Saturday, February 9, 2008

A Successful Gluten Free Master Baking Mix -and- Mini Donut Hole Muffins

Last month, I received an email from a wonderful reader named Peggy. She had tried my "all-purpose" baking mix I first posted last month and said that it tasted bitter to her. She had tried it in several recipes and while they were good, they had an aftertaste that she and her family didn't like.

Thankfully Peggy was kind enough to email me and let me know about what happened when she made the mixture. I am always appreciative of readers who let me know how my recipes turn out. I have no way of knowing if it actually works for others unless I receive feedback!

Peggy was also patient enough to try the recipe again after we adjusted certain ingredients. So after several emails with Peggy discussing what could be wrong, we lowered the amounts of baking soda and baking powder (realizing we didn't need nearly as much as I originally called for in the mix) and Peggy added additional white rice flour to her mix and it worked perfectly! She emailed me again when it came out right, and I was thrilled! Thank you so much for not giving up Peggy!!

After that experience, I went to work trying to create a more healthy and a BETTER all purpose/ master baking mix, that would work for everyone. I learned a lot of pointers through the email "conversations" with Peggy.

While, I had not used a master mix (like Bisquick) before going gluten free, I know this is a great tool for busy families and working singles! A quick mix can be a life saver for someone who is gluten free and needs to come up with a quick meal for their family, especially if they are on a budget, and also do not want to risk getting "gluten-ed" at a restaurant.

After some trial and error, I've come up with a great mix! It is very healthy and low in points (if you are following a weight watchers points system like I have started to do). I've used it in several recipes that I will be sharing with you throughout the next few weeks. You can make up this mix ahead of time and keep it in an air-tight container and it should keep for several weeks (although I doubt you will have it around that long)! Use this mix cup for cup in any recipe using a baking mix like Bisquick. I would absolutely LOVE to hear your results! Please feel free to email me or leave a comment below!

***For those who need a dairy-free version, please check out my revised recipe:

Ginger Lemon Girl's Original Gluten Free All Purpose/ Master Baking Mix
(like Bisquick)

Entire mix makes roughly 30 servings (1/4 cup of mixture)
2 WW points per serving

2 1/2 cups brown rice flour
1 1/2 cups certified gluten free oat flour - or - millet flour
1 1/2 cups tapioca flour
1 Tbsp. + 1 tsp. xanthan gum
2 tsp. salt.
3 Tbsp. baking powder
1 1/2 cups powdered milk
1/2 cup shortening (I used a butter flavored one)

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together all flours, xanthan gum, salt, baking powder and powdered milk. Make sure to whisk for several minutes to fully incorporate all ingredients evenly. Cut shortening into small squares and cut into flour mixture (like you would for pastry) with a fork or potato ricer until shortening has been fully incorporated throughout the entire mixture. It will look like very tiny peas or specks of shortening throughout the mix. It should look similar to the picture below. When your mix is well combined, place it in a seal-tight plastic or glass container and keep in a cool dry place. I keep this in my cabinet with my gluten free baking supplies. It will be ready anytime you need to use it!! This mix has a very long shelf-life, but we usually have to make it about once a month because we use it so often!!

***For those who need a dairy-free version, please check out my revised recipe:

Please visit the Ginger Lemon Girl Recipe Index to see all of my recipes that use this mix! There is a section specifically dedicated to my Master Mix recipes!!


Now... I know you must be wondering what those delicious little muffin bites must be up in those pictures! Right? Well, even if you weren't you need to try them anyway! They are delicious and I am so excited about them!

Have you been missing donuts since being gluten free? Well I have. I have missed them terribly. And not just regular donuts... I love those little, tiny, baby, powdered donut holes. Those were always my favorite.

Some of my co-workers bring donuts to the office at least once every other week. It's torture. I can smell them all morning and I know I can't have a bite unless I want to get serious nasal congestion for the rest of the day (and I'd really like to lose some weight). So I just get to smell them.

Until now.

Now you can make these little muffin bites, which are tiny little bites of sweet powdered "donut-y" goodness!

And the best thing about them other than the incredible flavor and "cinnamon-y" aroma is that you can eat 4 of these babies for ONLY 3 WW points!! Yes! That means you can have 8 of them if you are feeling really indulgent and it's only 6 WW points! Don't you feel lucky!! They are low in sugar and fat, and are made with mostly whole grain gluten free flours. It doesn't get better than that folks! Please give these sweet little donut holes a try and tell me how much you love them!

Gluten Free Mini Donut Hole Muffins
14 servings (4 mini muffins per serving)
3 WW points per serving

2 1/4 cups Gluten Free Master Baking Mix (see recipe above)
3/4 cup sugar
2 tsp. ground cinnamon
3 egg whites
1 1/4 cups skim milk (or water since there is powdered milk in the master mix)
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1 Tbsp. cocoa powder (if desired)

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Spray a 24 mini-muffin tin with nonstick cooking spray. In a medium bowl combine gluten free baking mix, sugar, and cinnamon. In a small bowl combine egg whites, milk, and vanilla flavoring. Make a well in the dry ingredients and pour egg white/milk mixture in. Stir until fully incorporated. Batter will be somewhat thin, almost like a pancake batter. Fill mini-muffin tins 2/3 full. You should have enough batter to fill and bake 48 muffins. Bake at 375 degrees around 10 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of a donut hole comes out clean. Remove from pan and cool on wire rack for 10 minutes. In a gallon sized plastic bag mix powdered sugar and cocoa powder together. Place 8-10 muffins at a time inside the bag and shake to completely cover donut holes. Allow to cool completely and then place in an airtight container. You can also freeze these wonderful donut holes in individual plastic bags and take out a serving at a time. Enjoy!!

I'll be posting several more recipes in the coming weeks using my new Gluten Free Master Baking Mix! I hope you'll come back often and share your comments!

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