These Hot Dog Buns came about after I received a message from a mum. Her daughter needed a grain and gluten free bun that looked like other kids buns for when she went to parties. I've used yeast to help create a soft-centred bun (choose a yeast without additives, Saccharomyces cerevisiae is the type for baking bread). They are perfect to cradle your hot dog or sausage in.
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Pour the warm water into a jug or bowl and whisk in the yeast. Add the maple syrup and stir (the yeast will feed on the maple syrup). Allow to sit for 15 minutes while foam forms on top.
Meanwhile, add the almond meal, arrowroot, coconut flour, psyllium powder, flaxseed and salt to a large bowl. Stir well and remove any lumps.
Pour the warm foaming mixture into the dry ingredients and mix well to combine. Let the dough sit for 2 minutes to allow the moisture to be absorbed, then kneed the dough for 45 - 60 seconds. Cover the bowl with a tea towel and let sit in a warm spot out of a draught for 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 190c (fan-forced) 10 minutes before the proving has finished. Line a baking tray with baking paper.
Divide the risen dough into 4 equal portions (approx. 168g each) or 6 portions for kids size buns (approx. 112g each). Coat your palms with olive oil and shape the portions into round logs, then roll the logs between your palms to make the surface smooth, add extra oil to your palms as needed. Make the 4 portions 17cm long (the kid sizes 12 - 13cms).
Place the dough portions on the prepared tray and wipe olive oil or melted ghee over the tops and sides. Slice a 1cm deep cut down the centre of the whole length of the buns.
Bake for 35 minutes (25 - 30 mins for small buns) or until golden brown and the tops are firm. Allow to cool on the tray before slicing and serving.
To serve: Cut a V shape in the precut line down the centre of the buns and remove the small wedge of bread and place your fillings into the cavity. We enjoy fried onions with our additive-free hot dogs or sausage. These buns are also delicious sliced and toasted, and spread with grass-fed butter or ghee.
Suitable to freeze (if you would like to crispen them back up, place the buns into a preheated oven for 5 - 10 minutes).
HAMBURGER BUN option: Divide into 5 equal portions and roll into balls, flatten slightly to form a round bun shape and cut a cross on the top of each bun. Wipe the tops with olive oil or melted ghee. Bake for 35 minutes.
I feel it's much better for our health if we filter our water. Our tap water contains disinfectants, chlorine and chloramine. Also floride is add which I believe is toxin to our bodies.
When purchasing Active Dry Yeast for baking bread at home, choose a dried yeast that doesn't contain additives. Saccharomyces cerevisiae is the type for baking bread. I've used dried yeast to create a more bread-like texture, it helps to produce a more soft and aerated centre. Store sealed in the fridge after opening.
Maple syrup is an earthy, sweet tasting amber liquid that is produced by boiling down the sap of maple trees. Use organic 100% maple syrup which is a natural food sweetener, not a flavoured maple syrup. Pure maple syrup contains a decent amount of some minerals, especially manganese and zinc, some traces of potassium and calcium but it does contain a whole bunch of sugar. I try to reduced the amount of sweetness in each recipe to the lowest possible without compromising taste. Feel free to adjust to your liking. I use maple syrup in place of raw honey when I don't want the strong honey flavour coming through in a recipe. I have paleo cookies and desserts in my cookbook made from whole food ingredients with natural sugars but please don’t overindulge. Use as a treat only for special occasions.
The most favoured gluten/grain free flour substitute in my kitchen is almond meal. It is finely ground blanched almonds and is also known as almond flour. It has a slightly sweet flavour so you don’t have to add as much sweetener when baking with it. Almond meal/flour is rich in manganese which helps the body heal after injuries and also helps the body break down carbohydrates. Almond flour is also rich in magnesium, which can help control your blood sugar levels. It's rich in vitamin E and other antioxidants, which may help reduce the risk of serious health conditions like cancer, diabetes, stroke, and heart disease. Almonds are also a good source of calcium.
All kinds of nuts can be ground down to make a meal and are excellent for raw cheesecake or pie bases. Nut meals/flours are best stored in airtight containers in the fridge or freezer to prevent them going rancid.
Arrowroot is a herb, the roots are cultivated for its starch properties. It is used in my recipes as a thickener and I also like combining it with almond meal to produce a much lighter texture, more like a gluten flour. I find the starch helps to bind the ingredients together. You can substitute tapioca flour, which is made from the dried roots of the cassava plant. Tapioca can be used in baking, it has a slightly sweet flavour. However, I do not recommend thickening with tapioca, as it has a stretchy, gummy texture. Supermarkets only sell in very small containers, which is not cost effective. Purchase from baking specialty stores, health food stores or online. ( When substituting for cornflour in recipes, 2 teaspoons arrowroot = 1 tablespoon cornflour/starch).
Coconut flour is made by drying and grinding the meat of a coconut to a fine texture. Coconut flour is a low-carb flour that's an excellent source of dietary fibre and protein. It's a good grain-free and nut-free alternative but does require a larger amount of liquid than normal when used for baked goods. When replacing in a recipe that calls for wheat flour (or almond meal), use this guide; 1 cup of regular flour = 1/3 cup coconut flour, add an extra egg and an extra 1/3 cup of liquid. It can be used in soups, gravies and stews as a thickener and adds a boost of nutrition. Coconut flour may promote stable blood sugar levels and a healthy heart. In addition, it may have antibacterial properties and aid digestion and weight loss. There are now quite a few brands of coconut flour available and they all seem to perform differently depending on how coarse the texture is. In my recipes, I used Organic Coconut Flour from 'Let's Do Organic' and 'Red Tractor Foods' I like their finer texture.
Psyllium powder is ground down psyllium husks to produce a very fine powder. Psyllium is a source of soluble dietary fibre, it expands when mixed with liquid. It can help relieve constipation and diarrhea. Psyllium is used in gluten free baking, as the finely ground husks bind moisture and help make breads rise and less crumbly. You can purchase psyllium husk powder from a supermarket or make your own by using a blender or food processor to ground to a very fine powder.
Golden flaxseed meal is finely ground linseed. You will find it in many of my recipes. It is also a great egg substitute when mixed with water. Flaxseed is very low in carbohydrates, making it ideal for people who limit their intake of carbs. It is rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, which is the key force against inflammation in our bodies. Flaxseed must be stored in the fridge. I like to use golden flaxseed as it is lighter in colour, than the brown variety and produces a nicer colour to your baking.
Organic unbleached, unrefined organic Celtic sea salt or pink Himalayan salt is my salt of choice as these contain healthy minerals and trace elements that our body needs. Regular table salt has been bleached, refined and processed leaving minimal health benefits. If you choose to use regular table salt in my recipes you will need to reduce the quantity or the end result will be to salty.
Ghee is a lactose-free ancient superfood. It is made by slow cooking and clarifying butter to remove the milk solids and lactose, it's pure butter fat. You can get the flavour of butter in your cooking without the dairy (please don't consume if you have an allergy to ghee). My favourite brands are Organic Valley Purity Farms or Puresoul grass-fed. It is also very easy to make yourself. Ghee has a high smoke point 485F/250C.