Hearty Sour Rye Bread

Hearty Sour Rye BreadRecipe
Becky Luigart-Stayner; Melanie J. Clarke
These loaves of sour rye were everyday fare for Mennonites living on the Russian steppes. They were made with a natural sourdough starter and baked in ovens that were fueled by prairie grasses. In this recipe, yogurt replaces the sourdough starter.


12 servings

Recipe from

Cooking Light

Nutritional Information

Calories 168
Caloriesfromfat 20 %
Fat 3.8 g
Satfat 0.9 g
Monofat 1 g
Polyfat 1.6 g
Protein 6.5 g
Carbohydrate 28.1 g
Fiber 2.4 g
Cholesterol 37 mg
Iron 1.7 mg
Sodium 394 mg
Calcium 59 mg


2 tablespoons vegetable oil
3/4 cup chopped onion
1/4 teaspoon sugar
1 package dry yeast (about 2 1/4 teaspoons)
2 tablespoons warm water (100° to 110°)
1 1/4 cups plain low-fat yogurt
1 tablespoon caraway seeds
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
3/4 teaspoon white pepper
1 large egg, lightly beaten
2 1/4 cups bread flour, divided
1 1/4 cups stone-ground rye flour (such as Bob's Red Mill)
Cooking spray
1 tablespoon water
1 large egg yolk, lightly beaten
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt


Heat vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion; cover and cook 10 minutes or until golden brown, stirring frequently. Remove from heat; cool completely.

Dissolve sugar and yeast in warm water in large bowl; let stand 5 minutes. Stir in yogurt, caraway seeds, salt, and pepper. Add egg; stir well with a whisk.

Lightly spoon flours into dry measuring cups, and level with a knife. Add 2 cups bread flour and rye flour to yeast mixture, 1 cup at a time, stirring until a soft dough forms. Stir in chopped onion. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead until smooth and elastic (about 8 minutes); add enough of remaining flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, to prevent dough from sticking to hands (dough will feel tacky).

Place dough in a large bowl coated with cooking spray, turning to coat top. Cover and let rise in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, 45 minutes or until doubled in size. (Gently press two fingers into dough. If indentation remains, the dough has risen enough.) Punch dough down; cover and let rest 5 minutes.

With floured hands, knead dough 5 times. Shape into a round 7-inch loaf. Place loaf on a large baking sheet covered with parchment paper. Cover and let rise 30 minutes or until doubled in size. Make 3 diagonal cuts 1/4-inch deep across top of loaf using a sharp knife.

Preheat oven to 350°.

Combine 1 tablespoon water and egg yolk; gently brush over dough. Sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt. Bake at 350° for 35 minutes or until loaf sounds hollow when tapped. Cool on a wire rack.