During the late summer and autumn we make a lot of pickles and preserves from the garden produce and I wanted to create a bread that could hold its own, in terms of taste, with a lunch of cold meats, cheeses and pickles. To get the taste I needed to include some rye and then to back this up I added some porter from a small local brewery. I have now made the bread twice and it seems to go down well with my family. I was also trying to recreate something of the taste of the 'granary bread' which local bakers made in my childhood. The name comes from the stout (or porter) which goes into the mix and the fact that the mixed grain or maslin bread was the loaf of the yeoman farmer of yesteryear.
This receipe will make 3 large loaves plus a few bread buns.
650g wholegrain flour
650g malted grain flour
200g dark rye flour
25g dried active yeast
90g unsalted butter
400ml stout or porter
500ml tepid water
1 teaspoon of granulated suger
Mix the three flours together and mix in the salt. Add the yeast to 150ml of the water with the suger and leave in a warm place until it starts to froth, showing that it is activated. While this is taking place, cut up the butter into small pieces and thoroughly rub into the flours. Pour the yeast mixture into the flours and add the stout, followed by sufficient of the remaining water to produce a workable dough. Depending on the flour it may need a little more or less than I have suggested.
Tip the dough out onto a lightly floured/oiled surface and knead until it has a smooth and silky texture. This will take around 10 minutes, depending on the vigour with which you knead! The rye flour will keep it a fairly sticky dough. Return the dough to an oiled bowl.
Cover the bowl with a towel or clingfilm and allow to stand somewhere warm for about an hour or until it has doubled in size.
Knock back and portion out into the loaf shapes.sizes of your choice. I did try some of it as a plat, but the wholemeal flour tends to stop the individual strands sticking together as well as I would have liked and so I shall avoid this in the future. Cover and allow to rise a second time for about an hour. Bake in a hot oven (Gas mark 9) for about 25 minutes. The loaves are assisted by a roasting tin of boiling water in the bottom of the oven to create some steam.
In my oven I find that I can fit 3 large loaf tins across a shelf and then put the bread buns on a shelf above them. The bread buns will only take about 10 minutes to cook.