Dean Brettschne­i­der of Baker & Cook shares some of his best bread and pas­try recipes


Dean Brettschne­i­der of Baker & Cook shares some of his best recipes

Fruit and Nut Dan­ish Rye Bread

Makes 1 loaf DIF­FI­CULT

Chock­full of grains, seeds, fruit and nuts, this loaf orig­i­nates from Den­mark. It is best eaten with salted but­ter, and a lit­tle apri­cot jam.

Quick rye sour­dough

15g bread flour

15g rye flour

20g nat­u­ral unsweet­ened yo­ghurt 10ml warm wa­ter

1/8 tsp ac­tive dry yeast

Sour­dough feed

15g bread flour 15g rye flour 25ml cold wa­ter

Soaked grains

160g whole rye grains 60g sun­flower seeds 60g lin­seed

10g salt

260ml hot wa­ter


160g bread flour

60g rye flour

100g rye sour­dough (recipe above) 150ml wa­ter, room tem­per­a­ture

1/2 tsp in­stant dry yeast

Soaked grains (recipe above) 40g dried apri­cots, diced

40g dried cran­ber­ries, chopped 40g sul­tanas

40g wal­nuts, chopped


50g white sesame seeds, rolled oats, rye flour or pump­kin seeds (op­tional)

Special equip­ment

19 x 11 x 11-cm loaf tin

1. Pre­pare quick rye sour­dough 1 day ahead. Place all in­gre­di­ents in a small bowl and mix with a wooden spoon un­til evenly mixed. Cover with cling wrap and leave to fer­ment for at least 12 hrs.

2. Pre­pare sour­dough feed. Com­bine all the in­gre­di­ents and mix well. Feed quick rye sour­dough with sour­dough feed, and mix with a wooden spoon un­til evenly mixed. Cover with cling wrap and leave to fer­ment for an­other 12 hrs.

3. Use 75g for this recipe and keep the rest in the con­tainer. Feed with sour­dough feed every 12 hrs. If not bak­ing daily, keep the sour­dough in a cov­ered con­tainer in the fridge and feed every 10 days or so. When needed, bring it out a day be­fore and feed it twice to make it healthy and strong again.

4. Pre­pare soaked grains 18 to 24 hrs ahead. Place all the in­gre­di­ents in a bowl and mix to coat with wa­ter. Cover and let stand at room tem­per­a­ture for at least 18 hrs or up to 24 hrs.

5. Place all in­gre­di­ents for dough, ex­cept for dried fruit and wal­nuts, into a large mix­ing bowl. Us­ing an elec­tric mixer fit­ted with a beater at­tach­ment, mix on slow speed for 10 mins, scrap­ing down the sides of the bowl oc­ca­sion­ally for an even mix.

6. Add dried fruit and wal­nuts, and mix un­til evenly com­bined. Al­ter­na­tively, do this by hand us­ing a large metal spoon. This will take some ef­fort as the dough is akin to a very stiff cake bat­ter.

7. Lightly grease the loaf tin. Spoon bat­ter into loaf tin. Us­ing your knuck­les dipped in wa­ter, press bat­ter into cor­ners of tin, then smooth it out with a spat­ula or scraper un­til level and smooth. Al­ter­na­tively, scrape

dough out onto a wet work sur­face and roll into an thick ob­long log, 2-cm nar­rower than the width of the tin. Place dough in tin. Sprin­kle with a top­ping of choice, if de­sired.

8. Cover tin with cling wrap and leave for 2 hrs in a warm, draught-free place. (Do not leave for longer as the dough will col­lapse if over-proved.) In the last 30 to 45 mins of ris­ing, pre­heat oven to 250°C.

9. Place loaf on low­est shelf of pre­heated oven. Im­me­di­ately lower oven tem­per­a­ture to 180°C, add steam and quickly close oven door. You can cre­ate steam by plac­ing some ice cubes into a pre­heated bak­ing tin placed at the bot­tom of the oven. Bake for 1 hr, or un­til in­ter­nal tem­per­a­ture of loaf is 96°C us­ing a tem­per­a­ture probe.

10. Re­move loaf from oven and leave to cool in tin for 5 mins be­fore trans­fer­ring to a wire rack. Cool for at least 6 hrs or prefer­ably overnight, wrapped in a clean tea towel.

11. If loaf is not cooled prop­erly be­fore cut­ting, the in­ter­nal tex­ture will not have set cor­rectly and the knife will ‘gum up’ with what seems like un­baked dough.

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