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German baking day

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Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

German baking day

At my son's school we are starting a German expat's learning group to give our children some idea of German culture, like watching Biene Maja, playing Mau Mau and .. of course... German supper, usually some bread with different toppings such as sausage and cheeses and cold meats.

This gave me the push to start investigating how to make tge breads I miss over here. It's not the multigrain ones - I have a craving for different kinds of "Mischbrot" - bread that is made up of (light) rye flour, and wheat flour. Usually it is leavened with a rye sourdough, and some yeast is added in the final mix.

The overall percentage of rye can  vary from 30 to 99% (100% would be a rye bread, "Roggenbrot") If there is more than 50% rye it's called Roggen-Mischbrot, if it's less than it's a Weizen-Mischbrot.

Meister Suepke gives in his Sourdough blog a general formula for the process called "Detmolder Einstufen-Fuehrung", bread made with sourdough which has been made in a single stage (as opposed to the intricate Detmolder 3 stage process), and he also gives hints how to scale this to different wheat contents.

I found that his formula corresponds very well with many of the rye formulas in Hamelman's "Bread", so I played a bit with the ratios and was very pleased with the outcome.

== Update 23/06/2011: Added some new photos and formulas at the end

== Update 12/05/2012: Added link to Google Docs spreadsheet

Enough words for now - here is a photo of what I made for the supper tomorrow: 80% rye with soaker according to Hamelman (tin loafs, could have baked a bit longer), 60% rye after Suepke (ovals) and 30% rye after Suepke (fendu)

Here the procedure:

All breads use the same sourdough:

100% wholemeal rye

80% water

5% ripe starter

The sourdough has fermented at 23-25C for 14 hours

The doughs (The percentages are in a table below):

Ingredient80% Rye60% Rye30% Rye
Wholegrain rye136  
Wholegrain rye from soaker111g  
Light rye 196g69g
Wheat flour110g226g402g
Water125g192g213g
Water from soaker111g  
Salt9.9g11.3g11.5g
Instant Yeast2.7g1.8g1.8g
Sourdough381g257g

186g

The procedure is roughly the same for all breads:

Mix and work the dough, rest for 30 minutes, shape, proof for 40 to 60 minutes, bake at 220C for 25 to 35 minutes (500g loaves)

The soaker for the 80%rye is prepared at the same time as the sourdough: pour boiling water over the flour, mix and cover.

The doughs with more wheat should show some gluten development.

/* Update */

On the evening of the bake I couldn't wait - I cut the breads and posted the crumbshots above.

And I tasted them - the lighter breads are very satisfactory - beautiful elastic crumb and a rich taste with a good level of acidity - this is what I wanted.

The 80% turned out lighter color than I expected - I think I baked a bit too early and not long enough, but the taste is very promising (this bread should be cut and eaten at least 24 hours after the bake, it will get darker by then).

For reference here is the table with the percentages following Suepke's formula. I scaled the water down to 70% for 20% rye Mischbrot which works well. Sourdough as above.

Rye

100%

90%

80%

70%

60%

50%

40%

30%

20%

Wheat

0%

10%

20%

30%

40%

50%

60%

70%

80%

Water

78%

77%

76%

75%

74%

73%

72%

71%

70%

Salt

2%

2%

2%

2%

2%

2%

2%

2%

2%

Fresh yeast

1%

1%

1%

1%

1%

1%

1%

1%

1%

Fermented flour

28%

26%

24%

22%

20%

18%

16%

14%

12%

Yield

181%

180%

179%

178%

177%

176%

175%

174%

173%

 

Here is the aabove table in Google Docs:

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AkcYHhPxccKtdERlMzlWOEhBQ2Z5c1Z0MUZYRGVTZlE

You can export the spreadsheet as Excel (with all the formulas) and scale the dough according to your needs.

You can adjust the expected dough weight, hydration of starter, surplus amount of starter and scaling weight.

Happy Baking,

Juergen

Variations

Using the above percentages and procedures I made 3 different "Mischbrot" variations:

1. 30% Rye using wholegrain rye starter and flour and caraway (about 2%)

2. 50% Rye using light rye starter and flour, and  bread flour

3. 50% Rye using wholegrain rye and wholegrain wheat.  The flours for the final dough and the water have been mixed and left to soak overnight.

Here a photo:

The 30% rye is among the most delicious breads I've made so far. Light and hearty, and goes well even with jams, despite the caraway. (I get the feeling that I will have to bake lots of those in the coming weeks...)

The 50% mixes were inspired by my search for Kommissbrot (German army bread), which has been introduced during WW1, but found its way into the shops (and is still there). Originally it was - according to WiKi - a 50:50 wholegrain rye/wheat mix with sourdough and yeast.

The 50% rye with light flours is not bad, but a bit boring, but the wholegrain version certainly will stay in my repertoire: A very rich, complex taste with a strong wheat component and quite a bit of acid, like a mix between a 100% rye  and a levain with wholegrain. The crumb feels light and springy, despite its look. I'm very pleased.

 

Comments

ananda's picture
ananda

Some lovely rye breads here Juergen, I'll guess you had a lot of fun doing these.

Interesting what you say about the concept of a single phase of Detmolder.   I would guess this is only practicable if you use the rye sour often.   If you have a period where you don't bake for a while, I'm not sure you'd get away with the single feed.   Of course, that is why the baker's yeast is included in the formula; safeguards the process just in case!

I like the flour-topped bloomers the best, but we need to see the crumb shots really.

All good wishes

Andy

Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

Thank you, Andy.

I updated my post with crumb shots (couldn't wait the 48 hours).

Getting into Suepke's formulas and comparing them to Hamelman's was fun and a relevation. This sort of thing takes me to the next step, as will your recent comments about protein activity. I've never seen that explained/applied within the context of formula development (I haven't read Clavel).

As for the starter: I keep a 200% hydration rye in the fridge, and it almost always comes back after 2 feeds. When I want to bake this kind of bread I use one feed to reactivate and adjust hydration, and use this to kick off the production sourdough. So far it almost always worked.

The 3 stage detmolder is quite intricate, and Suepke mentiones that not many bakers follow this, except the ones with a purpose built apparatus.

When I lived in Frankfurt I frequently had some outstanding rye breads from some local bakery chains - I am now convinced they use 3 stage Detmolder.

As for the yeast - my guess is that this creates a predictable and convenient work schedule - as well as cut some enzyme activity short!?

Best wishes,

Juergen

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

Juergen,

What beautiful loaves!  Tantalizing enough to get added to my 'to bake' list which keeps getting longer and longer and longer. I am a sucker for working with rye and the people I bake for all love the loaves I do that have rye in them.

Thanks for taking the time to photograph your loaves as well as print out your method of mixing and baking.  Makes it very easy to follow in your footsteps :-)

Take Care,

Janet

Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

Thank you for your kind comment.

I am sure you will have fun with this. The procedure seems to be quite tolerant to substitutions - all of the variations Hamelman suggests (hot rye flour soaker, chopped rye soaker, wholegrain wheat ...) should work well.

For a friend who's child is wheat intolerant I made a 70% rye recently substituting the wheat for white spelt. Just delicious.

Thanks,

Juergen

 

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

David

Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

Thank you, David

varda's picture
varda

of breads.    And what better ways to teach kids than through their stomachs.   -Varda

Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

Thank you, Varda. I look forward to this afternoon's session. I hope to capture some of it in pictures.

Juergen

rossnroller's picture
rossnroller

And nice-looking breads! Fortuitously enough, fellow Perth-based TFLer and pro baker Yozza has just given me some light rye flour, and now you've presented the perfect opportunity to try it out. Appreciate your clear directions.

Just one thing: I'm a SD purist, and don't like adding commercial yeast to my breads. I know you can't know for sure, but what's your view on whether these breads would turn out OK without adding yeast? I'm thinking increased proof times would be all that's needed...?

PS: I've been a devotee of German bread, and a proselytiser of same, since spending a year living in Germany (Munich and Cologne) waaaay back in the 80s. Far better than any bread I encountered in France or the rest of Europe  - and such a diverse variety. In fact, for me the German breads were nothing short of a revelation. I hesitate to use that flayed word, but there is none more appropriate in this case. It's no exaggeration to declare I have been obsessed with bread ever since.

My yearning for bread as good as that lovely German produce remained unsatisfied, however, even with the emergence of a genuine artisan bread movement in Australia, until I started baking SD at home. Apart from light ryes, though, I have not ventured into baking rye breads. You might imagine, then, I'm looking very forward to trying your recipes. Thanks for sharing them.

Best of baking
Ross

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

Ross,

I know you have been a member here for over a year and I am sure you know about hanseata - Karin.  She has posted many wonderful German breads here that are delicious.  I am a huge fan of German breads too so I am always on the look out for her postings.  

I was surprised learn from her that commercial yeast is used a lot in their breads.  I was under the assumption that it was all SD.  Karin has converted many of the recipes so they can be done with SD....which ever way works out best for you.

Take Care, 

Janet

rossnroller's picture
rossnroller

Yes, I follow Karin's posts. I've also pored over minioven's epic threads on rye breads, and will no doubt use the contents as a reference point whichever rye breads I start on.

And yeah, I was aware that the German SD breads are typically spiked with commercial yeast. It surprised (and disappointed) me a little, but I guess that's projecting my own SD purism in an inappropriate way.  The most important thing is the quality of the bread, and in my experience the German breads are second to none. I have a Czech friend who tells me that their breads are predominantly SD and up with the best of the German ones, and have no reason to doubt that. There's probably fine breads all over Europe. But that's another conversation...

Cheers!
Ross

Yundah's picture
Yundah

Jürgen, 

Your breads look gorgeous.  Thanks for sharing.  I have some light rye flour and I know what is going to happen to it soon.  Hanseata's brötchen recipe was perfect for me,  I think this may give me the Mischbrot I miss so much.  Danke  viel mal.

Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

Thank you, Ross.

I am glad to hear your stay in Munich and Cologne set you off omn the quest for good bread. Those two places have quite different food cultures and bread styles.

I was surprised, too, about the spiking with yeast.

I have two guesses about that (as mentioned in the reply to Andy's post):

1. The yeast helps in creating a defined and predictable work schedule in a commercial bakery

2. Enzyme control (this is speculative): By cutting the bulk short through using the yeast the danger of having amylase and protease turn a nice freestanding loaf into a pancake is avoided.

I am sure it works without the yeast. On p.203 Hamelman mentiones that you can omit the yeast in his 3-stage 90% rye sourdough as long as the starter is vigorous enough. I think this is true for Suepke's formula as well, the outcome might look slightly different.

Happy Baking,

Juergen

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

On Added Commercial Yeast,

Speculative too....but in Peter Reinhart's book WGB he has yeast added into the final doughs too but says it can be omitted.  I do think it is used as more of a convenience as you state in #1 above.  

Roots of bread baking are in SD so it had to change somewhere in the past. Commercial yeast obviously provided a new way for the professional baker to keep to a more predictable baking schedule and a whole new way of leavening breads was born. I imagine it caught on because it was fast and convenient....production rose and so did income...so in with the new and out with the old.

Would be interesting to know if it does have anything to do with enzyme control except from what little I know about SD is that it slows down the enzymes that cause the break down in doughs.  

Tomorrow I am making a recipe of PR called Hutzelbrot.  It uses a hefty portion of rye leaven as well as commercial yeast in the final dough.  I probably won't add the commercial yeast so I will see what happens but I suspect it will work out just fine.

Take Care,

Janet

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

Juergen and Ross,

So my mind just wanted to know about this commercial yeast with SD and I ended up doing a search though I know there has to be more out there on the subject.

I found this thread and it addressed German breads with commercial yeast so I am bringing it here for you to see and maybe someone who knows more than I can  solve the mystery.

Except for rye....In general, if a cookbook author uses sourdough and commercial bakers yeast they don't really understand sourdough.  They don't have a good starter, or trust their starter.Rye is the exception.  For about 100 years, the common practice in Germany was to use an over-acidified sourdough starter to acidify rye flour and then add yeast to the dough to get it to rise.  It works, and has been the base of many classic German rye breads.  However, many German bakers are re-examining how they handle rye and sourdough and are moving away from using commercial yeast.Commercial yeast not only isn't necessary, it speeds the rise to the point where most of the sourdough characteristics one is looking for by using sourdough don't have time to develop.MikeExcept for rye....In general, if a cookbook author uses sourdough and commercial bakers yeast they don't really understand sourdough.  They don't have a good starter, or trust their starter.Rye is the exception.  For about 100 years, the common practice in Germany was to use an over-acidified sourdough starter to acidify rye flour and then add yeast to the dough to get it to rise.  It works, and has been the base of many classic German rye breads.  However, many German bakers are re-examining how they handle rye and sourdough and are moving away from using commercial yeast.Commercial yeast not only isn't necessary, it speeds the rise to the point where most of the sourdough characteristics one is looking for by using sourdough don't have time to develop.Mike

 

I am baking a Hutzelbrot formula this morning that calls for commercial yeast in the final dough.  I am leaving it out and shall see what results I get.....

Take Care,

Janet

Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

Hi Janet,

Thank you for your research. I'll ask Mr Suepke about the matter of yeast and report here.

Hutzelbrot (or Birewegge as we called it where I come from) is very dense and has loads of fruit. (I don't know the PR formula)

I'm sure it will be fine without commercial yeast.

Did you see this movie? A bit Black Forest folklore ...

Juergen

 

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

Juergen,

Thanks for the video.  I haven't seen it before.  It was nice to see that his dough is sticky.  Because I use a rye starter too my dough is very sticky though PR says it shouldn't be too sticky.....WRONG :-)

I like seeing that the baker made small little loaves.  I have always done ones that are about 3 times the size so now I have a new way to divide the dough!

Was nice to see he didn't try to score them either.  I have tried.  The picture in WGB shows a really nice scoring pattern.  My attempts look as though someone has walked over the tops of my loaves with soccer cleats on!  :-0.

So now the pressure is off on shaping and scoring and it is just up to the dough to do all of the work.  It is rising now so I know the yeasties are eating to their hearts content!

Thank you for asking Mr. Suepke about the commercial yeast.  It will be interesting to discover what he has to say.  I think my loaves will be fine too.  MiniOven prefers her rye loaves without commercial yeast or else they simply ferment too fast and don't have time to develop elasticity.

Take Care,

Janet

 

Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

Dear All,

I got Meister Suepke's Answer:

He says it's all about the baking schedule.

He has 1 hour for the final proof of his batches and he adjusts the yeast according to the dough there and then - anything between 0.9% and 1.5%.

He also says that he gives out these formulas because this is how he bakes every day and he wants to be sure whoever has a go will have a good result.

He essentially says he could do it without commercial yeast if there was no time pressure and he could guarantee the proper and stable dough temperature.

I will do some comparative baking when I've got time, maybe next weekend.

Thanks,

Juergen

 

 

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

Jeurgen,

Thanks for such a quick response!  His answer clears up this mystery and is much of what I suspected....Time schedules.

The Hutzelbrot dough I mixed up today fermented in less than 2 hours without any commercial yeast!  I would hate to see what it would have done if I had added the yeast!

 (I use all whole grains that are freshly ground so my doughs tend to ferment quickly hence I usually end up having to cut down the amount of leaven I use but didn't do that with this loaf.  Flavor will still be good due to 2 preferments - the leaven and the soaker which includes altus.....lots of flavor going on!)

Again, thanks for your research and response!

Take Care,

Janet

Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

Hi Janet, how did it turn out? I am sure it is great, you made me curious. Do you keep it for a while to develop its flavour before tucking into it?

I was thinking about Mike Avery's post, and in my opinion his gerneralisation doesn't do justice to German bakers and tastebuds.

Germany has many different regions, and it has as many food cultures.

In the south people are more into wheat, in the north they are more into rye (generally speaking). 50 years ago they liked it more sour than today.

I think using a sourdough with high acidity and then using commercial yeast to do the heavy lifting has more to do with regional taste - and of course with managing a schedule - than with bakers not understanding the fermentation process.

The very sour bread has been made for people who like very sour bread.

I grew up in Black Forest, the far south-west of Germany. I didn't get to taste a lot of very sour breads until I moved north.

Best Wishes,

Juergen

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

Juergen,

I have a 17 year old daughter.  On a day when I am baking a loaf that is one of her favorites her first question to me in the morning is, 'When will it be ready?'......I think you might be able to guess the answer to your question about developing flavor :-D.

She was home when the loaves came out of the oven yesterday and our loaf was cut into before it even hit the cooling rack.....

I have explained the 1 hour 'rule' and the suggestion of letting some loaves sit for a day....but my family loves nothing better than a slice of steaming hot bread fresh out of the oven.  I stopped enforcing the 'rule' months ago......One look at their faces was all it took.....so much for bread rules around here. ROFL

There is 1 heel left in the bread box.

The loaves turned out really well despite the fact that I had to add extra flour.  Think I overdid the water in the altus I added.

They also fermented very quickly!

I didn't make small loaves as shown in the video this time because the loaves were for a fund raiser I am doing for my daughter. (A loaf a week for 8 weeks to friends who want to help her pay for a ballet intensive here this summer.)  Next bake I think I will do that and see how the kids like the mini loaves.  Figure if I do many mini loaves some will make it intact to the next day and then we can see if there is an improvement in flavor by the extra 'sitting' time.)

Thanks for pointing out the generalization.  How tempting it is to go for an easy explanation when one wants to clear something up and move on to something else.  You are very right in that bread techniques vary from region to region and one simple statement can not do justice to the complexity that is really involved.

Indeed, one of the things that I absolutely love about TFL is that we get such a good variety of formulas from people all over the world.  I love reading the recent threads about using regional grains and the use of yeast waters.  I had no idea there was such a variance prior to joining TFL.  

Interesting in that something as simple and ordinary as baking a loaf of bread can open up a whole new world to someone.  In my short time here I have learned a lot of history, geography and biology!  All I was looking for was a better loaf of whole grain bread. :-)  I have gotten far more than that and the horizon just keeps getting bigger! 

Take Care and thanks for asking about the loaves.  I frequently forget what I have written and having a reminder is nice because I know I get curious too about what people are making.

Janet

 

Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

... is not possible after a great bake. I appreciate that. After all it's the greatest reward when the loaves seem to disappear by themselves ...

The Hutzelbrot is traditionally a christmas thing, and with many christmas things it's being made much earlier and waits for weeks to find a hungry mouth (I had a waiting period of weeks in mind, rather than hours. Maybe you can hide one after the next bake, just to give it a go.)

Best Wishes,

Juergen

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

Juergen,

I had to chuckle at your recommendation to hide a loaf next bake.....My kids used to love hunting for Easter eggs that I would hide throughout the house.....I always counted how many each had.  Well, last year both were short and I still am clueless as to where I hid them.....

Another 'needless to say'....I do not intentionally try to hide anything anymore.  Things somehow hide themselves. ROFL

But I will keep the suggestion in mind and maybe, if I write myself a note, I will be able to keep track of it....but then I will have to remember where I put the note...  :^)

Take Care,

Janet

 

ananda's picture
ananda

Hi Janet/Juergen,

Great comment here from Mike Avery, as ever.

So do you simply use the sour as overt acid, hence very strong flavour, and rely on fresh yeast to leaven the dough?

Or, do you learn how to produce a natural leaven which is not so astringent, and which has substantial leavening power of its own.

The thread also references Hamelman and his use of yeast as an addition in the final dough.   Personally, I believe he advocates this for those bakers not using their leavens that frequently, and/or in sufficient quantity to cultivate really strong natural yeasts.

Having worked in a bakery which held 600kg of rye sour and 300kg of French wheat leaven in stock at any point in time and worked 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, I have witnessed how powerful leavens become.   Hamelman makes few concessions to home bakers, but his option of use of small amounts of yeast in this way, is, I believe just one of these.

The acid bath actually makes very poor bread in any case.   Additional yeast becomes essential just to get a result.   I do agree with Mike's wise words here.

Very best wishes

Andy

CarlSF's picture
CarlSF

Hi Juergen,

Great looking loaves you have there!  I wish I could grab one and taste it.

Carl

Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

The lighter ones are really where I wanted them to be. Great taste and texture.

I'm sad your arm isn't long enough..

Juergen

CarlSF's picture
CarlSF

You mean lighter in color (or taste)?  Just by looking at the pictures they seem to be lighter in color.

Carl

Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

Carl, Sorry I wasn't clear: I meant the breads with 30% and 60% rye (Probably German thinking: 100% rye = heavy, 100% plain white flour = light)

CarlSF's picture
CarlSF

Juergen,

If you really want a light bread, try 70% wheat and 30% rye.  I have been experimenting with that particular flour proportion, but I'm not getting the right sour taste that I want.  I like my rye breads to have a solid rye sour taste (not so strong), but I should be able to detect it after several seconds of chewing the bread.  I was wondering if your breads have a solid rye sour taste?

Carl

Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

Hi Carl,

The fendu style loaves above are actually 30% rye and 70% wheat. Very light they are indeed, and the taste developed considerably over time. I didn't actually get to eat much of them. Got another shipment of light rye today and will play with the formula (30% Rye) over the weekend.

Yesterday I managed to do some comparative baking with and without yeast, with a 60% rye and some wholewheat. I'll post a separate blog, but - our kitchen was cooler than usual while the starter was ripening. Suepke recommends 24 to 28C, our kitchen had 22C. It took a lot longer for the starter to mature, and it was a lot more acidic than the one I used for the breads above.

The result are great breads with a distinct acidity. The aftertaste stays with you for 10 minutes or more. And my family likes it, too (usually I make white breads for them ...).

But more about this in a separate blog.

Juergen

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Got some room for a hand full of moist altus in that starter?   I'm into feeding my starter a good portion in preparation for a loaf.  

Piggies:  This little piggy went to the market...      

Das ist der Daumen, 
der schüttelt die Pflaumen, 
der hebt sie alle auf, 
der bringt sie nach Haus, 
und der Kitzekleine isst sie alle, alle wieder auf 

Easily applied to your loaves...

Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

Hi Mini, Thank you for your comment.

There weren't enough little ( and big ) ones there this afternoon to eat it all, but they liked their supper very much.

Juergen

Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

Hi Mini,

About how much is a good portion of altus for you?

The "Leitsaetze fuer Brot" say that bakers can use max. 20% of rye based bread or 16% of wheat based bread (fresh weight).

I'll experiment a bit...

Juergen

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Answer to the Q, "How much is a good portion of altus for my starter?"    

I'm talking replacing flour with dried crumbled altus.   :)  glad you asked

Syd's picture
Syd

Beautiful looking breads, Juergen and what a great idea to start an expat  learning group.

shape, proof for 40-6- minutes,

Is that 46 mins, then?

Lovely bake,

Syd

Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

40 to 60 minutes.

Thank you,

Juergen

rossnroller's picture
rossnroller

...wondering how long you baked each of the loaves, Juergen?

Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

Hi, I baked for abourt 25 minutes at 220C. The 80% rye could have done 35 minutes, but it tastes great today nonetheless.

kim's picture
kim

Hi Juergen,

Wow, you have a great selection of rye breads there. I’m sure you are enjoying and satisfied with the bake result. I still love your 80% rye breads. Thank you for posting.

Kimmy

Noor13's picture
Noor13

Ein Hoch auf Deutsches Brot :)

Your loafs look delicious and I am sure they taste wonderful as well

 

 

Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

Kimmy, Noori13, Thanks a lot.

Not much left of the loaves, and the taste is still improving!

Juergen

hanseata's picture
hanseata

Dein Brot sieht sehr lecker aus, Jürgen! I can understand your craving for Misch- or Feinbrot quite well - I started baking bread after I came to the US because my stomach refused to adapt to Wonderbread.

I wasn't aware that people South of Hannover prefer less sour breads than North Germans. But I definitely do, therefore my "Feinbrot" has quite a bit of tanginess.

I experimented once with Hamelman's Walnut Rye Sourdough, preparing the sourdough for one loaf according to the recipe, the other in a simplified 3-step process (Martin Stoldt Pöt: "Der Sauerteig - das unbekannte Wesen"). The difference was quite remarkable, the 3-step starter was livelier and smelled very pleasantly fruity-sour, the other was less active and had no strong smell. Both breads looked the same, but the 3-step sourdough bread tasted definitely better!

My husband spent part of his childhood in Germany, therefore he loves German breads, and we, too, have one meal per day with bread and cold cuts. And even though Maine has no good rye bread to offer  -  we have a lot of really good micro-breweries.

Viel Spass beim Backen,

Karin

P.S. Please, don't treat your poor children with "Biene Maja" - the Japanese TV-series is the greatest saccharine dripping kitsch - what about "Käpt'n Blaubär", "Sauerkraut" or "Prinzessin Fantaghiro"?

 

 

 

Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

Hi Karin,

Thank you for your comments. The big things on TV when I was little were the early Augsburger Puppenkiste (Kalle Wirsch, Urmel Aus Dem Ei). I remember watching the Apollo missions on black&white TV with my grandpa. I saw some episodes of Kaeptn Blaubaer as an adult ... Great! I'll tell the group. (And - don't we have sourdough bread to counterbalance the saccharine ;-))

With regards to the bread geography: I moved to Frankfurt in 1992, and the  bakeries there had these dark ryes which you hardly ever saw in Freiburg at the time (with the exception of Pumpernickel). A lot has changed since then. But still, the further you go north the more variety of ryes you get, of course with regional variatins.

Danke Schoen und Tschuess

Juergen

hanseata's picture
hanseata

Jürgen, I saw the Augsburger Puppenkiste, too, but when my children watched tv, I was only too happy to join them for Käpt'n Blaubär & Co. My inner child comes with a sense of wry humor, and that is abundant in those stories. Also, check on "Sauerkraut" - it is a blast! My daughter especially loved: "Princess Fantaghiro" (a German/Italian co-production) and "Petterson und Findus" (it's a Swedish childrens' book made into a tv-series) - it can't get any funnier and nicer!

Breads in Hamburg got better and more diversified over time, when I traveled to Southern Germany, I especially loved the breads with subtle spiciness from coriander, fennel, caraway and anise. Nowadays you can get all those in Northern parts, too. The Jewish rye you find in the US is often heavily overdosed with caraway - you don't taste anything else. Also, I find the white rye flour you can get here rather tasteless.

I have tried to emulate German rye types with mixes in different ratios of white and whole rye, but didn't quite succeed. I brought some rye Typ 1150 from my last trip and intend to compare it to the medium rye you can get here. Though I really appreciate the wheat flours with their higher protein here in the US, I miss the different rye types from Germany.

Though I adapted many of my German bread recipes very successfully to American flours, there are some rye breads that I couldn't quite match, the ones made with different medium rye types. You might like to try the Feinbrot recipe I developed from the scratch, it is done without any additional instant yeast:

http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/20242/karin039s-german-feinbrot

Thank you for posting the ratio formula, that's a very useful tool.

Karin

 

 

 

Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

Hi Karin,

I'll try it, definitely.

About rye flours: I actually don't have much experience with many different ryes.

I did most of my rye baking with Dove's wholegrain rye, and found that very unproblematic.

I used light rye from Shipton Mill, equally unproblematic, and both quite tasty.

My positive experience with other Shipton Mill flours lead me to try their stoneground wholegrain rye, and that's something completely different. I had to relearn my whole procedure of making rye starters, because this flour smells, feels and reacts so different. And the taste is a lot richer, earthier. My starter is vigorous and the performance is pretty much as given by Hamelman or Suepke.

I never made rye bread in Germany, I have no comparison with those flours.

Viele Gruesse,

Juergen

Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

Hi Karin,

I didn't get my light rye I expected on Friday, so I changed my plans and made your Feinbrot.

It came out looking very beautiful, with a wonderful crumb that has a distinctive sour taste balanced by the spices. Great!

My starter is very lively, just over 2 hours was enough for the bulk proof in my case.

Thank you,

Juergen

hanseata's picture
hanseata

The Feinbrot is really "my baby". I didn't have much bread baking experience, no urgent necessity to do that in Germany, and I missed this everyday bread so much. I was really desperate to make my own in Maine, I only knew it was sourdough, had rye and wheat in it, and bread spices. I went through weeks of producing bricks, making always changes, until the first loaf came out, looking and tasting right. How to achieve a better crust, using steam, I learned much later, from Peter Reinhart's "Bread Baker's Apprentice" which was the first really good, instructive bread baking book I got. My old ones, from Germany, had good recipes regarding the ingredients, but not the procedure.

Happy baking,

Karin

 

JonnyP's picture
JonnyP

Juergen,

Could you elaborate on how you "mix and work the dough" in your recipe above?  Do you dissolve the sourdough levain in the final dough water before adding the final flour, or do you add the levain after mixing the final flour with the final water?  Do you use a mixer?  How long?  How does the dough change as you work it?  What do you look for to know you are done mixing?  I'm mostly interested in the 30% ryes.

Thanks,

JonnyP

Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

Hi JonnyP,

Thank you for your interest in those formulas.

The dough gets more sticky the more rye you add. The 30% rye dough is already very different from baguette or pain de campagne dough.

I mix by hand using a dough scraper for the first bit, batch sizes up to 3.2 kg.

I don't dissolve the levain prior to mixing.

After the ingredients have come roughly together (there might still be lumps of levain) I work the dough using "slap and fold" for about 4 minutes, until the dough is homogenuous and the gluten structure starts to show.  I then do one or two folds during the bulk proof.

The dough is still quite sticky after the proof - I usually shape on the slightly oiled worktop.

The poking tests work well to determine the progress of fermentation.

These breads lend themselves to a load of variations:

1. Develop the gluten in the wheat before adding the levain - I did this a long time ago and don't quite remember the results

2. Use a wheat preferment (sourdough, poolish, flying sponge...). I made some of this with 12% of the total flour from a poolish - nice, rich taste. My 5-year old even liked the crust ...

3. Use dark rye for the sourdough, light rye for the final mix, this gives you a noticeable change in texture

Of course, this list is incomplete.

Best Wishes,

Juergen

chefscook's picture
chefscook

Would love to make your bre. ads but don't understand grams if you could please translate tablespoons teaspoons and cup. Also oven temp
Thank you

Chefscook

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