Life Lessons: Pure Knead for gluten-free

Posted: 5:25 AM EDT Jun 07, 2013   Updated: 12:57 PM EDT Jun 07, 2013

One in 100 Americans have celiac disease, a digestive condition that leaves them unable to tolerate gluten.

A diagnosis of celiac disease used to mean no pasta, no cereal, and no bread! But that's changed.

Gluten-free cooking has come a long way.

For years Michelle Kelly's son couldn't eat wheat because of a gluten allergy. "He couldn't go have pizza after a soccer game, " says Michelle.

So Michelle created "Pure Knead", a bakery that steers clear of gluten, dairy, soy, peanut, tree nut, and shellfish. The bakery isn't open to the public but has retail partners, many in the Atlanta, Georgia area.

Michelle explains, "We're free of seven of the top eight allergens."

Michelle says baking without gluten can be tricky. "Texture is the challenge." One secret? Michelle says use a blend of gluten-free flours.

"For the most part, blends always work better than a single flour."

Another secret is in the oil. "I love coconut oil. It's got great health properties. It adds tremendous richness to baked goods," she explains.

For a simple flatbread combine potato, tapioca, millet, sorghum, and cornstarch flours. Add some salt, sugar, yeast, and xanthan gum. Mix them, then add warm water and olive oil and mix some more.

Spoon the dough into a pan, cover and let it rise for about 40 minutes. Sprinkle olive oil, rosemary, and sea salt on top and bake for about 25 minutes.

Avoid preservatives and additives if you can.

And Michelle says don't expect it to taste the same. "The comparison should not be this is not what I'm used to. The comparison should be, 'Wow, this tastes really good.'"

Michelle says another tip is don't buy mixes of flours; buy base flours instead and then blend them together yourself.