The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

How to rest rye breads post-baking

thebreadfairy's picture
thebreadfairy

How to rest rye breads post-baking

I have read that sourdough rye breads will develop the best flavor if allowed to rest for 24-48 hours after baking. I would appreciate any advice on the best way to store them during this period e.g. in a bag, out in the open, in a bread box? In my specific case, I am working with a Greenstein's Jewish Corn Bread which is "docked" and so does not have a tightly sealed crust, if that makes any difference.


Any help will be appreciated.


Jessica

gavinc's picture
gavinc

My Bread book by Jeff Hamelman p.191 is specific to rye sourdough final fermentation.  His advice is 50 to 60 minutes at between 78 to 84 F.  Breads leavened only by sourdough will require more proofing time.  In genereal, breads should be loaded into the oven when 85 to 90 percent risen.  Breads that receive a completely full rise tend to collapse in the oven.


He is a trusted expert.


Regards,


Gavin


 

gavinc's picture
gavinc

sorry folks, I misread the problem.  Ignore my comment

LindyD's picture
LindyD

Hi Jessica,


The higher percentage of rye, the longer rest time the bread needs before it should be eaten.  Breads with 60 percent rye need 24 hours; a 100 percent rye should be held 48 to 72 hours before eating (Hamelman's "Bread," pp 192-193).


The cooled bread should be wrapped in a clean cotton or linen cloth or placed in a container and covered with the cloth.  The bread needs to breathe.


I wrapped my Hamelman's Flaxseed rye in a cotton cloth and left it out on the counter for a day before I sliced it.   It was wonderful the next day, and even better 48 hours later.  


 

suave's picture
suave

Usually after my ryes have cooled I put them on a wooden board, cover with a towel and leave like that overnight.  I disagree with Hamelman somewhat though - there's nothing quite like cutting into a freshly baked warm loaf of 100% whole rye.


Mike

thebreadfairy's picture
thebreadfairy

Thanks for the help.

I happened to look at Leader's "Local Breads" after my post last night. He recommends using a brown paper bag. Has anybody tried both to compare?

suave's picture
suave

Uh. I had such a rotten luck with the last couple of recipes from Leader's book, that at the moment I tend to disregard his advice.


Mike

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

I especially like the contrast of a lightly warm moist rye with a hard crust but ....letting it stand lets the moisture in the loaf soften the crust for a more consistant slice.   I prefer wrapping a cold loaf in paper or a paper bag and then inside a plastic bag to prevent too much drying of the crust.  I also use a tightly woven towel.  A lot depends on room temperature and humidity.  It is important to keep the loaf from drying out.


Mini

ehanner's picture
ehanner

This is a pet peeve for me in that I can never seem to keep a loaf for more than a couple days before the crust becomes bullet proof hard. Especially with sourdough wharf bread and high percentage rye's. The only thing that seems to work for me is covering the bread overnight with a towel and later the next day putting it in a plastic bag. If it hasn't dried out enough though, it will get gummy on the crust I find. I end up trimming the crust off to use the crumb which is still delicious more times than not.


Eric

suave's picture
suave

I think that's the way, Eric, - once the bread is cut the best way to keep it is a ziploc bag.  These aren't French crusty breads - we don't care if crust softens.  I have a leftover rye from Sunday bake stored that way and it is still quite edible, however at this age I'd prefer to warm in a toaster oven, that does wonders.


Mike

Susan's picture
Susan

Rub or brush butter over the entire top of the loaf as soon as it comes out of the oven.  Do not use a glaze.  I think you will be happier.


Susan from San Diego

ehanner's picture
ehanner

Butter does seem to make everything a little better. What a good idea. Thanks!


Eric

paddyboomsticks's picture
paddyboomsticks

I thought I was some kind of bread freak - having to plastic bag all my loaves or start using an angle grinder to slide them after about two days!


Looking forward to trying the butter, Mini O. :)

xaipete's picture
xaipete

I use full sheets of parchment paper to wrap up my cooled breads. To my thinking parchment paper is somewhere between plastic bags and paper bags. Recently I've noticed that one of the local artisan bakers around here (Bennett Valley) has started using a parchment paper type bag for some of their breads.


--Pamela

baltochef's picture
baltochef

I echo what everyone else has said about letting rye breads rest before slicing and eating them..Although I am not presently making my rye breads with a sourdough culture, I can attest to the fact that rye breads made with commercial yeasts always taste better after a 24-hour rest before they are sliced and eaten..


My current favorite rye bread is a N.Y. Delicatessan-style rye bread with caraway seeds that I am baking in a Pullman pan..Other than a scant 1/2 oz. of organic cane sugar, this bread is nothing more than wheat bread flour, coarse rye flour, sea salt, instant yeast, and filtered water..


This bread tastes WAY better after it has rested for 24 hours, than it does when eaten directly after it has cooled..


BTW, this bread has a 35% ratio of coarse rye flour to the wheat bread flour in the recipe..


Bruce

thebreadfairy's picture
thebreadfairy

Thanks to everyone for their advice. I am working currently with a practice loaf that I put away last night, uncut, in a brown paper bag. I think tonight I will cut it up into several sections and try storing parts in a paper bag, in plastic and in parchment and see what happens. Of course this is may be a different situation than what to do with an uncut loaf but it still should be interesting. I will let you know what I find out.


 


Jessica

thebreadfairy's picture
thebreadfairy

I have just been invited to some friends' home for dinner and will be bringing my loaf so my proposed experiment will have to wait. Thanks anyway for your help.


Jessica

LindyD's picture
LindyD

I've tried storing in paper bags, wrapping in a cloth, and even storing in my microwave.  The bread dries out.  Like Eric and Mike, I now use ziplock bags for all my breads.  I've got about a quarter left of a week-old sourdough and it's still in good shape.  


While the crusts do soften a bit, they still have some crunch.  I bake all my breads "boldly," because I enjoy the taste of the caramelized crust and wonder if that has anything to do with their staying power under plastic.


I remember my mom stashing bread in a metal breadbox. Williams-Sonoma sells one for $100, but I've no idea if they work.

suave's picture
suave

When I was growing up everyone had breadboxes, my mom still does probably, but plastic bags were always used to keep breads from drying out.   


Mike