My Adopted Gluten-Free Blogger- Naomi of Straight into Bed Cakefree and Dried

This month the Adopt a Gluten-Free Blogger event was hosted by the always helpful Thomas Dzomba at The GF CF Experience. I was momentarily at a loss- which of the fabulous bloggers that have recently come across my radar should I adopt? Gazing at my recently updated list of gluten-free bloggers I happened to spy Naomi Devlin of Straight into Bed Cakefree and Dried. Naomi is a force to be reckoned with in the gluten-free blogging community, not only for her incredible recipes, but also for her famous monthly Go Ahead Honey it is Gluten Free Blog Event. Naomi is also a pretty darned cool person all on her own, and is a homeopath across the sea in Bridport, Dorset. Naomi infuses her recipes with healthful ingredients in a creative way, and her blog is fun and interesting to read to boot. The tricky part for me this time was picking just one recipe. Luckily I was immediately inspired when I saw her photo for Sweet Potato Pitta Bread. Something about that orange, fluffy crust adorned with sesame seeds called my name, big time. And just like that, I had picked a recipe.

One slightly tricky thing about Naomi’s blog is that measurements are in ounces, and need to be weighed. Luckily I have a super handy kitchen scale that I picked up at Amazon just for these problems. Also, the recipe called for exotic sweet potato flour- this might seem like another problem except recently I discovered an incredible Korean Market, han kook in Sunnyvale that carried Sweet Potato Powder. This sweet potato powder was mixed with cornstarch, so if you want to buy some make sure you read the label. I don’t know if it is ever mixed with wheat starch, but anything is possible.

So, armed with all the ideal ingredients (except for date sugar), on one quiet weekday afternoon I prepared my ingredients, roasted a sweet potato, and tried Naomi’s tempting recipe.

I skinned and mashed my sweet potato, and as I was sifting the flour over it I started to have a really good feeling about the recipe. Sometimes you can just tell a recipe is well constructed. I got even happier as I mixed the dough. It was pliable and easy to work with, if a little sticky.

I shaped balls of dough:

And then I deviated from Naomi’s instructions a little. I put the ball of dough inside a quart sized ziploc bag:

And pressed it out into a circle by hand. It was so easy!

Without using any flour, the pita circle peeled right off:


I placed the dough circles in a pan:

I let the dough rise for an hour (although it didn’t rise much) and then baked it. The dough smelled and looked good, but unfortunately it didn’t puff for me the way it did for Naomi. I think it’s just one of those subtle things that happens when you get the recipe just-right. Then I split one of the pita to make a super tasty egg salad sandwich with fresh tomatoes and basil for garnish. Mmm… (And yes, tofu egg salad would have been just as good, if not better, but I was out…)

Our verdict?
I really liked the recipe and the balance of flours. The sweet potato added vibrant color, nutrition, and a great texture. Sorghum isn’t my favorite whole grain flour, but it worked here. I think Naomi’s come up with a winner with this recipe! DH liked it, but he didn’t rave. He is notoriously difficult to thrill with bread, though, and remember, he’s a glutenoid.
Any Changes?
If I were to make the recipe again, I think I would increase the yeast, because the pita really didn’t rise much for me. I think that would lighten them a bit and maybe (but not necessarily) make it more likely that they would do that lovely puffy air pocket thing. Many of the recipes that work well for me and are really reliable really amp up the yeast and I’d like to see what would happen here if I did that- I also might not let the dough rest before I rolled it out, or possibly might refrigerate the dough, but that’s crazy talk.
I had fun with this recipe and am so glad this event spurred me to make one of Naomi’s lovely recipes. And now, I really ought to get together an entry for her “go ahead honey” event, hosted this month by Ginger Lemon Girl. If somehow you haven’t seen Naomi’s blog, please go and take a look at her super-fabulous collection of recipes. Toothsome recipes that caught my eye include Poppyseed Cardamon Cake, Carrot Pulp Bread, and Peanut Butter and Coconut Mufins, but I have a feeling this is only the tip of the iceberg.
* * *
Important Event Info:
For those interested, the next Adopt a Gluten-Free Blogger event will be held between June 23rd- July 7th. If you are interested in hosting, please comment immediately. I had the feeling that someone had asked to host this month, but I can’t track down the comment or email, so please, if that was you, please post a comment here and let me know. If we don’t have any takers, I’ll host this month. Cheryl of Gluten Free Goodness will be hosting next month. Participants- you can always check the Adopt a Gluten-Free Blogger Headquarters to verify the host(ess) and event dates! Thanks, dahlings! So glad we’ve managed to keep this fun event going!


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6 Responses to “My Adopted Gluten-Free Blogger- Naomi of Straight into Bed Cakefree and Dried”

  1. [...] This week I posted up a storm, with a Retro macaroni Summer Salad Recipe Reviews of GF Instant Meals by Glutino etc and I adopted Naomi and reviewed her GF sweet potato pita recipe [...]

  2. Sea,

    Thanks for the great write up! I’m sorry your pittas didn’t puff, I think yeast varies so much that it’s best to play with it till you get the amount that’s right for you. I find if I use too much yeast the bread gets an alcoholic taste that I’m not keen on. I wouldn’t refrigerate it though, better to warm absolutely everything like you were bathing a delicate baby!

    I think the key to puffing is to get a really steamy atmosphere in the hottest oven and sprinkle the pittas with water just before they go in.

    I like your trick with the plastic bag, but I wonder if the flour on the outside contrbutes to the crust too and therefore encourages puffing? Hmmm…. I’d love to hear if you do trial the recipe again.

    I look forward to seeing what one pot meal you come up with too.

    x x x

  3. Hi Naomi! Thanks for coming by! :D I hear you on the yeast taste thing- it’s a tricky thing to get right and age of the yeast can make a big difference. Maybe mine wasn’t the freshest. ;) I did sprinkle the pitas with water, actually, but maybe I should have tried the old “toss in a few ice cubes” trick. Perhaps once I manage to empty out my freezer a bit and actually have room for an ice cube tray I can do that. heh heh. Flour might be a feature- but I’m not sure. I could always sprinkle it with flour after rolling out and see what happens. :) Thanks for the lovely recipe!

    -Sea

  4. This recipe looks really excellent and would love to make it. I don’t see anyplace on the site to click on that says “recipe” or anything like that. I have some sweet potato flour and have had no luck finding good recipes to use it in.

    Also, the back of the bag is in Korean or some other language and have no idea what the nutritional breakdown is. Do you have that information?

    You have a great blog. I am not a gluten-free girl but I try and eat healthy. I would love to use my sweet potato flour and make this recipe. I adore pita bread. Any help would be appreciated.

  5. Risa, The recipe is linked in the text above in the first paragraph where it says “Luckily I was immediately inspired when I saw her photo for Sweet Potato Pitta Bread.” The name of the recipe is hot-linked to her recipe post.

    The back of the bag is probably in Korean, which I don’t read or speak. (I do read Japanese, but that doesn’t help.) I would do a google search for sweet potato flour and see if you can get nutritional information. It is not a common flour, even in gluten-free baking, so that information may be difficult to come by. I have info on other more typical GF flours, but sweet potato flour is too new and rarely used to be in any of my sources.

    Good luck! Thanks for coming by!

    -Sea

  6. Thanks a lot. I will print out the recipe and give it a try. I happen to have sweet potato flour and a cooked sweet potato.

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