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Buttermilk Rye-Whole Wheat Bread

I’m in a better mood today. ¬†Cat pictures did help, thanks.

I decided this bread was worth taking pictures post-baking.


I love rye bread.  I especially love rye toast.  I extra especially love rye toast when the bread has caraway seeds throughout the loaf.


This recipe is from¬†Bernard Clayton’s New Complete Book of Breads, and is one of the few rye bread recipes that doesn’t require a starter. ¬†I usually decide the morning of that I want to bake bread, so I haven’t had a chance to actually make a starter and use it yet–but someday I will plan ahead and make a sponge.

Isn’t sponge kind of a gross word? ¬†It makes me think of “corpus spongiosum”, which, if you have any knowledge of anatomy, is not something I should ever talk about on a food blog ever again.


Buttermilk Rye-Whole Wheat Bread (makes one loaf)

  • 1 C rye flour (I used medium-ground rye flour)
  • 1 C whole-wheat flour
  • 1 pkg dry yeast (2 1/4 t)
  • 1 T wheat germ
  • 1 T caraway seeds (I was generous)
  • 2 T salt
  • 1 C buttermilk (milk + vinegar for those of us admittedly bad at planning ahead)
  • 3 T molasses
  • 2 T vegetable oil
  • 1-1 1/2 C all-purpose flour

Combine the dry ingredients and mix well, then set aside.

Next, add the buttermilk, molasses, and vegetable oil in a small saucepan and heat until hot but not boiling.  Pour into the flour and mix for three minutes at medium speed with the flat beater of the mixer.

I love how specific Mr. Clayton is with his direction.  Makes it easy to follow for a non-professional baker such as myself.

Gradually add the all-purpose flour until the dough no longer sticks to the sides of the bowl while mixing (you’ll need to switch to the dough hook here). ¬†It’s okay if it still sticks to the bottom–less flour is more here. ¬†Knead for eight minutes.

Place the dough in a greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap, until it doubles in size (about an hour).

Punch the dough down and shape into a loaf.  Place in a greased large loaf pan and cover with plastic wrap again until it doubles in size (an hour and a half).  Twenty minutes before baking, preheat the oven to 375 degrees, and bake on the middle rack until dark (dark dark) brown.  It should sound hollow when tapped on the bottom.


I was afraid I burned it because the top was so dark, but it turned out to be just right.  I think next time I would actually take this loaf out of the loaf pan and bake for a few minutes directly on the rack so the sides and bottom could get a little crustier, too.


I’m all about the crust on rye toast.


Cool, slice, toast, and butter.

Like I said, I love rye bread.  Much more exciting toast.


Here’s to another busy week. ¬†With all my overtime last week (and getting a cold), I didn’t work out once last week. ¬†It felt great at the time, but now I feel lazy and ready to get back into it. ¬†Also, I really miss running outside. ¬†I know that some people do it during the winter (and props to those who do) but I don’t have that many warm workout clothes plus the sidewalks are still covered in snow plus I don’t really like being cold. ¬†As soon as it hits 40-50 degrees, though, I can manage‚Ķand I can’t wait.

I think I’ve gotten bored of doing the same Insanity workouts over and over, so I may switch to P90X for a while to switch it up a little (a friend gave us her copies of a few different workout DVDs–I didn’t go buy them all!).

Also, I managed to snag a photo of Henry attempting to groom Emerson (and Emerson barely tolerating it), but it was super dark and I didn’t want to turn the flash on, so sorry about the exposure. ¬†Aren’t they adorable?


This picture makes me think of Henry out at the club.  Too cool for school, man.


Here I go anthropomorphizing my cats again.  Have a good night and an amazing week!

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  1. Averie @ Averie Cooks

    Gorgeous rye bread! Saw it on FG and I have always been scared to make rye b/c everyone makes it sound so hard…but you make it totally do-able. The only thing I dont have on hand is the wheat germ. Do you think it’s imperative?

    1. Lauren Zietsman

      No, I’m sure you can skip it!

  2. Alexandra

    This load looks incredible! I love a good rye bread, and caraway seeds are really just the perfect complimentary flavor. And btw, every recipe I ever make using buttermilk should actually read milk + vinegar… it works, so why not?
    Your cats are too cute! Love that b&w photo!

  3. Nuts about food

    I promise you, once you start running you warm up immediately and it turns out to be much more pleasant than running in the summer or warmer months. I just wear a sweatshirt, gloves and earband and after about 15 minutes I actually want to take my gloves off! That is why I just cover my ears: I get too hot with a hat on. Then again, we don’t have snow on the ground most of the time, so that is a help. But it does get really cold.

    1. Lauren Zietsman

      you were so right. it wasn’t so bad!

  4. Susan

    I do love a good bread that makes excellent toast … and I concur. Rye with caraway seeds is just killer!

  5. Kathy-Lee

    Lovely! I made this bread and it tastes AH-MA-ZING!
    I rarely eat bread (I’m a low carber but mostly because I can’t taste bread or bread doesn”t seem to have a taste often, especially white bread) but if I crave bread, then it has to be high quality and taste. great
    And this bread satisfies my cravings! Rye and Caraway is a match made in heaven as well as rye and anise (ever tried it?)
    This bread tastes incredible toasted and I admit that I ate two slices toasted with hummus and apple slices on top!
    Thank you! This is a keeper!

    1. Lauren Zietsman

      I’ve never tried rye and anise but I LOVE anise so I might have to seek something out‚Ķ :)