Cinnamon and Improvisation

Posting light today due to legal shenanigans yesterday. But I did bake cinnamon rolls, from Gluten-Free 101, by Carol Fenster. Same cookbook that has the excellent GF pizza recipe, complete with made-from-scratch pizza sauce.

The cinnamon rolls required a bit more improvisation. The book recipe calls for, among other ingredients, 1 egg and 1 additional yolk, powdered dry milk, and guar gum.

I can’t do egg. Flat out. Very annoying, as deviled eggs and scrambled with salsa used to be some of my top favorite meals. Substitution: One serving of no sugar added applesauce (about 1/2 cup).

I really can’t do powdered milk. Both the lactose and the intact milk proteins dislike me intensely. Substitution: Equal amount of Fage 5% yogurt. More on that later.

And we just didn’t have guar gum. That I looked up on the internet; you can use 2/3 xanthan gum to substitute for 1 unit guar gum. That we could do.

Cinnamon-sugar filling mixed, dough achieved… well. Not exactly. You can probably guess the problem.

Yep. Yogurt, much more liquid than milk powder. Based on past experience, too much liquid in a recipe that depends on xanthan gum will result in a gel-like consistency that the water cannot be cooked out of. Fortunately I’d kept the xanthan gum out of the mix when it kept looking suspiciously liquidy. So I added about… eh, ended up maybe a cup of extra GF flour-mix (brown rice flour, potato starch, and tapioca flour) to dry the mix out a bit. Then added the xanthan gum. Resulting dough was still very moist, but worked.

The recipe called for rolling it out flat before slathering with cinnamon-sugar. The improvised dough was too fragile, so I just patted it into a thin layer and went from there. Slather, slice into thirds, roll up, slice each roll in half, plant on sheets to rise 1/2 hour, then cook.

Verdict: Came out well, would probably have been sweeter and more dessert-like if I hadn’t had to add extra flour mix. Next time I’ll reduce the amount of water the recipe calls for to account for the liquid in the yogurt.

All told, a lot of work and dishes to make this, but a nice change for a treat.

20 thoughts on “Cinnamon and Improvisation

  1. Would freeze-dried yogurt work, assuming you can FIND stuff without the various things you can’t have?

    It looks like a lot of “yogurt powder” may actually be “flavored dried milk,” so…..

    Liked by 1 person

    1. So far legal shenanigans continue, because our lawyer pointed out there was a section of one kind of official form maybe cut-pasted into what was supposed to be a completely different kind for us to sign, and we’re now going round and round with the other lawyer about getting it cut before we sign.


      1. So far, incompetence.

        We got a version this morning with the offending sentences removed, but the lawyer had neglected to add extra spacing at the end of that page to account for the cut. Result: Witness signature lines on pages separate from where notary public signatures supposed to go.

        Emailed back, pointed out error, suggested fix.

        …I’m a writer. I didn’t expect to have to be proofreading someone else’s lawyer.

        And before you ask – no, I’m not honestly surprised, this is the level of incompetence I expect from anyone who willingly deals with my relatives. I’m just amazed.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Okay… so I’ve only used applesauce as a moisture substitute, but apparently you were using it as a binder? And people use other kinds of fruit puree for that, too?

    Is it a pectin thing, or is it just that natural sugars are “sticky”?

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I don’t know how you react to corn starch, sugar, salt, and blueberries, but I’ve got a pretty good pancake syrup or jelly recipe if you want it. The only other ingredient is water.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Blueberry sauce
        (Makes about 1 pint)

        2 c fresh or frozen blueberries
        1/2 c water
        1/4 c sugar
        2 T cornstarch
        Dash of salt

        Mix salt, sugar and cornstarch then blend into water. Add berries, cook ‘til thick; stirring constantly. (Let it simmer- bubbles on the edge- [I know it looks like it will burn, that’s what the constant stirring is for] otherwise it won’t condense.)

        For the sugar, this was originally a pie layer so it called for 1/2 c of sugar, but the first time I made it for waffles it was way too sweet so I cut the sugar in half for the next batch and it was perfect. The original recipe also called for 1/2 T of butter, but I kept forgetting to put it in because it wasn’t in the instructions, and it tastes just fine without.

        Liked by 1 person

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