Several months ago I bought a used copy of Bernard Clayton’s Complete Book of Breads. If you are interested in baking a variety of mostly straight-dough breads (where you mix all ingredients together at once, instead of mixing and fermenting a sponge first, as in the New York Deli Rye recipe), this is a great book and will keep you busy for a long time. There are a few sponge and sourdough recipes in the Complete Book of Breads, though, enough to give you a taste if you’re interested in that too.
In my search for the perfect (for me) rye bread, I made the Buttermilk-Rye-Whole Wheat recipe, which Lauren Zeitsman has blogged, with pictures, here. Unfortunately, I forgot to take a picture of the bread. I didn’t even think about it until there was just a tiny stub of heel left (which didn’t take long).
Unfortunately, this bread, as it stands, is not quite “the one” either. I love the tangy flavor that the buttermilk gives it. I think next time I’ll make it I will omit the whole wheat flour, because I liked the texture of the New York Deli Rye better. The buttermilk gave it too much tang for the Dearest Husband’s taste, though, so I’ll experiment with other percentages of buttermilk/plain milk and see if an acceptable compromise can be reached.