp. oil

1 1/2 tbsp. sugar

1/2 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. vinegar or dough enhancer

3 egg whites

1/2 tsp. cream of tartar

Bloom yeast in water and sugar for 10 minutes.

Combine flours in a bowl along with salt, xanthan gum, egg white solids, dough enhancer (add vinegar with the water if using) and baking powder. Mix well, make a well in the center. Pour in oil, water/yeast mixture. Add enough water that you have a wet dough (you may or may not use more or less than 1 1/2 c. depending on the weather & time of year. Today I used a bit over 1 1/2 c. The idea is to have a dough that is just wet enough to seem like really thick mashed potatoes.

Whip egg whites to very stiff peaks (add the cream of tartar when they just start to turn white), fold into dough in fourths. Pour batter into well greased bread pan, let sit in a warm place for about 1 to 1 1/2 hours, or until about an inch under the bread pan's rim.

Bake at 350 degrees for 35-40 min. depending on your oven. Immediately place on cooling rack.

Hopefully I explained it well enough to for everybody else to duplicate. Enjoy!

Laura

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I've been watching this thread w/ interest too! There's no Udi's bread anywhere near me and the ordering/shipping costs are keeping me from trying this "wonder" bread as everyone describes it! Major thanks to all you scientists!!

It just further confirms what I tell people all the time. Celiac disease just makes one have to learn to cook differently! We (YOU) can recreate almost anything!!

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Hm, will note that amount of xanthan for future reference. Is there a rule of thumb of how much to use per amount of gluten-free flour?

Used 1 tsp yeast. Let the dough rise for about 2 hours (covered in microwave with container of hot water because house is too cool to let it rise in the kitchen). It rose up to maybe half the size of a typical Udi's loaf. Would more yeast make a difference? Or more rising time?

Thanks for the tip on the egg whites. I tried whipping them with oil because another recipe had a similar step & was curious if it'd make a difference or not.

The general rule for the xanthan/flour ratio is about 1 tsp xanthan per cup of flour. That is for breads. Pizza crust may use a bit more, while muffins and cakes may use less. I find that pancakes need very little or none, depending on the whole recipe.

In my experience, rising longer than about 45-50 minutes generally seems to result in failure. I've had very few exceptions to this. However, I have a warm setting for my oven which happens to be perfect for letting bread rise. I have found that too low a temp can't be fully compensated for with additional time. But, I don't add sugar to feed the yeast, so that might make all the difference. I read somewhere that yeast can handle 110°F to 130°F. Though I don't have a thermometer to verify, I believe the temp which has been most successful is about 90-100°F. More yeast can make it rise quicker, but will result in a more noticeable yeasty taste. I think 1 tsp yeast would be fine for the amount of flour you used. Though I don't generally measure the yeast, I think I use less than that. Since you started with warm water, I'd guess the container of hot water didn't keep the microwave warm enough inside.

Did you allow the egg whites to warm up to room temp before whipping? This will not only help them whip up, but will help keep the dough from getting cooled off from cold ingredients.

Softer dough will usually rise more quickly, but can over-inflate when baked, because of the additional amount of steam. Apparently, it is the steam which creates most of the rise. That's why it can get so much higher once it is being baked. So, I usually let it rise a bit less when the dough is softer. Not that it turns out right for me every time, because it doesn't. I find it very tempting to allow it to rise more. And, whenever I do, it invariably falls, either before it's finished baking, or afterward. Starches seem to make it able to rise a little more without falling, but I don't think I've ever gotten the dough to double without falling later. Keep in mind, that I don't use pure starches, which does limit how much rise the dough can handle.

When I let the dough rise, I ignore the height of the pan. I judge when it's risen enough based on how much higher it is than when it started.

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The general rule for the xanthan/flour ratio is about 1 tsp xanthan per cup of flour. That is for breads. Pizza crust may use a bit more, while muffins and cakes may use less. I find that pancakes need very little or none, depending on the whole recipe.

In my experience, rising longer than about 45-50 minutes generally seems to result in failure. I've had very few exceptions to this. However, I have a warm setting for my oven which happens to be perfect for letting bread rise. I have found that too low a temp can't be fully compensated for with additional time. But, I don't add sugar to feed the yeast, so that might make all the difference. I read somewhere that yeast can handle 110

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Okay, I'm jumping in here. I couldn't resist trying to see if I could help out. It turns out that I made a successful loaf of bread after tweaking everybody's commented on loaves here. I was majorly impressed with the loaf, I could have sworn it was freshly baked white bread. Kudos to those who started the process, your reverse engineering is pretty darn amazing. It resulted in a bread dough that was about 1/2 of a normal size loaf pan as dough just mixed, rose to about 1/2 inch to the top of the pan before baking, and had a middle peak about 2" taller than the rest of the loaf. It was really brown around the edges of the loaf (where it touched the pan) but wasn't as brown on top. But neither of us cared that much about that.

Anyway, here's my recipe:

(I mixed the bread by hand, but I whipped the egg whites with an electric mixer. You need a pretty big bowl to do this.)

1 c. potato starch (I was out of tapioca)

1/2 c. rice flour (I use a 50/50 mix of white and brown)

1/3 c. corn starch

4 1/2 tsp. egg white solids

2 tsp. xanthan gum

1/2 tsp. salt

1 1/2 c. water

2 tsp. yeast

1 1/2 tbsp. oil

1 1/2 tbsp. sugar

1/2 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. vinegar or dough enhancer

3 egg whites

Bloom yeast in water and sugar for 10 minutes.

Combine flours in a bowl along with salt, xanthan gum, egg white solids, dough enhancer (add vinegar with the water if using) and baking powder. Mix well, make a well in the center. Pour in oil, water/yeast mixture. Add enough water that you have a wet dough (you may or may not use more or less than 1 1/2 c. depending on the weather & time of year. Today I used a bit over 1 1/2 c. The idea is to have a dough that is just wet enough to seem like really thick mashed potatoes.

Whip egg whites to very stiff peaks, fold into dough in fourths. Pour batter into well greased bread pan, let sit in a warm place for about 1 to 1 1/2 hours, or until about an inch under the bread pan's rim.

Bake at 350 degrees for 35-40 min. depending on your oven. Immediately place on cooling rack.

Hopefully I explained it well enough to for everybody else to duplicate. Enjoy!

Laura

Wow! Good job! Sounds good! Have to get some some egg white solids & try it out. Do you take the bread out of the pan before placing on the cooling rack?

Thanks!

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Wow! Good job! Sounds good! Have to get some some egg white solids & try it out. Do you take the bread out of the pan before placing on the cooling rack?

Thanks!

Yes, I always take bread out of the pan immediately.

This bread is amazing. DH said it felt like angel food cake in look & texture (but that's not a bad thing). We made monte cristo sandwiches and regular cold sandwiches to see how it turned out. It was really tasty, but I preferred it cooked or toasted. I've never found Udi's here, so we have nothing to compare to, but we both really like the bread. DH said it needed more salt, so next batch, I'll probably bump it up to a full tsp.

For what it's worth, I didn't let the egg whites come to room temperature, exactly. They sat out for a little bit while I made the rest of the bread dough, but I didn't deliberately let them warm up.

On the rising front, my house tends to be on the cold side, so it usually takes longer to rise than in a warmer environment. I think it took about an hour and 10 minutes total.

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Wow! Good job! Sounds good! Have to get some some egg white solids & try it out. Do you take the bread out of the pan before placing on the cooling rack?

Thanks!

Maggie,

They have the egg white powder at WF and Sprouts :D

Janie

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Okay, I'm jumping in here. I couldn't resist trying to see if I could help out. It turns out that I made a successful loaf of bread after tweaking everybody's commented on loaves here. I was majorly impressed with the loaf, I could have sworn it was freshly baked white bread. Kudos to those who started the process, your reverse engineering is pretty darn amazing. It resulted in a bread dough that was about 1/2 of a normal size loaf pan as dough just mixed, rose to about 1/2 inch to the top of the pan before baking, and had a middle peak about 2" taller than the rest of the loaf. It was really brown around the edges of the loaf (where it touched the pan) but wasn't as brown on top. But neither of us cared that much about that.

Anyway, here's my recipe:

(I mixed the bread by hand, but I whipped the egg whites with an electric mixer. You need a pretty big bowl to do this.)

1 c. potato starch (I was out of tapioca)

1/2 c. rice flour (I use a 50/50 mix of white and brown)

1/3 c. corn starch

4 1/2 tsp. egg white solids

2 tsp. xanthan gum

1/2 tsp. salt

1 1/2 c. water

2 tsp. yeast

1 1/2 tbsp. oil

1 1/2 tbsp. sugar

1/2 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. vinegar or dough enhancer

3 egg whites

Bloom yeast in water and sugar for 10 minutes.

Combine flours in a bowl along with salt, xanthan gum, egg white solids, dough enhancer (add vinegar with the water if using) and baking powder. Mix well, make a well in the center. Pour in oil, water/yeast mixture. Add enough water that you have a wet dough (you may or may not use more or less than 1 1/2 c. depending on the weather & time of year. Today I used a bit over 1 1/2 c. The idea is to have a dough that is just wet enough to seem like really thick mashed potatoes.

Whip egg whites to very stiff peaks, fold into dough in fourths. Pour batter into well greased bread pan, let sit in a warm place for about 1 to 1 1/2 hours, or until about an inch under the bread pan's rim.

Bake at 350 degrees for 35-40 min. depending on your oven. Immediately place on cooling rack.

Hopefully I explained it well enough to for everybody else to duplicate. Enjoy!

Laura

Compliments to the chef!

Nice work! But I have a few questions.

1) What is the size of your bread pan, and what material is it (pyrex, black metal, etc)?

2) By your description of the thickness of the dough, I'm a bit puzzled by the phrase "Pour batter...". Did it pour like batter, or did you fold/scoop, or otherwise push it out of the bowl? Did you smooth out the dough in the pan with a wet spoon?

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Thank you very much for the detailed answer. It's great information for future reference and projects.

I have a new oven & it didn't occur to me to try to set it at a temp to allow the bread to rise. D'oh! :blink: Although with the short 1 hour power outage, I don't know if the oven would've stayed at that temp or not (it's gas but with an electrical power control panel).

If the oven doesn't have such a low setting, you could simply turn it on the lowest it has, for some short duration, perhaps less than one minute. Just enough to get it warm inside. Then check it every 10 or 15 minutes, and give it a booster as needed.

I think I should get a thermometer. I guess a room thermometer would work for seeing the temp while the dough rises, though obviously it'd probably not survive the bake cycle LOL.

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May I chime in? We don't have Udi's bread here, and I usually make a brown bread (the recipe can be found at this website http://www.gfchef.ca/sample_recipes.php ) but it calls for warm milk, not water. How would milk make a difference compared to using water?

My son has been on the diet for 4.5 years and I usually stick to a recipe once I've had success, so I've been making this brown bread for a couple of years now but I'm always up for trying a new recipe.

Re: rising...I usually preheat the oven to 170F and then turn it off once the preheat buzzer goes off. I let it rise in the warm oven. I use a 4 x 11 bread pan that I got at Ikea for $5. It's nonstick medium grey on the inside and red enamel on the outside. I remove my bread immediately to cool and have never had a problem with the bread sticking in the pan.

Also are powdered egg whites the same as egg replacer?

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Compliments to the chef!

Nice work! But I have a few questions.

1) What is the size of your bread pan, and what material is it (pyrex, black metal, etc)?

2) By your description of the thickness of the dough, I'm a bit puzzled by the phrase "Pour batter...". Did it pour like batter, or did you fold/scoop, or otherwise push it out of the bowl? Did you smooth out the dough in the pan with a wet spoon?

My bread pan is an ordinary black nonstick pan, 9 1/4 x 5 1/4 x 2 3/4.

The batter doesn't "pour" as much as almost plop into the pan. With the egg whites folded in, it's more of a consistency like soft mashed potatoes (like before they set in a clump as they cool) or lumpy banana bread dough. Pushing and scooting into corners is necessary. I used a plastic spatula to get it out of the bowl and into the pan. I didn't have to wet the spatula down, but I did wet my fingers before I scraped the dough off the spatula and to "smooth" out a few spots.

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Also are powdered egg whites the same as egg replacer?

I don't think so. I have no experience with egg replacer as DH still eats eggs without trouble, but I know the egg white solids/powdered egg whites are exactly what they sound like. I guess you'd have to try the egg replacer and see what happens. :)

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