Simple Rustic Loaf is a beautiful loaf of bread that is easy to make and will leave you amazed that it came from your kitchen and not the bakery.
This Simple Rustic Loaf is a part of last year’s goals and a big part of this years goals. Had I known how delicious it is, I wouldn’t have waited so long!
Have you started your new year with a set of goals that you’d like to accomplish? I have, and even though they are probably modest compared to a lot of goals, I’m excited to get a start on them!
Last year one of my goals was to learn more about baking bread. I joined several bread groups to push myself to try more recipes that I normally wouldn’t have attempted or even heard about without these groups.
This month’s challenge was to use a flour that we’d never worked with. I chose pumpernickel.
To tell you the truth, this recipe actually used very little pumpernickel flour, and I learned that there are a lot of pumpernickel recipes that use a combination of flours such as wheat and rye flour.
I just loved how this bread came out. It has a wonderful artisan crust and the crumb is so soft and moist. This bread is easy to make, and I think you will be surprised that such a pretty loaf of bread can come from your oven.
Bread can be pretty right?
You will want to start this recipe either early in the day or even the day before which is what I did because it has you make a sponge that needs to sit out on the counter for at least 4 hours.
What is a sponge?
I left mine out overnight and baked my bread the next day. Don’t let the sponge scare you. It’s just a flour yeast mixture that is allowed to sit out and will help the flavor of your bread develop. This picture is of my sponge after it sat overnight. All bubbly and ready to do its job.
You will also note that I suggest you use filtered or spring water. That’s because chlorine can have an adverse effect on yeast. So, if your water is chlorinated, use bottled or filtered water.
Others say if you can drink it you can bake with it. You be the judge.
A Simple Rustic Loaf
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1 tsp instant yeast
- 1 1/2 cups All Purpose Flour I use unbleached
- 1/2 cup pumpernickel flour
- 2 tsp salt I use fine sea salt
- 2 1/4 cups 9 1/2 ounces Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
- 1/2 cup whole grain bread blend
To make the sponge
- Mix the sponge ingredients together. Cover and let it sit at room temperature 3 to 4 hours or overnight.
- Stir down the sponge. In a large bowl, combine dough ingredients and the sponge. Knead until smooth and elastic. Knead in the Harvest Grains blend or your choice of seeds. Form a ball and put it into a large well oiled bowl. Turn once to coat both sides. Cover and allow to rise for 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
- Lightly grease a baking sheet, or cover it with parchment paper. Turn out the dough out onto the baking sheet, and form it into a ball. Cover and allow it to rise for 1 more hour. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
- Gently but firmly slash the dough across the top and then spritz it with water. Bake the bread for 30 to 35 minutes, until it’s a deep golden brown. Remove from the pan and allow the loaf to cool completely on a cooling rack prior to slicing.
Our monthly bread baking party is no longer active, but you can still enjoy many of their recipes as I do!
60% Kamut Sourdough Bread from Karen’s Kitchen Stories
Coconut Flour Zucchini Bread from CulturEatz
Five Grain Loaf with Dried Cranberries & Pecans from All That’s Left Are the Crumbs
Rustic Loaf using Pumpernickel Flour from Hostess At Heart