Sunday, July 21, 2013

Gluten Free Biscuits Finally Fluffy!

I have tried since September of last year (10 months) to make a fluffy gluten free southern style biscuit, but no matter how much gravy or honey we dump on top of them, there's just no hiding the fact that they taste and feel like eating a sand castle. I almost gave up last week, but we found a gluten free frozen pizza that made me try one more time.  The crust wasn't grainy, and it reminded me of a recipe photo I saw for something called "oopsie bread."  It had egg whites and something else.  This pizza crust had tapioca starch and eggs.  A light bulb came on, and here's what I came up with. My best attempt at buttery homestyle biscuits ever.  My husband even said they were some of the best biscuits we'd had including recipes with "regular" flour. 

1 cup tapioca flour
1 cup potato starch
1.5 tsp xanthan gum
1 TB baking powder
1 tsp table salt
1 stick butter softened*
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
enough milk to fill cream to 2/3 cup
1 egg

Yes, I realize this is not a healthy list of ingredients, but sometimes you just need a dang biscuit.  I have cut enough bread and pasta out completely, that I think these are okay in our Sunday brunch. :)

Preheat oven to 375F.
In a large mixing bowl (I think mine is four quarts, but make it big enough to get your hands in) mix together your dry ingredients. (That's the first five on the list) Next, using a pastry blender or a fork, cut in the softened butter.  If you've never made biscuits before that just means getting the butter to crumble in with the flour until you have a coarse meal.  Pour in the cream/milk and add the egg.  Using a fork or spoon, stir the liquid in until a sticky dough forms.  Do NOT overwork your dough, just make sure all the flour is wet.  It will become elastic-y at this stage.  Turn it out on a lightly floured surface and knead it just a couple of times.  Your dough will pick up some of the flour and won't be so sticky.  Roll (I press with my hands) dough out to about 1/2 inch thickness and cut with a 2" round cutter or just cut in squares. 

Place biscuits about 1/3 inch apart on an ungreased baking sheet, and bake for 18 minutes.  They'll be a pretty golden color and about 1.5 inches tall when they're done. My dough batch yielded about 12 biscuits. One was a smaller, hand formed cutie.

They taste like Cracker Barrel biscuits to me....mmmmm.  We made a giant omelet with ham and cheese and cut it to fill these. If you've ever had an Ultimate Omelet Biscuit from Hardee's or Carl's, then you know where we were going with that. I'm going to try pre-cooking for 10 minutes and freezing a batch.  I'll let you know how that turns out. If you try it before I do, please comment below!!  If you'd like to link to your favorite GF recipes, I welcome you to.  :)  

*For the love of Paula Deen, please use real butter here.  Margarine/vegetable oil spread does not have the consistency to bake a biscuit.  If you're out of butter, you could substitute shortening, but honestly you can get organic butter, and you won't be putting unneeded chemicals in your body. Everything in moderation.

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