One of the first few things we change in our children’s diet when starting the GFCF diet is bread. We obsess over finding the perfect bread that has similar taste and texture to normal breads. Some prefer to bake their own bread using pre-mixes, some prefer to use one of the many gfcf bread recipes available online and mix different flours together, whilst some prefer to buy it ready made. And some are considering buying bread making machines too.
For me, I always chose the cheapest and easiest option ie. premixes. I had spoken to a German baker in PJ (not sure if it’s the same as Hans Peter baker) This was years ago when exploring GFCF breads. It was quite pricey RM25+ I think for a tiny loaf. He couldn’t sustain the product because at that time there was too little uptake. To me, the taste was comparable to Bob’s Red Mill, much more expensive, the loaf was tiny and the bread wasn’t any better than what I can easily make with premixes. One packet of Laucke or Bob’s bread premixed can make one big loaf of bread, 3 times the size of what the baker could offer.
You don’t need a bread maker to make GFCF bread, I rely on pre-mixes. 1 pack is enough for at least 1 week’s worth of consumption. Many of the gluten free bread recipes and premixes require eggs, however we can always substitute with No Egg or any other egg replacer. But from experience, gluten free bread premixes are much nicer when using real eggs. So for many of us, our breads will never be as yummy, just another thing we have to live with temporarily during our recovery journey. Gluten free bread always tastes best toasted I find.
Also, no GFCF breads can ever have the same taste and texture as Gardenia bread or normal bread. You can search the planet, nothing comes close to a delicious wheat bread:-)
So before you commit to an expensive bread maker, try making one loaf first. My daughters used to be addicted to bread, they would eat Bob’s, Ogran’s and Laucke, all these premixes are available in Bangsar Village Grocer. But after a few months they refused to eat any more GFCF bread. They’d rather go without bread, so that saves me money:-) Do ask parents who have been doing the GFCF diet for a long time and see if they actually have to make GF bread or buy GF bread anymore? I bet for many of them in Malaysia, like me we find that our kids no longer want to eat GF bread. However, some of my friends in the US orders them online and have favorite specialist stores that can deliver the bread to them weekly.
In Singapore you can buy pre-made sliced GFCF breads. Brown Rice Paradise carries several brands (brown rice bread, white rice bread, tapioca bread, with and without yeast etc) I think it’s Ener-G brand and another one, sorry forgot the brand. It’s slightly cheaper than the one I bought from the German baker in Malaysia. You can even buy it in certain supermarkets on the shelves. I usually buy 2 loaves, keep 1 loaf in the fridge and another in the freezer and it lasts me for 1 month. Back 2 Basic bakes and sells their own range of bread and baked goods too.
You can also buy GFCF foods including breads from specialty bakeries in the US, some deliver to Malaysia though I never bothered as it wasn’t worth the delivery cost. Remember, our kids are young, they’re not gourmet food critics, many kids are so picky that even the ‘best’ GFCF bread will be spat out. I nearly cried when my daughter refused the expensive loaf that I bought from the German baker. I remember grumpily eating it because I didn’t want to waste it.
Some kids will eat anything, Parents tell me their kids will eat anything they are served. So for these kids, I assume they’ll even eat Ogran bread. So, don’t sweat over finding or making the perfect bread. To me, so long as it’s GFCFSFEF and my kids will eat it, it’s fine by me.
Unless you don’t have an oven, you can easily make GFCF bread with premixes. It is super easy. A small oven costs less than a bread maker btw.
In Malaysia, GF breads are not yet commercially available unless you make a special order with a bakery. Please don’t spend too much of your time, energy and money on sourcing GFCF breads, when you can find a simpler but less elegant solution that you child is still happy with. After all, there are many other foods you can feed your child. Even for a bread addict which my girls were, they put up with the gluten free breads I served them because they craved it so much.
So, manage your time and finances wisely. Consider which options suits your child’s food preference and budget. You would do far better with your time and money by treating your child’s health or doing therapy for your child rather than searching for that elusive perfect loaf of GFCF bread. But if you do find it, please let me know ok? 🙂