Friday night I kept trying to decide what bread to make next. Vince wanted rye but he wanted me to try a different recipe.
I’m not sure if I love making bread or if making bread gives me the sense of accomplishment and maybe makes me feel like there’s at least one area of my life in which I am in control, as everything else seems to spin out of control. I can’t explain it but all I seem to think about is making bread.
There were some experiments I wanted to try so I figured if I made several different recipes, something should be edible.
Swedish Limpa Rye Bread:
When I recently made rye bread, a reader suggested Swedish Limpa Rye so I tried that and we both loved it. I may have found our favorite rye bread recipe. This is the recipe I used and it was great except I cannot find anywhere in the instructions where you add the caraway, fennel and anise seeds. I dumped them in with the flour and it all worked out. I didn’t have any anise seeds so I used a few drops of anise oil and have now ordered anise seeds.
Since I was using whole grain rye that I milled, I added a bit more water. You can see from the photo that the dough is a bit wet. It had a great feeling to it and I was very pleased with the dough.
It rose better than I expected considering half the flour was home milled whole wheat.
It was delicious! The texture was good. The taste was good. We used it for tun salad sandwiches to go with our leftover tomato soup last night and it was exactly what we both wanted.
Whole Wheat Sourdough:
I had been wanting to experiment with whole wheat (hard white) in sourdough. Back during the Fall, or maybe even late summer, I neglected my sourdough starter for too long and lost it. I ordered another one a few weeks ago and have been faithfully feeding it so it was ready to use.
I didn’t really have a recipe and since the sourdough doesn’t have added yeast, it isn’t very forgiving. If I had been using yeast, I would have mixed it all up, let it sit, then add more water or flour as needed and done a second or third kneading but I knew with sourdough, at that point, I would have had a hard lump of flour and water.
The dough was very sticky when I left it for the first rise but I had hoped it would absorb some of the water and tighten up, and it did a little but not enough that I was comfortable balling it up and baking it on a baking sheet or even putting it in a Dutch oven so I stuck it in a loaf pan. That would help it keep its shape!
Haven’t cut into this one yet but it looks good. I was surprised at how much it rose. I’ll report back on the taste/texture after we cut into it.
John Hamelman’s Black Bread:
I’ve mentioned on here before about the black bread I used to get at Chart House in New Orleans. I loved their bread! It’s one of those things that I remember how much I loved it but I’m not sure I remember a whole lot else about it. This is not the recipe I used but I’m going to try this recipe next. They call it “Steakhouse Black Bread” and the comments mention that it is very similar to the black bread at their favorite steak house.
The recipe I am using is Jeffrey Hamelman’s Black Bread. I don’t know why I decided to use this recipe because I’m concerned that it has 21 grams of coffee grounds. Maybe that will be ok . . maybe not.
The blue bowl is the Whole Wheat Sourdough . . not part of the black bread. That gooey looking black stuff — that’s the Slurry and it contains the coffee grounds. I’m having second thoughts! 🙁
Anyway . . I’m going to add some molasses because I know the Chart House bread had molasses. Maybe I’ll even add some cocoa powder. Heck . . since I don’t like coffee or chocolate . . what can it hurt?
The slurry and “sourdough” had to be made and sit out overnight. I actually made them about mid-day yesterday so let’s hope they’re still active enough to create a nice loaf of bread.
Soon, we’ll know if this was a good recipe for me or not. Yes, I definitely have my doubts. This doesn’t seem like nearly such a great idea as it sounded about this time yesterday! But . . it’s just bread. I bet the chickens would love it.