The Fresh Loaf

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Vollkornbrot from Hamelman's "Bread"

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dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

Vollkornbrot from Hamelman's "Bread"

Hamelman's "Vollkornbrot" is a 100% rye bread with sunflower seeds. The flour Hamelman calls for is "rye meal," which I just happend to have in quantity due to my error in ordering "medium rye meal" when I had intended to order "medium rye flour" from nybakers.com. Well, as Kubler-Ross wrote, "There are no mistakes, no coincidences. All events are blessings given to us to learn from."

As it happens, I have intended to work on baking 100% rye breads for some time, my  past attempts having been less than wonderful. Clearly, my unconscious mind highjacked my nybakers.com order. So, after blessing my unconscious ... or something like that ... I proceded to takle this project.

Hamelman's formula for Vollkornbrot calls for 68.4% rye meal and 31.6% rye chops. I had abundant rye meal (see above), and I had a pound of cracked rye from Central Milling, which I used in lieu of rye chops.  60% of the rye meal is pre-fermented. The cracked rye is included in the form of a 100% hydration soaker. The overall hydration of the dough is 82.1%.

Other than substituting cracked rye for rye chops, I followed Hamelman's formula and procedures to the letter. The dough was drier than I expected, but still very sticky. It had no difficulty holding together. I shaped it on a wet board with wet hands and, after shaping a log, placed it in a pullman pan and smoothed it out with a spatula. The top was dusted with more rye meal, as instructed by Hamelman. I baked it with steam for 15 minutes at 470 dF then for another 60 minutes at 380 dF. I then dumped the loaf out of the pan and baked another 15 minutes with the loaf sitting on a baking stone. This was to firm up the crust, although it was very firm already when taken out of the pan.

After baking and cooling on a rack for several hours, I wrapped the loaf in baker's linen and let it rest for about 30 hours before slicing. The crust was very firm and chewy. The crumb was very dense, as you can see, moist but not gummy. The aroma and flavor were earthy and slightly sweet. I had some for breakfast with cream cheese and smoked salmon and enjoyed it. I think this bread would make great Danish-style open face sandwiches.

I have never had this type of bread before, except once long ago from an imported package. So, I really don't have a good model with which to compare my bread. From what I've read and pictures I've seen, I think I hit the target. I wish I knew how close to the bullseye I got. This bake was certainly superior to my few previous attempts at a 100% rye bread.

I'm hoping TFL members with more experience than I have of this type of bread will offer constructive criticism and suggestions.

David

Comments

PMcCool's picture
PMcCool

I think that you checked all the boxes on this bake.  Using cracked rye was a good call; I've used that before, too, and very much enjoyed the additional heft and "tooth" that it provides.  "Earthy and slightly sweet" is a good summation for the flavor of this kind of bread.

One of the things that I notice with this style of bread is how just a thin slice or two leaves me feeling very full.  While it is dense, yes, it seems to hit the satiety button a lot more firmly than its mass would suggest.

Good stuff and a good bake.

Paul

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

Your comments are reassuring.

And I am noticing the the fullness effect. I had some for breakfast and more for lunch today. It's way past the time when I'm usually hungry for dinner, but I'm not. Maybe we have a new treatment for obesity. 

David

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

and the next thing is you start thinking like other retired people.  Your 100% rye looks very tasty.  Like you, I had mine with a schmear and some fruit for breakfast this morning too:-)  Mine was half YW and half Rye Sourdough though.  YW really opened up the crumb.  Very yummy and as good a breakfast bread as one could ask for.

Nice baking David!

 

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

Hmmm ... So, retirement makes one's mind turn to rye? Or are you referring to my ordering error? 

It looks like you had a nice Summer breakfast. 

David

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

I were eating our home baked 100% rye for breakfast, with a schmear and thinking alike.  Sadly, I think more like my apprentice now a days and she is only 8 years old and that is about as old as men get if you listen to her  :-)

nicodvb's picture
nicodvb

really great bake, David!! It could hardly come better than this one. The only minor complaint is in the unevenness of sunflower seeds distribution (they seem to be all at the sides), but it happens all the time, however you knead the dough:)

What a pity that rye chops are nowhere to be found in the world!

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

Well, the seed maldistribution doesn't seem to detract from the eatability.

David

FlourChild's picture
FlourChild

David, your loaf looks gorgeous to me, lovely crumb and sounds like it was delicious.  I'm headed to VT next week for a sourdough class, and this is one of the breads I hope to buy from the KAF bakery.  If I get a loaf I'll let you know how it compares :) 

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

Have a great time in Vermont. I'll look for your report on the class and the bread!

David

Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

David, your bread looks just right.

What Hamelman doesn't mention - some bakers get seriously addicted to this kind of bread...

 

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

I could see getting addicted to this bread. To my surprise, my wife, who generally does not like rye breads as much as I do, enjoyed this one.

David

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Absolutely Lovely Volkornbrot, David!! I really can't be better than this.

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

David

kallisto's picture
kallisto (not verified)

i didn't taste your bread, but it looks like the vollkornbrot i always buy at my bakery :)

altsveyser's picture
altsveyser

I have made 4 loaves thus far from the following recipe (aged for 2-3 days each time) depending on how desperate I am to consume it).

http://www.applepiepatispate.com/bread/vollkornbrot/

Each one turned out 100% FANTASTIC. Moist, heavy, rich, delicious and authentic tasting. They say it can keep for 2 weeks in the fridge but that is not going to happen in this house; it's addictive!

I made 3 modifications.

1. I cannot source local rye chops (believe it or not, I live in ALBERTA!). So I use half whole rye berries and half steel cut oats in the soaker.

2. I add about 2 tbsp of molasses to the final dough.

3.  This dough is so wet and sticky I have forgone shaping into a log. I just spoon it out into a pullman pan and compact it down with a rubber spatula.

PS this site sucks so bad (designed by a hack). I don't have time to find out how to attach some pics of today's bread to this post, or I would have attached them. Trust me, a wonder to behold.

Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

Altwhatever.  Total unecessary comment about the site's creator.  C'mon, as a fellow Canadian, I would expect more class.

In my opinion, if you don't like the site, there's plenty out there to go to.  Or perhaps you can create a better one.

John

altsveyser's picture
altsveyser

I didn't mean for you to take it so personally. I assume you're the site designer. I js fnd it rather unintuitive and gave an opinion.

Sorry, no time or inclination to build websites. I am a database engineer and that keeps me more than busy.

BTW, try the recipe in the link; it's really good.

 

Oh ya, altsveyser = know it all .... :)

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

The recipe to which you linked is the same as the one used in this posting, Jeffrey Hamelman's from Bread. I assume you didn't have time to read it ... or perhaps either one.

P.S. You may not know it, but participation in this forum is not obligatory. Your low opinion of the site, the many demands on your time (unfortunately preventing you from learning how to use the site), and your general wonderfulness (although, I have to trust your word as to that), suggest we may not be worthy of your contributions. I am sure you have more important things to do.

altsveyser's picture
altsveyser

If you cared to read both recipes you will  note they are  not identical. There deosnt seem to be much difference in all the recipes I have read.

 

I was simply wanting to provide a venue for othres to try it. Jesus, your the 2nd milk toast to comment to me in this fashion. Don't get yor knickers in a knot over it. Sheesh....

 

PS I hardly ever come here and will probaby use it even less often if everyone is a touchy as you and the other guy that sent me a love note. 

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

Read carefully ...

This is a community. We share an interest in baking bread. This community has a tradition, exemplified by the owner - that "hack" to whom you refered - of mutual respect and, I dare say, affection.

Respect is earned through demonstration of competence, by asking honest questions, by offering help when other members are having problems and by expressing appreciation when others share.

When a new member or infrequent visitor waltzes in and posts a self-congratulatory message, unevidenced at that, and goes on to disrespect the site, it is offensive to most. 

Please understand this. You owe an apology for how you expressed your opinion. You have only compounded your offensiveness by name-calling. You have a right to your opinion. You have a right to make suggestions and identify specific problems you are having with the site. You don't have a right to deposit your excrement and expect others to admire it.

 

altsveyser's picture
altsveyser

 "When a new member or infrequent visitor waltzes in and posts a

self-congratulatory message"

I really don't give a shit what you think, but just to  get the story right, I was NOT congratuating myself. I was SHARING what I considered to be a recipe of interest. I do not need to feed my eago by venturing onto here and my intersts are not restricted to bread baking. In fact it is rathe rlow on my "things to do".

 

If  you feel that using the word "hack" is name calling I suggest you are rather thin skinned.

 

I'm done with you.

Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

Hi David.  I think the word we are all looking for is anyhoooooooo......

I have been wondering for some time now as I can not find rye chops locally, or at least I have not seen any around.  I have found nice organic rye berries.  Could one improvise in making a decent substitute for rye chops by simply coarsely pulsing them in a food processor after they have been scalded or soaked/softened?  Any drawbacks that you could think of in doing this?

I have held off on many recipe's such as this one simply because I can not find rye chops or rye meal (which I am assuming is a finer grind of rye chops?).

Thanks for your help in advance. 

John

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

I couldn't find rye chops. I got what I used from nybakers.com and from Central Milling.

I believe I have seen rye chops on the product list of one of the smaller mills that sells online.

There was some discussion a while back about how to replicate rye chops starting with rye berries. It seems to me Karin or Mini Oven had some good ideas. A TFL search might turn up something. I'm sure the solution involved soaking or par-boiling the berries.

One solution is to try hand chopping. Or rather a non-solution. I've tried it, and the best I can say about it is that it was entertaining.

David

Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

Entertaining??  That sounds good...or bad...

I will experiment and post my results.  If worth posting!

John

Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

David.  I gave the Vollkornbrot a go and I fear I have failed horribly.  If I was Luke and you were Yoda, very very dsappointed with me would be you.

John

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

Believe in The Force, John.

David

Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

Too good :)

John

katzinchen's picture
katzinchen

Hi, I am glad to read of others' experiences with Hamelman's rye breads. My husband is from Germany and I have tasted no better whole-grain breads than in that country (Denmark also produces a lovely coarse black rye bread, sold there and in Sweden). Here in SD I have needed to add water to the total amount of 2 cups to the rye meal soaker in order to get the bread to fill my French Pullman pan. By accident once when baking the bread I added the water for the sourdough mixture along with the salt to the chops, and the sourdough starter (I have been using purchased German liquid and powder sourdoughs) went into the rye meal mixture . I took out some of the water but as my previous loaves had not risen enough to suit me I hoped that the bread would be forgiving with its extra moisture content. It was the best loaf yet, though not quite baked through in the middle. So I settled on how much extra water to add. I draw as well on my experience with IKEA bread mixes from Sweden, whose apparently presoaked ingredients allow for super fast preparation time and which require so much water as to make a pourable batter. My sunflower seeds are distributed throughout the loaf, perhaps because of the added moisture; but climates vary. Right now I am trying out Horst Bandel's Black Pumpernickel. I just peeked under the pan lid and that bread has actually risen a good bit. I did add an extra 1/2 cup of water to the rye meal soaker. And as a note I add that I ordered rye chops by mail from a mill in North Carolina; however, in my zeal I ordered 15 lbs, not having realized that it would take me years to use the amount in our freezer!

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

you are more than half way to Karin's bread challenge!  Don't you think you should give that a go after this fine piece of art?  That is what retirement is all about..... doing bread challenges, smoking meat, making beer and keeping the wife as happy as can be with........ desserts like Pie :-)

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

Well, dbm, not much bread baking is going to happen for the next couple of weeks. There is plenty in the freezer, and we're preoccupied with our grandson's bar mitzvah which is in 10 days. I just finished calligraphing the cover for the program. Lot's of little details to keep me busy.

Besides, I need to source some rye chops or cracked rye. Got any leads?

David

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

grandson coming of age!

To be honest i make my own rye chops because i can't find them near here..  My poor Krup's coffee grinder, before it grinds anything like hard rye berries, seems to crack them pretty well first.  If you go longer they become just like chopped rye, a little longer and they become rye meal.   A little longer and you have medium rye.  After the next whirring period you have to decide if you want to start extracting out the bran with a sieve to eventually get a nice white rye at 75% extraction.  I love the total control I get with that little grinder that you may not be available with other ways to get there. 

It is easy with this primitive $20 piece of equipment that I dont' bother looking for rye chops or cracked rye any more but I should... so I will :-)

  . 

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

Hmmm ... I do actually have some organic rye berries. I could just put them through my KitchenAid grain mill at the coarsest setting. I bet they be something sort of like rye chops.

David

Old Dog's picture
Old Dog

Glad I found this discussion on JH's vollkornbrot.  I've made this bread in the past and had good luck with it.  Like everyone else on this thread, I have no access to rye chops.  A substitution of rye flakes (like old fashioned oatmeal flakes) worked well.  My question, however, has to do with the yeast.  The yeast quantity for the "home" formula seems to be off.  The baker's percent is 1.8%, which is .57 oz. of yeast.  However, the formula as written in the book calls for .19 oz of yeast.  The commercial metric formula does not share the discrepancy.  When I made this bread previously I used the yeast amount as written, .19oz.  It worked fine.   I am scaling the recipe to fit some new pans, and that's how I ran into this issue.  Anyone know if a correction has been made to this formula?  What yeast percent did you all use?  Thanks!

By the way, I have found Hamelman's formulas to be right on the money every time.  It's a refreshing change from some other books. This is the first one which seems off.

Old Dog's picture
Old Dog

So I found the answer immediately after posting the above. The commercial percentages (and the baker's percent)  are for fresh yeast.  The home formula uses instant yeast.  JH discusses this on pages 90-91.  Apologies for the false alarm.  

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

David

Old Dog's picture
Old Dog

I was checking out Snavely's Mill online.  Their medium stone ground whole wheat is quite good.  On their product list I found the following:  http://snavelysmill.com/sub_page.pweb?pagelink=Rye-Chops

The chops come in 40lb bags.  I don't know if you can purchase directly from Snavely's.  I imagine not, but they would be able to direct a caller to a local source for the chops.  I am personally happy using the whole rye flakes.  I have been getting them at my local bulk foods store at about $2.39/lb.  I just found that Honeyville Grain sells 50lb sacks for about $50.  Honeyville is also a good source for medium rye flour which also can be hard to find.  It's also available in 50lb sacks for about $50.  Honeyville will ship any size order for just $4.49.  That's pretty amazing considering that it might cost $30 to ship a 50lb package by UPS.  I got my first sack last week.  That explains why I've got the Hamelman book open to the rye section.   

Just a thought -- it might be interesting to try substituting steel cut oats for the rye chops.

Best-  Gary (Old Dog)

Old Dog's picture
Old Dog

A few images of the Hamelman's vollkornbrot which finished baking late last night.  These are made with the rye flakes instead of chops.  I'll slice these in a couple days and try to post a pic of the crumb then.  My kitchen is cold at this time of year, so I upped the temperature on the dough and added a 2-3 grams more yeast.  The loaves may have over-proofed a bit given that the crust is very slightly indented on the top.  Lesson I learned is to scale all the dough, shape all, and then place all loaves in pans. For some reason I did each loaf individually -- scaled dough, shaped, pan -- and by the time I was done with the third pan, the first had risen quite a bit.  I had to stagger the bake to account for the difference.  These were made in long, Wilton pans and baked in my older Jenn-Aire oven without convection on.  Each finished loaf weighs a bit over 3.5lbs.  The Bosch mixer had no trouble with that amount of dough, very easy for it, actually.

By the way, the photo upload tool took all of 90 seconds to figure out for this new/infrequent poster.  I hope no one is offended. : )Hamelman's vollkornbrotHamelman's vollkornbrot pic 2

Old Dog's picture
Old Dog

And here is the crumb.

Old Dog's picture
Old Dog

And here is the crumb.

Old Dog's picture
Old Dog

A bit out of focus.  Apologies.

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

How did you like it?

David

Old Dog's picture
Old Dog

Thanks for the kind comment.  I only tasted a few slivers, but I'm partial to the intense rye flavor of this bread.  The loaves ended up at our local farmer's market.  I bake bread out of my home kitchen for the market every week.   I cut these loaves after 48 hours, packaged them in two layers of heavy saran, and labeled them.  Hamelman says waiting three days to cut is "not excessive."  Next time I think I will wait until that third day.  The crumb on day two was a bit too moist, maybe because of the rye flakes.  

My wife and I lived in Chicago for many years, and we got used to eating rye breads from a place called Baltic Bakery. They made a great dark pumpernickel brick bread.  I think it was their Lithuanian Rye.  The crumb was a bit more open than the vollkornbrot.  Toasted, it was the best bread I've ever eaten.  If anyone has a similar recipe, I would love to give it a go.

bikeprof's picture
bikeprof

I just did my first vollkornbrot this morning, following Reinhart's recipe out of his whole grain book (while also looking at JH's version).  Following his recipe produced a pretty stiff/dry dough in my first go around, it came out a bit squat using a regular loaf pan, but we shall see when I cut it open in a day or so.  In the meantime...

There is precious little in the way of guidance on technique in working with the dough (let alone an explanation of the why's behind the recommendations, or informative pictures). Reinhart does recommend a series of kneading steps, and references gluten development and dough strength(?!).  He also recommends using the his regular wheat bread pan loaf shaping process for vollkornbrot (?! again).  Hammelman says even less, so I'm looking for insights on process - guidance on proofing (how much rise?), shaping, and the like - ideally with some explanations that will give me insight into why things work/don't work.

Thanks much...

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

I'm afraid I have little experience with which to address your questions. The loaf in this posting was my first and last attempt at this bread. Based on this limited experience, I would say that "kneading" is not an appropriate term, and "moulding" would be more descriptive than "shaping" for that step.

I have Reinhart's WGB but have not looked at his version of volkornbrot. I'll do so, but I'd take Hamelman's advice over PR's for this type of bread.

David

Old Dog's picture
Old Dog

David's comments seem accurate to me. I use a Bosch mixer which doesn't like to mix this bread -- it sort of just pushes it to the sides of the mixing bowl like wet sand.  I stop the mixer occasionally and use a spatula to move the dough back to the hook. I've noted that Hamelman specifies using a spiral mixer which I think would be more able to keep the dough together and actively mixing.  By the way, gluten development is not a concern, because there is no gluten to develop. In wheat breads gluten is developed with time and proper folding.  That's not a concern for this 100% rye bread.  That's why the bulk fermentation time is so brief.  After the brief bulk fermentation, I shape the dough (which is like sticky, grainy clay) into a log and then plop it into the pan.  A spatula comes in handy to mould the dough into shape once panned.  Round the panned dough so that it is higher in the center of the loaf.  It seems to even out when rising.  With regards to rising, I think its important here to have gotten the dough temperature correct in the mix -- whatever temp is recommended in Hamelman's book -- and then follow his recommendations on time and proofing environment.  Temp and humidity are difficult to control at home, but there are a number of ways to McGyver a home proofer.  I like a cooling rack placed on a pan of hot water in the bottom of a picnic cooler.  It works well for a loaf or two.  The vollkornbrot should rise no more than 1/3 in volume. An over proofed loaf will collapse in the oven because of the lack of gluten.  Make sure the oven temp is high for the first fifteen minutes of the bake -- i think Hamelman recommends 475 F degrees.  That should set the crust and keep the loaf from falling.  This bread is not at all dry.  In fact, if you cut it too soon after baking it will seem overly moist and gummy.

bikeprof's picture
bikeprof

Thanks, that is helpful, esp. the 1/3 rising amount and shaping. I found  helpful explanations in D. Wing's Bread Builders, where it emphasizes pH in controlling enzymes in order to prevent loaf collapse, so I plan to pay special attention to the sour starter development.

I did just make a nice and simple DIY proofer which is a big help now that the weather has cooled.

After 24hrs, the loaf a bit disappointing, but not a total failure, will wrap it up and try again tomorrow, and bake again next weekend...

 

 

Old Dog's picture
Old Dog

JH calls the pH issue "starch attack."  It can not only cause the bread to collapse, but it will also cause a gummy crumb.  You can help avoid this by ensuring that your starter has ample time to ripen, 14-16 hours.  You have to maintain a warm temp during that time.

I'm going in the opposite direction today -- making Hamelman's Jewish rye.  I'm adding some sauteed onion to the starter to approximate an onion rye.  'Don't know how the onion will affect a stiff starter.  We'll see. The onions should add more sugar, but since they are a root crop they might also contain chemicals which inhibit the growth of microorganisms.  I have no idea.  Peter Reinhart's onion rye (NY deli rye) sounded a bit odd -- it includes buttermilk and brown sugar.  I'm going with JH's formula with the addition of the onions.

bikeprof's picture
bikeprof

I'd also really like to hear more about how hydration levels make a difference and how to gauge hydration adjustments in the dough

bikeprof's picture
bikeprof

Wow...my bad - suggesting that JH's Bread provides precious little instruction on rye.  I had just gotten my copy of his book and just flipped to the Vollkornbrot formula to compare with PR's.  That formula  doesn't include much discussion of technique, but I overlooked the short but informative section on mixing rye, including 100% rye doughs, and other rye discussion the book contains.  Those discussions make me wonder that much more about PR's Vollkornbrot instructions.

Old Dog's picture
Old Dog

PR also suggests using caramel coloring in his pumpernickel formula.  Enough said.  

Hamelman's book is about 95% for the professional baker.  Its a working baker's text which can -- with some experience -- be used effectively in the home kitchen.  I find it indispensable.  It's also fun to read.  His personality comes through here and there.  The book is aptly titled, however.  It's about BREAD, not the baker.

 

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