2 pkgs active dry yeast
3 1/4 c warm water
6 c all-purpose flour
2 c rye flour
2 ts salt
1 tb caraway seeds
1-1/2 ts poppy seeds
2 tb melted butter
3 tb granulated sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten in 1 tb water
Four days ahead of breadmaking, prepare the starter. Combine 1
package of the yeast, 2 cups warm water, and 2 cups all-purpose
flour in a plastic bowl or container. Cover tightly and let stand
for 2 days at room temperature. Then refrigerate for at least
another day (see note below).
The day before preparing the dough, combine 1 cup of starter, the
rye flour, and 1 cup warm water in a bowl. Cover with plastic wrap
and let stand overnight at room temperature. The next day stir down
the dough and add the second package of yeast, dissolved in 1/4-cup
warm water, salt, caraway seeds, poppy seeds, butter, and sugar.
Then add up to 4 cups all-purpose flour, 1 cup at a time, to make
a stiff but workable dough. Knead for 10 to 12 minutes, then shape
into a ball. Place in a buttered bowl, turning to coat the dough
with the butter. Cover and let rise in a warm, draft-free place
until doubled in bulk, about two hours.
Punch down and divide the dough in half. Shape into two round loaves
and place on buttered baking sheets generously sprinkled with
Cover and let rise again until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour. Brush
with the egg wash, and bake in a preheated 375 deg F. oven for 30
minutes, or until lightly browned and the loaves sound hollow when
rapped with the knuckles. Cool, covered with towels to prevent the
crust from hardening.
This will provide more starter than you need for this recipe. To
keep it going, replenish with equal parts of warm water and flour,
let stand again at room temperature, then refrigerate. Continue
the process each time you use some of it. You can also substitute
some other starter.