Saturday, January 2, 2010

42.  Ruggenbrot (Rye Bread), pg. 59

I enjoy waking up early before my husband and being inspired to make bread in the quiet of the kitchen.  I've probably written this before, but as many people who make bread consistently would tell you, making bread can be a meditative chore.  Bread dough is much more forgiving than a cookie dough and can take non-perfect measurements and still turn out just fine.  The warmth of the dough combined with the opportunity to get your hands dirty go well together, and seeing it all come together in a smooth dough brings great satisfaction.  What's more is that with our current work in our kitchen (still installing cabinets and countertops...), it's a treat to have an extra-cozy and fragrant workspace to motivate us. :)

Knowing there are only two mouths to feed, I decided to halve this recipe and just get one loaf out of it.  This is a simple recipe to change proportions, so change it up according to what you are looking for.

Using molasses instead of brown sugar will give the dough a slightly darker color, but either will round out the flavor nicely with their warmth.  I did mess up on the rye flour bit -- forgot that I was only supposed to put in 1 c., and dumped in 2 c. instead, so I had to adjust the amount of white flour down to about 1 1/2 cups.  Taste-wise, I thought the bread was still great -- probably just a bit heartier than what the recipe states.  I also put in about 1 T. of golden flax seed for spunk and nutritional benefit.

When it comes to making your loaf, don't expect to use a 9x5 and get a "standard" loaf -- the dough doesn't expand much.  For mine, I simply shaped it into a log and put it on a cookie sheet.  Just before baking, slash the top with a sharp (or serrated) knife several times to allow for even baking.

The end result is a hearty bread asking to be served alongside a brothy soup.

Overall: 3.2 out of 5  Standard, healthy, and hearty.


  1. Reading about your making rye bread reminds me of my mother--she made a lot of rye bread and it is still a favorite of mine. Maybe I'll be inspired to try out this recipe too! Mom

  2. So I decided that after I finish my current loaf of store-bought bread I would start making bread :) And this has definitely inspired me to try this recipe first! (plus i hear rye bread is good to help lower high cholesterol...haha)

  3. Wow! I'm so happy to find your blog! I made the Ruggenbrot today. I just 'googled' it and found your site ☺ My bread is heavy, but delicious. But we will toast it for tomorrow's breakfast. MWL is my favorite cookbook. Making some lentils tomorrow.