I am no expert but will share my knowledge. Before going GF I baked out of boxes so didn't have much to unlearn to be a successful GF baker.
As far as just switching rice flour for wheat flour won't work because they react differently, because each flour acts differently is why there must be a mix of flours. King Arthur Flours just came out with a GF line and they have a pretty good basic breakdown of what the different flours do its at the bottom of the page. www.kingarthurflour.com/glutenfree/
There are a few All Purpose flours, they work OK, but haven't worked 100% for me.
Gums - Xanthum and Guar - are common in GF baking. Since gluten is the glue that holds baked goods together you need something to hold it together using eggs or gums. They do react a little differently but for most things are interchangeable.
When 1st starting follow a recipe to a T, once you get to know the feel and comfortable try branching out a little. There is a lot of hit and miss, don't expect everything to turn out right the 1st time. I've been trying for over 2 years to make a GF biscuit, mostly got hockey pucks. Finally last night made a passable biscuit, needs a little tweaking but works.
I would start with a good basic GF cookbook - I started with Bette Hagmans Gluten Free gourmet, make sure to get a revised edition. Carol Fenster has some good cookbooks. I can't wait for GF Girl and the Chef's book to come out in the fall.
| current weight: 230.0