Sour Rye  Bread  314 reads

1 cup rye flour
1 cup water
1 tablespoon crushed caraway seeds
1 teaspoon minced onion
1/4 teaspoon dry yeast

1-1/2 cups rye flour
3 cups unbleached all purpose, or bread flour
1/2 cup mashed potatos, warm, or 1/3 cup potato flakes
1-1/2 cups water
1 tablespoon dry yeast
1 tablespoon caraway seeds

Mix rye flour, water, caraway seeds, onion and yeast into a soft dough and allow to stand in a covered container at room temp from 24-48 hrs. This sour can be refrigerated for up to a week or frozen if necessary.

Dissolve yeast in 1/4 cup warm water and allow to stand until proven. All the rest of the water, the sour, and the potatos or flakes. Mix until sour is well broken up. It's almost impossible to get it to totally dissolve.

Combine flours, salt, and seeds. Add to liquid and mix until soft dough is formed. Knead by hand for at least 10 min or by mixer with hook for at least 5 min. The dough will never lose all it's stickiness. Add white and rye flours alternately as necessary to attain consistancy of soft dough. It may be necessary, but is unlikely, to require more water. Add whatever is necessary to get a soft dough.

Put kneaded dough in greased bowl, turn to coat, and allow to rise, covered, until doubled.

Remove risen dough onto floured countertop. Knead a couple of times to deflate, and allow to rest, covered, for 10 minutes. Form 2 loaves. Brush with glaze made by dissolving a teaspoon of cornstarch in 1/4 cup cold water, and pour this into a pan of 1 cup boiling water. Allow to return to boil, then cool. Sprinkle with more caraway seeds after glazing.

Place loaves on baking sheet sprinkled with cornmeal. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to rise for about 20 minutes. Loaves should not double. Slash loaves 3 times with a sharp knife.

Place loaves in the middle shelf of a cold oven. Set oven to 400F and put a pan of boiling water on the rack under the loaves. The loaves will finish rising as the oven heats. Remove pan of water after about 30 min.

Bake until loaves are well browned and sound hollow when knocked on the bottom with your knuckle or a wooden spoon. You can apply more glaze about 1/2 way through the baking and again when they come out of the oven for a good sheen.
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