Rye and caraway lend to this bread's wonderful flavor, while the surprise ingredient of baking cocoa gives it a rich, dark color. I sometimes stir in a cup each of raisins and walnuts.
- 2 packages (1/4 ounce each) active dry yeast
- 1-1/2 cups warm water (110° to 115°)
- 1/2 cup molasses
- 6 tablespoons butter, softened
- 2 cups rye flour
- 1/4 cup baking cocoa
- 2 tablespoons caraway seeds
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 3-1/2 to 4 cups all-purpose flour
- In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Beat in the molasses, butter, rye flour, cocoa, caraway seeds, salt and 2 cups all-purpose flour until smooth. Stir in enough remaining all-purpose flour to form a stiff dough.
- Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1-1/2 hours.
- Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface; divide in half. Shape each piece into a loaf, about 10 in. long. Grease two baking sheets and sprinkle with cornmeal. Place loaves on prepared pans. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 1 hour.
- Bake at 350° for 35-40 minutes or until bread sounds hollow when tapped. Remove from pans to wire racks to cool. Yield: 2 loaves (12 slices each).
Originally published as Old-World Rye Bread in Best of Country Breads 2000, p46
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