it's a great life, if you don't weaken (matociquala) wrote,
it's a great life, if you don't weaken

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Weird Ukrainian bread

So there's this bread I remember from my childhood youth, kleb, this chewy stuff with a glossy crust, dense enough to make your jaw ache chewing it, but moist, mostly deep black with little flakes of other colors in it, bits of seeds and hull and bran and...stuff, with a rich, complicated, bittersweet flavor that is nothing at all like pumpernickle, which it superficially resembles.

I haven't had any since the bakery that I used to get it from went out of business (They used to sell it by the quarter loaf. These were big loaves of bread!). And today, while I was looking fo a good blini recipe, because I had decided, hell or high water, it was blini for dinner tonight, I found a recipe for kleb...

4 cup Rye flour
3 cup All-purpose flour
1 tsp Granulated sugar
2 tsp Salt
2 cup 100 percent bran cereal
2 tbl Caraway seed, crushed
2 tsp Onion powder
1/2 tsp Fennel seed, crushed
2 pkt Dry active yeast
3 cup Coffee
1/4 cup Vinegar
1/4 cup Dark molasses
1 oz Unsweetened chocolate
1/4 cup Butter or margarine (1/2 stick)

1 tsp Cornstarch
1/2 cup Cold water

* Combine rye and all-purpose flour, set aside. In large bowl thoroughly mix 2 1/3 cups flour mixture, sugar, salt, cereal, caraway seed, onion powder, fennel seed and yeast.

* Combine coffee, vinegar, molasses, chocolate and butter in saucepan.

* Melt over low heat. Gradually add to dry ingredients. Beat at medium speed with electric mixer for 2 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally.

* Add 1/2 cup flour mixture. Beat at high speed 2 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally. Stir in enough additional flour mixture to make soft dough. Turn out on lightly floured board. Cover dough with bowl.

* Let rest 15 minutes. Then knead until smooth and elastic, about 10 to 15 minutes. (Dough will be sticky.) Place in greased bowl, turning to grease top. Cover and let rise in warm place, free from drafts, until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour. Divide dough in half, form into 2 loaves and place in 9-by-5- inch loaf pans. Or form into 2 round balls and place on greased baking sheet. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

* Bake 45 to 50 minutes or until bread sounds hollow when tapped on the top. Meanwhile, combine cornstarch and 1/2 cup cold water. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture boils. Stir constantly for 1 minute. As soon as bread is baked, brush cornstarch mixture over tops of loaves. Return bread to oven. Bake 2 to 3 minutes or until glaze is set. Remove from pans. Cool on wire racks.

Because I could not find rye flour anywhere (sometimes I feel like the only Slav in Las Vegas), I took a half of a package of knacke (Swedish rye hardtack) and ground it up in the food processor, and lowered the amount of salt in the recipe by 1/2. Also, I used whole wheat flour, because I wanted a denser bread, and I added a teaspoon of garlic powder because I remember a garlicky taste in the bread I used to get, and some extra molasses because the dough did not look dark or taste sweet enough.

Since I don't own an electric mixer, I used the dry-well method and kneaded the wet ingredients into the dry on a pastry marble.

The bread is rising under the pilot light in the oven now, because we have the air conditioning on. I'll let you know how it came out in an hour or three.

I'm so excited I can barely stand it.
Tags: food porn, food snuff porn, forensic cookery, forensic ukrainian cookery, kleb

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