A recipe calls for coating (slightly cooked) fennel bulbs in flour before roasting them, presumably to obtain a bit of a crust. Is there anything I could coat them with that is gluten-free?
Rice flour should work well for this; it produces very crispy crusts.
Doesn't rice flour also contain gluten?– CarmiOct 6, 2010 at 13:29
4No. Rice generally thought of as a good gluten free alternative. Brown rice contains something like .02 of gluten so some highly intolerant people can only have white. I emphasis that this is rare though.– nunuOct 6, 2010 at 13:50
1@nunu: thanks for the correction. It seems I learn something new every few hours, and unlearn something wrong every day.– CarmiOct 8, 2010 at 7:43
I like nuts that are finely chopped, kinda like bread crumbs. Almond flour will perhaps work as well.
The last time I made "breaded" chicken, I had some spare lentils leftover and decided to pulse them in the food processor and try using them (not quite to a fine powder, but closer to that than whole). The result was delicious, a little bit of a nutty flavor, and a great crunch.
+1 for a cool, off the beaten path idea. Did the wife consider it a vegetable? ;) Oct 7, 2010 at 3:15
@yossarian - HA! I didn't think to ask, but I bet she did :) and it must have been pretty good because she asked me to make it again the next week! Oct 7, 2010 at 3:29
This sounds delicious! Were the lentils cooked or raw when you pulsed them?– DorreneOct 7, 2010 at 13:38
They were still raw - which is why I decided to take them down to a size that was as close to a powder as I could without being an actual full-on powder (though I suspect a powder would work just as well, maybe with just a little less crunch) Oct 7, 2010 at 13:43
I would consider using potato flour. It gives a coating sort of like the outside of a chip (french fry).
3And for the cases where you're replacing breadcrumbs instead of flour, you can crush up potato chips (but use the thicker cut ones, like the ripple cut ones)– JoeOct 7, 2010 at 2:06
Grits, which is to say coarsely-ground corn. Also try masa, which is very finely-ground corn. You can find masa in Mexican grocery stores.
Actually, what I usually use at home is chickpea flour. It has a neutral flavour, generally, and gives a nice brown coat to my pakoras.
I'd use corn starch. It's gluten free and I use it as part of (although not all of) my fried chicken coating for extra crispiness.
Almond meal is another alternative.
Bean flour, usually from lentils is a very good gluten free replacement for many things (except in baking). It's very popular in a lot of Indian food.
@Nick is correct. Gram flour (milled from chickpeas) is used extensively for 'crunch' with fried stuff. It does have a taste of its own which although tasty, doesn't necessarily go with everything. But its definitely worth a try.
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