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Pamela's Wheat Free Bread Mix

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Pamela's was my second attempt at making bread from a mix.

First was Gluten Free Pantry Favorite Sandwich Bread...flavor of GFP was ok, a little metalic or an aftertaste, but the look and texture were great. I used a 9x5 silicon loaf pan and it expanded...the loaf was HUGE.

Now for the Pamela's mix...I baked it in the oven (not a bread machine). Used my stand mixer with the whisk attachment (instructions say not to use a dough hook...should I have used the paddle attachment?). Poured it into the recommended 8x4 pan (I used metal). I let it rest for 60 minutes on the counter while covered with plastic wrap (maybe that is where I went wrong? I did that b/c Gluten Free Pantry's sandwich bread mix recommended that). Baked it for 65 minutes, but covered it with foil the last 10 b/c it was getting really brown. When I took it out, it sounded hollow when I tapped on it. The finished product is...really dry, very oddly shaped (the top is wider than the bottom and lopsided, really tall on one side), and the inside is a little undercooked...flavor is pretty good though (but texture is really not right).

I like the flavor of Pamela's better, but the texture of GFP was much better. Any suggestions? Should I use a 9x5 pan for Pamela's? The 8x4 pan seemed so small. If so, should I shorten the baking time for the bigger pan? And is metal, glass, or silicon better? Or do you think I made a mistake with the mixing, resting, or baking?

I welcome any suggestions!! Thanks in advance!

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Hi there-

I'm not sure I can really offer too much advice as I have only baked a few loaves. I have done two GFP and one Pamela's. I had the same problem as you did with Pamela's- way too doughy/sticky/undercooked for me (which totally grossed me out). I haven't really found that the GFP had much of a taste at all and the texture was the best so far, both times I made it. I also tried the Bob's redmill mix and I had the same problem as Pamela's- doughy/sticky. Both of those were much harder to slice. I decided to stick with the GFP for now as it is quicker than the other two...seems to work...slices well...no doughy texture. If you figure it out- let us know. I would be interested too!

Rachel

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I love the flavor of the Pamela's mix, and am finding that buying it in bulk from Lame Advertisement is my most affordable way to get gluten-free bread.

I, too, have had several loaves turn out lopsided, where one side of the pan rose faster and higher than the other. Those loaves were too brown, too. Those happened when I followed the package directions exactly.

What seems to work a bit better for me is this: I prepare the mix as instructed (yes, using the whisk attachment). I place the dough in an oiled, metal, nonstick bread pan, and spread it as evenly as possible. I cover it with plastic wrap (which I've sprayed with canola oil, to keep it from sticking to the dough). Then I place the dough in (or on top of) a warm oven (I alternate turning the oven on "warm" and turning it back off, to keep it warm enough for the dough to rise but not so warm that it cooks or the plastic wrap melts). The heat helps the dough to rise. That seems to take 40-55 minutes. In my limited experience with this mix, it seems that if I get the dough to rise prior to baking, it does so pretty evenly (where if I follow the package directions and just have the dough sit, not rise, prior to baking, it ends up having a really uneven top). I bake the bread as directed, except that I cover the top with foil after the first 25-30 minutes of baking, at which point it's already nicely browned.

Have you tried using the Pamela's mix for dinner rolls? They're heavenly. Just put the bread dough in nonstick muffin tins, and smooth and round the tops as much as you can with a spatula. That's the first thing I used Pamela's bread mix for, and after that I was hooked.

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I bake 2 of these loaves a week (Pamela's). I follow the ingredient directions for oven (little different than the bread machine recipe), I always use the paddle attachment on my Kitchenaid (the whisk might put in too much air causing it to fall....) I put in my metal loaf pan (sprayed with Pam) and rest it on top of a heating pad set to medium for an hour. Then I bake for 10 minutes longer than what the pkg says, so about 75 minutes. The last loaf I made, I used another technique posted on here--when I preheated the oven, I put a cast iron skillet 1/2 full of water on the bottom rack and left it in the oven with the bread on the rack directly above (I have convection oven...) I've never had a loaf of bread raise that much--it actually hit the top of my oven!! It was the lightest, best cooked loaf I've made yet. I also buy in bulk from a/m/a/z/o/n.

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Thank you for your tips! Did you use a 8x4 or 9x5 loaf pan??

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I bake 2 leaves a week of the Pamela's mix too. I use a 9x5 glass pan and the paddle attachment on my kitchenaid. I would not use the whisk attachment. I think it would be gummed up too much in the wires and not get mixed enough. I think an 8x4 pan would be too small. The thing that threw me about the Pamelas mix at first is that it does not rise very much outside the oven. The bulk of the rising of the mix is during baking (it's the kind of yeast they use). I think the bag even refers to it as a rest instead of a rise. I rise the bread on the top of my preheating oven. The ideal ambient temperature for rising bread is 75 - 80 degrees. So I used my instant read thermometer to find the place on the top of my oven that was that temp. For me it is on top of the right front burner. I do not find that the Pamela's mix needs to be covered with plastic wrap while rising. The reason some recipes do that is because our gluten-free flours lack structure. When rising, the saran wrap is intended to keep everything together so it rises up and not out over the sides of the pan. But since the Pamela's mix isn't intended to rise over the top of the pad before you put it in the oven, it isn't really necessary. I don't know if it would hurt, but I'm not convinced it would help either.

Maybe if your bread was shorter on one side than the other it was because one side of the pan was warmer than the other. You know how one of the burners on the stove is the vent for the oven? Maybe the taller side was next to that (warmer ambient temp) and the shorter side was not. If your bread was browning too much on top, you could check the height of the racks in your oven. I always use the rack on the middle setting. Otherwise it gets too close to the top element and gets browner faster. Pamelas mix bakes for exactly 65 minutes in my oven at 325.

Hope this helps!

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I bake the Pamela's bread a really weird way, but it works great. I mix it up right before going to bed with cold water. Then I put it into a 1.5 qt oval casserole dish and put it in the oven on time bake for 70 minutes, with the light on. It "rests" overnight. The oven comes on at 5:40 and at 6:50 the bread is ready, just as I am getting up. The kids love having warm bread for breakfast and they also slice some up, cool it, and make sandwiches for school.

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