Thursday, November 28, 2013

Roggen Sauerteigbrot mit goldenen Leinsamen

I have baked sourdough rye flax seed breads in the past, but I have never baked one as tasty as this. Replacing medium rye flour with whole rye flour and increasing the percentage of bread flour to compensate for the use of whole rye flour in this bread make a noticeable difference in the texture of the crumb and flavor of this bread. I used golden flax seeds in this bread, which make the seeds seem more hidden from the eye, while still providing that amazing toasted nutty flavor. Flax seeds also provide an almost healthy taste, but in only a good way. Not in a over cooked tofu sort of way but rather in an earthy and wholesome way. 

40% of the flour in this bread is prefermented in the rye sourdough build, all of which comes from whole rye flour. The build is hydrated at 80%. I am finding that the rye breads that I love most are hydrated at 80, 83-84, or 100 percent. This recipe initially called for 60% medium rye flour and 40% bread flour, but I prepared this bread with 50% rye flour and 50% bread flour. This change of only 4% made a huge difference in this final texture of this bread. It is amazing how only a 10% change in the flour ratio can affect the final product. I found that the reduction in the overall percentage of the rye flour allowed the the flax seeds to play a larger roll in this bread. Typically, I prefer breads where the rye flour is the main contribution of flavor, but it is nice every once in a while to bake a different kind of bread. A lighter or softer bread. I think sometime I make this bread I am going to try prefermenting all of the rye flour into the build, and then adjusting the hydration of the final mix, to maintain the same overall hydration (75%), which works perfectly for this particular bread. 

I know that many bakers include the flax seeds and the additional water needed to soak them in with the sourdough build, but I like to keep them separate. I like the rye flour is not infused with the flax flavor but rather they are two separate components. It also always amazing to me, how much water the flax seeds can absorb, as you can see from this picture, of the dough right before the mix. This bread has a ton of seeds, but it still is not over powering, the rye flavor is still very present. In general, soakers such as this flax seed soaker also help to improve the breads keeping quality, because rather than having free water in the dough, the water is contained by the seeds; it is bound. 

The mixing is simple three minutes on first speed, three minutes on second speed. Moderate gluten development from the bread flour. It ferments for 50 minutes. Proofs for 50 minutes and bakes for 40-50 minutes. A really simple bread to make as long as you put ample time in to the sourdough build and obey the proper temperature requirements. 

I once again utilized my brotforms for this traditional german bread. I also want to mention that I am going to be making authentic pumpernickel bread with Alex next week and I will be using this bread in the "Olde Bread Soaker", which will contribute a nice rye flavor. This is a great sandwich bread, its a great bread for toast, jam, butter. Its a great bread for pretty much anything. 

Monday, November 25, 2013

Sourdough Rye with Walnuts, with two stage build

I have made this bread at least four times in the past but I have yet to be totally pleased with the results. Fifth times a charm....This is the first time that i baked this bread with a three stage rye sourdough build. The 3-stage process really adds quite a bit of hearty sour flavor and allows the baker to do without adding commercial yeast. I actually forgot to feed the build before I left for work, but Kelly was there to save the day! I called her from work and gave here detailed instruction on what needed to be done. Kelly was Great. (And she still is.) She did exactly what had to be done and her efforts ensured that I would be able to bake that evening. 

This bread incorporates 50% of its flour weight from whole rye and 20% of its weight from walnuts, which I roughly chop and toast for the wonderful flavor and color that it contributes. It gives an almost purple/lavender hue to the crumb. It's pretty cool. Most important, the toasting adds a meaty nutty flavor to the bread. I like to use medium to large pieces so that you really get to chew the nuts when you bite into this bread. Another interesting thing about this bread is that when you toast it, the nuts brown and create another layer of flavor when you actually eat the bread. 

I have to be honest, this sourdough is actually only a two stage build, but because I failed to feed it properly during the second feeding, I decided to feed it twice as much as I normally would have and it did still have a nice sourness and tang.

30 percent of the flour (and 60% of the rye flour) is pre-fermented in this bread, which accounts for good acidity and rye flavor. This bread comes together very easily once the sourdough is built. All of the ingredients get added to the bowl except for the nuts. (Speaking of the nuts, most recipes tell you to toast the nuts and let them cool. I prefer using warm nuts in my breads. I think it add to the flavor infusion during the bulk fermentation phase). The nuts are added after the dough has mixed for three minutes on first speed and three minutes on second speed. The bread is then mixed for 30-45 seconds just to ensure that the walnuts are placed evenly throughout the dough. The bread is then given 90 minutes to bulk ferment (if yeast is used only 50 minutes) and then another hour once the breads are shaped.

The bread is then baked at 460 degrees for 15 minutes. Then the temperature is reduced to 440 degrees until the bread is done which is about 30 minutes depending on the size of the boules or batards. I once again proofed these in brotforms for the signature dough rings, but I am going to try to use my couches now that I have some stencils. 

Bake On!
-DW, The Rye King

Friday, November 22, 2013

Unfaithful Servant

Could not have said it better myself..... Here is to one of my favorite songs by my favorite band! To say anymore would be a crime

Unfaithful Servant

Bake on!

Thursday, November 14, 2013

65% Three Stage Sourdough Rye Bread

One of the best breads I have had in a very long time! I love these long process breads! 

This is Jeffrey Hamelman's Three Stage, 70% Sourdough Rye Bread with a few minor changes. First of all, this recipe calls for medium rye flour, so I replaced 50g of the medium rye flour with bread flour to compensate for the fact that I used whole rye in this bread. Also, instead of using Jeffrey Hamelman's method for a three stage starter, I used an approach taught to me by Karin Anderson, a fellow blogger and bread baker located in the state of Maine. Other than those two changes, the bread is made exactly the same way that Hamelman writes about. 

The starter is made in a new style. 50 grams of starter is combined with 100 grams of whole rye flour and 100g of water and is then allowed to sit covered at room temperature for 6-8 hours. The build is then fed 100 more grams of both flour and water and is then allowed to sit at room temperature for another 6-8 hours. The third stage again adds 100g flour and 100g water and this is allowed to sit again for yet another 6-8 hours. I then used all of this mix, minus only 1-2 Tbs, which I put back in with the rest of my starter in the fridge.

A lot of sourdough build in this one

I realize that if I had used Hamelman's method, much less of the actual starter would have been used in the build. This probably accounts for this bread being particularly sour, even after a 24 hour rest. All in all, I think that it is the three stage build that has provided more depth in acidity to this bread. 

The mix is actually quite simple once you have the starter completely built. Place all of the ingredients in the mixing bowl and mix on first speed for 4 minutes and then on second speed for an additional 1 to 2 minutes. This bread is made without yeast, but still requires one hour to ferment and one hour to proof. Hammelman suggests docking this loaf with a dough docker, but I just scored it like I normally do. This scoring created a bread with a rather funky new slash pattern.

This bread is baked at 490 degrees for ten minutes. Then, the oven is reduced to 410 to finish baking for about 30 additional minutes, or until the bread is fully cooked. It is very important that this bread be given a full 24-36 hours to rest. This rest allows the crumb to settle and lets the bread come to completion. Do this, and you will have a bread that will be absolutely awesome! 

The consistency after the mix

My first bite of this bread keeps me wanting more. It is pleasantly chewy and pleasantly acidic. I am very fond of this three stage technique and believe that I can easily adapt it to most of my rye breads. This is another bread that I will be baking again in the future.

The final product (repeat picture)

 Bake On
-The Rye King

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Light Caraway Rye

This is the third rye bread from Hamelman's Rye chapter, and to be honest, it is leaving me with one last request: "MORE RYE". This is traditional New York Jewish Style Rye, but it is leaving me asking for more! I want More sourness, More chewiness, even More caraway. I am partial to the heavy breads, partly because I love to chew, and partly because I am very health-focused. This bread really does not do much for me, but I will post on it just the same.

I have to be honest here. I am struggling with the idea that I have to talk to you about a mediocre bread. Well, here goes: The sourdough build is rather small. This bread contains only 15% of final flour weight and contains all of the rye flour. This formula actually calls for medium rye, but states that whole rye can be used for a more intense rye flavor. Well, that is what I did. However, I still feel that there is not enough rye flavor. This might be because I could only allow the build to mingle for 11 hours because I totally forgot to prepare the build the night before. Luckily it was day we turned the clocks back, so it gave me an extra hour.  It probably helped a little, but not enough.

The dough seemed like it had a little too much yeast. This is a lighter bread, and I do not bake light breads very often. My next project will incorporate breads with larger preferments and lighter loaves. This is something that I have not done recently, and it will be a good opportunity to push myself out of my comfort zone. 

Anyways, this bread rises for one hour, is then shaped oblong, and is proofed for fifty minutes. It is then baked with steam for twenty minutes at 440 the finished at 420 for about an additional twenty minutes. The results, as I mentioned above, were less than remarkable. That being said, I made it in my oven so I am sharing it with all of you.

We will have better luck on our next bread, which actually is a special request from my friend Uriya for his bread class. He has been raving to his chef about my bread and want his classmates to see that you CAN make artisan bread in the home oven!

Bake On
-DW, The Rye King

Friday, November 8, 2013

Three Cheers For Kelly Flanagan

Hip Hip Hurray!......Hip Hip Hurray.......
Hip Hip Hurray!!!

I am absolutely ecstatic to announce the my partner and the love of my life Kelly Flanagan has passed her social work boards, we are so so proud of you! I never doubted you for a single second! 

You are fun

and loved




And a strong woman!!

And I just want to let the whole world know how truly lucky I am to be your man!

Love you, David A. Wolfe

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Introducing Jack Straw

I am excited to announce the arrival of our newest team member, Jack Straw (my new liquid levain starter). Jack has been inspired by Richard Miscovich's new book From the Wood Fired Oven. Richard was the man who taught me how to bake and to finally have his coveted book in my hand makes me feel that I am supporting my baking past and building on that foundation to push onward into my baking future. 

This book is filled with great recipes, and I will review it in full once I have worked my way through it. I would like to take this time to announce my next bread challenge. Baking through the breads in Richard's new book. Although I will not be sharing the recipes I will share the lessons learned and hopefully teach each and everyone of us a bit about bread, a little about life and a whole lot about love. Stay tuned as this will not start till I have chronicled all of Jeffrey Hamelman's Rye Breads. (i am a quarter of the way through at this point.)

I am proud to have spend twelve weeks under your guidance and even prouder to have your wisdom and creativity on my kitchen shelf. 

Bake On

-DW, The Rye King (but a mere squire when dwelling in your court)

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Rye Sourdough with Whole Wheat

This is the second formula in Hamelman's Rye chapter, and it happens to be a personal favorite of mine. I think that it is my favorite bread for toasting. It is especially good with cream cheese. This might be another Mickey Mouse thing, but I never spread a whole slice with cream cheese. I prefer to spread only enough cream cheese for each bite because I think it better allows for "textural differentiation". Perhaps, I am just a little quirky here, but I thought that I would share it with you.

This bread starts off with all of the rye flour in the sourdough build (always a good sign). The build is hydrated at about 85%. For this bread, it is important to use whole rye. Use the whole rye because of it has great water-absorbing properties as well as its full flavor. The build is allowed to grow for 12-16 hours, I actually let this one grow for almost 20 hours. I am able to do this because I know that my starter, Liza May, is very vigorous and can handle longer growing times, especially in the cooler months. 

This bread also gets a considerable sourness from the inclusion of wheat flour, which makes up 25% of the flour in the dough. Also, because of the use of whole wheat flour, this bread should be mixed for an extra minute on second speed. Moderately heavy rye breads are generally mixed for three minutes on second speed, but it is best to mix this one for four minutes. The mix for this bread is very simple. Place ALL ingredients in the bowl, mix on first speed for three minutes and then on second speed for four minutes. 

Remove the dough and place it to ferment at room temp for 60 minutes. The dough is then shaped into boules and then placed in floured brotforms and allowed to proof for 50 minutes. It is then baked at 460 for twenty minutes and then finished in a 440 oven for another 20-25 minutes. 

This is a pretty simple bread, so I will keep this post fairly short. Before I finish this blog entry, I would like to strongly recommend that you toast this bread to a deep brown color, and then slop chocolate hazelnut spread all over it!!

I also was able to enjoy this bread with both a hearty vegetable stew with onions, carrots, garlic, zucchini, kale and napa, as well as with a Tuscan white bean soup with kale and fresh corn! Both of these played nicely off the deep rye and wheat tones in this fantastic bread.

Happy baking and Happy eating.