The Scarlet Pumpernickel

Actually, it’s brown, not scarlet, but it is pumpernickel. Day 5 of shelter-in-place saw the grilling of English muffins, an apple pie and finally a loaf of pumpernickel. Previously I made dark rye both with and without that nicer chewy, crunchy crust and white sandwich breads. The last time I made pumpernickel it didn’t go well, but with my recent success I decided to try again. Good move!!

This is a recipe from King Arthur Flour, my favorite Vermont baking source. This has great crumb, flavor and crust. Definitely a keeper.

Pumpernickel Bread – KAF

INGREDIENTS

• 4 cups (482g) AP flour
• 1 cup (96g) pumpernickel flour
• 3 tablespoons (21g) rye bread improver, optional
• 2 tablespoons (11g) black cocoa, for dark pumpernickel color
• 1 teaspoon Deli Rye Flavor, optional
• 2 1/4 teaspoons salt
• 2 teaspoons instant yeast
• 1 3/4 cup + 2 tablespoons (425g) lukewarm water

METHOD

  1. Combine all of the ingredients and mix and knead — by hand, mixer, or bread machine — until the dough is elastic and slightly sticky.
  2. Let the dough rise in a lightly greased, covered bowl for 1 to 2 hours; it should become puffy.
  3. Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled surface. Gently deflate it, and shape it into a ball.
  4. Place the shaped loaf onto a lightly-greased or parchment-lined sheet pan or into a Dutch oven and cover with the lid.
  5. Let the loaf rise for 60 to 90 minutes, until it’s almost doubled in size.
  6. Preheat the oven to 425°F.
  7. Slash the loaf diagonally in several places.
  8. Bake the loaf for 35 to 45 minutes until it is crusty, and a digital thermometer inserted into the center reads 190°F to 200°F. If using a stoneware baker, remove the lid for the final 5 minutes of baking for a crusty top.
  9. Remove the bread from the oven, and transfer it to a rack to cool completely.

Tips from our Bakers
While both the rye dough improver and the rye flavor are optional, we recommend using them if you can. The dough improver helps to improve the loaf’s rise and texture, while the rye flavor adds authentic pumpernickel flavor.

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