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Monday, December 27, 2010

HBin5's Pseudo-Bavarian Pumpernickel - a new tactic

HBin5's Pseudo-Bavarian Pumpernickel

With the last experiment of the HBin5 Bavarian Pumpernickel a total failure, this time I decided to try a longer bulk fermentation, and a longer baking cycle, and a different method of baking.  Pumpernickel is traditionally steamed, and to approximate this, I returned to a Lahey-style method of baking it inside a pre-heated old crock pot interior.

I rolled the soaked rye seeds in the interior as I had previously, but I put it in a floured, cloth-lined basket for about 2 1/2 hours prior to baking.

The baking was done at 450 degrees F for 30 minutes with the lid on, another 30 minutes with the lid off, and then a further 15 minutes with a boiled rye flour starchy coating to the crust to keep it from getting too hard -- a total of 75 minutes.


It still was not long enough.  The interior of the loaf is still far too moist (even a full day after baking, before slicing into it).  The loaf did stick to the preheated container -- probably due to the damp rye seeds that were sprinkled on what ended up being the bottom of the loaf prior at the time of bulk fermentation; or it could be because of the rye starch wash that was placed on the loaf during the final 15 minutes of baking.

The crust is crunchy and has a nice taste.  The loaf was damaged in digging it out of the container with a spoon when stuck.  It is very airy inside, and far lighter than it looks.

When you get an edge piece of the loaf, it tastes quite nice (although not a thing like pumpernickel) -- a nice, mild rye bread.  But the interior remains gummy, that no amount of toasting will correct.

Notes to Myself
  • This will be the last time I make this recipe.  It is not a good one.
  • When baking rye breads in this manner, and this thick, you best consider a time of 45-60 minutes with the lid on, then another 30-45 minutes with the lid off.

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