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Hamelman's light rye baked in a dutch oven

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holds99's picture
holds99

Hamelman's light rye baked in a dutch oven

Here are some pictures of a batch of Hamelman's light rye that I made using a couple of dutch ovens simultaneously.  I did the entire mixing/kneading process by hand just to be able to get a good feel for the dough.  I doubled Hamelman's recipe and made 2 three pound loaves using 2 dutch ovens. We're talking "serious workout" by hand :-)  I also did a a couple of stretch and folds during bulk fermentation (20 minute intervals).  He calls for dividing the dough for a single batch into two 1 1/2 pound loaves but I decided, since I had doubled his recipe, I would bake 2 large 3 pound boules using 2 dutch ovens.  I used 2 large parchment lined skillets to proof the loaves under 2 large clear plastic bins (Walmart), then holding each end of the parchment I lifted each loaf into a preheated 500 deg. F. dutch oven (oven mittens highly recommended for this procedure), put on the lids on placed them into the oven and immediately lowered the oven temp. to 450 deg. F.  Baked them for 25 minutes, took off the lid and let them top brown for about 10-12 minutes.  Then shut off the oven and cracked the door for another five minutes before removing them from the oven.  At the end of the baking cycle the intermal temp. of the loaves was 205 deg. F.

I did not use carraway seeds in this interatation.  I wanted to compare Hamelman's light rye with Leader's Pierre Nury light rye to see the difference.  Hamelman's loaves turned out to be a very good without the carraway seeds.  But without the carraway seeds it didn't have the pronounced taste that you get with good Jewish rye, which the carraway seeds impart.  This recipe is slightly different from Leader's recipe, but very good.  I think Leader's Nury rye has a bit more flavor as a result of the process and the ovenight retardation in the fridge for 12-18 hours.  But overall they're both great recipes, only slightly different in taste and texture.  The Hamelman recipe is somewhat easier and quicker (uses a bit of yeast in the dough) but I still think it's near impossible to top the Nury rye.

Anyway, that's my experiment for the week. I recently bought a couple of bags of King Arthur whole grain with my last flour order, which have been sitting in the refrigerator waiting for some "action".  So, later this week I'm going to make some whole grain.  Haven't done the soaker thing yet but after seeing Eric Hanner's beautiful whole grain loaves he recently posted I'm anxious to try Mark Sinclair's recipe.

P.S. The memory stick on my camera filled up and I couldn't get a photo of the crumb (yeah, likely story) but it was nice and open. Not as nice and open, with large holes, as Leader's Nury rye but still a very nice crumb.

 Hamelman's light rye no. 1

Hamelman's light rye baked in a dutch oven: Hamelman's light rye no. 1

 

 Hamelman's light rye no. 2

Hamelman's light rye baked in a dutch oven: Hamelman's light rye no. 2

 Hamelman's light rye no. 3

Hamelman's light rye baked in a dutch oven: Hamelman's light rye no. 3

 Hamelman's light rye no. 4

Hamelman's light rye baked in a dutch oven: Hamelman's light rye no. 4

Comments

Janedo's picture
Janedo

I took a look at his formula when I received the book, but haven't done it, yet because it isn't THAT different from the light rye that I did a few weeks back. He doesn't do the overnight fridge stay and I agree that it is what gives all that nice complex flavour. I've done his Pointe-à-Callière and the pain au levain. They were good but nothing like the overnight stay ryes. I'm going to redo them but with the night in the fridge even though he says it wouldn't be a good idea (I don't believe him!).

I've never tried the baking in a cocotte. I think it's a shame to lose all that crust. But I have friends that swear by it (I think they have bad ovens, though).

Yours looks very nice, anyway! We'll believe you for the crumb! :-)

I made a light rye but with cider in the liquid. Very good! You can actually taste the cider. It gives a nice, apply, acidic touch to the bread. My kids loved it.

Jane 

holds99's picture
holds99

I've baked this bread both ways; Method 1: final rise in bannetons and then onto parchment lined baking pans and into the oven...Method 2: (this time) in the covered dutch oven with parchment, and each method has it pluses and minuses.  Open baking (sans cocotte) gives a beautiful crust, where using the dutch oven gives a nice crust but incredible oven spring.  So, if it's "out of this world" crust one is looking for---then "open" baking is the "ticket".  However, if one is looking for "very good" crust along with a bit of a safety net (reduce speading after emptying it from bannton onto the baking pan or peel and during the initial 5-8 minutes in the oven), then the dutch oven works well. 

Your cider ingredient sounds intriguing.  What proportion of cider did you use?  I'll have to try that sometime. 

Howard - St. Augustine, FL

Darkstar's picture
Darkstar

Holds99,

Nice loaf!  I have to say you beat me to the punch.  It's been too hot to make me want to turn my gas oven up to 500 degrees just so my air conditioner can fight to keep the house in the 70's so I was going to go outside and fire up my Lodge 10" and bake bread.  I've already baked a few times in it over charcoal while camping and discovered what you so nicely stated about how to get good crust.  Dutch Ovens are VERY good at keeping moisture inside when cooking/baking.  This is great for the oven spring but not so great if you want a nice crust.  Cracking the lid during the end of the bake lets out moisture but the cast iron holds enough heat to make the crust have a nice crunch.

My first DO loaf had thin, flimsy crust and a really spongy crumb that I swear I could have wrung water out of like a washcloth.  Subsequent loaves have improved.

 

Thanks for inspiring me to kick it into high gear and do some DO baking!

holds99's picture
holds99

As I said, I removed the lid for the final 10-15 minutes which releases a lot of the moisture/steam, which is held in during the first 20-25 minutes of baking.  I think you need a accurately controlled heat to do this method and perhaps a grill might not be quite controlled enough.  Also, I've noticed that even the placement of the dutch oven (on the baking rack) in the regular oven make a difference in how long it takes to brown the top.  I set my dutch oven on a baking stone to keep the direct heat from the oven heating element from hitting the bottom of the dutch oven.  The stone tends to dissipate the heat coming off the heating element and keep the bottom of the dutch oven from overheating and scorching the bottoms of the loaves. 

The one thing I like about the dutch oven method is that it's pretty much "failsafe", especially for large 3 lb. loaves that need extra oven time in a ralatively small oven, like mine.  I would encourage you to...Go for it!

Howard - St. Augustine, FL

Darkstar's picture
Darkstar

Howard,

 

I think you'd be pleasantly suprised at the accuracy of heat you can achieve in a cast iron Camp Dutch Oven.  The difference between the enamled and camp is obviously the lack of enamel but also the addition of legs to raise it off the bottom coals and a lid with a lip to hold the top coals.

 

Addtionally dutch ovens solve the oven steaming problem since they hold moisture so darn well.  As we both noted you have to crack the lid toward the end of the process to allow a sufficient level of dryness so crust will form.

 

If anyone wants to try it here's a link that explains different methods of keeping a constant temperature in a camp oven.  There is even a small web-application that lets you pick the diameter dutch oven you have an what temperature you desire.  It then tells you how many briquettes to place on your oven and where to place them (top and bottom)  Thick cast iron is really quite amazing stuff to cook on/in/with.

 

I'm hoping to start a poolish tonight and document a simple loaf in my dutch oven tomorrow.  Since it's been too hot for me to want to bake inside I'm pleased that I can do it outside.  Plus it makes fore really tasty eats when camping since dough travels well in a bag in the cooler.  I'll do my best to post before the end of the weekend.

holds99's picture
holds99

Darkstar,

Thanks, I checked out the link you posted and it's very interesting how the process is done.  I think I remember reading somewhere that the old "Sourdoughs" (gold miners) used to carry their sourdough starter with them and used a dutch oven buried in hot coals to bake their breads.  Anyway, thanks again and I'll look forward to seeing the photos of your bread.  As I mentioned, I started out using a cast iron dutch oven and it was too small. In fact the bread nearly pushed the lid off during baking.  So that's what led me to getting a larger dutch oven.  Best of luck with your baking adventures.

Howard - St. Augustine, FL

rainbowbrown's picture
rainbowbrown

That looks very nice. I've wanted to do a dutch oven loaf for a long time now, but still have yet to try it. I only recently began experimenting with using a bowl over my loaf, so I've got to take one thing at a time.

I'm thinking that since I usually do one small loaf at a time anyway, I'll use the dutch oven for a small boule, perhaps that will mean more crust since there'd be less contact with the walls.

I made a loaf of this bread a couple of weeks ago and loved it. I did use the caraway. I have not done Leader's, though I know it's well loved around here.

So many breads, so many methods. Once again great looking loaf, you gonna eat all that six pounds of bread? Good for you.

holds99's picture
holds99

Appreciate your kind words.  I too like it with the caraway seeds.  They give it real character.  You're right, so many methods and so many recipes and so little time.  The positive side is there's never a shortage of challenges.  We just have to keep at it.  As for the 6 lbs. of bread, I cut the large boules in half and freeze them for later use.  Otherwise, I would have a shape akin to the Goodyear blimp America :-). 

Best of luck with your baking adventures...and keep us posted.

Howard - St. Augustine, FL

Janedo's picture
Janedo

Now, now Howard... sourdough does NOT make you fat! It's GOOD for you!

If you really want to avoid getting fat, don't make the NYTimes cookies

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/07/09/dining/091crex.html?_r=1&ref=dining&oref=slogin

But, they are definitely worth it!

Jane 

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

I've not made Hamelman's light rye. I've seen it as very similar to Greenstein's Sour Rye, which I make frequently. But you say you got a very open crumb baking it in the Dutch oven? That's different! How was the "chew" compared to hearth baked?


David

holds99's picture
holds99

The crumb was open but not anything close to what you get when you make the Nury.  Hamelman uses a sourdough sponge but adds yeast to the final dough and that gives it a texture more akin to a direct method, but not completely.  Even though my dough was very slack, it doesn't have the nice large holes in the crumb and the texture isn't really like a sourdough texture but more like cross between a "direct method" bread and a sourdough.  There is a hint of sourness to this bread from the starter used.  I don't know if I'm making any sense, but it's different than the Nury rye but still very good with good crumb. 

The final fermentation time is short...50-60 minutes (because of the yeast) and I may have let it slightly overproof, but it still came out OK.  It has a nice clean flavor and nice chew but not the complex flavor you get with the retarded Nury rye.  It's very good toasted and I think it would make a great corned beef and Reuben sandwiches.

Howard - St. Augustine, FL

foolishpoolish's picture
foolishpoolish

Nice bread there Howard!

The dutch oven idea for baking sounds great.   Would a non-enamelled cast iron dutch oven work? I assume that as long as there's some baking parchment, I needn't worry about sticking?

FP 

holds99's picture
holds99

Thanks for the complement.  Yes, as long as you use parchment you won't have a problem.  The parchment is mainly for getting it into and out of the dutch oven because the dutch oven is pretty hot when you put the loaf in AND take it out. 

Before I bought my enameled dutch ovens (got them at Walmart and they're much less expensive than the one I bought at Le Creuset's outlet store) my mother-in-law loaned me her cast iron and it worked great too.  Only problem was hers was a bit too shallow and the top of the loaf was nearly pushing the lid off.  At Walmart they sell for about $40 U.S.  They come in a couple of sizes.  I bought the large ones.  Mine are green and I don't recall seeing another color when I was shopping.  Give it a try.  It really give you "major" oven spring.  If you do it post some pictures, it would be great to see your results.

 

Howard - St. Augustine, FL

Richelle's picture
Richelle

Hi FP, yes a non-enamalled cast iron dutch oven works fine as well. I have 2 non-enamelled dutch ovens (one a really big oval one) and a more recent enamelled one. All three of them work fine. I never use parchment paper however... if you keep the inside of your DO smooth by rubbing some olive oil into it every once in a while and DON'T wash it with soap, just let it soak in some warm water if necessary, then the loaves won't stick. I use the DO for both No Knead kind of breads with lots of seeds and nuts (quite dense but with a nice crust and it keeps for ages) and Nury-Janedo sourdough and it works fine for both. I bake them for 30 minutes with the lid on at 260 C and another 10-15 minutes with the lid off and the oven turned down to 200 C.

My 'trick' to get the loaves out without burning myself is just to wedge a fork between the pan and the bread to lift it just a bit. Then with my other hand (with oven mitt of course) I get the bread out. The crust will be quite firm, so no fear of damaging it.

Richelle

weavershouse's picture
weavershouse

This is how I make most of my rye bread. It's a favorite and I get the height, an open crumb and the best crust and flavor. I love the other ryes I make but the one in the Le Creuset is so easy and has such great rye flavor.

My photo of the inside of my rye is here.....http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/2355/rye-bread-le-creuset

Other photos are in the search. 

 

You did a great job on yours. I'd love to see the inside.                                                  weavershouse

holds99's picture
holds99

Weavershouse,

I looked at your link and you did a great job on yours.  Somehow I missed your posting, darn it.  When I did my first attempt with the dutch oven I started out using a cast iron one borrowed from my mother-in-law, but it turned out to be too small.  So, i then tried my very large Le Creuset, which let the loaf spread a bit too much, which I didn't like.  So I decided to go a little smaller than the Le Creuset I have and went to Walmart and bought a couple of less expensive and less large Le Creuset "look alikes" just for baking. 

OK, I went out and pulled a loaf out of the freezer, thawed it out and took a picture.

 Hamelman's light rye - crumbHamelman's light rye baked in a dutch oven: Hamelman's light rye - crumb

The crumb isn't as open, with the nice large holes, as the Nury but it was a big 3 pounder (do I get extra points for excuses?).  Anyway, it tastes great and makes really good toast and I'm going to give it another shot sometime down the road using the dutch ovens.  Good to hear from you.

Howard

weavershouse's picture
weavershouse

I hope you needed bread for the table and didn't take that 3lb. loaf out of the freezer to take its picture! It does look great though and I think a beautiful crumb, open enough for this kind of bread. Nury's is a whole other ballgame. This would make great sandwiches I bet and toast too like you said.

 

I think cooking under cover like this really does give a great rise to the bread and it's so fun to pick up that lid and see what's there. I don't even score it anymore because I love to see how it opens on its own. I don't know if you read the recipe for my rye under cover but I just followed the recipe for the New York Times no-knead bread idea using 2 cups RYE BLEND FLOUR from KA and 1 3/4 cups ALL PURPOSE from KA. It makes enough to fill my pot nicely. I don't know how much rye is in the blend but it's mostly rye. I used to add some vital wheat gluten but don't anymore. It rises very high on its own. You might want to try that flour sometime.

 

Again, hope you need 3lbs. of bread or you better have a party. Great job Howard.                         weavershouse

holds99's picture
holds99

Weavershouse,

Charlene wanted it sliced so we could give some to her mother.  So it worked out fine.  Thanks for the tip on the KA rye blend.  Your loaves really look very nice so next time I place an order with KA I'll have them include some bags of the rye blend and give it a try.    I'll make a note of the proportions (2 parts rye to 1 3/4 parts AP).  In the past I had been adding some vital wheat gluten when I used rye but I too have stopped adding it.  I also stopped using malt powder because I think it make the crumb a bit tacky, but maybe it's my imagination.  I tried ciabatta with the malt powder, as Rose Levy suggests, and then without it, and I think it's better without it.  I am looking forward to baking some whole grain bread in the next week or so.  It'll be a first for me.  Anyway, thanks again for complements and the tip on the rye blend and best of luck to you with your baking. 

Howard

weavershouse's picture
weavershouse

I found that the vital wheat gluten and/or malt sometimes made for a tacky/heavy crumb and I didn't like it. But, I also think the rye blend flour from KA has it in the mix. Maybe I add too much.

 

Good luck with your whole grain baking, I look forward to seeing the results. Have fun.         weavershouse

rmansfield's picture
rmansfield

I've created a link to your recipe in our newest "Cast Iron Around the Web" post at http://www.cookingincastiron.com