Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Gluten Free Vegan Biscuits

I took on another vegan project this past weekend... Biscuits! These biscuits were gluten free in addition to vegan, and they worked out pretty well. This was all spurred on by a gal I've been dating for about a month who has some pretty particular dietary restrictions. We'd made our way to a gluten free bakery on MLK called Tula for breakfast a couple of weeks back, and after having one of their parmesan biscuits, I was inspired to try my hand at it myself. In the interest of giving credit where it's due, I based my recipe on a post I found on Vegansaurus, with a few alterations. To wit...


2 C gluten free flour*
3/4 tsp xanthan gum
1 1/2 tsp salt
5 tsp baking powder
5 Tbsp chilled vegetable shortening**
1 C unsweetened hazelnut milk

* I used Bob's Red Mill brand, you could also experiment with your own combination of corn, rice, garbanzo and bean flours, and potato starch.
** I used Earth Balance shortening; Crisco or vegan margarine would probably work in a pinch.


Preheat oven to 400F.

Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl and whisk together well. Add the shortening, cut into 1/4 inch pieces, and cut in with a hand mixer until the shortening has reduced to smaller pieces, and the mixture takes on a sandy, pebbly appearance. Then stop, you don't want to overwork it. It helps, by the way, to have placed the shortening in the freezer for a while, as well as the blades of the mixer (or, if you're using a Kitchenaid mixer, as I did, the paddle attachment and the bowl).

Add the hazelnut milk and knead by hand until just combined, ten or fifteen times at most. Again, you don't want to overwork it, or the flakiness of the biscuits will suffer.

Spoon biscuit sized portions of the batter onto a greased baking sheet. You should get about eight biscuits per batch. Place into oven, and check them after eight minutes. The bottoms should be golden, but not quite brown. Place back in the oven for another four minutes. Keep an eye on them during this period, as you don't want the tops to brown, only the bottoms.

And enjoy! For the gravy, I used an altered version of the sauce from Epicurean Vegan's Mac and Cheese recipe with some sauteed and crumbled seitan thrown in (seitan is, however, by definition not gluten free), although I might try Vegansaurus' recipe in the future...