Piecrust-astrophes, October 2013

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I’ve been baking FODMAP friendly long enough to give piecrust a try, and some Facebook friends sent helpful tips (thank you Kim, Erin, Lindsay and Bobbie! Unfortunately, your recommended flour blend and piecrust mix contain brown rice, which I can’t digest right now).

So I fired up the search engine … got out my GF cookbooks … and started experimenting. I wanted something with egg and vinegar, like my mother-in-law’s never-fail recipe. The cookbooks all suggest using a fairly starchy GF flour blend, keeping everything super-cold, and making sure sure sure not to use too much water.

King Arthur Flour’s website had a GF piecrust recipe that looked good. Besides egg and vinegar, it calls for “Instant ClearJel” (I substituted gelatin) and xanthan gum. I also substituted my own flour blend.

With some leftover chicken and veggies, I stirred up a sweet-rice-flour cream sauce and added herbs for an Experimental Chicken Pie. The filling was ambrosial; the crust was tough. Conclusion: try an even starchier flour blend.

First, another online recipe came highly recommended. The main ingredient was white rice flour, blended in a food processor until superfine. I tried filling it with a maple syrup-based pecan filling. For company.

Results: fabulous filling, but the crust was worse than ever! The filling boiled up between crust and pie pan, supergluing the crust to the pan—and it was gritty. Plainly I didn’t blend long enough. And who knows what else. My company was gracious. We scooped out the filling, doused it with chocolate ganache, and the free-eaters added vanilla ice cream. It was a great evening, but I had plenty left over.

A person can eat up just so much less-than-excellent pie in a week, which is why there is not yet a gluten-free piecrust recipe on Comfortable Comfort Foods. But I’m determined to find something that works—without gluten or brown rice flour! I think I will re-try the King Arthur recipe next week, with more potato starch in my blend.

Here’s hoping!

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