Saturday, May 21, 2011

Rye Bread


Rye bread is typically made from a starter that needs to be fed for days 
before it's ready to use. The starter is what gives your bread the sourdough taste.
For this recipe you can stir together your starter...go out for 4 hours,
and then come home and start making your bread dough..
I make this recipe into one large loaf that I bake on a pre heated 
13" pizza stone. It makes one very large tasty rye loaf.

Ingredients:
  • 1 tbsp dry yeast (not instant)
  • 2 cups warm water
  • 1 cup rye flour
  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 1/2 - 4 cups white flour
  • 2 tbsp caraway seeds, optional. (we don't care for them so I omit)
Method:
  1. In a large glass bowl dissolve yeast in 1 cup of the warm water.
  2. Stir in rye flour, cover loosely and let stand at room temperature for 4 hours. During this time the surface will eventually get small bubbles, puff up and then it will eventually drop about an inch.
  3. After 4 hours give starter a good stir, and add remaining ingredients, holding back at least 1 1/2 cups white flour to work in as you begin to knead dough.
  4. This dough requires a long knead. It is not a light and airy dough, but it should have some air bubbles that form in the dough as you knead. I knead for at least 10-15 minutes. This along with the starter is the key to a nice textured rye.
  5. Cover and let rest for 15 minutes.
  6.  Place parchment paper on counter and sprinkle generously with cornmeal. Form bread dough into a large round loaf.
  7. Cover with a clean t towel and allow to rise for 1 hour.
  8. Just before baking brush with a cornstarch wash, recipe follows, and slash top with a serrated bread knife.
  9. Place pizza stone in oven and preheat oven to 450ยบ.
  10. Carefully slide risen loaf along with the parchment paper onto the hot stone and place back in oven.
  11. Bake for 30-35 minutes. The loaf should be well browned and feel firm. Slide baked bread off of stone onto a cooling rack. Allow to cool at least 15-20 minutes before slicing. 
Cornstarch wash:
  • 1/2 tsp cornstarch
  • 2 tsp water
  • 1/2 cup water
Mix together cornstarch and 2 tsp water to make a paste. Add rest of water and stir until it is smooth.
Heat in microwave or on stove top until it comes to a gentle boil and becomes clear.


13 comments:

  1. Your bread looks so professional!! I do not have a pizza stone. How else could you suggest baking this?

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  2. Your bread looks amazing. I wish that rye bread didn't take quite so long. Maybe during my vacation I can attempt to make some. Definitely bookmarking this page. Thanks for sharing!

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  3. I see that you and Judy have the same green polka dot napkins (or maybe its a placemat). They look so springtime!

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  4. Lorrie, the reason for the pizza stone is gives the bread it's nice firm crust. The instant heat on the stone also helps the baking process in this type of bread, Go ahead a try to bake it on a regular baking sheet or pizza pan.....but I would not heat it first. All the best....let me know how it turns out.
    PS....ask for a pizza stone for your birthday, they come in really handy and will make you the best pizza crusts as well.

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  5. Thanks for that wonderful idea...what a great tip...you know what I will be trying very soon. Looks great.

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  6. I've had real good results baking on a preheated cast iron griddle. So much so that I bought a cast iron pizza pan. I tried this after my pizza stone had cracked in half. Necessity is the mother of invention.

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  7. Made this today as my hubby loves rye bread. It won't last long in our house. My 5 year old said, "this is so yummy, I could eat it all." I was told I could make it again.

    Ang Nickel

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  8. This bread looks really good! Could you let the starter sit for 8 hours instead of 4? I would like to make the starter before going to bed and then make the bread in the morning.

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  9. Heidi,
    I don't see why not. Why don't you try it?

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  10. This bread is wonderful. I was wondering if the same technique could be used with a starter of other kinds of flour such as whole wheat?
    Thanks for any information and/or hunts you might have.
    Liz

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  11. Is the cornstarch wash essential? I want to make this tomorrow but have no cornstarch in the house

    TIA

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  12. Yes, for this recipe it's important to use the cornstarch.

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  13. Lisa, sorry I didn't explain. The top is quite dry without the wash. You could leave it off, but it's much better with it. I hope you enjoy the finished result. Baked bread gives the house such a nice smell. Kathy

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