Basic recipe rye-wheat bread “Clausener Kuuscht”

70 % rye / 30 % wheat | single stage rye sourdough

The Clausener Kuuscht is my current everyday recipe: a strong, pot-baked rye-wheat bread with a spectacular crust.

Schedule

  • Pre-ferment: 5 minutes preparation, 14-16h ripening
  • Main dough: 10 minutes preparation, 45 minutes bulk ferment, 90 minutes final proofing
  • Baking time: 65 minutes (45 with lid + 20 without)

Ingredients sourdough

  • 265g wholegrain rye flour
  • 265g water (45 °C)
  • 15g starter (rye sour)

Prepare the sourdough

  • Mix ingredients in a large bowl; close the bowl
  • Allow to ripe at approx. 21 °C for 14-16 hours (e.g., on the floor of the room away from the heating)
  • The dough is ready when it has significantly increased its volume, is streaked with bubbles, and has a slightly sour smell

Ingredients main dough

  • Entire sourdough
  • 265g wholegrain rye flour
  • 230g wholegrain wheat flour
  • 280g water (45 °C)
  • 12g fresh yeast (alternative: 4g dry yeast)
  • 15g salt
  • (6g spice mixture at will: anise, fennel, coriander, caraway in equal parts)

Prepare the main dough

  • Pour water into a mixing bowl
  • Add rye and wheat flour
  • Add sourdough
  • Add yeast
  • (Add spice mixture at will)
  • Knead with the food processor: 5 minutes on level 1 (slowest), 1 minute on level 2 (next faster)
  • Add salt after about 2 minutes
  • If the dough sticks to the walls of the bowl, slide it down with a dough card if necessary

Fermentation

  • Put the finished dough in a large bowl, the bottom of which has been lightly floured; form a ball and flatten it a little; close the bowl
  • Bulk fermentation: let the dough rest for 45 minutes at approx. 24 °C (e.g. on top of the kitchen cupboard)
  • Open the bowl and fold the dough upwards all around with a dough card
  • Final proofing: close the bowl again and let the dough rest at 24 °C for about 75 minutes
  • After 15 minutes put a large pot with a lid (ideal: Dutch oven; diameter approx. 24cm) without plastic parts in the oven; preheat the oven to 250 °C (recirculation mode) for 1 hour

Baking

  • After 75 minutes, flour the dough: spread a little flour on the surface, use a little more flour along the edge of the bowl; then fold in the flour all around with the lower edge of your palm so that the dough comes off the base
  • As carefully as possible, tip the dough out of the bowl into the preheated pot, first in your hand and out of the hand in the pot (alternative: carefully tip it into the pot so that the dough rotates completely – that can easily go wrong …); close the lid quickly
  • Set the temperature in the oven to 205 °C and bake for 45 minutes at a falling temperature
  • After 45 minutes, remove the lid and bake for another 20 minutes
  • Turn the finished bread onto a wire rack and let it cool for about 2 hours

Tips & tricks

  • Unlike wheat-heavy dough, rye dough does not bind properly because rye contains little gluten; rye doughs are therefore always slightly sticky and difficult to process; higher firmness can be achieved by reducing the amount of water (e.g. 25g less in the main dough) or increasing the proportion of wheat in relation to the rye
  • The order of the ingredients for the main dough is important; pre-ferment and yeast should not come into direct contact with the hot water and salt
  • The dough can also be kneaded by hand (when kneading by hand, the dough cannot be “kneaded over”)
  • Temperature plays an important role in the timing of proofing; 5 °C more/less room temperature roughly halve/double the proofing time; the water temperature affects the proofing in a similar way
  • Proofing test: lightly press in the dough with a finger; if the hole remains visible or only slowly closes again, the dough is ready (if the dough proofs too long, the dough quality is reduced)
  • The amount of water should be adjusted depending on the type of flour; wholegrain flour needs approx. 10% more water on the total amount of flour than finer flours (e.g., type 1050); when using finer flours for the main dough, simply use 250g water instead of 280g
  • The amount of yeast in the dough can be varied depending on the strength of the sourdough starter; in total, no more than 1–2% yeast relative to the total amount of dough should be used
  • Baking times can vary somewhat depending on the type and size of the oven
  • Leftover flour can be left in the pot after baking: this burns the next time it is heated and gives the bread a light smoke aroma