Peter Reinhart’s Many-Seed Bread

I spotted Peter Reinhart’s Artisan Breads Every Day at the library this afternoon, so I grabbed it. I gave it to Dr. Science so he could pick out something, and he picked out Many-Seed Bread. I like bread with seeds, too, and I had all the ingredients, so I made it.

All the ingredients

All the ingredients

This one has more than a pound and a half of flour and 5 ounces of seeds, so it’s just on the verge of being too much dough for my 4½ quart stand mixer.

That's an awful lot of dough for this mixer.

That's an awful lot of dough for this mixer.

Once again, I’m fantasizing about winning the lottery and buying a 7-quart Viking. The dough went together just as Peter said it should.

I diverged from the directions when he said to put the dough in the fridge overnight, because we’re out of bread now. So I left it to rise in a warm spot for 45 minutes, at which point I punched it down, gave it a stretch and fold, and left it to rise again. After another 45 minutes, I punched the dough down, gave it another stretch and fold, and let it rise for another 45 minutes. The yeast were obviously feeding happily.

The yeast are doing their job.

The yeast are doing their job.

Then I divided the dough into two loaves, gave them a little bench rest, and let them rise in loaf pans. After almost an hour, they had crested the pans and looked good, so I gave them an egg wash (a beaten egg brushed on the loaf glues the seeds on), sprinkled them with sesame seeds and flax seeds, and popped them in the oven at 350℉ for 45 minutes.

I got no oven spring, and I don’t know why. It might be the pans. I had another loaf in the oven at the same time (cinnamon-raisin bread, which had huge oven spring), but I don’t know if that had anything to do with it.

The bread is good, though. No doubt the long rise in the fridge would develop wonderful flavor, but this is definitely good bread.

Many-Seed Bread
(adapted from Artisan Breads Every Day)
22½ oz bread flour
3 oz whole rye flour
2 oz sesame seeds
1 oz sunflower seeds
1 oz pumpkin seeds
1 oz flax seeds
3½ tsp Diamond Crystal kosher salt
1½ T instant yeast
2 oz agave nectar
12 oz warm water
6 oz whole-milk plain yogurt

Put all the ingredients in your stand mixer, fit the mixer with the paddle, and mix on low speed for 2 minutes. Let the dough rest for 5 minutes while you clean the paddle and tidy away the ingredients. Fit the mixer with the dough hook and mix on medium low speed for 3 to 4 minutes. Turn the dough onto a floured counter and knead by hand for about 3 minutes. Spray a large bowl with cooking spray. Round the dough, pop it in the bowl, spray the dough with a little oil, and cover the bowl with plastic wrap and a towel.

The dough ready to begin its first rise

The dough ready to begin its first rise

Let the dough rise in a warm place for 45 minutes, then turn it out onto the counter, punch it down, and give it a stretch and fold: Stretch the dough to one side.

Stretch the dough

Stretch the dough

Fold that over the center.

Fold the dough over the center.

Fold the dough over the center.

Stretch the dough out on the other side.

Stretch out the other side of the dough.

Stretch out the other side of the dough.

Fold that over the previous fold, just like folding a letter into thirds.

Fold the second side down, like folding a letter.

Fold the second side down, like folding a letter.

Now do that again in the other direction. Put the dough back in the bowl, cover it as before, and let it rise for another 45 minutes. Give it another stretch and fold. Give it another 45-minute rise.

Punch the dough down and divide it into two (each should weigh about 1 lb 10½ oz, if you have a scale).

Dough divided and resting

Dough divided and resting

Cover those with plastic and let them rest for 15 minutes. Spray two 9″ x 5″ loaf pans with cooking spray. Gently form the dough into loaves and place them in the pans. Cover the pans with plastic and towels and let them rise until they crest the top of the loaf pans by about 1 inch.

Dough cresting above the edge of the pan

Dough cresting above the edge of the pan

If you want to decorate them with seeds, beat an egg in a dish and brush some beaten egg on the top of each loaf.

Brushing egg wash onto the dough

Brushing egg wash onto the dough

Sprinkle on some seeds. Peter suggests sesame seeds and poppy seeds; I used sesame and flax.

Egg-washed loaves sprinkled with sesame and flax seeds

Egg-washed loaves sprinkled with sesame and flax seeds

The egg acts as a glue to keep the seeds stuck on the bread. Egg white (or egg white mixed with water) also makes the crust shiny and a little crisper; whole egg makes the crust shiny and a little softer because the fat in the yolk slows down the evaporation of moisture somewhat.

Bake the loaves at 350℉ for 45 minutes, switching their places and rotating the pans 180 degrees about 20 minutes into the baking. The bread is done when the internal temperature is between 190℉ and 210℉. Remove the loaves from the pans and let them cool on a rack for an hour (or longer) before slicing.

A finished loaf

A finished loaf

And, of course, the crumb view:

Many-seed bread: the crumb view

Many-seed bread: the crumb view

Reference
Peter Reinhart: Many-Seed Bread. In Artisan Breads Every Day. New York: Ten Speed Press, 2009, pp 102-103.

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