Today is Labor Day in the United States and Canada, so I had a bonus day tacked on to my weekend. With the weather getting a bit cooler (which here in Pennsylvania means “only” 80 degrees Fahrenheit), what better time is there to try a new (to me) bread recipe? A friend recently mentioned this bread to me, and since then, I’ve been wanting to try it. It was a wise choice – this bread is hearty and complex, perfect for toast with cottage cheese. Recipe is from Food.com.
Pumpernickel raisin bread
Yields 3 small, circular loaves
- 1 1⁄2 cups lukewarm water (105* to 115*)
- 1⁄2 cup molasses
- 1 package active dry yeast
- 1 tablespoon instant coffee granules
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 2 cups medium rye flour
- 1 1⁄2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 cups whole wheat flour
- 2 cups bread flour or 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 cup raisins
- 3-4 tablespoons cornmeal
- 1 tablespoon cold water
- 1 egg white
- Stir together the lukewarm water and molasses in a large mixing bowl.
- Sprinkle in the yeast and stir to dissolve.
- Let stand for 10 minutes, or until slightly foamy.
- Stir in instant coffee, salt and rye flour.
- Sprinkle in the cocoa and stir well to combine.
- Add whole-wheat flour and 1 cup of the bread flour, or enough to make a sticky dough.
- Turn the bread out onto a lightly floured work surface and let it rest.
- Wash and dry the bowl.
- Sprinkle additional flour over the dough and begin to knead.
- Continue until most or all of the remaining bread flour is incorporated and you have a smooth elastic ball.
- (Breads with rye flour will always be slightly sticky.) Pour the vegetable oil into the mixing bowl, turn the ball of dough to coat well, cover bowl with a towel, and set aside to rise until dough is tripled in bulk, 3 to 4 hours.
- Lightly flour the work surface and turn the dough out onto it.
- Flatten it into a large rectangle and sprinkle with the raisins.
- Roll up the dough and knead it, to distribute the raisins and let rise until doubled.
- Sprinkle a large baking sheet with 3 to 4 tablespoons cornmeal.
- Turn the dough out,cut it into 3 pieces, and shape each piece into a small round loaf.
- Set loaves on the baking sheet, leaving as much room as possible between them, cover, and let rise until doubled.
- Preheat oven to 400*.
- Beat egg white together with 1 Tbsp cold water in a small bowl.
- When the loaves have risen sufficiently, brush the tops with the egg white mixture.
- Bake loaves on the middle rack of the oven for 35 to 45 minutes, or until they are dark brown and sound hollow when bottoms are rapped.
- Cool completely on racks before cutting or wrapping.