This Pumpkin Cornmeal Einkorn Rye Bread with kefir milk is moist, slightly sweet, and nutty due to the inclusion of einkorn and cornmeal. Baking it in a La Cloche produces a crusty exterior with a soft crumb. The first bite has just a hint of pumpkin pie spice.
Judy, the host kitchen for the Bread Baking Babes for October, chose this Pumpkin Cornmeal Bread because it was sensible and seasonal.
Sensible and seasonal sounded great to me. I love all of the seasons, but particularly autumn, with its changing colors, falling leaves, pumpkin patches and cool, crisp evenings, to name a few.
The Babes had the option of making loaves or rolls for this challenge. I chose to do both. I baked my loaf as a hearth loaf, but due to the tighter, yet moist crumb, I think this would also make an excellent sandwich loaf. There are so many possibilities with this dough.
I substituted kefir milk for the buttermilk because that is what I had on hand. I also used a mixture of all-purpose einkorn and slightly less than 20% whole grain einkorn flour instead of regular all-purpose or bread flour.
Since I utilized kefir milk as the fermentation method, I reduced the amount of yeast used and let the dough cold ferment overnight in the refrigerator.
Instead of baking the loaf on a baking stone, I chose to bake it in a La Cloche; and when it came time to bake the rolls, I didn’t want to switch out the cloche for a baking stone midway through the bake cycle, so I baked the rolls in the cloche as well. Even though the rolls were a bit over proofed because they had to wait their turn for the cloche, they performed beautifully in the cloche. Why I hadn’t thought to bake rolls in the cloche before is beyond me, but I’ll be doing again, that’s for sure,
I forgot to reduce the liquid to adjust for baking with einkorn so I compensated by adding more flour. This was a fairly sticky dough, but the overnight ferment in the refrigerator made it manageable, not to mention delicious!
In hindsight, I should’ve baked the rolls first because they didn’t take as long to proof. Now that I know that baking rolls in the La Cloche works so well, I’ll definitely plan accordingly next time.
Equipment used to make the bread and rolls:
- Large mixing bowl
- Danish Dough Whisk, dough scraper
- Superstone La Cloche Dome Bread Baker by Sassafras
- Bread Lame by Mure & Peyrot
- 8 inch round bread rising basket and liner by Bread Experience
- Parchment Paper, optional
- ¾ teaspoon instant dry yeast
- Pinch of sugar
- 240 grams / 1 cup warm water (105˚ to 115˚)
- 240 grams / 1 cup warm kefir milk (105˚ to 115˚)
- 70 grams / 5 tablespoons melted butter or oil
- 112 grams / ⅓ cup honey or molasses
- 123 grams / ½ cup pumpkin purée (either canned or homemade)
- 18 grams / 1 tablespoon salt
- 108 grams / 1 cup fine- or medium-grind yellow cornmeal
- 120 grams / 1 cup whole grain rye flour
- 480 grams / 4 cups all-purpose einkorn flour, divided, add'l for sprinkling
- 140 grams / 1 cup whole grain einkorn flour
- 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
- In a large bowl, combine yeast, sugar, salt, pumpkin pie spice, cornmeal, and rye flour. Whisk to mix well.
- Add the warm water, kefir milk, melted butter, honey, and pumpkin purée. Beat until smooth (1 to 2 minutes) using a Danish dough whisk.
- Combine 240 grams all-purpose and 140 grams whole grain einkorn flour, and incorporate thoroughly into the batter. Add the remaining 240 grams/2 cups of all-purpose einkorn, ½ cup/60 grams at a time, until it becomes a soft dough. Add in the flour gradually. You may not need all of the flour.
- Cover and let the dough rest for 30 minutes. Perform several folds and turns in the bowl to start the gluten development. Scrape the bowl down with a spatula or bowl scraper.
- Cover and let the dough proof at room temperature on the counter for 2 hours. Fold and turn the dough every half hour or so. The dough will start to develop but will still be tacky. Cover tightly and place in the refrigerator overnight.
- The next day, remove the dough from the refrigerator. Sprinkle the work surface with flour and turn the dough onto the work surface.
- Divide the dough into 2 equal round portions. Let the balls rest on the counter for 15 minutes. Shape one round into a tighter ball and place it in a floured and lined or unlined banneton basket. Cover with t a kitchen towel and let rise at room temperature until doubled, about an hour or so. Since the dough is shaped cold, it may take longer to double.
- Divide the other portion into 8-12 smaller balls, depending on how big you want to make the rolls. I divided mine into twelve pieces, about 65 grams each. Place the rolls on a parchment-lined baking pan sprinkled with cornmeal. Cover loosely with a kitchen towel, and let rise at room temperature until doubled, or place in refrigerator for 2 hours to overnight.
- -45 minutes prior to baking, preheat the oven to 450˚ F with a la cloche on the bottom rack.
- When the loaf is proofed and the cloche is preheated, carefully place the loaf in the cloche base and score it in the pattern of your choice. Place the cloche in the oven and cover with the domed lid.
- Bake the loaf with the cover for 20-25 minutes, then remove the cover and bake an additional 15 minutes or so without the lid. The loaf should be a golden brown color and sound hollow when thumped on the bottom.
- Remove the loaf to a wire rack to cool and place the cloche back in the oven to preheat again to 450˚ F. Place the rolls in the cloche. You can place the rolls on the parchment directly on the cloche base or take them off the parchment, but they tend to deflate a bit when you do that.
- I baked 6 rolls at a time. You could probably fit 8 rolls in the base. I didn’t score the rolls because it would’ve deflated them too much. However, if you don’t proof them too long, feel free to score them as well.
- Bake the rolls for 15 – 18 minutes, 10 minutes with the lid on and 5 minutes or so with the lid off. Remove from oven, let cool on rack until completely cool.
- Follow the same process to bake the remaining rolls.
Adapted from "Bread for All Seasons" by Beth Hensperger
Would you like to bake along with us?
Judy is the host kitchen this month, and you have the option to make Pumpkin Cornmeal Loaves or Rolls or both should you choose. Look for the details on her blog Judy’s Gross Eats We’d love for you to join us.
Be sure to visit all of the Bread Baking Babes and check out their versions of this month’s recipe:
- Blog from OUR Kitchen – Elizabeth
- Bake My Day– Karen
- A Messy Kitchen – Kelly
- Judy’s Gross Eats – Judy
- Karen’s Kitchen Stories – Karen
- Notitie Van Lien – Lien
- Bread Experience – Cathy
- Feeding My Enthusiasms – Elle
- Thyme for Cooking – Katie
- My Kitchen in Half Cups – Tanna
- My Diverse Kitchen – Aparna
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