Gluten-Free Flours … our guide
Think gluten-free flours are only for those with a wheat intolerance? Think again. Gluten-free flours are a great addition to your pantry, allowing you to introduce new flavour and texture into your cooking. Let’s explore some of the best gluten-free flour options.
Made from skinned, blanched, finely ground almonds, almond flour is well known as the key ingredient in macarons. It also works beautifully in cakes and biscuits.
Many people believe that almond flour and almond meal are the same but there are differences. Almond meal is made from almonds with their skin on and the almonds are not always blanched. Almond meal also has a coarser grind that almond flour. This coarse texture means that it works well for crumbing proteins such as chicken, tofu or fish but you definitely won’t want to use it to make macarons.
Available in both white and brown rice varieties, rice flour has a mild flavour and light texture. Brown rice flour is slightly nuttier in taste than white rice flour. Use it in baked treats like shortbread, cakes and muffins.
Coconut Flour is made from dried coconut meat that is finely ground. Very high in fibre, it is also sweet and absorbent so you need to use more liquid when cooking with it. Coconut flour can be tricky to work with, so try mixing it with almond flour to get the coconut flavour without the headaches of trying to balance its texture.
The distinct nutty flavour of buckwheat flour can be a little overpowering, almost bordering on bitter. It does add a depth of flavour to loaf cakes, biscuits and breads, but if you are worried about the flavour being too strong you can mix it with another flour.
You can make your own oat flour at home because it is simply rolled oats finely ground. You will need a food processor to blitz it up to a fine powder. Its mild flavour makes it a good option when you don’t want to add a flavour from the flour.