The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

66% Sourdough Rye from Jeffrey Hamelman's "Bread"

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dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

66% Sourdough Rye from Jeffrey Hamelman's "Bread"

This bread is a rye with 66 percent rye flour and the remainder high-gluten flour. A rye sour is elaborated using whole rye. The sour is 80% hydration, which ends up being a very thick paste, due to how much water the whole rye absorbs. This is fermented for 14-16 hours and is then mixed with Medium rye flour, high-gluten flour, more water, salt and instant yeast.


The resulting dough is very loose. Hamelman says to mix it (in a professional spiral mixer) for only 3 minutes at first speed and 2 minutes on second speed. He says you should have "a bit of gluten strength, but ... not much." I aimed for "a bit" of gluten development but had to mix for 16 minutes in my KitchenAid. The dough was extremely sticky and still rough and pasty. It had enough elasticity after fermenting to form into loaves, using more flour dusting on the bench and my hands than is necessary with lower-percentage rye doughs.


Fermentation was only 45 minutes and proofing was 50 minutes. Proofing is tricky with this type of rye. Under-proofing contributes to excessive oven spring and blow-outs. Over-proofing leads to the loaf collapsing when it is scored or when it is loaded into the oven. I think I hit it about right. <whew!>


I wasn't sure about scoring a bread like this. I considered not scoring at all or making rounds and docking them. In the end, I decided to make oval loaves and score one in the "sausage" cut and the other in the "chevron" cut.



Hamelman prescribes a 24 hour rest after baking before slicing. I wrapped the loaves in linen and left them on the counter overnight.



When sliced, this rye has a fairly thick, chewy (but not hard) crust. The crumb is fairly dense and quite moist. It is tender to chew. The aroma is assertively rye, as is the flavor with a mild sourdough tang.


The taste is good when eaten plain. It is strong enough to come through when eaten with a slice of aged gruyère cheese. Just as a light rye seems to call for corned beef, this rye calls for stronger cheeses and fatty fish such as herring or salmon. I wish I could get some smoked sable. 


David

Comments

erg720's picture
erg720

I made the 40% rye bread and now the Vermont Sourdough.


The 40% was wonderful. i'll wait for the crumb photo.


Ron

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

David

JeremyCherfas's picture
JeremyCherfas

Fine looking loaves. I'm just starting to reexplore rye breads again, and I think this is possibly a little too tricky.


Jeremy

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

If this had been the first rye bread I'd baked, I think I would have given up sometime mid-way through mixing. The dough is nothing like an all wheat-flour dough.


My advice is to get comfortable handling doughs with less than 50% rye before tackling those with more rye. 


This very sticky dough is "tricky," but once you know the "tricks," it is not hard, just different.


Hmmm ... It's time to update the TFL Handbook to include more material on handling high-percentage rye doughs.


David

CarlSF's picture
CarlSF

Those are wonderful rye loaves you have there, David. I cannot wait to see a picture of the crumb structure and to hear how it tastes.  Out of curiosity...what % of rye culture did you add to your final rye starter?  80% hydration sounds about right, and I wonder what % of rye culture did you add.  Also, when you are not using your rye starter, how do you propagate it?

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

Hamelman's formula for the final rye starter calls for 5% "Mature sourdough culture." In the context of the rye chapter, I assume this is supposed to be a rye sour, and I used that.


Re. rye starter maintenance: Oh man, I gotta be truthful. I keep a fair quantity of rye sour refrigerated in a 750 ml glass jar. I don't feed it on any schedule. I think I've gone over a month without feeding it at times. A couple days before wanting to bake with it, I take some out and start building it up to the quantity I need. (See my blog entry on "The care and feeding of rye sour." If I had fed it in the preceding week (or so), I may do this in one feeding. If I need a large quantity of sour and had not fed it recently, I may build it more slowly, over 3 feedings.


I don't deserve my rye sour. It is unbelievably resilient. Even after prolonged neglect, it comes back strong, even with the first feeding, and raises dough and makes great tasting bread.


Now, that's what I do. Ideally, I should feed it about weekly, let it ferment for an hour, then re-refrigerate. But, "my way" it takes at least 6 weeks before it throws off hooch, although it does get soupy after 10 days or so. It has never gotten moldy. It always smells wonderful. 


So, there you have it. 


David 

nova's picture
nova

David,


I do not worry about my rye starter....I might feed it as little as every 7-10 days.  And longer should not matter as long as the rye gets a rousing feed before use.  Once the mature starter is established, it always seems ready to rock and roll.  In fact, if I haven't fed it for several days but am unsure about the strength of some my other starters, I may pitch 3-5 grams of the rye in with the other.  The resulting starter/levain for the targeted batch is also happy and energetic for the mix ahead.


And I have not tried the 66% rye...good to hear your care with the bulk ferm and proofing.  I tend toward the heavy whole grains, like Vollkornbrot, 70% with wheat and Horst Bandel.  I need to get the lighter ryes under my belt as well. Good Job!


nova

SylviaH's picture
SylviaH

Lovely Rye loaves, David!


Sylvia

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

David

candis's picture
candis

look magnificent!


 

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

Enjoy!


David

CarlSF's picture
CarlSF

Hi David,


Thanks for the info on how you maintain your rye starter.  I have heard something similar from a German baker on how to maintain a rye starter especially if one is not going to be using the rye starter for a while, and what he told me is something very similiar to what what you are doing.  I will have to experiment with that.  One last question for you....when you make your rye starter in preparation for your rye bread, and you use 80% hydration and 5% rye culture, do you feel the rye starter is very stiff or just loosely stiff to mix or stir with a fork or spoon?

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

Hi, Carl.


The starter was quite stiff - like thick paste, but not stiff enough to form a ball, like with a wheat flour "firm" starter.


When I make light ryes, the starter is usually thinner - more like a thick batter.


It's hard to compare the consistency of a rye sour to that of a wheat flour starter. They are qualitatively different. I hope this helps.


David

smasty's picture
smasty

Mmmm...I love rye!  Those look great!


Sue

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

David

vkaft's picture
vkaft

what temperature was the environment for fermenting and proofing?


what did the dough look and feel like when you decided it was ready to bake?


thanks.

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

I fermented and proofed at room temperature. I don't recall what the exact temperature was that day.


When ready to bake, the loaves had expanded 50-75% and, when poked, the hole fills in but slowly.


David