Gluten-free crusty boule

Gluten-free crusty boule

This bread recipe comes from Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day, the wonderful new book from Jeff Hertzberg and Zoë Francois. Don’t know their names? You know their other book, I’m sure: Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day. Almost everyone I know who can eat gluten makes bread out of that book. They all rave. The rest of us were left to feel sad, shunted off to the side again.

Gluten-Free Crusty Rosemary and Kalamata Olive Bread, adapted from Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day, by Jeff Hertzberg and Zoë Francois

I loved the rosemary loaf made by Essential Bakery in Seattle. My dear friend Gabe and I both loved it so much we used to leave it in each other’s mailboxes as a present when the other was having a bad day. And I seemed to live on the olive loaf from Macrina Bakery in Seattle, just before I found out I had celiac.

Start making this recipe now and you’ll be prepared for the next loaf by fall.
Start making this recipe now and you’ll be prepared for the next loaf by fall.

I’ve missed both those breads. So I put them together and made this. Now, go forth and bake.


  • 1 cup brown rice flour;
  • 3/4 cup sorghum flour;
  • 1 1/2 cups tapioca flour;
  • 1 tablespoon granulated active dry yeast;
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt;
  • 1 tablespoon xanthan gum;
  • 1 1/3 cups lukewarm water (heated to 110°F);
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature;
  • 2 tablespoons + 2 teaspoons canola oil;
  • 1 tablespoon honey;
  • 2 handfuls kalamata olives, sliced;
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary, taken off the stem and finely chopped;
  • olive oil;
  • coarse sea salt.


  1. Mixing the flours. Mix together the brown rice flour, sorghum flour, tapioca flour, yeast, salt, and xanthan gum in the bowl of your stand mixer (or a large bowl, if you are doing this by hand).
  2. Making the dough. Add the water, eggs, oil, and honey to the dry ingredients. Mix with the paddle attachment (or with a large spoon if you are mixing by hand) for a few moments until the dough has fully come together. It will be soft. It will sort of slump off the paddle. Don’t worry. That’s the right texture. Add the olives and rosemary and mix one more time.
  3. Letting the dough rise. Put the dough in a large, clean bowl and cover it with a clean towel. Put the dough in a warm place in your kitchen, then leave it alone to rise about 2 hours.
  4. You can now use the dough. Or, you can refrigerate it in a large container with a lid. The dough stays good for a week. Refrigeration overnight does seem to improve the flavor, as well.

Baking the bread

  1. Shape 1 pound of the dough into a squat oval shape or small ball. Sometimes, wetting your hands helps if the dough feels too sticky. Let the dough rest for 40 minutes. (If you are pulling the dough out of the refrigerator, let it rest for 1 1/2 hours before baking it.)
  2. Half an hour before you will put the bread into the oven to bake, turn on the oven to 450°.
  3. (Now we slide a Dutch oven in there to heat up. Jeff and Zoë recommend a pizza stone in the oven and a pizza peel sprinkled with cornmeal for resting the bread. Please make sure both are never before used, if you are gluten-free.)
  4. Before baking, make 1/4-inch-deep cuts with a serrated knife to the top of the dough. Pour on a bit of olive oil and sprinkle with coarse sea salt.
  5. Put the dough into the Dutch oven, cover, and return it to the hot oven. (Or, slide the loaf from the pizza peel onto the hot baking stone.) Close the oven door and bake the bread until the top has lightly browned and the bread feels firm, about 35 minutes. (Also, the internal temperature of the bread should be at least 180°.)
  6. You can put a large sauté pan filled with ice cubes on the rack below the one that holds the baking bread. This will create steam in the oven and help to form that golden crust.
  7. Take the bread out of the oven and let it cool at least 15 minutes before slicing. (I know. But really, you have to do this.)

Eat. Enjoy. Makes 2, 1-pound loaves.

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