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Sourdough Spelt Bialys with Caramelized Onions

3 Sep

  It’s been too long since I made some bialys.  Bialys seem to be the forgotten stepchild of bagels it seems :).  My original formula and procedure is here.

I decided to use around 28% freshly milled and sifted spelt flour along with First Clear flour in this bake.  I also use freshly caramelized onions instead of dehydrated onions and added some balsamic vinegar to finish them off.  I under-estimated how much onions to sub for the dehydrated and did not have enough for all the biayls so I used some shredded cheese instead.  Not a bad replacement if you ask me.

I also bulk fermented the dough instead of shaping the bialys and then refrigerating them.  Other than that you can follow along with the original instructions.  For the dough I bulk fermented after 3 rounds of S & F’s every 25 minutes and let the dough sit out at 78 degrees for 1.5 hours total.  The next day I took the dough out and let it sit for around 1.5 hours at 78 degrees, shaped them into balls, let them proof for 1.5 hours, shaped per original recipe and baked.

The fresh caramelized onions really added a nice sweet flavor to these and were worth trying.

Download the Formula here.

Happy Holidays–SD German Pretzels and Porridge Rye Beer Bread

26 Dec

img_5810-1   I hope everyone is having a Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukah.

For Christmas Eve at our good friends I made some German style pretzel rolls which are always a big hit and went perfectly with the Saurerbraten that was served for dinner.  I also made some potato pancakes to bring as well which everyone seemed to like.

I also made a Porridge Rye with beer to bring to our friends for Christmas day.  They usually serve ham as the main course so this rye goes perfect.  Unfortunately our friends were struck with the stomach virus that’s been going around and we ended up making our own ham at home yesterday.

The starter with the onions really is very pungent,  but when everything comes together this one is moist and tasty and worth the effort.









Pretzel Rolls Stuffed with White Vermont Cheddar Cheese

25 Nov


I made these to bring to my Brother-in-laws for Thanks Giving while visiting North Carolina as usual.  I adapted my formula for Potato SD Pretzel rolls and adjusted the water to compensate for the removal of the potatoes.

I used KAF bread flour mixed with KAF medium rye flour.  I also added some maple syrup.

I stuffed each roll with a couple of pieces of extra sharp white cheddar we bought during our last trip to Vermont and sprinkled some on top along with pretzel salt.

The final result was as good as it looks.  The taste of the cheese along with the distinct pretzel flavor was a perfect accompaniment to all the usual Thanksgiving treats.

Tcloseup2 closeup3 crumb main


25 Apr

Main A few days ago my wife decided to make her delicious meat sauce and I volunteered to make a bread to go with it.  I didn’t have time to create a starter so I made a straight dough based on the German Style rolls I have made before which I posted about here.

I of course had to change it up a little since that’s kind of what I like to do.  I added some freshly ground whole Kamut flour and used honey instead of sugar.

I wanted a nice light crunchy bread that would be good to mop up the heavy tomato based meat sauce and this did just the trick.

The Kamut gave the bread a little extra nutty flavor while adding a nice yellow hue to the final bread.

For a relatively quick bread without a starter this really did come out pretty good and is worth a try.



German Weizenbrotchen Bread (%)

German Weizenbrotchen Bread (weights)


Porky was happy to eat the crumbs of this fine bread 🙂



This post has been submitted to the Yeast Spotting Site here:

Pizza Time Again

24 Apr

Grill3   Spring is finally here so along with grilling hamburgers and hot dogs and steak it was time to crank up the grill and make some pizza.

My pizza set-up allows me to get the temperature over 700 degrees.  I’m not sure how hot is really get since my thermometer only goes to 700 degrees so I would say it’s probably closer to 800 or higher.Grill1Grill2

I made a basic dough recipe using instant yeast this time since I didn’t have time to make the starter version I made last time and I used mainly type 00 Caputo flour along with a little bit of freshly ground whole wheat.  For the basic recipe you can refer to my previous post here.

I made 3 different personal size pies this time with the first being a simple version using fresh tomato sauce, fresh mozzarella and some shaved Parmesan.  Unfortunately my wife ate most of it before I had a chance to photograph it, so no pictures.

The second pie was made using my wife’s left-over meat sauce along with some fresh mozzarella and shaved Parmesan.


The third and last pie of the night was a white pie which we used a garlic butter spread, caramelized onions, fresh mozzarella and shaved Parmesan.



All three came out great with a nice charred crust just like I like it.  They were so good we ate all of them except one slice.





Sourdough Beer Pretzel Rolls with Caramelized Onions

9 Feb

Final I’ve made German Pretzel Rolls many times now and they are always a hit at parties and just one of the best types of breads to make.  I usually make the original version using yeast and bread flour but I’ve made them with some dark rye and sourdough starter before as well.

This time I wanted to push the envelope a bit and used beer instead of water and added some caramelized onions to really kick it up a notch.

To get that authentic pretzel color and crust you must use Lye but if you really are afraid you can use baking soda.



For Lye Bath (3.5% Solution

2 Liters (1836 grams) of Cold water

70 grams Sodium Hydroxide Crystals



Sauté an onion cut into rings in olive oil on medium to low heat until they are caramelized and allow to cool.

Add the diastatic malt powder to the water and stir.  Add the flours in your mixing bowl and slowly add the water mixture.  Mix for about 1 minute until combined.  Cut your starter in pieces and lay on top of the flour mixture and cover and let rest for 30 minutes to 1 hour so the flour can absorb the water.

Next add the salt and mix for 3 minutes on low.  Now add the caramelized onions and mix on low for 1 minute to incorporate.  Place the dough in a slightly oiled bowl and do a couple of stretch and folds.  Cover the bowl and let it rest for 10-15 minutes.  Do another stretch and fold in the bowl and let it rest another 10-15 minutes.  Do another stretch and fold and let the dough sit out in the covered bowl for another 1.5 hours.  Place the dough in the refrigerator until ready to bake the next day.

When ready to bake take the dough out and leave it covered in your bowl for 2 hours.  Next divide the dough into around 10 pieces that are 110 grams each.  Flatten each piece into a circle and place a piece of cheese in the middle and pinch the dough around the cheese.  Next flip over and roll against your work surface while creating a tight ball.  Place on a baking sheet and cover with either a moist towel or plastic wrap sprayed with cooking spray.  Let it rest for around 60 minutes to about 1/2 proof.

While the rolls are proofing, fill a large stock pot with 2 liters of cold water.  Measure out the Lye and slowly add it to the cold water.  (DO NOT EVER ADD LYE TO HOT WATER).  Cover the pot and bring it to a rolling boil and then shut off the heat.

Pre-heat your oven to 400 degrees.  When the rolls are proofed sufficiently, prepare to dip them for about 15 seconds in the lye bath upside down.  Let them drain on a bakers rack over a cookie tray covered with a towel or parchment paper.  After draining for a minute you can transfer them to a cookie/baking sheet that has been sprayed with cooking spray.  You want to use a stainless steel cooking sheet as aluminum may react with the lye and peel.  Note: do not ever use parchment paper as the rolls will get stuck to the bottom.  I know this from experience and I had to cut off the bottoms of half the rolls I made.

When ready to bake, score each roll with an “X” on the middle and sprinkle with pretzel salt.  Make sure you use pretzel salt if you want authentic rolls.

Bake for about 15-20 minutes until they are golden brown and register about 200 F in the middle.  Let them cool on a bakers rack until you can’t wait any longer!


This post has been submitted to the Yeast Spotting Site here:


Max loves the Snow….I can’t wait for Spring!


80% Sourdough Rye from Hamelman’s Bread-Detmolder Method

7 Apr

MainAfter returning from the first ever TFL gathering in Lexington MA last weekend I wanted to use some the rye starter that Varda gave me to make a rye bread.  Dave Snyder posted his latest bake of the above bread on The Fresh Loaf this past week and pushed me over the edge to try it myself.  You can find the recipe at his original post here.

This recipe uses a three-step build process called the Detmolder  process which by using precise temperatures for each build is supposed to optimize the development of yeast growth, lactic acid and acetic acid production.

David had described his latest bake as having an almost sweet taste without that much sour flavor.  My bake to me seemed to have a much more sour flavor than intended.  I think I might have rushed the second build a bit which could have effected the final outcome.

In any case, the crumb came out about where I think it should for such a high percentage rye bread.  The crust ended up much more thick than I think it should.

This type of dough is docked instead of scored and you only use steam for the first 5 minutes of the bake.


Before Docking Dough


Docked Dough


I used my knife tool to dock the dough. Worked fine.

I will have to try this one again and see if I get the same result.



Submitted to Yeast Spotting.