These hearty oval-shaped breads are delicious served with the slightly sweet Cranberry-Studded Whipped Butter (page 111). We used Guinness for the dough, but you can substitute another dark beer, such as Newcastle Brown Ale, if desired.
Cooking Light DECEMBER 2005
Combine raisins and 1 cup boiling water in a small bowl; let stand 10 minutes. Drain and reserve raisins.
Combine warm water, yeast, and 1 tablespoon honey in a bowl; let stand 5 minutes or until bubbly. Add remaining 1/4 cup honey and beer; mix well.
Lightly spoon flours into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine 3 cups all-purpose flour, rye flour, and salt in a large bowl; make a well in center of mixture. Add yeast mixture to flour mixture, stirring until a soft dough forms. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead until smooth and elastic (about 7 minutes); add enough of the remaining all-purpose flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, to prevent dough from sticking to hands (dough will feel sticky). Flatten dough; top with raisins and walnuts. Fold over dough sides to cover; knead until raisins and walnuts are well distributed. 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, 1 1/4 hours or until doubled in size. (Gently press two fingers into dough. If indentation remains, dough has risen enough.)
Punch dough down; turn out onto a floured surface. Knead 1 minute; cover and let rest 5 minutes. Divide dough into 2 equal portions. Roll each half into an 8-inch-long football shape. Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Cover and let rise 30 minutes or until doubled in size.
Preheat oven to 450°.
Uncover dough, and make 3 (1/4-inch-deep) diagonal cuts across top of each loaf using a sharp knife. Bake at 450° for 10 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350° (do not remove loaves from oven); bake the loaves for 30 minutes or until browned on bottom and sound hollow when tapped. Cool on a wire rack 30 minutes before slicing.
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