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whole wheat/rye bread, no caraway

whole wheat/rye bread, no caraway

Before I baked any rye bread, I always assumed it was the rye flour that gave the breads its distinctive taste.  It turns out that it is due more to two things: caraway seeds, and the fact that many rye breads have an acidic component, either sourdough, or something like buttermilk.

The rye seems to interact with the sour components in a different way than white flour.  It adds a certain depth to the flavor, but the main punch is the caraway seeds.

I wondered what rye without caraway seeds would taste like, but never got around to making any because I like the caraway flavor, and why mess with something I like?

But then a friend was told by her doctor to cut out the carbs.  The doctor did tell her that rye bread was okay, but she doesn’t like rye bread.  I asked if it was the rye or the caraway she really objected to, and she didn’t know, so I made this bread as a test to find out.

I used the rye variation of the basic sourdough whole wheat recipe from the Tassajara Bread Book.  I ran out of whole wheat flour though, so it actually ended up being about 1/3 whole wheat, 1/3 bread flour, and 1/3 rye flour.

The amount to rise that I got out of it surprised me, since rye has less gluten than wheat, and whole wheat doesn’t rise as much as a all-purpose or bread flour.  I’m glad that I used the bread flour.

It tasted good, especially the first day.  The texture was a little dense, as one would expect with a high proportion of whole wheat and rye.  My favorite part about it was the slight crunch that the rye gave to the crust (the particular flour I used is very coarsely ground; not all rye would have that effect).  The rye without caraway does have a different flavor than wheat, but it is subtle.  My husband and I liked it, but I haven’t heard back from my friend yet.