Rye bread with buttermilk starter - UPDATED


Rye bread with buttermilk starter
I made this rye and spelt loaf yesterday. Hanno said it's as good as the one from the German baker.  Woohoo!

Hello dear readers.

I'm back into my bread routine although I'm not baking bread every day, which is what I used to do. Now we eat our main meal at lunchtime and we don't need bread for sandwiches. This is a dense bread if you make it with rye and spelt - very much like traditional rye bread. It will be lighter if you add white or wholemeal flour instead of the spelt. Hanno likes a slice or two of good bread in the late afternoon which he eats with cheese, ham or smoked salmon. I had a slice of this last night with cheese and chilli jam. It was delicious.

It's important to use clean hands and clean utensils for this recipe.  If you don't, you may introduce yeast or bacteria you don't want in the dough. You'll need clean bowls, measuring spoons and jugs and it's a good extra precaution to sterilise the jar you make the starter in. By using only the cleanest equipment, you'll end up with a very good dough that will bake well.

BUTTERMILK STARTER
I used a buttermilk starter dough to make this loaf and that was made by mixing one cup of rye flour with ¾ cup of buttermilk in a jar that can hold about 3 cups. Make sure you mix it well with a spoon because the starter needs oxygen. I left the open jar on the kitchen bench all day, at night I put it in the fridge. That slows down the fermentation and allows flavour to develop.  Give it a good stir each morning when you take it out of the fridge. It's ready to use when you can see it's fermenting and bubbly. It takes between two to three days here but it will depend on the temperature in your kitchen.  Please don't worry if the starter takes three or four days because the longer it takes the better the flavour will be. If, after three days, you see no activity, smell the starter and if it smells okay just add ¼ teaspoon dry yeast to the mix and stir. You should see fermentation start a few hours later.



RECIPE
1 cup spelt flour - you can use white or wholemeal if you don't have spelt
2 cups rye flour
water - enough to make the dough come together**
2 teaspoons salt - I use pink rock salt - optional*
1 tablespoon molasses or brown sugar - optional*
1 teaspoon caraway seeds - optional*
all the starter

*All the optional ingredients add a lot of flavour to the dough, use or omit depending on your taste and health requirements. I always use all of them.

Add your ingredients to a bread machine, adding about 50mls of water. Add the starter and start the machine on the dough setting.  Check the dough after about a minute and add more water, bit by bit, until the dough comes together in a sticky ball.

When the cycle is finished, place the dough on a floured board, knead for a minute or two to make sure the consistency is right. It needs to be a firm dough because it won't be baked in a bread tin. Set the dough aside in a greased bowl or a banneton covered with a clean tea towel and allow it to rise.  If you use rye and spelt it won't rise much, if you use white or wholemeal, which contain more gluten, it will rise but not as much as your normal white loaf. I baked my loaf after 60 minutes but this will depend on the temperature in your kitchen.  Don't rush it by leaving it in a warm place, take your time and allow the flavours to develop - this is slow bread. Rye is always a sticky dough, so if it sticks to your hands, you're doing it right.

Preheat your oven to 220C/430F and prepare a baking tray with baking paper.  When the dough has risen, plop the dough onto the baking tray and put it in the oven.  After 10 minutes, turn the temperature down to 190C/375F and bake for about another 20 minutes.  The loaf is ready when it smells like bread and there is a hollow sound when you tap the bottom of the loaf.

If you're looking for a healthy loaf with flavour and fibre, this is for you. I hope you try it. I'd love to hear how you go with it, so let me know.

I've changed this last paragraph because I used the wrong link.  Here is a recipe for soft rolls like a brioche roll. I'll write about the other link soon.  Happy baking everyone!  👩‍🍳🥖👨‍🍳

** this post was updated because I left out the water component.


17 comments

  1. Looks delicious. Now I'm hungry for a ham sandwich! My husband makes a lovely rye bread (he's the bread baker in our family). Does this starter work like sourdough starter and you can reserve some with the addition of more flour and keep it going?

    Hugs
    Jane

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes Jane, it does. I save a cup of dough and use it to start the next loaf. Our loaves are about three days apart now.

      Delete
  2. I am baking similar loaves too, Rhonda. The weather is changing and it's gettiing to be perfect for non-commercial starters... Your loaf looks good :) I hope you are doing well. -mrsmeagre

    ReplyDelete
  3. Buttermilk starter does sound interesting, Rhonda. I already have two sourdough starters though so am not sure about making another one to look after but I might make a one off loaf for a change from the sourdough. It does look delicious and reminds me of the bread I used to eat when I lived with some German people back in the sixties.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Chel, you can use the starter after a few hours if you wish to. Allowing it to sit over a few days increases the flavour. The benefit of this starter is that even with a few hours, it makes a tasty dough and you don't have to look after another starter.

      I hope you're well. I'll go and check your blog later. xx

      Delete
  4. Your bread looks great Rhonda and it sounds like Hanno is more than happy with it.

    Thankyou for the link too. Those rolls looks so, so soft. I will be making those very soon.

    ReplyDelete
  5. It was quite timely to read this post. I made a rye loaf with a sourdough starter yesterday. I was a bit disappointed with the level the loaf rose to. The taste was delicious and the loaf was dense. I now know that the the density and the level of rise, is because of the rye flour.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jane, rye dough doesn't rise much and the bread is supposed to be dense. If you add white flour to the rye, instead of the spelt, it will lighten it considerably and give you a fluffier loaf.

      Delete
  6. Rhonda this is fabulous, thanks for sharing. I'm addicted to the baking of sourdough and the relationship I have with my starter, but always love trying other ways of bread making. Rye flour has gone onto my shopping list for the next time I'm at the shops.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Thanx for sharing this post... I will try your starter next time...*Ü*...

    ReplyDelete
  8. Oh Rhonda I made those soft rolls and just served them up to the kids as a side with their dinner. Straight out of the oven and slathered with butter. They said they're better than the bakery. I would like to double the recipe next time as these will be lucky to last the night.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We liked them too, Kylie. I made them last weekend when Jamie was here. They were fabulous as ham and salad rolls.

      Delete
  9. Love it, thank you! Hubby can't eat wheat so we use spelt on occasion, but I hadn't spent time coming up with a decent recipe. Now I don't have to:)

    ReplyDelete
  10. as you head for planting season, I also await mine but in the northern hemisphere. Still very cold here. Love your photos and instructions. made yogurt for first time from skim milk powder... success. I am amazed. best regards

    ReplyDelete
  11. I tried the starter. It did absolutely nothing except turn into a hard blob. Suggestions? Hubby and I were VERY excited about this bread!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Elle, did you add some yeast? (as suggested above)

      Delete
  12. His was delicious. Thank you for posting this, I always find eye bread heaving. I left it a few more days, the starter that is as is cold ATM. Worked a treat. I have been out of action in the bread department for a year, this was the first loaf I made now that I have started back up. I will make this one every week. Thank you again Rhonda.

    ReplyDelete

DEAR READERS, PLEASE NOTE:
Thank you for taking the time to comment today. I love reading your thoughts and ideas.
Comments containing personal or commercial links will not be published.
All comments in English, please.

Back to Top