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Rye Bread IV (P, TNT)
Source: Self
Yield: 1 large loaf

2 cups rye flour, divided
1/8 teaspoon yeast
1-1/2 cups water, divided
1 tbsp. caraway seeds

1 medium potato
2-1/2 cups water
1-1/3 cups medium rye flour or 1-3/4 cups light rye
1 tbsp. yeast
1 tbsp. salt
4 cups bread flour (540g) or more if needed

1 teaspoon cornstarch
1/4 cup water

Chernushka or kalonji seeds, to taste
Coarse cornmeal, for the pan

Make Sponge:
Combine 1 cup rye flour, yeast, 3/4 cup water, and caraway seeds in a 4-cup measure. Cover and let rise for 8 to 10 hours. Add the remaining rye, and water. Stir, cover and let rise overnight.

Make Dough:
In the morning, scrub the potato and place in a pot with 2-1/2 cups water. Boil until the potato is soft, about 12 to 15 minutes. Reserve the cooking water and peel the cooled potato. Mash and measure out 1/2 cup mashed potato. Discard remainder or use in another recipe.

Place the mashed potato, 1-1/3 cups of the reserved potato water, and the sponge in a large mixer bowl.

Add the rye, yeast and salt, and all but about 1/2 cup of the bread flour. Mix with the flat beater until blended, and then switch to the dough hook. Knead on low to blend, and then on medium-low for 8 to 10 minutes. The dough should be able to stretch to make a "windowpane," and be slightly tacky. When done, turn into a greased bowl and let rise for about 1 hour until doubled.

Punch the dough down. Shape into a large round loaf, and place on cornmeal-dusted baking pan. Cover and let rise for 30 to 40 minutes until doubled. Near end of rising time, preheat oven to 400°F.

Make Glaze and Assembly:
Boil water. Make glaze by combining cornstarch and water. Cook over high until thick and boiling. Brush glaze on bread and sprinkle with seeds. The top of the bread can be stippled with 10 to 12 holes using a skewer.

Pour 1 to 2 cups of boiling water into pan set into bottom of oven. Spray bread with water. Bake for 5 minutes. Spray again and bake for 10 minutes.

Remove the water and reduce temperature to 350°F. Bake for 30 to 45 minutes more or until bread sounds hollow and is 195 to 200°F internally. Let cool for a crispy-ish crust, or cover the hot bread with a towel if a chewy crust is desired.

Poster's Notes:
When I was growing up on Long Island, corn rye was a large, very moist rye bread that was topped with little black pungent seeds. These can now be found at Indian grocery stores or online and sold as kalonji seeds. In Eastern Europe they were sold as chernushka and were put on corn rye. Here is my recipe for Jewish Corn Rye--if you want to do the first rise in a bread machine, cut the dough in half.

Posted by Penny Eisenberg

Nutritional Info Per Serving: N/A