Friday, March 2, 2012

Knaeckebroed - Crunch! Crunch!

This is a flat crisp bread common in the Scandinavian countries. I make it from 100% Rye and it is a Sourdough/Yeast starter mix. My wife Lilo loves crisp bread instead of norm al bread from time to time. But the ones you can buy in the supermarkets in my opinion rather taste like cardboard than bread. It is like, crunchy and is a perfect snack for on the road. One variation I want to try is to shift the whole focus to northern Italy, add some spices and make a Vinschgauer which is a crisp bread the farmers took with them up the mountains. But that's another blog entry.

Original Recipe: "The handmade loaf" by Dan Lepard
The Handmade Loaf

200 gm Rye Flour (100%)
200 gm Water (100%)
100 gm Rye Sourdough Starter (50%)
2 gm active instant yeast (1%)
4 gm Salt (2%)

Mix the liquid ingredients and the yeast in a bowl.Mix the flour and salt in your mixing bowl. Add the liquid to the flour/salt and mix until you get an even batter. Put at a warm place and let rise for 3 hours.

Prepare sheets of baking paper as big as your baking tray. Put the batter onto the paper and flour heavily. One thing with this dough is you need to use a lot of flour for rolling it out. As soon as it becomes a bit sticky, use more flour. Don't worry this is intended. I know most of the time people say you shouldn't use to much flour when working the dough but with this bread it is different. Now roll out your dough on the baking paper very thin. About 5 mm thick. This takes a bit of practice but once you get the hang of it it is easy. Try to avoid to get the corners too thin because they will burn easier than the thicker middle part. You can also trim the corners if you want to create a more even square piece of rolled out dough and get rid of the thinner parts. Once rolled out, cover it with a tea towel and let it rest for 2 hours at a warm place with no draft.

Heat the oven to 225 deg Celsius.

Use the end of a wooden spoon or anything with a rounded tip and indent the dough slightly. Don't punch holes in it just do indentations. With a dough scraper or a knife (or a pizza wheel) cut the dough in pieces. I do approximate 10 x 10 cm but it is really up to you.

Bake for 30 minutes at 225 deg C. Now the original recipe I used said 40 - 50 minutes. I always follow the instructions when I do a recipe for the first time. But I ended up with burnt bread. I now bake for 30 minutes and that's perfect. I suggest you keep an eye on your oven. If it becomes golden brown and the edges start to darken it is ready. I want to try next time to maybe lower the temperature to 200 deg C and bake a bit longer.

Once finished baking put on a cooling grid and let cool. Let dry overnight or until really crisp. There shouldn't be any soft parts to the bread. It needs to be crisp all the way through.

This bread can be stored for a long time. As long as it is kept dry it won't go mouldy. This was the purpose of this bread. People used it for long time storage. It is light so they could take it with them when they went on a hunting trip.

Goes well with cream cheese.

May your dough always rise.

Coquo, ergo sum!

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