Overnight Rye Bread

This overnight rye bread is one of my favorites.  A hollowed out loaf filled with spinach dip with the innards of the loaf for dipping is too wonderful to just read about.  It needs to be experienced.  The loaves freeze well and this makes a lot of bread, but the loaves make very yummy sandwiches, so they rarely lasted long enough at our house to make it to the freezer.

The recipe came to me from the treasured family recipes of one of the many people who have come into our family’s life for an extended period of time.  This man was an interesting connection that benefited us practically, but was emotionally a puzzle.  We helped him practically and I hope we helped him emotionally and spiritually as well.

How to make Overnight Rye Bread

2 pkg. yeast (dissolved in warm water 10-15 minutes) / 1 quart of milk /                          1 Tbls salt / 1 cup DARK molasses / 1.5 tsp instant coffee (dissolved in a bit of water) / 1 cup dark brown sugar (or honey) / 1 cup oat bran / 1 cup oil / 1 cup rye flour / 8-10 cups white flour

Mix milk, molasses, sugar (or honey), oil, salt in sauce pan until warm.  Mix with rest of ingredients.  Knead 15 minutes–adding flour as needed until the dough is smooth and doesn’t stick to your hands.  Cover and let stand overnight in draft-free place.

In a.m., shape into 6 round loaves.  Let rise.

Bake on cookie sheet 350 degrees, 35-40 minutes.  Brush melted butter on crust.

Makes 6 loaves.

Explanations:

These are dense loaves, so be sure and let them rise enough.

I found that cutting an “X” on the top of the loaves kept them from splitting and made a more uniform loaf.

I made this in my largest Tupperware bowl…..mixing it all in there since it is too much flour for the electric mixer.  If you mix and knead and let rise all in one bowl, you only have the saucepan and that bowl to clean up. Simple.

Kneading by hand works best if you think of “quarter-turn, knead,” “quarter-turn, knead,”  over and over.  Pull the dough from underneath to the top and push down.  (Good for triceps and biceps!)