Napoleon gave a common bread its name when he demanded a loaf of dark rye bread for his horse during the Prussian campaign. “Pain pour Nicole,” he ordered, which meant “Bread for Nicole,” his horse. To Germanic ears, the request sounded like “pumpernickel,” which is the term we use today for this traditional loaf.
I read somewhere that Pumpernickel Bread is bread for grownups. I think that might be right. You either love the taste or deplore it. I happen to love it. It’s rich and hearty and great for sandwiches or just with cheese and your favorite glass of vino.
I used a recipe from the Betty Crocker’s 40th Anniversary Edition cookbook. It’s the first time I’ve made Dark Rye/Pumpernickel bread and I do believe it turned out just dandy. If you’re a grownup, you might enjoy it as well. ;-)
Hearty Dark Rye Bread / Pumpernickel Bread
3 pkgs active dry yeast
1.5 cups warm water (105º to 115º)
2.5 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup shreds of wheat bran cereal
1/2 cup dark molasses
1/4 cup cocoa
1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon caraway seed
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2-2.5 cups dark rye flour
1/4 cup cold water
1/2 teaspoon cornstarch
Dissolve yeast in warm water in large bowl. Add all-purpose flour, cereal, molasses, cocoa, salt, caraway seed and oil. Beat on low speed until moistened. Beat on medium speed 3 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally. stir in enough rye flour to make dough easy to handle. Turn onto lightly floured surface, cover & let rest 15 minutes. Knead about 10 minutes until smooth & elastic. Place in a greased bowl and turn greased side up. Cover and let rise in warm place about an hour or until double. Grease cookie sheet & sprinkle with cornmeal. Punch dough down and divide in half. Shape each half into round, slightly flattened loaf. Place loaves in opposite corners of cookie sheet. Cover and let rise in warm place 40-50 minutes or until double.
Heat oven to 375º. Bake 30 minutes. Meanwhile head cold water and cornstarch to boiling, stirring constantly. Brush over loaves. Bake 10-15 minutes longer or until loaves sound hollow when tapped. Cool on wire racks.
Makes 2 loaves (12 slices each); 120 calories per slice. Yum. ;-)
- It takes 9 seconds for a combine to harvest enough wheat to make about 70 loaves of bread.
- Each American consumes, on average, 53 pounds of bread per year.
- Assuming a sandwich was eaten for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, it would take 168 days to eat the amount of bread produced from one bushel of wheat. A family of four could live 10 years off the bread produced by one acre of wheat.
- One bushel of wheat will produce 73 one-pound loaves of bread.
- Breaking bread is a universal sign of peace.
- Farmers receive approximately 5 cents (or less) from each loaf of bread sold.
- Bread is probably the one food eaten by people of every race, culture and religion.
- Murphy’s Law dictates that buttered bread will always land buttered-side down.