A touch of orange and a scattering of caraway seeds add zip to this strong, sweet rye bread.
INGREDIENTS (for 3 servings):
- 3 (.25 ounce) packages active dry yeast
- 1 cup warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
- 4 1/2 cups hot water
- 3/4 cup honey
- 3 tablespoons salt
- 1 cup white sugar
- 3 tablespoons orange zest
- 1 1/2 tablespoons caraway seed
- 6 tablespoons butter, softened
- 7 1/2 cups rye flour
- 7 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
In a small bowl, dissolve the yeast in the warm (110 degree F) water. Let sit until creamy, about 10 minutes.
Pour the hot water in a large mixing bowl, add the honey, salt, sugar, orange zest, caraway seeds and butter; briefly stir. Let cool to lukewarm.
Combine the yeast mixture with the honey orange mixture. Stir in the rye flour. Mix the bread flour, 1/2 cup at a time, until the dough comes together. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and supple, about 8 minutes. Lightly oil a large mixing bowl. Place the dough in the bowl and turn to coat with oil. Cover with a damp towel and let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 1 hour. Meanwhile, lightly grease three 9x5 inch loaf pans.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and divide into three equal pieces. Form each piece into a loaf and place in prepared pans. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise until doubled in volume, about 40 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 40 to 50 minutes, or until the top of the loaves are golden and the bottoms sound hollow when tapped.