Xanthan or Guar Gum

I can not tolerate xanthan or guar gum and I am having problems making gluten- free bread. I wondered if you had any other advice for someone who can’t use these ingredients. Thanks for you help.

We asked Carol Fenster, author of 1,000 Gluten- Free Recipes and president and founder of Savory Palate, Inc., what ingredients might be substituted for xanthan or guar gum. Here’s what she said:

Unfortunately, our gluten- free yeast bread, especially the 9x5-inch size loaf, is much better with gums. The gums provide a cell structure, replacing the function of gluten, in which the carbon dioxide can expand to make the bread rise. You could try making popovers, which can successfully be made without gums since they are bound by lots of eggs. Pull out the soft interior and stuff the popovers with sandwich filling. Also, try Focaccia, which is a flatbread and doesn’t have to rise very much to be successful—but be sure to use eggs. A teaspoon of unflavored gelatin mixed in with the dry ingredients might provide some structure, but won’t be as successful as gums. Or, try spreading the Focaccia dough over a 13x9-inch nonstick pan to make a very thin flatbread that can be simply torn and dipped in oil. It is supposed to be very thin and the crumbliness that results from omitting the gums won’t be as noticeable.

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