The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Most bookmarked

  • Pin It
dmsnyder's picture

Krupnik - soup to eat with rye bread, onion rolls, pumpernickel, etc.

Sour Rye Bread (Norm's formula) with Krupnik

Sour Rye Bread (Norm's formula) with Krupnik

 Krupnik is an Eastern European beef and barley soup that is a meal in itself, with some good rye bread. There are many versions. Mine is an old family recipe, although I have seen almost identical versions in Jewish cookbooks. Unlike the version Floyd makes, mine is strictly meat - no milk products, since it is a Jewish version. I know that it has been altered somewhat from generation to generation, depending mostly on the tastes of family members. The version I will give is as close to that my maternal grandmother made as I can remember.

Recipe for Krupnik

  •  1 lb lean chuck trimmed of fat and cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 2 carrots cut into 1 inch long pieces
  • 2 stalks celery cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 1 large onion, coarsely chopped
  • 2/3 cup dried brown lentils
  • 2/3 cup pearled barley
  • 1/2 cup dried baby lima beans (optional)
  • 1/2 cup dried navy beans (optional)
  • 1 large russet potato, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch dice.  (optional)
  • Salt and pepper to taste (I like lots of pepper, but each person can add this at the table to personal preference.)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • Water to cover ingredients by 2 inches. Plan on adding more as barley and lentils swell to achieve a thick but not solid final consistency. 
Notes on ingredients
  • When I was a child, I hated beans in this soup, so, for many years my mother omitted them. My tastes changed as an adult, and I now put them in. 
  • My grandmother used a variety of cuts of beef, often short ribs. As we have tried to cut down on fat in our diet, I began using top chuck.
  • My wife's grandmother made krupnik with lamb rather than beef. We have made it this way many times, using lamb neck, and it is equally delicious.
  • Many recipes also add some dried porcini/cepes. I love mushroom-barley soup, but I don't put mushrooms in krupnik.
  • My wife likes krupnik with some tomato, so we now usually add a small can of coarsely chopped tomatoes. This is definitely not traditional, however.
  1. Trim and cube chuck and place in a 8-10 quart soup pot. Add 3 quarts of water. Bring to a gentle boil and skim any scum that rises to the surface. 
  2. Turn the fire down to achieve a steady simmer and simmer for 1 hour.
  3. While the meat is simmering, cut up the onion, carrots and celery (and optional potato) and measure out the other ingredients.
  4. After the meat has simmered for 1 hour, add all the other ingredients and additional water, as needed.
  5. Cook at a steady simmer, stirring frequently for 1-2 hours until the beans are completely cooked and the meat is very tender. Add water to thin it if the soup is getting too thick. When thick, it tends to stick to the bottom of the pot if not stirred very frequently.
  6. Adjust seasoning to taste.
  7. Serve with  rye or pumpernickel or other bread of your choice. 
This soup is even better the next day, but you almost always have to add more water as you re-heat it. It also freezes well.  Enjoy!  David 


tgw1962_slo's picture

unbromated flour vs. regular flour


About two months ago I discovered "unbromated" flour. I had never heard of this before nor did I know what it meant. So I did a little research about it and found out what the difference is. Based on what I learned, I decided to buy a bag of it to try. I made a focaccia using some of this and was really amazed at the difference. The focaccia came out soft and chewy (but firm). I was really happy with the results. A week prior to this I'd made a focaccia using what I'll call "regular" flour and the results weren't as good. The crust was rather hard and crunchy (kind of hard to chew).

So I guess I'm wondering if anyone else here uses unbromated flour? What your experience is.

Please let me know. Thanks.



bluesbread's picture

Rising in cooler -- why didn't I think of this long ago?

Maybe this is a well-known trick but I'm still patting myself on the back for thinking it up recently, and I want to make sure you all know about it:

Let your dough rise in an insulated cooler! I have a small soft-sided one that works great, but any small cooler would work. The yeast generates heat as it eats and multiplies, and the cooler holds it in, keeping the dough nice and cozy (but not so warm that it speeds up the action to the detriment of the flavor, as happens when you put it into a warm oven). I used to wrap towels around the bowl, but the cooler is easier and more efficient. Do not stick dough that you've just removed from the fridge into the cooler, though, or you'll just be keeping it cold. Wait until it warms to room temp and then place it in the cooler. Happy baking! bluesbread

Traci's picture

Bake times for smaller loaves


I have only just started baking. I've made the no-knead bread and really like that. However its really, really large for one person. If I want to split the recipe in two and make two loaves how I should adjust the bake times to still get the same results of a crispy, crackly crust and nice soft inner part? Also, is there anything I'll need to do differently with my dutch oven?

Thanks in advance!



KipperCat's picture

wrapping bread for swap meet - and baking ahead

First I want to say hello! to everybody.  I've missed chatting about bread - and missed baking it even more.  Awhile back I suspected some food allergies, so decided to test some changes in my diet.  To my dismay, I found that I do feel a lot better when I don't eat wheat or dairy.  There was no way I could bake bread all the time and not eat it.

I've changed my focus to another hobby - gardening.  I'm attending my first plant swap in a few weeks.  Since I have almost no plants to trade, I decided to make some bread. With very rusty skills, some no-knead multi-grain seems good.  I'd like to bake it a week or two ahead. I have some of the Glad Cling Wrap to freeze it in. 

I could use some suggestions for thawing. Is there a good way to restore some crispness to the crust?

Then there's the whole issue of bagging it.  Does anyone know where I can buy some paper bags for boules?  I don't mind buying more than I need this time, as I may do this again in the future.  Or do you have other inexpensive suggestions for packaging?

berryblondeboys's picture

What is the yield for wheat berries to cups of flour?

I guess there are two ways to look at it, 5 lbs of flour is the same as 5 lbs of wheat, but what is the yield? Like, how many cups of flour do you get from a cup of wheat berries?

Or, for baking purposes (and I do use my scale a lot), is it better to just weigh my wheat berries and then grind them and use that as my guide for making a loaf?

Consensus seems to be either use it IMMEDIATELY or have it wait a few days (more than three?)

I don't have a mill right now, but have been thinking about it for YEARS and now that I'm baking daily AND i make cakes, I'm wondering if it's more economical in the long run to grind my own wheat?



dmsnyder's picture

Norm's Onion Rolls &, at no extra charge, Kaiser Rolls.

Norm's Onion Rolls

Norm's Onion Rolls

  These Kaiser Rolls (AKA hard rolls, vienna rolls, bulkies) were made with the same dough used for onion rolls.

Norm's Kaiser Rolls: These Kaiser Rolls (AKA hard rolls, vienna rolls, bulkies) were made with the same dough used for onion rolls.

I didn't grow up in New York. We did have a Jewish Bakery in Fresno when I was younger. They got me addicted to Sour Rye and Jewish Corn Rye and pumpernickel and cheese pockets. They made onion rolls, too, but I never liked them much. They were fluffy with a boring crust and no "tam."

 The carryings on about how wonderful onion rolls used to be by folks on TFL who hail from NYC and environs made me think maybe I'd missed something, so when Norm posted his formula, I thought I should try making them. I got distracted by other baking projects, but the recent postings about these rolls re-activated my intention to make them. Thanks to Eric, Elgins, RFMonaco and Eli. I am delighted to join you!

These onion rolls are, as Norm said, "only onion rolls." Yeah. Like a stradivarius is "only a fiddle." 

 Kaiser rolls are made from the same dough as onion rolls. What is most different is the elaborate shaping. Ever since I read Greenstein's description of the old-time bakers sitting around the bench "klopping" hundreds of vienna rolls every night for the breakfast rush, I've wanted to try doing this. Well, the rolls are delicious, with a substantial crust and  sweet, chewy crumb. We had them tonight with "hamburgers" made with ground chicken. These are not your fast food joint's soggy, tasteless buns. What they really need is a pile of thin sliced juicy roast beef, or roasted brisket, better yet, or maybe chopped liver. 

My klopping needs some work. They will be prettier next time, but I can't really imagine them tasting better.

The hamburger was good. But the best part of dinner was dessert - An onion roll sliced in half with sweet butter.

Thanks, Norm! 

 FYI, all the rolls were scaled to 2.55 oz. I think this was just right for the onion rolls. Next time I make Kaiser Rolls, I think I will scale them to 3 oz.


SteveB's picture

Croissants and Pain au Chocolat

For any who might be interested, I've detailed my latest foray into croissants and pain au chocolat here:

Please note that the post is video intensive, so it might take a while to load.


chahira daoud's picture
chahira daoud

Right from the oven to TFL,tonight baking,very hot!!!


spsq's picture

Interesting article: health benefits of sourdough/whole wheat/whole grain

I thought people here might find this interesting!  I loves me whole grain (fortunately, I have a flour mill), but good to know sourdough is good to!