Sunday, October 5, 2008

Rye Victory Finished

Bread out of the oven!
Bottom crust looks great,
and tapping it produces a hollow sound:

Top crust doesn't look quite so great
(next time I will preheat the lid along with the rest of the pot
and also sprinkle some oats on top,
and forget the slashing idea):

We cut into it before the 1 hour post-oven rest time was up,
because we wanted it for lunch,
so the crumb was a bit gluey.
However, it was fairly tasty.
A bit salty, though.

The whole point of all this experimenting is to come up with a bread that is a reasonably close tasting approximation of medieval peasant bread.
Hence rye not wheat, and if wheat, whole wheat not white.
Also hence the sourdough,
as commercial 'sweet' yeast was not really a possibility.
(If I were really gung-ho I would try to acquire some brewer's yeast
but sourdough should be a reasonable acceptable alternative).

This is a good-tasting workable recipe, but it is much nicer bread than what medieval peasants got.
For one thing, the flour is way too fine.
I am going to try the recipe again with half cracked-rye
(using my Mom's hand mill that she uses to make cracked wheat)
substituted for half of the flour.
Then once I get some feel for how rye breads work,
I will branch out back into sourdough attempts.

I have to say that I would probably get on better if I weighed my ingredients
instead of measuring them by cups and so on.
However, I don't feel comfortable with that kind of baking.
And I haven't found a good kitchen scale yet.

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