Gluten Free Cloud Bread

Last week, I had the privilege of attending a bread baking course with Zen Master Edward Espe Brown during the FAQ Bregenzerwald.  Edward, who made the journey all the way from San Francisco, wrote a legendary bread bible in the 70s, unfortunately long out of print. There are still a few copies being sold at very steep prices on Amazon.

Even though I'm not allowed to eat bread, I wanted to learn how to bake it from a master baker and see how to knead the dough and correctly bake a loaf. Everything is an art, from the correct flour to yeast ratio to how to mix with a spoon, knead with your hands and use different tins for different types of bread. I've even learned a new dough braiding technique.
I particularly loved getting my hands on the smooth dough and kneading it - letting your hand massage the dough and the dough massage your hand, as Edward put it.

I was impressed by the springiness and smoothness of a dough after being kneaded correctly - gluten free bread unfortunately never shows that kind of consistency. Gluten is a starchy protein composite and gives bread its stickiness, ensuring a loaf is crispy and firm on the outside while remaining soft on the inside.
When we were sliding the loaves into the oven and a delicious smell started to permeate the kitchen, a bit of nostalgia set in for me.

When you bake gluten free bread, you just have to be a lot more creative and work with nuts and seeds, either whole or ground, or work with gluten free grains like millet, quinoa or polenta.

I've delevoped my gluten free cloud bread for my after training snacks, as protein boosts are very important after exerting yourself. The bread is also ideal as a dinner or in-between snack.

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Gluten Free Cloud Bread
1 Loaf tin

Ingredients:

Ingredients for 1 loaf tin (21cm in diameter):

  • butter of coconut oil for greasing
  • 100g mashed chickpeas
  • 60g dried tomatoes (no oil)
  • 250g low fat quark
  • 4 eggs
  • 100g almond meal
  • 100g ground flaxseeds
  • 8 TBSP millet, chestnut or quinoa flour
  • 20g hemp seeds or 1-2 TBSP hemp protein
  • 1 packet baking powder
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 2 tsp Rudi Ruhe or fresh herbs like rosemary and/or thyme

Preparation:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C (upper/lower) or 150°C (fan).
  2. Grease a bread loaf tin with butter or coconut oil. Mash the chickpeas with a fork or blitz them in a food processor until you have a smooth-ish mash.
  3. Finely slice the dried tomatoes.
  4. Combine the quark and the eggs. Add the chickpeas, tomatoes, almonds, flaxseeds, flour, hemp seeds or hemp protein and the baking powder. Mix well. Season with Rudi Ruhe or your fresh herbs and half a teaspoon of salt and mix well one more time. Distribute the batter in your loaf tin and smooth the surface.
  5. Bake in the preheated oven on the middle shelf for 35-40 minutes. Let the loaf cool briefly, flip on an even surface and remove the tin. This tastes absolutely amazing with butter or just as it is as an in-between snack.