The Fresh Loaf

A Community of Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts.

Eric's Favorite Rye - this one is for you my dear friend ...

txfarmer's picture

Eric's Favorite Rye - this one is for you my dear friend ...

Sending this to Yeastspotting.

Click here for my blog index.

A couple of years ago, after having posted quite a few blogs on thefreshloaf, I got a private message from a TFL member I never conversed with. His name was Eric, and he wanted to teach me how to improve my photography. Now, this message could've come off as insulting or arrogant, but not when it's from Eric. Eric's sense of generosity, enthusiasm, sincerity, and kindness shines through across virtual world to reach me, who in fact desperately needed exactly that: photograpy 101. (Do you know he actually did teach photography lessons on the side? Multi-talented that man was...)

From there on, he was a kind friend yet a strict teacher. He never shied away from telling me exactly what I was doing wrong, however, he also was always patient, kind, and encouraging. I know I can show him what I have done and hear  his honest opinion without sugar-coating. Without his lessons, I couldn't have had improved so quickly.

Truefully, he taught much more than what I could digest at the time. He knew that, yet he was never frustrated with me. He just smiled whenever a light bulb came on and I emailed him with all CAP letters yelling: NOW I KNOW WHAT YOU MEANT BY ...

Recently he has posted less, but we still exchange emails from time to time. Even though we've never met in person, but I feel he's one of my most repsected teachers and friends. Then the news came and I was in shock and disbelief. 

So, Eric, this one is for you. It's now my favorite too. RIP.

A few notes: Eric's original recipe is here. I have no First Clear Flour on hand, so I used a blend of WW and bread flour. 



ananda's picture

Hi txfarmer,

I am so pleased you have added your own version of Eric's Favourite Rye to the other tribute loaves already posted.

A gorgeous loaf, for a great guy

All good wishes


txfarmer's picture

Thanks Andy!

Mebake's picture

Eric will be pleased, and proud, I'm sure.

Txfarmer, you've baked a beautiful tribute to Eric. His sense of generosity and sincerity shows in your tribute, in addition to your skills in both baking, and photography.


txfarmer's picture

Thanks Khalid!

BobS's picture

Beautiful, txfarmer. Could you share the proportions of the WW/White blend you used to replace the First Clear in the original formula?  I've been wanting to make this bread, but haven't got any First Clear.



txfarmer's picture

Bob, I used about 20% of ww flour, 80% BF.

Floydm's picture

Very nice tribute to Eric.


txfarmer's picture

Thanks Floyd.

dabrownman's picture

is, I am sure you put a smile on his face.  Your take on Eric's Favorite Rye is so well done and photographed - he would be proud.

Nice baking for Eric.

txfarmer's picture


Franko's picture

Eric would have loved this beautiful rendition of his Favourite Rye txfarmer, and the pastrami sandwich as well! A lovely post and tribute to our buddy.

All the best,


txfarmer's picture

Thanks Franko!

varda's picture

At one point I was trying to figure out what you were doing that made your photographs so excellent.   I posted a question (where I can't remember) and Eric answered me and gave me the answers I was looking for.   He never mentioned that he had had a hand in teaching you, which I didn't know until now.   Your rye is gorgeous and so are the pictures.   Your teacher would have been proud.  -Varda

txfarmer's picture

Oh, I completely missed that conversation. Eric was always so humble.

FlourChild's picture

Gorgeous bread and a hearfelt and moving tribute.

Isand66's picture

What a beautiful tribute and bread.  Eric will be missed but his legacy will live on with all the people he has touched.

I just baked a rye myself that was inspired by his original recipe that I hope to post this week.