Wednesday, 27 January 2016

The Gluten-Free Files : Sausage Rolls

I've been gluten-free for over 2 months now, and it's mostly going very well. There are a few things I miss though, so I thought I'd make a list of them and experiment with making gluten-free versions. First on the list is sausage rolls!

As I often do, I chose a recipe and then changed my mind at the last second, found I didn't have all the ingredients, substituted some and ended up with something quite different. This is the recipe that I butchered was inspired by. I also found the tips from For Dummies here really handy.
And I apologise in advance again for the photospam -- most of my cooking posts seem to have a ridiculous number of photos!

The basic ingredients. The flour is a commercial pre-mixed blend of tapioca, rice flour and potato flour. I read that you can use chia seeds instead of xanthan gum (used for binding). I happened to have some black chia seeds in the cupboard that I'd been planning to make a pudding with. And of course, butter, salt and sausage mince. I think most sausage mince is gluten-free, as they tend to use maize or soy flour for the filler, but always check the label to be sure!

Cutting the butter into the flour. This pastry tool is probably my favourite kitchen implement! I bought it from an op-shop years ago. I love how the paint is wearing off the handle. And the fact that it has a wooden handle at all, now that I think about it.

The sources I found on substituting with chia seeds said they could be ground or not, but didn't mention if they should be soaked in water first or not. After consultation with an expert in all things cooking (i.e. Husband), I decided to grind and then soak them.

The pastry dough. The black chia seeds really stand out, oops! I'll get some of the white variety to use next time. Other than that, they worked perfectly. I only added a tiny bit of water, about a teaspoon, and it still seemed a little sticky. I hoped that the next step, the chilling, would help with that.

According to the source I read, the dough should be very cold when placed in the oven, as it's the sudden heating that causes the water in the butter to steam and separate the dough into flaky layers. I flattened out the dough so it would chill faster.

Meanwhile, I made the filling. To the sausage mince, I added herbs, onion flakes, a bit of curry powder, and shredded carrot. I mixed it together with my hands, the old fashioned way! I did take a photo of that, but it looked kinda gross, so I deleted it. =D

Half an hour later, I began the rolling. The dough became sticky again very quickly, and it was difficult to work with, even with non-stick paper. I might try adding a little more flour next time.

I had to use the non-stick paper to fold the pastry up and around the filling before peeling it off, much like making sushi handrolls, if you've ever seen how they're made. But in the end, success!

Half an hour later. Gluten-free baked goods tend not to go brown, but I can assure you, they are cooked!

The dough came out quite well, I think. It's flaky and holds together quite well.
But was it worth it, cost-wise? I saw some gluten-free sausage rolls in my local supermarket for $9.99 for a pack of 3 (frozen). That's $3.33 each. Leaving out the little one, I calculated the cost of my five to be $0.67 each. Fresh! It seems so!

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