Sourdough rye! I confess, I didn’t know what to expect from this bread.
I made my firm rye starter out of my normal starter, with some added white rye flour and water. I had to special order the white rye flour and the pumpernickel flour from King Arthur Flour. I don’t know how people survived before the internet came along.
I also made the soaker, which is just pumpernickel flour and water.
I fermented the starter for the full four hours, until it looked noticeably puffier:
The soaker, however, didn’t change at all, of course:
Then I combined everything together to make the dough, and set it out to rise.
I came back after four hours, but this is what I saw:
Not much difference, is there? I let it keep rising for about two hours more, and I also moved it to a more sheltered spot in the kitchen.
I shaped it into two batards, which was kind of difficult. The dough didn’t feel much like wheat dough. There wasn’t the elasticity and flexibility there normally is. This dough felt more like clay than dough. I’m not sure if this is to blame, or if it is my inferior shaping skills, but my batards turned out very long and skinny, more like baguettes.
So they turned out kind of small for sandwiches. The crumb looks nice, and the taste was…interesting.
They were very dense, and I didn’t exactly like them, but didn’t exactly not like them either. They weren’t my favorite, let me put it that way.
I ended up finding a good use for them. I cut them into cubes and baked them into croutons, which seems to make them more palatable. I don’t think I can recommend ordering special ingredients and going through the trouble of baking the bread for the sake of croutons, however. I don’t think I would make these again, although the recipe seemed to work well. I will give these 2.5 stars.