The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Westphalian Pumpernickel

Weizenbrot's picture
Weizenbrot

Westphalian Pumpernickel

I saw a recipe in Stanley Ginsberg's book The Rye Baker for a bread consisting only of water, salt, and rye meal (no leavening). The loaf is baked in a 220° F./105° C. oven for 24 hours.

I'm tempted to make this. If anyone has tried a similar recipe I'd like to hear about how it went.

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

that has been making this exact bread sinc 1537.  Just go to youtube and search for westphalian rye.  I made it not long ago and made the only non edible brick in 45 years:-)  It was horrible but this bakery has made  a businees out of it for nearly 500 years:-)  Just shows what experience really means in baking.

This recipe, with no leaven,  is spposedly the original Westphalian Pupernickel Recipe.

http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/44576/westphalian-pumpernickel-%E2%80%93-1537

 

Elagins's picture
Elagins

Scalding for 18 hours really hydrates the rye meal, and sealing the pan directs most of the moisture (in the form of steam) into the grain, gelatinizing the starches and keeping the loaf near the amylase activity sweet spot of 150F/65C for a good part of the bake time. Finally, wrapping the cooled loaf and letting it rest for at least 48 hours allows the moisture to redistribute through the crumb while the flavors set and the gelatinized starches continue firming and integrating. Yes, the loaf is dense, but it certainly isn't a brick when it's done right.

Stan Ginsberg
www.theryebaker.com

Ricko's picture
Ricko

on your process, and sorry to hear your attempt turned out "horrible"! Have you tried since this attempt to perfect the loaf? When you placed the dough in the Pullman pan, did you replace the Pullman pan cover also, and then add a layer of foil over the pan cover? As for placing the Pullman pan into a larger pan pot containing 1/2" of water covered with foil, do you still recommend this? This is above and beyond what Stan suggests in his book. Since your first "horrible" result, is there anything else you've done to prevent the results from becoming a non edible brick? Thanks dabrownman for your insight, I'll try to avoid the same pitfalls! Regards 

SCruz's picture
SCruz

Did you try again? I tried twice. The result both times was like concrete.

 

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

   

Just click the weird link above.

Weizenbrot's picture
Weizenbrot

I saw the video the other day in Gerhard's post. I may give this a try one winter day when I don't feel like leaving the house.

Cicadalady's picture
Cicadalady

I made this one last weekend.  Found out that my electric oven automatically shuts itself off after 18 hours - but no harm done, The bread came out uniformly black coffee-colored.  After 24 hours the crust was still quite tough and a bit crunchy.  After 96 hours it slices like young Parmesan cheese (no crumbling) with a very sharp, thin knife.  Crust and center are consistent texture.  Wonderful flavor!  Very sweet, as if molasses had been added. But next time I'll up the salt some :-)

lenb's picture
lenb

Did you keep it in plastic for 96 hours?  Mine  crumbles when I slice it even with 1/2 inch slices.  I'll try to stop nibbling and let it age.  Does the consistency of crust and center texture improve as well?  After the suggested 48 hour of aging, my crust and center differ significantly.  Couldn't agree more about the flavor, wonderful.

 

 

lenb's picture
lenb

I put mine (also from The Rye Baker) back in plastic - it's now about 10 days old.  Keeps getting tastier.  The sweetness is uncanny.   The suggestion to not cut before 24 hours was clearly a minimum. 

My question is: What's the max, unfrozen.  I'd like to bake a few next time and age and freeze one or two.  Anyone know with how long I can/should keep it in plastic?  I'm a bit concerned about mold.  I see no sign that it is drying out. 

Thanks & happy baking.

Len

ootermind's picture
ootermind

Hi!  Just cut into my attempt at doing this bread and as Cicadalady posted above, while the taste was amazing, it was impossible to cut into slices as it would just crumble away!  I did let it rest for 49 hours wrapped in plastic (cling wrap) - I wonder if now that it is out of the plastic the humidity will be able to escape, therefore drying the loaf a bit so that it is less crumbly.  Could that be the case?  Or is it just a matter of better packing when you put it into the pan?  Smell and taste are killer - super sweet (almost like raisins!) and the texture is not bad for eating, just impossible to cut.  

ootermind's picture
ootermind

For anyone that might have the same problem, got a Reply from Stanley Ginsberg on my instagram saying that next time he recommends I use 50% coarse and 50% medium rye instead.