Monday, 3 December 2012

Light Rye with Caraway

My earliest memory of being able to find a loaf of bread baked using wild yeast was back in the early 1980s in Cambridge, where I lived at the time. The bread was sold in the Italian deli Balzano's, it was baked somewhere in the north of England was packed in a polythene bag and of course by the time I bought it, it was already a day or two old. The bread was delicious, dense with a hint of caraway, I imagine it came from an East European family bakery.

When I was thinking about making some rye of my own, the memory of the caraway came back and despite not knowing how much I should add to 600g of flour I seem to have gauged it correctly, for me at least.

This recipe makes two loaves and you will need:
For the ferment,
1 tablespoon of starter,
100g of Strong White Flour
100g of Rye
200g of water

For the main dough
All of the ferment
400g of Strong White Flour
200g of Rye
10g of Caraway seeds
450g of water
14g of salt.

Begin by activating the starter and creating the ferment. Mix all ferment ingredients and leave covered in a bowl (I use a 2 pint pudding basin) for at least 12 hours. The ferment should be bubbling well and rolling in on itself at the point where it's ready to add to the main dough ingredients see Fig 1

Last thing before going to bed, add the ferment to the main dough ingredients, omitting the salt. Leave the dough, covered overnight to rise. In the morning, add the salt and mix to distribute thoroughly. Leave the dough now to rise, stretching and folding the dough every hour for 3 or 4 hours. Form the dough into 2 loaves and place them in well floured baskets and leave for a further couple of hours to rise before slashing and baking in a hot, 220 degrees oven for 30-35 minutes.

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This bread, like the Porcini and Hazelnut bread carries a subtle yet delicious flavour throughout the crumb.
 Different flour absorbs water at different rates, so quantities of water are always approximate and it is best to gauge for yourself whether or not to add it all. Begin by adding nearly all the water recommended, then decide for yourself what is best.

1 comment:

  1. I have been a bit too scared to attempt rye bread after my recent attempts using Herman and churning out vinegar bricks that I could make a new house with out the back. I might give this wonderful tutorial a go and see how I go...Herman is skating on thin ice and had best produce SOMETHING edible or he might be used to activate my compost heap! Consider this a warning Herman! ;)