Sunday, October 17, 2010

Crusty Bread That Even Those Who Eat Gluten Might Like

Bread. It's the basis of so many world cultures. It's the thing many celiacs miss the most, and it's one of the hardest thing to get right without gluten.

One of my favorite food bloggers, Shauna Ahern of The Gluten-Free Girl and the Chef, and her husband, Daniel -- The Chef, have a new cookbook out of their best gluten-free recipes. It has everything from recipes that are naturally gluten-free (chocolate mousse!) to gluten-free recreations of gluten-containing foods.

The Aherns were recently at the Hancock Shaker Village for a book signing. I've wanted to take the family there before we leave New England, so we went up on a beautiful early autumn day to meet Shauna, Daniel, and of course, little Lu.

(Sorry I kinda caught you mid-word there, Shauna!)

This is the beautiful brick house where the book discussion was. It was the home of the Shaker Brothers and Sisters.

The beautiful round, stone Shaker barn.

The intricate inner structure of the round barn.

I told Shauna that I would like to do the Julie/Julia treatment to the book (except without the Queens/Paris (sadly!) element. So here I go!

I started with the most missed, most lamented deprivation of people who are told to give up gluten: good old crusty bread. Crusty Bread That Even Those Who Eat Gluten Might Like, as a matter fact (yes, that's really the name of the recipe and it's exactly what it says it is). When I read the recipe, it reminded me of Mark Bittman's internet sensation, the No-Knead Bread, in that it has a long rising time and is baked in a blazing hot pan. But this recipe calls for much more yeast than Bittman's bread, of course, since we're not dealing with gluten here. The dough is mixed very quickly and then rises for 2 hours. It's baked for 30 minutes in a 500 degree Dutch oven.

The dough at the beginning of the rise.

After two hours.

I baked the loaf in my Le Creuset pan on parchment paper, which makes it easy to remove it from the pan. I poured a little olive oil on top and sprinkled it with some nice coarse Himalayan Red Salt.

Ahhhh, beauty..... And the smell..... Mmmmmm.....

Absolutely delicious with just butter. I love Kate's Homemade Butter with sea salt. It comes from Maine and is the nicest, most readily available, and most local butter I can get around here.

And it makes a divine tomato, basil, mozzarella sandwich! I got a super dark red heirloom tomato for this. It was soooo good!

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