Is there anything better than the smell of bread baking in the oven? Not at this farm! We believe baked bread is synonymous with country living and no farmhouse is complete without that glorious aroma wafting through the kitchen. It just brings us back to fond childhood memories.
Growing up Ella lived in the city but every few months she and her family would pack into the car and travel north to Oma’s house. All they talked about the whole trip was Oma’s bread. By the time they pulled up the long lane they were salivating like Pavlov’s dog. We cannot remember a family meal at Oma’s table that did not include homemade bread.
Oma had magic in her fingers. Even today when people mention Oma they mention her bread. Ella remembers the first time she tried to make Oma’s rye bread. “I crashed and burned.”” she laughs. Working with yeast takes some practice. We’ll share some of our tricks to help you along. We promise it will be worth the effort.
Oma’s Rye Bread
- 2 cups warm water
- 2¼ teaspoon active dry yeast
- 1 tablespoon molasses
- 1½ cups rye flour
- 1½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup brown sugar
- ¼ cup vegetable oil
- 3 -4 cups white bread flour
- In a two-cup measuring cup measure the water. I recommend using a thermometer to check the temperature. You want it to be between 110-120°F. Too hot, you will kill the yeast. Too cold, the yeast will not activate. Add about 1/8 teaspoon of the molasses to the yeast and water. You want to give the yeast something to eat. Let it sit for 5 minutes. When you have a layer of “foam” your yeast is ready.
- In a stand-up mixer bowl add the rye flour, salt, and brown sugar. Attach the paddle attachment and pulse to mix. Add in the oil, water & yeast mixture, and 2 cups of the bread flour and mix. Replace the paddle attachment with a bread hook. Add the remaining flour and knead until smooth and elastic about 8 minutes.
- Transfer dough to a clean lightly floured surface and foam into a bowl. Place into a lightly greased bowl, cover with a towel, and let rise until double in size, 1 – 2 hours.
- Using your knuckles push the dough down and return to floured surface. Knead about 3 – 5 minutes. Return to bowl and let rise a second time until doubled, 1 – 2 hours.
- Divide the dough evenly. I do not knead it at this point but rather form the dough into 2 loaves and place them in greased loaf pans. Let rise for 30 minutes Bake at 350°F for 30 minutes. Check for doneness by inserting a thermometer in the center of the loaf. It should read between 190-205°F. This recipe makes a light and airy loaf.