Sourdough Rye Bread
Author: 
 
Makes two large loaves
Ingredients
  • SPONGE:
  • 1 cup sourdough starter (approximate; if you have a little less, that's fine)
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon active-dry yeast
  • 1 cup bread flour
  • 1 cup warm water
  • BREAD:
  • Sourdough sponge
  • ¾ cup warm water
  • ½ cup very strong coffee
  • ⅓ cup molasses
  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil
  • 3 cups rye flour
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 3½ cups bread flour
  • 1 heaping tablespoon caraway seed (optional)
  • Cornmeal
Instructions
  1. SPONGE: Start this the night before. Combine sourdough starter, sugar, yeast, bread flour, and warm water in a medium bowl. Stir well, cover with plastic wrap and let it sit overnight.
  2. DOUGH: In a large bowl (a sturdy stand mixer with dough hook is recommended) combine the sponge, warm water, coffee, molasses, and cooking oil.
  3. Add rye flour and beat for 1 minute.
  4. Add salt, bread flour, and caraway seeds. Knead by machine for 5 minutes, or by hand on a floured surface for 7 to 8 minutes. Dough will be slightly sticky. If kneading with the mixer, dough should come cleanly away from the side of the bowl. If not, add more bread flour 1 tablespoon at a time. If kneading by hand, use a lightly floured surface and add a little flour at a time, just enough to make it easy to handle. A dough scraper will help.
  5. Move dough into a large greased bowl. Use slightly damp hands to form it into a ball and turn to coat the surface. Cover with a towel and let the dough rise until double. Depending on many factors this may take two to three hours.
  6. Prepare a large baking sheet by sprinkling it with cornmeal, then punch down the dough and form into two long loaves. Cover with a towel and allow to rise until double . . . 2 to 3 hours.
  7. Heat oven to 375 F.
  8. Slash across each loaf several times with a razor blade or a very sharp knife. Bake for 40 minutes, or until dark brown and the bottom sounds hollow when thumped with your knuckles.
  9. Slide loaves onto cooling rack, brush with butter if desired, and allow to cool before cutting.
Recipe by The Rowdy Baker at http://www.therowdybaker.com/?p=8148