This German bread is absolutely amazing. The big advantage is that you only have to wait about an hour until the dough has risen and is ready to bake.
I have tried many different kinds of seed combinations inside and outside the bread. One of the best, if you like caraway, is to roll the dough in caraway seeds, as these add a lot more characteristic flavor to the bread than sesame does.
Recipe for 2 loafs of four-grain bread
- 200ml / 0.8cup water
- 50g / 1.7oz oat flakes
- 50g / 1.7oz linseed
- 50g / 1.7oz sunflower seeds
- 50g / 1.7oz pumpkin seeds
For the dough
- 20g yeast (approximately half a cube) The fresh yeast can be easily replaced by a package (7g=0.24oz) of dry yeast doing the job just as well and saving you from buying fresh yeast all the time.
- 300ml / 1.25cups water
- 350g / 12.3oz wheat flour (type 550)
- 250g / 8.8oz rye flour (type 1150)
- 25g salt (just 2 tbsp)
- 75g / 2.6oz natural sourdough (either from a health food shop or from a well sorted, possibly more expensive supermarket)
Last but not least to roll the loafs in: 50g / 1.7oz caraway or sesame seeds (or any other you wish to try)
- Cook the water and add the oat flakes, linseeds, sunflower- and pumpkin seeds, stir thoroughly and let it soak for 2-3 hours. Don’t add too much water, as the dough might get too moist in the end.
- For the dough: Dissolve the yeast in the warm water. First add the soaked seeds, then the flour, salt and the sourdough. Either mix everything well in 8-10 minutes with a kitchen machine (5 minutes slow, 5 fast) or from hand.
- Put the dough on a floured working surface and let it rise for about 20 minutes. Knead one to two times in between, in order to obtain a wholly structure (A dry dough, which is very elastic at the same time).
- Divide the dough in half and form the halves into elongated bread shapes. Use a brush to apply water on the dough and roll it in the seeds you decided to cover your bread in. Then put the doughs on baking paper on a baking tray and let the dough rise for another 25 minutes. After 10 minutes take a sharp knife and scratch the dough on top carefully so as to obtain a cross.
- In the meantime preheat the oven to 240°C (464°F), circulation mode not recommended. While preheating, have a baking tray with water in the oven to increase the humidity inside, which helps the bread get its crispy crust.
- As soon as the desired temperature is reached, take out the baking tray and bake the breads in the middle of the oven for about 35-40 minutes.
After hopefully having the patience to let the bread cool down on a grilling rack, enjoy your bread with anything you fancy or only with butter.