Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Adventures with Rye Part 4: Light Rye Sourdough

Before I discuss this bread, I must first say, HAPPY BLOGOVERSARY TO ME! That's right- one year ago, on a very warm July day, I created this blog. One year and 120- something posts later, my breads and overall baking are much improved, my library has much increased, and more people want to be my friends because of all I've been turning out. Juuuust joking. Seriously though, I have loved baking, photographing, writing and posting since I've started and I hope it doesn't wind down anytime soon. Thank you for reading, whoever you are!
On to more serious bread business, we're back to my rye adventures. But this time, we have a... Sourdough! I finally got my hands on some sourdough starters, both rye and white, generously given to me by Leah. The first thing I made was this simple Light Rye Sourdough from King Arthur Flour's Whole Grain Baking. This bread was amazing. To echo their sentiments, it's quite amazing how so little sourdough starter can fuel an entire bread. I am taken aback every time. This bread performed like a champ through every step- through the rising levain, to the kneading, to the remaining risings, to the baking. The bread was very nicely tangy, you could taste the sourdough!, which I think is due to the very warm temperature that I fed the starter with. This bread looked beautiful and I must say I'm extremely proud of this loaf.

Light Sourdough Rye Bread

2 tbsp ripe rye levain
2 1/8 cups rye flour
1 cup water

All of levain
2 cups bread or all purpose flour
1 1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup waterThe evening before baking, place the levain in a container. Add the water and flour and mix to make a paste like mixture. Cover and let rise overnight. It had a pretty impressive rise.The next day, place the risen levain in a bowl.Add the remaining ingredients.Knead to make a smooth dough. Place it in a bowl and cover tightly. Let it rest for one hour.Here is my rested dough. Turn the dough out and shape into a loaf.Here is my oblong loaf, placed on a parchment lined baking sheet. Let the loaf rise no more than another hour.Here is my loaf proofed. About half an hour before the loaf is ready to be baked, preheat your oven to 450 with a baking stone inside. Prepare the oven for steam.Slash the loaf as desired. Place in the oven and steam the oven. Bake 35-40 minutes.This bread must be cool completely before you slice it or else it will be gummy due to the rye. Here is the lovely, even crumb. Enjoy with good friends!

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