The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

It took me forever to find Eric's Favorite Rye

dabrownman's picture

It took me forever to find Eric's Favorite Rye

It took me forever to find Eric's recipe / formula for his favorite and famous rye.  So here it is for everyone.

Eric’s Favorite Rye.

Susan has really done this recipe justice, and on the first try. It kills me that she can do this formula with better results than I have ever gotten. I guess that's the mark of a good baker, to be able to make minor adjustments that affect the outcome. Very nice Susan, a beautiful loaf!

The recipe is a result of my research inRyemixes a while back. I wanted to find a NY style Jewish Rye that didn't take 3 days to make that had personality. I've looked at and baked Levy, Greenstein, Mike Avery's Bohemian and a fellow named chef John V from Good cooking. I took all of this and simplified the process into something I could do in a long day and get reliable results every time. My family and I like deli style rye with caraway seeds and since we have many friends who are so inclined, I need to have a good loaf that works as house gifts and sandwich bread during the Jewish holidays and also for St Patrick's day corned beef. My German butcher friend has the best corned beef ever and serves 3000# plus every year at Irish fest inMilwaukeein sandwiches. We have been playing with using my rye bread formula if I can find a way to do the volume. In the end I don't say this is the best rye bread you can make. If you like the sour rye that takes 3 days to build, this isn't going to satisfy you. If you want a great tasting rye that will make a great CB sandwich and you can do the process in a long day or overnight, give this a try.


This is my formula for rye bread in the NY Deli style. The crust is soft after it cools and will slice better the next day. If you need bread that will stand a few days, this mix is good for mailing across the country. Sealed in a plastic bag after cooling, this rye will be great 4-5 days later and freezes very well.


100g Active Rye starter

275gRye(Whole or WhiteRye)

275g water

Mix and set at room temp overnight. (If this stage will longer than 8 hours I suggest refrigerating after 3 hours and warming to room temp before proceeding)

Final Dough:

All the sponge

484g water SEE NOTE BELOW

788g First Clear flour

1 Tablespoon sugar

1 teaspoon instant yeast

22g Sea Salt

20g Caraway seeds

Mix, rest for 20-30 minutes, knead by machine or by hand for 8-10 minutes or stretch and fold several times. It is important to have well developed gluten. Do enough stretches to feel the gluten chains forming. Otherwise you may have trouble getting a good rise. Place dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover and ferment till double, about 1 hour or so at warm (80 F) temp. Be sure you get double.

Divide and shape into 2-2lb loaves, final proof for 45 minutes.

Bake @370 for 30-40 Minutes. (I steam for the first 10 minutes)I’m looking for 190+ F internal temperature. When the bread comes out of the oven I brush with a glaze made from whisking 1T cornstarch into 1 Cup of boiling water and sprinkle with kosher salt lightly.

NOTE:I have been re hydrating dry onions in all of the water for the dough, and using that water in the mix. If you want Onion Rye, use the onions also in the dough mix. It is wonderful!

Measure the water in a microwave proof bowl and boil it. Add 1/4 Cup dry onions, mix around and let cool. Make the dough with this water.