This may be the simplest gluten-free bread recipe I have ever come up with. I am talking seriously simple. Even if you don’t bake at all, you can make this bread. This bread is basically a quick bread, which means there is no yeast, no rising, no hours of waiting—it’s quick. And how much do we love quick?
Most quick breads are sweet, like banana bread or orange cranberry loaf; this one, however, is savory thanks to some sun-dried tomato pesto and kalamata olives. This is a great bread to serve with dinner with some olive oil for dipping, is fun for sandwiches and, if toasted and spread with some cream cheese and more tomato pesto, makes a killer appetizer or snack.
Cut the leftovers into small squares, toast them and you have some pretty awesome gluten-free croutons for salad. You can even make some really tasty breadcrumbs out of it.
You can bake this in a loaf pan, like I did or in an eight-inch square or round cake pan or even in muffin tins for rolls. It keeps at room temperature for a day or two, but if you want to keep it longer, I suggest freezing it.
Because my basil plants have gone into overdrive right now, I made my own pesto but store-bought works just fine. If you do make your own pesto, it can be used to stir into gluten-free pasta, spread onto grilled chicken or fish, or as a lovely appetizer with fresh veggies, and such.
I should also mention the fact that the bread is not just gluten-free; it is also dairy-free and contains no xanthan gum. It is also pretty inexpensive—the only somewhat costly ingredients are the pesto and the olives. Using Asian white rice flour and tapioca starch will make it even more cost-effective and if dairy is not an issue for you, you can just use milk instead of rice milk, making this recipe cheaper yet.
If you think you can’t make gluten-free bread because you lack the skills, budget or equipment, try this recipe. Trust me; it is simple—seriously simple.
Sun-dried Tomato and Olive Quick Bread
Makes 1 loaf
Gluten free, non-stick cooking spray
¾ cup rice milk (or milk)
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
3 Tbsp sun-dried tomato pesto (store bought or use the recipe below)
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1½ cups white rice flour
½ cup tapioca starch
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
2 tsp dried Italian seasoning
½ tsp kosher salt
1/3 cup kalamata olives, chopped
1 Tbsp olive oil
Sun-dried Tomato Pesto
½ cup sun-dried tomatoes packed in olive oil
1 cup fresh basil leaves, packed
3 Tbsp of the sun-dried tomato oil (or use olive oil)
¼ tsp kosher salt
1/8 tsp black pepper
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray an 8 x 4-inch loaf pan with cooking spray.
Combine the rice milk and apple cider vinegar and let sit for five minutes. Stir in the pesto and egg.
In a mixing bowl, whisk together the rice flour, tapioca starch, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, Italian seasoning and salt.
Add the chopped olives to the flour mixture and toss well to distribute the olives throughout.
Add the wet ingredients to the dry and whisk to combine. Pour into the prepared pan and bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until the top is golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Brush the top of the loaf with the olive oil. Let cool in pan for 15 minutes then remove to a wire rack to finish cooling or serve warm.
For the sun-dried tomato pesto, put all ingredients in a small food processor or blender and process until almost smooth.