The Fresh Loaf

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Rye-Einkorn Bread (two sourdoughs, and one AYW)

codruta's picture

Rye-Einkorn Bread (two sourdoughs, and one AYW)

Recently, I bought a flour with a confusing romanian name "alac". The seller told me that is spelt, or something similar with spelt.  It was a very expensive bag of flour and I decided to use it with care. After the first bake, I was surprised by the flavor: I never felt such a deep wheaty nutty strong flavor in breads made with spelt. I thought is pure luck to find such a good flour, or maybe just an impression. I made another loaf, with AYW, using same flour, in the same ratio as before (60% "alac" flour, 10% rye flour and 30% white flour). The same wonderful result: deep rich wheaty taste, with a vague hint of bitterness. All this time I was convince I'm using spelt flour. I made a third bake, with sourdough, roasted fennel seeds and anise seeds (inspired by Hanseata and her post linked here) - this loaves were the best I've ever tasted. After that, I decided it's time to find out more about "alac" and, surprisingly, I found out that "alac" is not Spelt, but Einkorn. So... I used Einkorn flour all this time without even knowing it. That made me sad, somehow. I went back at the shop, and I bought another bag. That made me happy again.

back to bread

For the last bake, I used this formula:

Overall Formula:
- Italian white flour type "0", bio (corresponding to French T65, if I'm correct): 185 g ……………………………… 28.5%
- Einkorn Flour: 400 g ………………………………… 61.5%
- Rye Flour: 65 g ………………………………. 10%
- Water*: 495 g ………………………………………………………….. 76.1%
- Fennel seeds, roasted and crushed: 5 g ……………….. 0.77%
- Anise seeds, roasted and crushed: 2 g ……………….. 0.3%
- Salt: 13 g ……………………………………………………………… 2%
dough: 1165 g ………………………………………………. 179.2%
*I used 80g water in the levain, and 415g the water in which I boilled some beet roots, that's why the red-orangish colour.The stiff levain was build in two builds:
first build:
- White flour: 35 g
- Water: 35 g
- Sourdough (100%): 10 g

second build:
- White flour: 30 g
- Rye Flour: 40 g
- Water: 40 g
- Levain from first build: 80 g
results 190 g stiff levain 72.7%For the final dough:
- Italian white flour type "0", bio: 115 g
- Einkorn Flour: 400 g
- Rye Flour: 25 g
- Water: 415 g * see the note
- Stiff levain: 190 g
- Fennel seeds, roasted and crushed: 5 g
- Anise seeds, roasted and crushed: 2 g
- Salt: 13 g

I let the dough autolyse for 40 minutes (just water and flour, without levain and salt), Than I added the levain and the salt, I knead by hand using folds in the bowl technique and in the end I added the roasted seeds, and knead again, a few folds. The dough temperature was 24-25C. I transfered the dough in a oiled container, did 2 S-F at 50 minutes interval, for a total fermenattion time of 2h:30min. I divided the dough, shaped it and let it proof 1h:40 min, then I baked it on a baking stone, with steam for the first 15 min.

When I shaped the batard I used Khalid technique, illustrated here. I like it.

Batard: While I transfered the dough from the linen to the parchement paper, and while I scored it, I was talking on the phone. I wasn't paying attention to what I'm doing, and the batard sticked a bit to the transfer board. That's why is a little asymmetrical and the scoring is not perfect.

Round loaf: I proofed it with seams side down, hoping for a nice pattern to form while baking. Instead, I got a dome with no cracks. I have to practice more.

Here are the photos:


The bread I made before with AYW was 60% Einkorn Flour, 10% Rye Flour, 30% White Flour, 73% Hydration (2/3 yeast water, 1/3 water) and here are two pictures:


The first try with this flour was a sourdough bread. I didn't used seeds, but I used rolled germinated ryes. 60% Einkorn Flour, 10% Rye Flour, 30% White Flour, 10% rolled germinated rye, 80% Hydration, 16% prefermented flour. Photos attached below:

I never wrote a text so long in english. I hope my text is readable and comprehensible, and please correct me if some words are wrongly used.

If you'd like, you can check my romanian blog, Apa.Faina.Sare.




Mebake's picture

Absolutely great loaves , corduta! Lovely crumb on the sourdough version!!

What was the flavor difference between the SD version and the AYW? Must be divine with some butter! I havn't tried einkorn yet. How is the water absorbancy of the flour?

Your photography makes your bread look even better.

codruta's picture

Khalid, thank you. Your technique for the batard is really good.

From my experience, I can tell einkorn flour absorbs a lot of water. In this last bread I started in mind with 71% hydration and I ended added water till it reach 76%. I think I could have added even more, but that I have to try another time.

The AYW had a denser crumb, and I think the grainy-somehow-bitter flavor (bitter is not exactly the right word. strong wheaty flavor) is was more pronounced. It had a straight taste: simple, clean. Divine with butter, indeed.

The sourdough version, on the other hand, was milder, complex, rich, no bitter at all, maybe the water from root beets had something to do with it, or was the levain that did the trick? I'm not sure. The seeds are also very aromatic, and they pair well with einkorn (or spelt, too) and rye. I liked the SD better, but only because I can be picky and compare the two of them. But the AYW bread was very good, too.


lumos's picture

Another beauty, Codruta!

When I saw the first group of 4 pictures, I thought you used AYW because the crumb was so open, but really impressed when I knew it was sourdough based.  It's really wonderful!

Never even heard of Einkorn, to be honest. Not sure if it's available in UK, at all.  Pity.....

But still, your beautiful photos and lovely write-up was a treat for the eyes! Thank you.


codruta's picture

Lumos, you're always so nice to me. thank you for your comments.

Einkorn is available in UK, if you want to try it, I saw it on Doves Farm site. Here is the link 

I don't know who produce the flour I bought here (I know it is imported and packaged locally), but I paid for 1kg the equivalent of 3.5£, which makes it the most expensive flour I've ever bought. I hope my boyfriend won't read this. :)


lumos's picture

hehe, it's a bit embarassing to be given a link to UK site by someone who lives outside UK. :p

Thanks, Codruta.  Really glad to know it's available in UK. (the link above doesn't seem to work, maybe because of a dot at the end. Click here for the link.)

Did you find any difference in how Einkorn behaves compared to other wholegrain flour, like wholewheat or spelt, like gluten development, etc.?  If it's not too difficult flour to deal with, I might try it after I used up my stock of spelt flour.


codruta's picture

Sorry about the dot. I can't re-edit my own comment to make the correction, I wonder why? Your link works fine, thank you.

I liked working with it. Unexpectedly easy. I thought it would be stickier, but it wasn't. It's a long time since I worked with spelt flour, so I can't take that memory as a refference. But I had whole wheat doughs with the same hydration that gave me a lot of trouble. Compared to those, this one was a real pleasure to work with. I think the dough had the right temperature, and the fermentation time was good.

Try it, I hope you'll like it as much as I do.


lumos's picture

Thanks for the tip, Codruta.

Further search on einkorn told me there's even a website wholly dedicated to einkorn , though the bread recipe there is :p

You can't edit your post after someone 'replied' to it.  I found it myself hard way. :p

best wishes,




Dave W's picture
Dave W

Ive just seen this flour in my local butchers/supermarket, i'll get some and try it perhaps tomorrow.

Dave W

ananda's picture

as Andrew Whitley (2006; pp.88) describes einkorn, emmer and spelt.
Wheat became more popular as the outer husk spearates from the grain during threshing, so it is easier to harvest.

Hi Codruta,

What lovely breads, as always. That is a generous amount of einkorn in the formula, and a great final result. I guess the kamut (R) is next. I have einkorn to use up myself as well.

Very best wishes

codruta's picture

Yes Andy, Kamut (R) is on my list for the next bake. I'll leave for Venice tonight in a small vacation, to see the Biennale of Art and to celebrate my boyfriend's birthday. When I'll be back, I'll bake Kamut Bread and I'll post about it.

Thank you for your words, Codruta

nicodvb's picture

Codruta, I'm impressed by the opennes of the crumb of your last bake, it's really great. A friend of mine told me that teh taste of Einkorn reminds her of chickpeas.

codruta's picture

Thank you, Nico.

I can't tell if the taste of Einkorn resembles chickpeas, I only ate chickpeas once, a long time ago.


varda's picture

Hi Codruta.   Your bread looks gorgeous as I've come to expect.    I do have to ask how you get such perfect slicing.   Do you have a bread slicer?   I know that seems like a small point, but I feel very challenged in the slicing area, so I'm quite interested.   Also I'm really impressed with your photography.   In particular the second picture above (with the slicing) seems quite special.   I try to learn how people get these great effects, but I admit that I can't really analyze what you've done here.  -Varda

codruta's picture

Varda, Thank you for your comment. Sorry for getting back at you so late, but I was in vacation.

I don't have a bread slicer, just a big knife and a good hand. :) I sliced the bread after 24 hours, when the crust was not so crisp. I usually cut very thin slices with batards, with boules is more difficult. I'm obsessed with thin slices, I inherited it from my father.

About photographies... I'm not that good... I have little knowledge, just instict.


varda's picture

Thanks for your reply.   In reading your answer, I completely understand my problems with slicing - lack of patience (in addition to unsharpened knife and lack of precision as a general characteristic.)   Welcome back from vacation.   I hope you had a great time.  -Varda

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

 The stats just made me pull it off the shelf.  Codruta, when you mentioned using it already I found myself here for the first time.  What lovely loaves!   Spectacular crumb color!

I purchased it to replace wheat bread flour in my 80% rye loaves.  Can't wait to taste the flour!  It is ground very fine, it has very very tiny dark flecks but they don't look like they're big enough to cut gluten strands.  Wonder how much of the protein is gluten?  

For 100g flour:      Protein is 15g    Fiber is 9.4g   And just look at the Vit A and Magnesium amounts!     Compare to bread & rye flour and you might understand why I'm so excited.     :)     

Update: made my favorite pancake to test flour recipe and the tast is... wow  a lovely flour!  nutty mild and holds together well.  This pancake includes no levening but it was fluffy... amazing.  Not at all like a whole wheat flour.  Lovely, just lovely!  Can't say enough about it.  More testing... :)

codruta's picture

Mini, as I told you, I have a bag of this flour in my closet ... just waiting to be used. Your enthusiasm is contagious, I must try this flour asap. :)

ps. Have you tried to discard your white starter in the batter? I do it every time I want to make crepes, and both the taste and the texture are amazing.

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

The pancake I test is a crepe,  one egg, some flour and then milk plus a pinch of salt.  I can tell how it fries up, flips and tastes much quicker than waiting for a loaf.  But I've got rye starter set up for tomorrow and I fed it a little bit of the einkorn flour.   The beasties seem happy too!   At this stage of my experimentation I judge it to be not as glutinous as bread flour.  The pancake held very nicely together to flip over and it made a tender fluffy crepe.  Taste was superb.

dabrownman's picture

is built.  Can't wait to try out a mainly spelt with light rye SD.  Your pictures of the crumb are fabulous.