BLACK RYE BREAD
Today I wanted to show you one of the easiest home made bread recipes ever. This rye bread (rupjmaize, rudzu maize) always has been a staple of Latvian diet. Traditionally, Latvians ate whatever was available during the season – cereals, legumes and root vegetables, meat and dairy.
It is hard to make rye bread without specific ingredients, so this is the only recipe that worked and tasted just as amazing. This recipe makes one large loaf, but you can also make smaller ones if you wish. It takes time to make this recipe, but mainly due to waiting times of the dough being risen. The bread is crusty and soft inside, without proper storage I recommend you eat it within two days.
Rye and barley was available all year round thus becoming the most important source of subsistence (wheat was considered to be a delicacy). It was believed that while there was rye bread on the table, no one would go hungry. Good bread was the pride and joy of every hostess and no effort was spared when baking the bread.
Rye has been grown in Latvia for more than 1200 years, and rye bread became common more than a thousand years ago. Similarly to Scandinavian and Slavic traditions, rye bread was baked from leavened dough and it was considered to more nutritious and tastier than barley bread. In late 19th century sourdough bread gained popularity, but it was mainly baked for celebrations as it was more time consuming.
375 gr wholemeal rye flour
300 ml kefir ( you can also use buttermilk)
40 ml apple juice
2 tbs sugar
1/2 tbs salt
Instant yeast 7 gr
caraway seeds (optional)
Step 1 : Warm the buttermilk to blood warm temperature (test by putting couple drops on the inside of the wrist - it should not burn). I used a microwave and warmed it up for 30 seconds.
Step 2 : In a large bowl or your stand mixer, add all dry ingredients together and add all liquids. Mix well. The dough will become very thick. Continue by kneading the dough in the bowl or on a kitchen bench for 15 minutes. The dough will be slightly sticky.
Step 3 : Place the dough back in the bowl and flatten the dough with wet hands. Cover the bowl with a tea towel and place in a warm spot (above 25 degrees Celsius) to rise for 1-2 hours. Mine took about two hours.
Step 4 : When the dough has risen, wet your hands shape it into a loaf. Place on the pan and let it rise for 30 minutes. When dough has risen, brush the loaf with cold water all around.
Step 5: Preheat the oven to 250 C / 400 F and line a baking tray with baking paper or lightly oil the pan.
Step 6 : Place the tray in the oven and bake in 250 C / 400 F for 10 minutes, then reduce the temperature to 180 C / 350 F and bake for additional 25 minutes.
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