The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Rum Soaked Cranberry Walnut Sourdough

Benito's picture

Rum Soaked Cranberry Walnut Sourdough

I made a cranberry walnut sourdough loaf sometime in the past year or so and thought that although it was good, not soaking the cranberries made them less than they could be.  So this time I decided since it is Christmas why not soak them in some fine Flor di Cana 12 year old Rum.

What follows is the formula with the double batch weights in parentheses.

For one 906 g loaf 78% hydration 

311 g white bread flour.    (622)           

46 g whole wheat flour.     (92)          

21 g dark rye flour.           (42)             

266 g warm water, then         (532)   

21 g water for mixing later       (42)  

7.5 g salt  (15)

77 g levain   (154)

2 g diastatic malt powder 0.5%  (4)


76 g (152 g) Dried Cranberries 20% soaked overnight in rum drained before use

76 g (152 g) Lightly toasted Walnuts 20%


Total final weight 906 g 


Overnight levain 1:6:6  13 g starter 78 g flour (39 g each red fife and bread flours) 78 g water  started at 8 pm 74ºF with cold water to start, rose x 3 but starting to fall at 5 am

At the same time as the levain build do a Saltolyse mixing flours, diastatic malt, salt and water except hold out water.


In the morning add levain and gradually add hold out water.  


Bulk Fermentation 1215 to 530 pm


  1. + 30 min Bench letterfold remove dough for aliquot jar
  2. + 45 mins Lamination.  Place dough on wet counter and spread out into a large rectangle. Spread walnuts and cranberries on the dough in thirds. 
  3. + 45 min Coil Fold
  4. + 30 min Coil Fold
  5. + 30 min Coil Fold

Bulk fermentation ended with aliquot jar showed 60% rise.

Shaped dough into batard and placed in bannetons.  Allow further bench rest at room temperature until aliquot jar showed 70% rise.  

Cold retard in 2ºC fridge overnight.

Preheat oven 500ºF with dutch oven in place.

When dough loaded into Dutch oven drop temperature to 450ºF and bake with lid on for 30 mins.

Remove lid and drop temperature to 420ºF and bake without lid for additional 15-20 mins watching colour of the crust, compensate if getting too dark by dropping temperature to 350ºF if needed.


Benito's picture

This bread did turn out much better than the one I made last year.  Toasting the walnuts is always a good way to really bring out their flavour and soaking the cranberries in rum made them more flavorful and enjoyable to eat.  With the weight of the inclusions I’m not surprised that I didn’t get big oven spring, that’s OK with me the flavour of the inclusions were worth it.

Merry Christmas to all the wonderful bakers on TFL.

This last bunny is so cute with its little nose.  : )

isand66's picture

Looks fantastic and I’m sure the soaked cranberries must have been a hit.

Merry Christmas and happy New Year!

Benito's picture

Thank you kindly Ian.  I hope you and your family had a fine Christmas and that we can all look forward to a much better 2021 as we leave 2020 behind.