The Bread of the Month (BOM) for the Artisan Bread Bakers is Sourdough Rye with Raisins and Cranberries.
David, the host for the Artisan Bread Bakers for September, described the bread as, “… a wonderful bread for this time of year, delightful on its own, with a pleasant chew, a tender crumb and a nice crust! You will find it rather joyful!”
Unfortunately, the first time I made this bread, the experience wasn’t very joyful. It was a flop! The dough fermented too long, the loaf didn’t rise very well in the oven and the inside was gummy (see photo below). Needless to say, I was pretty bummed about it. I had decided to move on, but it kept beckoning me to give it another chance.
I waited a couple of weeks and tried it again after I got my new kitchen floor. This time, the loaf came out singing and so did I. I took a peek in the oven while it was baking. It was rising beautifully so I did a little gig and said, “That’s what I’m talking about!”
The issue with the first loaf was mostly due to timing. I was trying to get things ready before I got my new flooring installed. I was baking in between moving things out of the way. I ran out of time so I let the dough ferment in the refrigerator twice. It didn’t take too kindly to that. I also think my rye sourdough was a bit lazy, but that was not it’s fault.
I gave it some motivation the second time around by adding a little instant yeast. I wanted to make the bread without the added yeast, but this loaf performed better with a little help from a friend – the yeast.
I had a ball baking this bread on my new kitchen floor. Well, I didn’t bake it on the floor, but I stood on the floor and danced around while I was preparing the bread. All the rooms downstairs have bamboo flooring now so I have a huge dance floor to practice on. I’m loving it!
Sourdough Rye with Cranberries & Walnuts
Makes: 1 loaf
I ran out of raisins, so for my second attempt at making this bread, I only used dried cranberries. I really like the flavor with just the cranberries and the walnuts.
- 4.8 oz whole rye flour
- 3.85 oz water
- 1 tablespoon mature rye sourdough culture
- 2 oz dried cranberries
- Enough warm water to cover
- All the build
- 10.4 oz bread flour
- 0.8 oz rye flour
- 7 oz water
- 0.3 oz salt
- 1 teaspoon yeast
- All of soaker
- 1.4 oz (1/3 cup) Walnuts, toasted (or not)
1. Prepare the build 14-16 hours prior to baking.
2. Prepare the soaker 30 minutes before mixing the dough.
After about twenty minutes, drain the soaker. Save the water to use in the bread for extra flavor. Just subtract the amount of soaker water from the total water to get a total of 7 ounces.
3. Combine the build and water in the mixing bowl and stir for about twenty seconds. Isn’t the water a pretty color!
4. Add the flour, salt, yeast, and mix on first speed for three minutes and then on second speed for two minutes. Add the drained soaker and mix on first speed until combined.
5. Let the dough bulk ferment for one hour.
6. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. with a baking stone on the middle rack and a steam pan underneath.
Shape the dough into a round or batard and proof for forty five minutes or until ready to bake, depending on the room temperature. I shaped my loaf into a batard and placed it on parchment paper sprinkled with cornmeal to proof. The batard shape is one of my favorites.
7. Score the batard down the middle using a lame or serrated knife. If you’re making a round loaf, score it in the pattern of your choice.
8. Slide the loaf (on the parchment paper) onto the preheated baking stone and fill the steam pan with 1 cup of hot water. Spritz the oven with water several times at 30 second intervals to create steam. Bake the loaf at 450 degrees for 15 minutes. Remove the parchment paper, rotate the loaf, and reduce the oven to 425 degrees. Continue baking until the loaf is done, about 20-30 more minutes.
9. Cool the loaf on a wire rack.
10. Slice and enjoy!
No gumminess here. Just a beautiful and delicious loaf that tastes great with almond butter or regular butter.