Saturday, July 09, 2011

Bread herbs in a Swedish rye

One from the stash, literally. Found a package of Swedish bread spices in the pantry. Bought last year on our vacation there.

Decided to make a Swedish Rye with it what else? A nice and simple sandwich loaf, baked in a regular loaf pan. The sort of loaf that makes you think why don’t I do this more often? No fancy shapes, no days long pre ferments just bread in it’s simple goodness.

IMG_3514So what’s in the spices? The usual suspects when we think Swedish breads: some aniseed, fennel, cardamom … Just enough to give a hint of flavor, not overpowering.


250 gr bread flour
250 gr white and dark rye flour/meal combined
320 gr water
1.1/2 tsp yeast
grated zest of 1 orange
2 tbs oil/butter
3 tbs brown sugar
**1 tbs “bread spices”
1.1/4 tsp salt

** Bread spices in this package contained fennel, cumin and ground anise seed. You might make your own mix, think 1/2 tsp anis seed, 1/2 tsp fennel, 1/8 tsp cumin 1/8 cardamom.

Make a slushy paste by combining half of the flours with all of the water + yeast +sugar + oil and herbs. Stir to a thick batter, proceed by adding the remainder of the flour and start kneading. Once you have a shaggy rough dough add the salt and proceed to knead until a stiff tacky dough forms. If you are using a mixer this is the moment where you would want to proceed by hand. Rye dough doesn’t feel the same as a regular dough so I like to knead the last couple of minutes by hand to get a feel for it.

Try to knead it until it feel slightly springy to the touch. It still will feel quite coarse if you’re using the whole rye meal but that’s ok.

Leave to rise, this will take considerable longer than regular white dough: approx. 1.1/2 or maybe 2 hours. Roll out and roll up in a loaf that will fit your pan. Cover with plastic wrap and leave to proof.

Preheat oven to 375/190, slash if you like and bake for 30-40 minutes. Until golden brown and sounding hollow when tapped with your finger.
For a nice shine, immediately brush with butter when still hot from the oven.



  1. Wow, that is one gorgeous loaf, your crumb is perfect! I love Swedish breads. Did you have a note to go with your **? Or just the fennel, aniseed and cardamom?

  2. @hobby baker: a note.. yes that was the plan! Tried to find out the official contents of the package so I could write it down for all of you. Didn't happen, will try to find

  3. Oooh! What a lovely crumb! And an interesting mix of spices, too - we love spices in bread, so we'll have to try mixing some of this!

  4. Perfect for sandwiches and a really lovely loaf.


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