Sunday recipe: Multi-grain faux sourdough

multigrain bread cut on table

Better get it out of the way: his bread is super easy, but it takes a long time to make. There’s a minimum 6 hour paus in between steps 4 and 5.  But it is SO good. It’s a yeast bread, but gets a stronger, sourdoughesque taste profile from the long rest (and the additions of rye and flax.) My mom would make this bread when I was little – maybe once or twice a year. It was a big, unwieldy, recipe, so I have halved it (and I now make it once a week.) Partially because I had trouble getting it to stay tall in the full version, partially because it’s a heavy dough and my kitchenaid couldn’t knead it properly in its full size.

0.75 dl cracked wheat
0.75 dl cracked rye
0.75 dl wheat bran
0.75 dl flax (I mix whole flax and flax meal about 50%)
3dl boiling water
35 g (2 packages) fresh yeast
2.5 dl lukewarm water
1 tsp salt
1 dl cottage cheese
bread flour, about 6-9 dl

Day 1:
1. Mix the four first grains in a bowl.
2. Pour over the boiling water.
3. Cover and with a towel and let sit until around body temperature.
4. Crumble the yeast and mix in (if needed, borrow 1 dl of lukewarm water from the next step.)
Let sit overnight.

Day 2:
5. Mix in the water and cottage cheese (use small-curd and as high-fat as you can find; remember that this is the only fat in the bread, and it will be dry without it), add the salt along with the flour, which should be kneaded in bit by bit (about half a cup at a time) until the dough doesn’t stick very much to the bowl. If you are planning on letting it rest longer (1 hour+ per pause), make it slightly stickier than you would otherwise.
6. Rest in bowl for minimum 30 minutes, anywhere up to 2 hours.
7. Put into parchment-covered baking pan with tall edges, about 9×12 inches (-ish; slight variation is fine) , flatten out so that it’s even and filling the whole bottom of the pan. Prick with a fork a few times.
8. Rest for 30-40 minutes.
9. Bake for 20-30 minutes in the middle of a 435° oven, checking so that it doesn’t burn (our oven is slow and weak, it takes me 32 minutes, in our old oven it took 25, so…) Let cool.
10. Cut into two loaves, freeze if you won’t eat in the next day or two as it dried quickly.

Store in a plastic bag. Enjoy with butter and cheese, or half meatballs or lunch meats of whatever the hell you want. It’s delicious.

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