The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Jewish Rye re-visited

ehanner's picture

Jewish Rye re-visited

I had promised to bring 4 loaves of Jewish Rye to a 4th of July party this weekend so I dusted off my Favorite Rye recipe. I've been thinking about Norm the last few days and thought I remembered he had made some suggestions on Deli Style NY Rye. After digging around I found his suggestion for a max 40% rye sour component and a warmer oven than I usually use for this.

The bottom line is I made a last minute change and cut my sour to 40% of the dough flour weight and kicked up the temp to 410F. Usually I use about 60% sour. The finished loaves didn't blow up as much as usual so they look better. I still got a nice rise and good color and they smell great. I won't see the crumb for a few hours but everything looks good so far. I did have one loaf blow out in the center that I don't know how to deal with. I stopped slashing these since it didn't seem to help. I gave them a light wash of corn starch in the middle of baking and again at the end with a sprinkle of Kosher Salt as you can see.

One other change. Norm suggested using light rye which I did with these. Normally I use whole rye. The light rye seems more refined and the dough was smoother. Over all the changes I think make this a better bread. We'll have to wait for the corned beef to know for sure!

EricNY Rye-revisitedNY Jewish Rye-revisited

Janedo's picture

Looks yummy. I have never made this kind of bread... just a cultural thing, I guess. But I will try one of these days. I think it is a bread definitely worth meeting.


ehanner's picture

I grew up thinking that all rye bread had caraway in it. Not until a year ago or so when I made my first loaf of 100% rye did I understand how wrong I was. If you haven't explored rye yet you are in for a surprise. The Germans have found many ways to use rye grains that are both unusual and delicious.

In the states, a good Jewish Deli always has a deli style rye to make a corned beef or pastrami sandwich. Usually that means a caraway spiced light rye loaf. The Rye component is usually around 25-40%. At least that's my experience growing up in the midwest and flying all over the US. It's totally different than any other bread I've ever tasted.

The 100% rye sometimes called corn bread is amazing. The deep flavors that come out are unlike anything else. There are a few members here who are good corned rye bakers and I'm not one of them sorry to say. Dsnyder is one of the more adept rye bakers here and offered this a while back. 

Give it a try and be amazed.

weavershouse's picture

Great looking rye. Wish I was going to the party to get a taste. Let us know and I hope you get to sneak a picture of the interior. So this is your "Eric's Favorite Rye" is that correct? I know it would be trouble but I'd love to see the recipe written out as you did it this time. I'm % illiterate. If it's too much bother I'll just guess.

Great job. weavershouse

ehanner's picture

When I looked at the original post I see you commented on it so you may have a copy of it before I corrected it yesterday.

For anyone interested in the original post here, Susan from San Diego baked this better than I have ever been able to do it myself and here is the link to her documentation.

The bread I baked yesterday was changed slightly in that I used Light Rye from KA to feed and build my whole rye starter and I used First Clear flour also from KA. In addition I lowered the percentage of sour build to 40% of the weight of the First Clear flour and I raised the oven temp to 410F.

So, I only used 315 grams of the sour sponge instead of the 650 grams called for originally. Norm said that NY style Jewish Rye usually has only 40% sour. If I understood him correctly this would be the result.  I'm hoping he will see this soon and comment on my sour use and hopefully how I can make my breads look like Susan's.

The result was very very nice deli style rye. The caterer who was told to not bring bread for the event was happy and asked if I would work with him to develop his rye. The guests enjoyed the corned beef and pastrami sandwiches until it was gone. The crumb was quite a bit lighter in color than my usual rye breads because I used light rye flour. The loaves were smaller since I didn't use all the sponge which works out better for me and my pan sizes. I mixed a double batch in my DLX, divided the dough in half and set one half in the fridge for an hour while the other was fermenting. That way I didn't have half the batch over proofed at the end. The timing worked out perfectly.

The baking time in the original recipe is way to long for 410F. I checked and was at or over 200F after 30 minutes. I did brush a thin coat of cornstarch glaze at the midway point and again at the end on the stove top followed by a sprinkling of Kosher Salt. The salt is an option that my family likes but I'm not sure it is standard.

Hope this helps.


weavershouse's picture

Thanks so much for the reply. I do have the original recipe and now you've updated it for me. I really appreciate it and I hope to be making it soon. I'm glad everyone enjoyed it...I knew they would.


Thanks again.                  weavershouse

rainbowbrown's picture

These loaves look wonderful. I'm so used to making German style ryes that the idea of doing Jewish style ryes rarely comes to me. I must, really. I'm going to do a search here for some more tips, and see if I can find your "favorite rye" formula.

dmsnyder's picture

And it sounds as if they were well received!

The differences between Norm's recipe and Greenstein's are minor. They both allow discretion regarding the proportions of sour to wheat flour. I've made both, and the results are essentially identical.

The essential ingredients to produce either bread are 1) a white rye sour that contributes all the rye flour to the dough (unless the optional altus is used), 2) First Clear flour (or another high-extraction four), 3) Caraway seeds, 4) yeast, salt and water. Glazing the loaves with cornstarch is recommended.

It's easy enough to convert a wheat or mixed-flour starter to a white rye sour with 2-3 feedings. I always build my rye sour with 3 feedings over about 36 hours before mixing the dough anyway.

I have had lots of loaves burst. My sense is that the best way to avoid this is to fully proof the loaves before baking.