The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

tough crust on hamelman's 70% detmolder rye

pasdedough's picture

tough crust on hamelman's 70% detmolder rye

Hi all,


I made the 70% detmolder rye the other week, from Bread. The taste was lovely, and it's the first time I've tried to shape such a high % rye bread rather than using a tin, but within a couple of days (it's mostly just me eating my bread around here!) the crust was very tough and I struggled to cut it at all. Now I know I need a new bread knife! But it was also thick and tough to chew and I wonder what I could do to get a thinner crust?

I shaped a boule and baked in a dutch oven. 

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Just grab a french blade or a cleaver, I'm serious.  A strong thin sharp knife cuts a high percentage rye much nicer than a toothy ol bread knife.  

Tough crust eh?  Well you could just dunk the crust in water and let it drip dry, then bag it tightly.  OR not bake it so long.  OR  dunk it right after baking or brush on some water to soften the crust.  OR rub the hot fresh baked loaf with butter before it cools off thereby trapping in some steam to soften the crust... gives nice colour too!  

pmccool's picture

but brushing boiling water on a rye bread having a thick, hard crust immediately after it comes out of the oven will help to soften the crust.  Once it is cool, store in plastic to encourage further softening.

For this round, Mini's advice covers everything that I might think to suggest.


pasdedough's picture

thanks for advice! 

I need to sharpen all the knives actually...

I'll try brushing with water if it comes out looking thick again next time.