HOW IT STARTED

My Story

Hello my name is Sass. I was diagnosed with Coeliac disease over 15 years ago. Back then, options were limited and I really struggled with my change to eating gluten free and finding alternatives for baked goods. 

 

I have always loved being in the kitchen so it was only natural that over the years I have sought out ingredients and ways to create delicious gluten free food. I am often told that you cannot tell my gluten free baking apart from "the normal..." so I dare you to give it go. 

Mid 2020, I was asked by my favourite gluten free flour company if I would become one of their at home test bakers. This involves confirming recipes where their flours are used. Of course I said yes! So you will see that I often reference FG Roberts in my baking. I use FG Roberts flours exclusively now because the results are consistent. 

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Gluten Free Shortcrust Pastry

For a coeliac, having something "just like the real thing"... is a bit of thing... Would you agree?


When I was first diagnosed as a coeliac, I missed a really goooooooood shortcrust pastry. You know, the kind of pastry that really and I mean reeeeally, melts in your mouth? I tried quite a few ready made gluten free pastries and they just never measured up to my memory of the real thing. And I was sad.


But then I start making my own and.... well... you guessed it.... the rest is history!


To make this shortcrust pastry you need gluten free plain flour, xanthan gum, salt, chilled unsalted butter, and a little iced water. Then just follow my simple recipe and you’ll have delicious, buttery, gluten free shortcrust pastry in no time at all. And best of all? It will be pretty much just like the real thing.




For pies and quiches I always blind bake the bottom crust first for ten to fifteen minutes, before adding the filling.


No matter what brand of plain gluten free flour you are using for your pastry, you will still need to add a little xanthan gum to stabilise the dough The main point of difference will be how much iced water you will need given some flours are thirstier than others. Always chill a little extra water and start slowly when adding your water.


For all my pastry making, I use FG Roberts plain flour. Their flour was used for the shortcrust which I made the mini ham and cheese tarts shown below.


Jump to recipe



Recipe

Basic Shortcrust Pastry


Ingredients:

250 gm plain gluten free flour

1 teaspoon xanthan gum

150 gm unsalted butter, cubed approximately 1-2cm and chilled

1/2 teaspoon salt (omit if using salted butter)

5-8 tablespoons iced water

extra plain flour for dusting


Thermomix Mixing Directions:

  1. Add flour, xanthan gum, salt and chilled butter to your thermomix bowl.

  2. Blitz 5 seconds speed 6. The butter and flour mixture should resemble small breadcrumbs

  3. Add three (3) tablespoons of chilled water and mix on dough mode 30 seconds, adding more chilled water, a tablespoon at a time, until the dough just comes together.

  4. The quantity of iced water needed will vary with different gluten free flours.

  5. Turn onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth.

  6. Form into a flattened ball, cover in cling film and chill for at least 30 minutes before rolling.

Conventional Mixing Directions:

  1. Add flour, xanthan gum, salt and chilled butter to your food processor bowl.

  2. Pulse 3-5 times until the butter and flour mixture resembles small breadcrumbs. You can also rub the butter into the mix using your fingertips.

  3. Add three (3) tablespoons of chilled water and mix, adding more chilled water a tablespoon at a time until the dough just comes together. The quantity of iced water needed will vary with different gluten free flours.

  4. Turn onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth.

  5. Form into a flattened ball, cover in cling film and chill for at least 30 minutes before rolling.

To Bake:

  1. For pie cases, prick the base with a fork

  2. Line the case with baking paper and baking weights (rice or beans work well)

  3. Blind bake in a preheated oven at 200 degrees celsius for 10 to 15 minutes.

  4. Remove the baking weights, return to the oven and bake a further 5 mins to crisp up.

  5. Allow the case to cool before filling and ensure the fillings are cooled.

  6. Once filled, bake 200 degrees celsius for 20 to 25 minutes until filling is cooked as desired and the pastry is golden.


Note: After cutting the dough, the remaining scraps maybe reused. If the dough becomes too sticky, chill until firm to roll and cut.

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