NOT Hamelman's 80% Sourdough Rye with Soaker
Although it was supposed to have been...
We've had some remodeling done in our basement recently and Valentine's day weekend was when we plunged headlong into the painting of the remodeled space. (I know how to show a girl a good time, yes I do!) The ceiling, which had had the popcorn texture scraped down, required a coat of primer and a coat of ceiling paint. Because it is a basement space, there are a lot of boxed out areas in the ceiling for heat ducts, plumbing runs, etc. So, lots and lots of cutting in to do before the actual production painting could begin. The walls got a new color which, fortunately, only required a single coat to cover. All of the trim got a new coat of enamel. Oh, yeah, there was much spackling and caulking to do before any paint cans were opened.
So, in and around all of this activity, I decided to make some rye bread. What could be easier than a sourdough that is essentially set it and forget it, right? That leaves plenty of uninterrupted time for painting, with just a few breaks to tend to the bread.
Friday evening, I put together the sponge and the soaker. As I was putting the flour away before heading back to the painting, I noticed the label on the canister said "Whole Wheat". Uh-oh. It hadn't even registered that I didn't have the rye flour while making the sponge and soaker. That's no small oversight, since the color, texture, and aroma are all different than the whole wheat flour. Maybe it was the paint fumes. Maybe I was tired. Maybe I was just too distracted to have paid the requisite attention. No matter, the flour was the wrong type and, after much muttering, I decided to forge ahead by making the bread with the rye and whole wheat flours reversed.
Saturday morning came and I made up the final dough. It rose more or less as predicted in my proofer (house temperature was about 68F, which would have slowed it considerably) for both the bulk and final fermentations. Into the oven for the allotted time at the recommended temperature and then out when the internal temperature reached 205F. And this is what I had:
The scoring's nothing to write home about but the color and aroma were very attractive.
And a closer view of the crumb:
Oddly enough, the first thing I thought when I had a taste was "Rye!" Even though the rye flour is a small component, it has an outsize effect on the flavor. The soaker/scald also produced a heavier texture and moisture content that is very much in keeping with high-rye breads, even to the point of being just slightly gummy when sliced. It might have benefitted from a slightly longer bake but it has been thoroughly enjoyable to eat as is.
If all blunders came out this well, no one would ever be afraid of making a mistake.