About Low Carb Bread

What with all this talk about low carb bread, I thought I should post about my recent experiments with baking my own.

I included several bread-machine recipes in 500 Low-Carb Recipes. They all worked great for me, or I wouldn't have put them in the book. But of all the recipes I've ever published, they're the ones that have turned out to be most problematic. For every reader who has written me raving about the bread, another has written to say that they couldn't get it to rise for love nor money.

Trouble-shooting was tough. Bread-making is among the most complex forms of cooking. It was very hard to put my finger on what the problem might be.

But I've been working on bread recipes for The Glycemic Load Cookbook, and I think I've worked it out. So if you've tried my recipes in your own bread machine, and been disappointed in the results, here's what I hope will solve the problem -- I know I haven't had a single failure since I figured this out.

When you make these recipes in your bread machine, do not simply put the ingredients in your bread machine, turn it on, and walk away. Instead, turn on the machine (use the whole wheat cycle if your machine has one) and let it knead the dough for three or four minutes. Then open the lid and look at your dough ball.

How does it look? Is it sticking to the sides of the bread case, and “puddling” at the bottom? It’s too wet. Add more of the dry ingredients (vital wheat gluten, flour, bran, protein powder) 1 tablespoon at a time. Sprinkle a tablespoon of one of those dry ingredients over the dough ball, and let the machine knead it in before you decide you need more. If you do, add a little of the next dry ingredient – you’re keeping your proportions right. When the dough forms a cohesive ball, it’s right, and you can close the machine and walk away.

If you look at your dough ball and it’s breaking into a couple of lumps, instead of forming one ball, or if it’s leaving dry flour behind, your dough is too dry. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of water over the dough ball, and let the machine knead it in. Repeat until you have a single cohesive ball that picks up all the flour. Then you can close the machine and walk away.

Don't forget to come back and remove the bread from the machine as soon as it's done, to prevent sogginess!

I hope this helps.

By the way, my current bread machine cost me $10 at a yard sale. I frequently see bread machines at the Goodwill, as well. The ingredients can be pricey, but you'll still probably come out ahead as compared to the price of ordering low carb bread by mail.

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White bread recipe questions

HELP! I have noticed that when I make the white bread recipe 2 things happen. 1) it never rises more then 3 inches which makes it extremely dense and 2) the flavour of the wheat gluten really takes over and leaves a bad taste in my mouth. Could the latter be the result of #1? I watch the dough through the kneading process and haven't had any issues with it "puddling" at the bottom or breaking up... it looks the same as every regular bread recipe I used to make before going low carb... so I'm not sure what the problem could be. Also, all my ingredients are fresh so I don't think it could be an issue with that.

low carb bread

km

I have been eating Trader Joe's Sprouted breads for months, but have a question about one of the ingredients that shows up in all of the types they sell. While low in carbs, does the inclusion of molasses make this bread off limits for the 2 week induction? Or is the amount so small it does not matter? I agree that the rye is the best!

molasses in bread

This is in response to the question about molasses in TJ bread. All yeast breads need a little sugar to feed the yeast. Although the sugar must be listed as an ingredient and the carbs must be included in the nutrition count on the label, all or most of it will have been consumed by the yeast in the finished product.

Judy Barnes Baker
www.carbwars.blogspot.com

Interesting i never thought

Interesting i never thought the sugars would've been used up by the yeast thats really good to know when shopping for low carb breads and other products which use yeast. I'm usually shopping online for hard to find products or ones that are to expensive in the local shops like discount vitamins and other supplements.

Interesting i never thought

Interesting i never thought the sugars would've been used up by the yeast thats really good to know when shopping for low carb breads and other products which use yeast. I'm usually shopping online for hard to find products or ones that are to expensive in the local shops like discount vitamins and other supplements.

Molasses in TJ's bread

I'm pretty sure that Induction doesn't include bread at all, even low carb bread. So the molasses question is moot.

But my feeling is that digestible carbs are digestible carbs, and the big thing is keeping your total intake of them low. I've been using tiny quantities of molasses combined with Splenda to get a brown sugar flavor in recipes for years and years.

And there's no question that bread rises best with the inclusion of a little sugar of some sort -- especially low carb bread, which minimizes the starch the yeast has to eat.

But if you're going to do Induction, I'd skip the bread entirely for a couple of weeks. Indeed, all these years later, I still consider even low carb grain products to be fringe foods in my diet; I don't eat them anything like every day, and they're one of the first things I drop if my jeans feel a little tight.

Is there any chance you'll

Is there any chance you'll give instructions on how to bake bread in a regular oven in your new cookbook? I know you're a huge fan of breadmakers but I quite simply don't have the space for another gadget.

I have a KitchenAid mixer that can do all of the kneading for me - I would just need rising and baking times. I've always wanted to try your recipes in 500 Low-Carb Recipes but have no clue how to convert bread machine recipes into regular oven recipes.

Non-Bread Machine Bread Recipes

Not in this book; I'm out of time to develop recipes. But I'll do some in the future. I have a Mixmaster with dough hooks, so I can use that -- though I grew up kneading bread by hand.

Mostly I'm a fan of bread machines because in my experience more people use them than will make bread by hand. :-)