(as) Authentic Tzitzel (as I can make)
Over the last year I have been trying to make a Rye bread called Tzitzel, which I remember from a bakery in my home town - University City, Missouri. The bakery is still there and still makes Tzitzel, but as I don't have much (any) reason to go back to U. City, I figured I'd better learn how to make it myself. After many attempts, I finally felt that I managed to make a respectable Jewish Rye with a nice crust and flavor http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/20506/jewish-corn-rye but it still didn't taste anything like the Tzitzel I remembered. Recently I took advantage of the brief free shipping period at King Arthur, and ordered White Rye and Sir Lancelot flour, neither of which I'd baked with before. I tried making Jewish Rye with these two flours instead of Hodgson's Mill Stone Ground Rye and King Arthur Bread Flour. I started to feel I was onto something despite the fact that the white rye flavor was much too mild, and the loaves puffed up like a white flour wheat loaf, which is very un-Tzitzel-like. Today I tried again with a rye sour made with 2/3 white rye and 1/3 Arrowhead Mills organic rye, which is a whole rye flour, but much less gritty than Hodgson's Mills. This time, the shape (broad and squat) flavor and texture were much more on target. So now I have one more thing to add to my long list of baking lessons that I've learned this year - the flour matters. If I want to get any closer to the original Pratzel's tzitzel, I am going to have to find out what kind of flour they use, and that's that.