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Pumpnickel help needed!

ktgp's picture

Pumpnickel help needed!

I tried the following Pumpernickel recipe and was disappointed.  It looked nice, but was pretty bland.

Any suggestions for improvement of this recipe?  Or alternative simple pumpernickel recipes?


Rye Pumpernickel Bread Recipe

Makes 2 Loaves

2 cups warm water
1 tablespoon Saf-Instant yeast
1 cup strong coffee, at room temperature
1/4 cup barley malt extract/syrup or sorghum syrup
2 tablespoons cocoa powder or carob powder
2 teaspoons sea salt
3 cups rye pumpernickel flour
2 cups whole wheat bread flour
2 cups unbleached bread flour
About 4 tablespoons yellow cornmeal
1 egg
1/4 cup milk

In a large mixing bowl,  combine water (not over 110° F) and yeast. Let stand for 5 minutes, or until the yeast is dissolved. Stir in the coffee, barley malt, cocoa or carob powder, and sea salt. When well combined, stir in the rye and whole wheat flours and as much of the unbleached bread flour as you can work in before the dough gets too stiff to stir.  Turn out onto a lightly floured work surface and let rest for 5 minutes. Begin kneading in the remaining flour. Knead for at least 10 minutes, or until the dough starts to get sticky.

Place in a greased bowl. Cover and let rise at room temperature in a draft-free spot for about 2 hours, or until doubled in bulk.

Grease 2 baking sheets and dust each with 2 tablespoons cornmeal or enough to generously cover. Set aside.

Punch down the dough and divide it in half. Shape each half into a ball, molding the sides under and smoothing any edges together. Place 1 loaf on each baking sheet. Cover and let rise in a warm draft-free spot for about 1 hour, or until doubled in bulk.

Preheat the Oven to 350°F. Slash the top of each loaf in several places. Whisk together the egg and milk. Generously brush the top surface of each loaf with egg wash. Bake for 1 hour or until deep brown and crusty and it sounds hollow when thumped on the bottom. Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack.


dmsnyder's picture

Hi, ktgp.

There are different styles of "pumpernickel," but should be made with a rye sour (rye sourdough starter). I would pass on any recipe that does not use a rye sour.

There are recipes for pumpernickel of the Jewish-American Deli variety in Reinhart's BBA and in Greenstein's "Secrets of a Jewish Baker." There is a recipe for the German type in Hamelman's "Bread."

BTW, try searching TFL on "pumpernickel" for discussions.

Hope this helps.


suave's picture

I've never tried to make faux-pumpernickel myself, but my brother brought me a loaf from NYC.  Having tasted it I can confirm that that's how it's supposed to be - bland.