Monday, 26 August 2013

Ratios in Gluten Free Bread Baking.

Ratios are what give gluten free baking the trial and error characteristic.
When you bake using ratios, you can double or triple a recipe with ease. Remember, always weigh the dry ingredients! In fact, its best to weigh the other ingredients, such as water and sugar, insuring you're following the ratio as closely as possible. Adopting how you measure by using grams instead of cups is one way to take one variable out of the baking equation.


In the gluten-free baking world, recipes for baked goods like scones, cakes, and breads are often based on a ratio of gluten-free flours to sugar, liquids, eggs, and fat. If you follow these ratios, you have a better chance of getting the result you want with gluten-free flours. Ratios of ingredients are what make a cookie different from a cake and a scone different from a pancake.

When you make a recipe using ratios, you need to establish the base ingredient. This can be any of the ingredients. Most bakers use eggs as the base because eggs are the least variable of all the ingredients. A large egg weighs 2 ounces, or 56 grams. If your recipe calls for 3 parts flour to 3 parts liquid to 1 part egg, you need 168 grams (3 × 56) of flour and liquid. You can use the liquid for the base ingredient also. Just keep the ratios consistent and weigh every ingredient and your gluten-free baked goods will be delicious.


With these ratios, you can substitute teff flour for sorghum flour and water for buttermilk without worry. You can change the flavor of a recipe from sweet to savory and vice versa with the confidence of knowing that scones will be flaky and crumbly, cakes will be tender, and breads will have a lovely, airy crumb.

The following table lists some of the basic ratios for common baked goods. Remember that these ratios are measured by weight, not by volume.

Basic Ratios for Common Baked Goods

Product
Flour
Liquid
Egg
Fat
Sugar
Angel food cake
1 part

3 parts

3 parts
Biscotti
5 parts
3 parts
2 parts
2 parts

Brownies
1 part (1/2 part for fudgy)

1 part
1 part
2 parts
Drop cookies
3 parts

1 part
2 parts
1 part
Muffins
2 parts
2 parts
1 part
1 part

Pancakes
4 parts
4 parts
2 parts
1 part

Pie crust
3 parts
1 part

2 parts

Pound cake
1 part

1 part
1 part
1 part
Quick breads
2 parts
2 parts
1 part
1 part

Roll-out cookies
2 parts

1/2 part
1 part
1 part
Scones
3 parts
1 part
1 part
1 part

Shortening cakes
2 parts
2 parts
1 part
1 part
2 parts
Yeast breads
5 parts
3 parts




The formulas above are used for developing recipes, but can be used to check whether a recipe should work. If the ratios in a recipe are way off of these numbers, you may want to try another recipe.
Not all ratios for all baked goods are the same; the numbers in the table are general, not specific. You may find that for the scones you like, you prefer more flour and more egg, or that for muffins, you want a bit less flour and more egg. If you choose to bake with ratios, measure carefully by weight and keep track of the ratios that work for you.


According to Ruhlman, baking bread is as simple as four ingredients (flour, water, salt and yeast) and two numbers: 5 and 3. That’s the ratio of flour to water that will create a basic bread dough. How much yeast and salt you need is less precise, but he suggests at least one teaspoon of each in a batch based on 20 ounces of flour.

Typically gluten free yeast bread recipes used the ratio of 5 parts flour to 3 parts liquid.

Always keep in mind that many gluten free recipes require more liquid than other recipes.

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