The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

German Farmhouse Bread

ostwestwin's picture

German Farmhouse Bread

I saw the topic about the German Klosterbrot. For me it looks like a rye mixed bread. Mixed rye breads are usual in Northern Germany. For more pictures see this entry.

German Farmhouse Bread

========= REZKONV-Recipe - RezkonvSuite v1.4

Title: Farmhouse Bread - Rye mixed bread (56/44)
Categories: Bread, Rye-sourdough
Yield: 2 Breads à 900 grams

500 grams Wheat flour type 550
300 grams Rye flour type 1150 (medium rye)
375 grams Water
1 tablesp. Salt
1 tablesp. Caraway, ground
800 grams Ripe Sourdough from rye flour 1150, 145 %
-- Hydration

============================ SOURCE ============================
modified recipe from:
Country Rezepte
Die 55 besten Gerichte aus ganz Europa
-- Edited *RK* 04/16/2007 by
-- Ulrike Westphal

Add all the ingredients to the mixing bowl. In a spiral mixer, mix
for 5 minutes on first speed, and 3 minutes on second.

Remove the dough from the bowl and form a ball. Clean and dry the
bowl, give it a light rub inside with oil, return the dough to the
bowl and turn dough until coated with oil. Cover with plastic wrap;
set aside to rise at room temperature for about 1 hour, or until

Flour two bannetons. Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured
surface. Divide the dough into two loaves, shape them long shapes,
position seam-side up in the bannetons for a floured top, and cover
them well with plastic wrap. Let the loaves proof until doubled in
size, about 1 hour.

Preheat oven with baking-stone to 250 °C. When the loaves have
doubled, do not push back when gently pressed with your finger but
remain indented, they are ready to bake. Flip each one seam-side
down onto the peel with parchment paper. With a serrated knife score
them two times and then peel them on the hot stone. Return heat to
200 °C and bake the loaves for 35 minutes or until internal
temperature of 90 °C. Remove loaves from the oven and let them cool
on a rack.


CountryBoy's picture

according the the bakery that produces it advises that the recipe is:

  • enriched wheat flour  (wheat flour, niacin, reduced iron, thiamin mononitrate, ribolavin, folic acid) 
  • spring water
  • rye flour
  • sourdough  (rye flour, spring water and bacterial culture) 
  • salt
  • yeast
  • dry cultured  whey

This is very similar to what you have suggested, but I sense that we are currently being challenged by items on the list and where can one buy:


  1.  type 550 wheat flour
  2.  medium rye flour.  
  3. dry cultured whey

 Many thanks.

ostwestwin's picture

whey. You can omit it, it's really not necessary. Type 550 wheat flour is bread flour. I can't help you with the medium rye flour. In Germany it is available in every supermarket. But you can purchase it here. And there must be German bakers in NY.

and The Bread Alone Book says that this mill sells flour, too.

CountryBoy's picture

so I defer to you as knowing what the facts are but:

  1. didn't the bakery have a reason for the whey?
  2. aren't there different types of rye flour?
  3. the crumb on the Klosterbrot in question is whiter, smoother, finer in appearance than the crumb on the loaf in your picture.

Yes I know about King Arthur and have their catalog.  Actually I wast talking with them yesterday and they have no idea where to get whey.  My guess is at a health food place.

Many thanks.

sphealey's picture

> they have no idea where to get whey

Apparently bodybuilders eat whey under the theory that it is beneficial to muscles. So I would say your guess is correct and that a GNC-type store would have it, although knowing a bit about those stores I would read the ingredients very carefully.

The other possibility would be a local heritage dairy if there are any in your area. My spouse and kids were just in Wisconsin and broght home some fresh curds from a small regional dairy; of course I had not to ask them to look for whey ;-(

I haven't had a chance to get my pictures of my Modified Hamelman 66% Rye posted, but I was able to buy a loaf of the Klosterbrot that has been discussed here and I have to say that other than the "creaminess" factor mine is better. So I think that the whey, or some milk product (I was thinking about trying yoghurt), is a key ingredient.


browndog's picture

CountryBoy, I can buy whey powder at the food co-ops around here, it's usually cheaper than milk powder.

noa's picture

Whenever I have fresh whey - the "water" leftover when draining yogurt - I use it in bread, especially rye. Just substitute about a third of the liquid in the recipe for whey.

ostwestwin's picture

They may have a reason, but I don't think it's worth to discuss. Whey is the "waste" you get making cheese. So they enrich their bread with some proteins, but it's not necessary for the taste like niacin, reduced iron, thiamin mononitrate, ribolavin, folic acid.

And yes, there are differences in rye flours. You have dark, medium, light and whole rye flour. It's not clear which they used: you could say the darker the rye the denser and darker the bread.

And I am a hobby baker so you can't compare an industrial bread with mine. The Americans are not so strict with their labeling. E.g. in Germany pumpernickel does not contain molasses or something like that. Perhaps your Klosterbrot is not a rye mixed bread it could also be a wheat mixed bread like this.

Mixed breads are very common in Northern Germany: I baked

Contry bread, the crumb isn't perfect :-)

rye mixed bread 80 % rye

wheat mixed bread 48 % rye

wheat mixed bread 25 % rye

rye mixed bread 80 % rye

All with different kinds of wheat flour and rye flours. In Germany the bakers must give the information about the rye and wheat content. I wouldn't have to guess.



noa's picture

I think whey gives you the advantages of cultured liquid, like those of buttermilk or yogurt, without the milkiness.

ostwestwin - gorgeous bread!

CountryBoy's picture

When I chatted with KA about whey, they said that it is used to extend and give flexibility to the gluten, so, maybe that is another way of saying the whey helps to provide the creaminess in the crumb that I mentioned.

Also with the Klosterbrot loaf there is a thin but very chewy crust which I believe is somewhat unique. Many pics on this forum seem to achieve crusts using different techniques but more often than not the crusts are somewhat thick by comparison.

sPh did you find the crust to be thick or on the thin side of the Klosterbrot that you bought?

sphealey's picture

> did you find the crust to be thick or on the thin side of

> the Klosterbrot that you bought?

The crust on the Dimpflmeier Klosterbrot I purchased was fairly thin and chewy. The issue there is that it is wrapped in plastic and I have no idea how long the chain is from Toronto to my local import store; I assume the loaf was at least 5 days old when I bought it and possibly older. Although it did last in the same state for 3 more days before I ate it all, so it seems fairly long-lived.


CountryBoy's picture

I think sPh's evaluation of his own bread raises a good point and that is that he knows what he likes and with the exception of the 'creaminess' he prefers his own bread over the Dimpflmeier Klosterbrot .

 I think that says it very well.  Everyone has their own preferences and in fact that is why many of us probably enjoy baking our own bread.  However, for me the Dimpflmeier Klosterbrot is what suits my own particular tastes and it is for that reason that I am trying to duplicate it.  I don't think I am alone however in my tastes since the Dimpflmeier Klosterbrot is one of its most popular products.

So hopefully people reading this thread are not reading it as a thread on what The Bread Loaf should be but rather a thread on A Bread Loaf that appeals to certain palettes.