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Sunday, 30 June 2013

"Local Breads" - Spiced Rye Rolls (Vingchter)

A rainy day is a good day to make bread (although actually any day is a good day if I have to be completely honest!), because I don't feel guilty about spending the time indoors!  And the day I made these was especially awful!  I don't even think the dog got a walk.
The view outside!
These Vingchter are an Austrian roll seasoned with the alluring combination of ground fennel and cumin, that smell completely divine whilst proofing and especially during baking!  They aren't shaped but are left to fall into individual irregular rolls.  It is a wonderfully soft dark dough, but is sticky and wet to start so is best mixed by machine.

I fed my rye starter 15hrs prior to making my dough - 50g starter + 100g water + 75g rye flour - and let sit at room temperature fermenting.  Room temperature during this time was probably <18°C as  made them at the beginning of May.

Rye starter ready to roll
I made this dough using my stand mixer as recommended.  380g water + 100g starter + 1/2tsp yeast + 380g rye flour + 120g high gluten bread flour + 10g salt + 1/4tsp each of toasted and ground cumin and fennel seeds. 

The dough was kneaded in machine using dough hook on low (#2) for about 10mins, then was left to sit for 10mins, then mixed on medium (#3) for another 10mins.  You should be able to see some strands of gluten at this time even though the dough will still be sticky and won't clear the sides of the bowl.

The dough was then fermented for about 2 1/2hrs at room temperature in an oiled bowl.  After this time it was much less sticky and had almost doubled in volume.

I covered 2 baking sheets with baking paper and dusted them with some rye flour.  With oiled hands I scooped out palm-sized portions of dough (about 100g or so each) and let them "plop" onto the baking paper in free-form shapes with some breathing room between each.  The "plops" were sprinkled with rye flour and covered in plastic to proof.

After about 50mins the rolls had spread and looked nice and pillowy so into the oven they went (I had heated the oven to 230°C prior) with a rack near the top and one in the middle (no  baking stone) + 5 ice cubes for steam.  After about 10mins I switched the trays around and rotated them (I have a hot spot back left corner!), and baked them for a further 25mins.

I managed to wait until they were cool enough to handle before I ate one, and it was a wondrous thing!  Not only was the smell of them cooking enough to bring the neighbours out, but the taste was splendidly spiced and unctuous - just with a dribble of butter.  I have since eaten with cheeses, jams, marmalade, for lunch with soup, for breakfast, and for no reason at all!  They froze really well and were great popped in the microwave to heat up slightly!  YUM!

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