Two Rye Sourdoughs
I have been working through an abundance of whole rye flour and strong bread flour lately so I’ve dropped anchor in the sourdough rye section of Hamelman’s Bread. I couldn’t quite make up my mind this week so I picked two. First was the Whole-Rye and Whole-Wheat Bread, baked pretty much by the book. Next was the Sourdough Rye with Walnuts. I turned that one into something a little different.
This is my second try at the whole-rye and whole-wheat bread. The first one was terrible. I didn’t take enough care with the fermentation at any stage and paid the price. At least I learned my lesson. This time it turned out much, much better. I made two changes to the book version – I left out the yeast (and so increased the ferment times) and I changed the bake temps, starting hotter at 500ºF and ending cooler at 425ºF.
I was happy with the result, but I don’t think this will be one of my favorites. The flour proportions (25% rye, 25% ww, 50% bread flour) kind of leave it in no-man’s-land to my taste. I think I would prefer it if one of the elements would stand out more. Maybe it’s just that I’ve been baking more rye lately and my taste is leaning in that direction.
Then came the Sourdough Rye with Walnuts… without walnuts… but with other stuff. This turned into a big pile of pecans and cranberries (sweetened and dried from the store) wrapped in rye bread. Oh, yum. The dough is 50% whole rye as in the book, though I left the yeast out of this one as well. The pecans are a bit over 20% the weight of the flour and the cranberries about 10%. Beyond that it pretty much speaks for itself.
Though fairly dense from all the rye and nuts and berries, there is enough bread flour to keep it soft. Just add butter and breakfast is served!