Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Rye Bread

First, I must say that it's sad that there hasn't been a new post on pete bakes! since mid 2010, because damn that guy had a lot of good recipes on there.  But, I can't really hate to much on him for blog abandonment....(sorry I haven't posted, guys.  It's been dark and cold here.) Pete seems to do a lot of other stuff, so you're forgiven Pete, thanks for the recipes.   

When my boyfriend first tried this bread he exclaimed that it was as good as deli bread you'd pay like $7 a loaf for.  Damn straight! That's why it's called 

Ingredients (makes 4 small loaves):
3 cups warm water
1 1/2 Tbsp yeast
1 1/2 Tbsp salt
1 1/2 Tbsp caraway seeds, plus more for sprinkling on the top 
1 cup rye flour
5 1/2 cups all purpose flour
cornmeal (for sprinkling on baking surface)
cornstarch (for cornstarch wash)

1. Mix the first 4 ingredients in a large bowl.  Add in the remaining dry ingredients and mix, without kneading. The dough will be sticky. Cover with a towel and allow to rest for approx. 2 hours.  (From here you can store the dough in the fridge for up to 2 weeks before shaping and doing your second rise.  The longer you store the dough the more sour the dough will get.  mmmmm sourdough.)
2.  Dust the surface of the dough with flour and divide into 4 equal parts.  Quickly shape the dough into a ball and elongate into and oval loaf shape. After shaping, leave the dough on a cornmeal covered surface (I used the baking sheet I baked the bread on) and let it rise for another 40 minutes.  (If you kept your dough in the fridge, you will want to wait longer to allow it to come closer to room temperature, wait until the loaves have approx. doubled in size).
3. preheat the oven to 450 F with an empty broiler tray on the shelf underneath.  If you are using a baking stone head that up in the oven too. 
4. Make a cornstarch wash by combining 1/2 tsp cornstarch with a small amount of water to make a paste, then add 1/2 cup of water and mix.  Microwave this mix for about a minute then brush on top of the loaves. Sprinkle with caraway seeds and slash the top of the loaves.  
5. Bake the loaves for about 30 minutes, until they are a deep golden brown.  As you put the bread in the oven to bake, pour 1 cup of HOT tap water into the broiler tray and quickly close the oven door.  Avoid opening the oven during baking.   Allow the loaves to fully cool before slicing. 

 You can find this recipe in Artisan Bread In Five Minutes a Day. I don't have the book, but they seem to have a lot of awesome recipes (and a very misleading title.  Just sayin')

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