There are many things in my life that I have a passion for, with bread being near the top. Recently I was very saddened to learn of the sudden passing of a terrific baker and person Eric Hanner. Eric was a frequent contributor on The Fresh Loaf website and he inspired me with his passion for baking and touched a great many people along the way.
His willingness to share his vast baking experiences and cooking expertise as well photography pointers left an unforgettable mark on all that came in contact with him. One of Eric's favorite recipes was his Jewish Rye which goes great with his homemade pastrami. I had a spirited conversation with Eric regarding our pastrami passion and I couldn't wait to try his pastrami after I had baked his famous rye.
In tribute to Eric I offer my own inspired Jewish Rye (I'm Jewish...therefore it's a Jewish Rye :0). I have not used my yeast water starter in a while so I refreshed it with some oranges due to my apples having gone bad. I also created a rye sour converting my AP starter in 3 stages including adding sautéed onions in stage 2. Both starters were finished by bringing them from 100% hydration to 65% hydration.
I also picked up some interesting ale at the local supermarket which was brewed with lemon peels, ginger and honey so naturally I needed to use some in this rye bread.
The final loaf ended up being by far one of the best rye breads I have made to date. The onions combined with the 2 starters and the ale made this a wonderfully tasty moist bread perfect for a pastrami or corned beef sandwich or a smear of cream cheese.
Yeast Water Starter Build 1
60 grams Pumpernickel Flour (KAF)
60 grams Yeast Water Starter
Mix the flour and Yeast Water in a bowl until thoroughly combined. Cover the bowl and let it sit at room temperature for around 6 hours. The starter should almost double when ready to proceed to build 2.
Add ingredients below to starter from above and mix until incorporated. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit at room temperature for 6 hours.
100 grams Pumpernickel Flour
100 grams Yeast Water
Add flour to starter from above and mix until incorporated. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit at room temperature for 4 hours or until bubbly and either use immediately or put in the refrigerator for the next day.
100 grams Pumpernickel Flour
10 grams Yeast Water
(Note: I made extra starter since I wanted to use this for another bake. You can cut the amounts down to make the 125 grams needed in the recipe)
Rye Sour Starter Build 1
63 grams AP Starter
63 Pumpernickel Starter
75 grams Water
Mix the flour, starter and water in a bowl until thoroughly combined. Cover the bowl and let it sit at room temperature for around 4-6 hours. The starter should almost double when ready to proceed to build 2.
Rye Sour Starter Build 2
100 Pumpernickel Flour
100 grams Water
123 grams Sautéed Onions (sautéed in olive oil)
Mix the flour and water with the sour starter from build 1 along with the onions. Cover and let sit at room temperature for 4-6 hours until doubled and nice and bubbly.
Rye Sour Starter Build 3
102 grams Pumpernickel Flour
Add the flour to the rye sour from build 2 and let it rest covered for 4-6 hours until bubbly and nearly doubled.
Main Dough Ingredients
300 grams Rye Starter from Above
125 grams Yeast Water Rye Starter from Above
400 grams First Clear Flour (KAF)
80 grams White Rye Flour (KAF)
50 grams Rye Chops (KAF)
30 grams Potato Flour (KAF)
357 grams Tenacious Traveler Shandy Ale
18 grams Seas Salt or Table Salt
8 grams Caraway Seeds
1 Large Egg (for egg wash only)
Build your Yeast Water levain and rye sour starter the day before you are ready to bake.
The evening before you want to bake, mix the flours, rye chops, caraway seeds and the ale. Mix on low-speed in your stand mixer or by hand for about 1 minute until the ingredients are combined. Let the dough autolyse for about 20 minutes to an hour.
Next add both levains along with the salt and mix for 4 minutes on low. The dough will come together and be slightly sticky. Place the dough in a slightly oiled bowl and do a couple of stretch and folds. Cover the bowl and let it rest for 10-15 minutes. Do another stretch and fold in the bowl and let it rest another 10-15 minutes. Do another stretch and fold and let the dough sit out in the covered bowl for another 1.5 hours. Place the dough in the refrigerator until ready to bake the next day.
When ready to bake take the dough out and leave it covered in your bowl for 1.5 to 2 hours. Next divide the dough into 2 loaves and either place in a banneton or from into batards and let them rest in floured couches for 1.5 - 2 hours.
About one hour before ready to bake, set your oven for 500 degrees F.and make sure you prepare it for steam. I have a baking stone on the top shelf and the bottom and use a heavy-duty rimmed baking pan that I pour 1 cup of boiling water into right as I put the loaves into the oven.
Score the loaves as desired and brush each loaf with a simple egg wash using 1 whole egg and a couple of teaspoons of water.
When ready to bake place the loaves into your oven on your oven stone with steam and lower the temperature immediately to 450 degrees. It should take around 30 minutes to bake until the rye breads are golden brown and reached an internal temperature of 200 - 205 degrees F.
Let the loaves cool down for at least an 2 hours or so before eating as desired.