Thursday, August 18, 2011

Review: Chebe Focaccia Bread (#1)

Recently, I decided to buy Chebe, which provides a variety of gluten-free bread mixes and (apparently) frozen goods. I hadn't tried anything by this brand before, but I've been craving gluten-free bread that isn't corn tortillas. Not that there aren't other options out there--and plenty of them--but while I'm staying with friends, I'm trying to minimize the number of things I buy and leave in their refrigerator--and the size of the messes I make in their kitchen.

The Chebe mix I bought, Focaccia  bread, looked easy enough: oil, milk or milk substitute, eggs, Parmesan cheese (optional). And it was supposed to cook in 35 minutes. I didn't have eggs though, so I decided to use the standard flax seed egg replacement and hope it worked.

I made up the mix as directed except the flax seed eggs. I used almond milk, since that's what I had, and olive oil . I topped the focaccia with garlic powder. I also wound up needing almost 2x the amount of liquid recommended.

The result: very crunchy (think crunchy-crust pizza with me) on the outside and yet almost doughy on the inside. I'd give it another try though--things don't always go amazingly in my friend's oven--rather than count either of these things against the Chebe mix. The flavor was good enough and my friend Lauren (who I ate dinner with) said it was "really good," while my friend who I'm staying with walked into the kitchen and said, "Whatever you're cooking smells amazing."

In short: It didn't turn out like focaccia at all (though I do think it would make a good GF pizza crust), but before I condemn it, I'd give it another try in a more reliable oven, and possibly with eggs instead as well. If I do this, I'll update the post, or make another post with a picture of the baked focaccia. The flavor is strongly rosemary, so if you're not a fan of this herb you might not like this bread mix. Just a warning.

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