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Old Milwaukee Rye

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“I think Bernard Clayton would love to have this recipe tried more. I made 2 round loaves out of this, but I'm sure you could shape it to suit your needs. Also, this is a three day 'sour' or 'sponge', but the only maintenance is a daily stir. I used a food processor, and learned that it wasn't recommended for a reason (!), so I'll just post the 'by hand' way. I just wanted to add a thanks to those that tried and loved this recipe, and decided to review it and add pictures. Thank you, and I'm glad you derived as much pleasure out of it as I did.”
2-4 Loaves

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Prep:
  2. To make the sponge, blend all ingredients of the Sponge above and stir 25 times with a wooden spoon. Cover tightly with plastic wrap to prevent moisture loss. It will rise and fall over the course of 3 days. Stir each day. Watch and smell the magic!
  3. This can be used as little as 6 hours after mixing, but I went the full three days with wonderful results.
  4. On the day you're baking, uncover and add the water, molasses, 1 tbsp caraway, egg, salt,rye flour, and about 2 cups of the white flour. Beat until smooth, about 100 strokes and add the shortening.
  5. Add the remainder of the flour, 1/2 cup at a time and stir or mix by hand until the dough is somewhat sticky still.
  6. Kneading:
  7. Turn the dough out on a floured work surface and knead by hand with a strong push, turn and fold method for 8-10 minutes. Use a dough scraper to help and add sprinkles of flour to control stickiness.
  8. First Rise:
  9. Place dough in a greased bowl and cover with wrap again. Leave at room temp until doubled, about an hour.
  10. Punch down and let rise an additional 10 minutes.
  11. Shaping:
  12. I shaped mine into 2 round loaves as I mentioned, but I'm sure this could be panned or shaped how you'd prefer.
  13. Second Rise:
  14. Cover loaves and let them double, about 40 minutes.
  15. Preheat oven to 375F 20 minutes before baking.
  16. Baking:
  17. Rye loaves should be cut on top. Diagonally for long loaves, or tic tac toe for rounds, but it's up to you.
  18. Brush tops with the egg/milk mixture and sprinkle with the last tbsp of the caraway seeds.
  19. Bake for 40 minutes until they pass the thump test or until they're done by your method of testing.
  20. Cool on metal racks.
  21. Keeps for a week in a plastic bag, or you can freeze it for months!
  22. Enjoy!

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