Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Five-Grain Sourdough with Rye Sourdough

I recently had a charcoal-fed oven made to use specifically for bread baking and I'm thrilled with the results that I got when I baked Hamelman's Five Grain Sourdough with Rye Sourdough with it.  After pre-heating it for more than an hour with a good amount of charcoal, I slid the unbaked loaves right in, closed the door and waited for the oven to do its magic.  I got mixed results using this oven though, the first batch I made (Hamelman's Whole Wheat Multigrain) had good oven spring but they flattened eventually during cooling.  Having already made a few loaves with this oven, I know now that the key is to really heat up the masonry for at least an hour or even more which will ensure even heating of the bricks resulting in proper convection, radiation and conduction.   

I lined the racks with unglazed quarry tiles

All the elements that make masonry ovens work so well in bread baking

Five-Grain Sourdough with Rye Sourdough
Adapted from Bread: A Book of Techniques and Recipe by Jeffrey Hamelman

Yield: 3 medium loaves or 2 large loaves

Rye Sourdough

Whole-rye Flour   227 g
Water   190 g
Mature Sourdough Culture   11 g

Hot Soaker

Cracked Rye   82 g
Flaxseeds   82 g
Sunflower Seeds   68 g
Oats   68 g
Water, boiling   374 g
Salt   20 g

Final Dough

Bread Flour 680 g
Vital Wheat Gluten   2 Tablespoons
Water   298 g
Honey 14 g
Yeast  5 g
Soaker   695 g
Sourdough   417 g


1.  Make the Rye Sourdough 12 to 16 hours before the final mix and let stand in a covered container at about 70 F.

2. Pour the boiling water over the grain blend and salt, mix thoroughly and cover with plastic to avoid evaporation.  Make this the same time as the Rye Sourdough.  If using rye chops instead of cracked rye, you can use cold water for the soaker.

3. After 12-16 hours add all the liquid-levain build, soaker, and final dough ingredients in a KA mixing bowl and mix until well incorporated and the flour is hydrated.  Cover with plastic and let stand for 30 minutes (autolyze).  Attach the mixing bowl in the KA and using a dough hook, mix at medium speed (speed 4) until a reasonable amount of gluten development is noted.

4.  Transfer the dough to an oiled bowl for 1 hour bulk fermentation.  No need to fold.

5. Divide the dough into desired sizes, shape into rounds and let rest for 15-20 minutes.  Shape into batards or boules then place in floured bannetons or lined wicker baskets.

6.  Cover each with plastic and proof for 1 hour.

7.  Score the loaves before baking.  Bake at 460 F at normal steam for 40 - 45 minutes.  The oven temperature can be lowered to 440 F if the loaves are coloring too quickly because of the honey.

*Submitting this post to YeastSpotting*

The loaf is really good with a light and moist crumb


  1. Lovely crumb indeed!! I also like how you slashed the bread :o)

  2. Nice bake. Do you notice any different smokey flavor from using the new brick oven versus your traditonal oven?

    1. Hi mookie. The bread certainly has a more delicious aroma because of the charcoal but not overpowering at all. The crust definitely has more flavor.

  3. Very nice looking bread. You mention honey in your comments, but it is not listed in the ingredients. How much is supposed to be in the recipe?

    1. Ooops sorry I missed placing that one...I used 14 g of Honey. Will edit the formula now.