Wish I could claim this bread to be my own. But sadly it belongs to Nils Schoener. Nils had a blog called, rather eccentrically, Ye Olde Breade Blogge in the mid Noughties where he used to post all of his bread formulas. These he turned into a Kindle book “Brot: Bread Notes fron a Floury German Kitchen” which is still available at £7.46, and worth every penny.
This might not be my favourite rye recipe but it’s one of them.
The starter is 100% hydration and should be refreshed 24 hours before the dough is mixed.
I have a mill attachment for my Kenwood which doesn’t mill very fine but at its smallest setting produces perfect rye meal.
Otherwise sieve the bran from wholemeal rye flour for the Rye Meal Soaker. The soaker should be made using warm water several hours before the mix.
To make the Rye Grain Soaker, boil the grain in water until it is just tender – still with a little bite. Drain and pour in the Guinness and the Sunflower Seed. Stand several hours or overnight.
Time to use your judgement! Nils calls for a dough the consistency of mashed potatoes. Drain the grain soaker. Mix all the ingredients adding the drained Guinness and enough water to obtain your idea of mashed potatoes. Let the dough stand in the mixing bowl for 30-60 minutes.
Oil a 1lb bread tin. Wet your hands well. Scoop the dough out of the bowl and squeeze it one way and the other to eliminate any air bubbles. Squeeze it to roughly the shape of the tin and drop it in, gently pushing into the corners and smoothing the surface. Cover and leave for about three hours.
It will appear to be doing nothing but, fear not, it will eventually start to rise, probably no more than an inch. Once it’s peeping over the top of the tin it’s ready.
Heat the oven to 240-250C. Bake for 15 minutes, reduce the temperature to 180C and bake for a further 45 minutes. Turn the oven off, remove the bread from the tin and return it to the cooling oven with the door slightly ajar for about 20 minutes. Cool.
When absolutely cold, wrap and leave at least overnight before cutting. Will improve day by day. The flavour will even develop in the freezer.
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