Bookmarked Recipe: Miso-Rye Bread
Not long ago, in the BBBabes’ FB group, Scott D mentioned that one of the breads he really likes to make is miso-rye. He wrote, “It’s my favorite toast!”
The mere mention of Miso Rye bread in David Lebovitz’s February 2012 blog entry, Pear-Fennel Soup, got me excited. David linked to Gontran Cherrier’s website, which was where the bread was purchased. Even switching into English on the site didn’t give me much of a clue about what’s in this bread other than the obvious. […] In the end I kind of had to invent my own recipe, taking a little from here and there and settling on a recipe that uses the sourdough starter and yeast. The miso-rye combination is delicious, especially as toast.
– Scott D, Scott_D.com: Miso Rye Bread
I made it a lot over a year. It makes the most delicious toast in the morning.
– Scott D, FB | Bread Baking Babes and Friends, Miso Rye
I’ve been making this bread for a year and a half now and have made a couple of minor changes to the recipe for more consistent results. They are the kind of adjustments a seasoned bread baker would make because they know the consistency that bread should have at the different stages. The metric measurements are all by weight.
– Scott D, Scott_D.com: Miso Rye Bread Updated
We have red miso in the fridge!
Immediately intrigued by the idea of adding miso to bread dough, I started to convert Scott’s updated recipe.
Almost as immediately, I got quite confused with the relationship between the volumes and weights he stated. How can 1/4 cup (60ml) of water weigh only 57 grams? And if 1 cup of all-purpose flour weighs 164 grams, then shouldn’t 2 cups of bread flour weigh around 328 grams instead of 278 grams as in Scott’s recipe?
So I started searching around the internet for other miso rye bread recipes. This lead me to Scott’s original recipe for miso rye bread that mentions David Lebovitz’s nod to Gontran Cherrier, which lead to….
I ate the soup with a crumbling chunk bleu des Causses and a few slices of rye-miso bread from Gontran Cherrier (I don’t have his recipe.)
– David Lebovitz, davidlebovitz.com: Pear-Fennel Soup
I recently learned about Gontran Cherrier’s Red Miso Rye and adapted to my method. The first part of this is a straight rye and the second part incorporates red miso into the mix. […] For Rye-Red Miso Bread add 150 gm of red miso to 450 gm water and mix into the dry ingredients […] Bake to an internal temperature of 200F (93.3C). The bread will be quite damp and need at least one full day to dry out. The taste continues to develop for two or three days.
– Paul Eggermann, eGullet Forums, The Bread Topic (2014–2015): Red Miso Rye
The flavor of this bread is unlike any rye bread I’ve ever had, thanks to the genius pairing of the malty aromas of rye with the umami sweetness of red miso.
Clotilde, Chocolate & Zucchini: Gontran Cherrier’s Rye and Red Miso Bread
Gontran Cherrier (can that be his real name?) is a wild man. His breads are like halloween costumes: arugula green, paprika orange, squid ink black. […] I love him, his shop, his ambition, his sense of humor. His bad boy good looks make him a stand-in for Brad Pitt. But the proof is in the tasting, and I am happy that his tidy little shop on the charming Rue Caulaincourt can be reached nonstop on my Métro line, for it’s easy enough to keep my kitchen stocked with a fresh loaf of his irresistible rye bread tinged with a salty touch of red miso.
– Patricia Wells, At Home with Patricia Wells blog: Brad Pitt Bakes Bread
Our original recipes, inspired by my travels, offer surprising colours and flavours: why not try a miso & rye bread, or the aromatic and flavourful monochrome bread range, which has since become a classic?
– Gotran Cherrier | Artisan Boulanger: Biography
I wasn’t sure if this would work – but I thought that as miso is fermented, maybe it will add a sour dough dimension. It turns out that it does. Its a subtle back taste and I’m intending to make more bread with miso and increase the amount of miso next time.
– morning glory, CookingBites Forums: Rye Bread with Miso (single rise)
Patricia Wells is right – Gontran Cherrier DOES look like Brad Pitt!
So. Staring at Paul Eggermann’s eGullet recipe, I’ve worked out that for 500 grams of flour, I should add approximately 100 grams of 100% hydration leavener (I’ll use whole wheat flour – simply because of the fear of producing varsol if I use rye flour for the leavener), 350 grams water, and 95 grams of miso.
Whoa! That seems like WAY too much miso! And Paul Eggermann planned to add MORE miso next time. Wow!
[A] good friend and even better cook reminded me that once you’ve listened to all the advice and tried and tested something, you must make the recipe your own.
– Rachel Roddy, My Kitchen in Rome, p.268
Rather than fight with other people’s recipes, I’ve decided to experiment by making a Tartine loaf – with 375 grams of all-purpose flour and 125 grams rye flour. Then add a small amount of red miso to the dough at the same time as adding the salt. Say: 25 grams (1.5 Tablespoons). Then, if we can’t taste any difference at all, the next time, we can try adding 50 grams of red miso.
Ha!! Best laid plans, and all that. We didn’t have that much rye flour!
Here’s what I did to make bread with a little rye and miso:
Tartine Bread Variation: Light Rye with Red Miso
based on recipes for ‘Basic Country Bread’ in “Tartine Bread” by Chad Robertson, and Scott D’s (In Scott’s Kitchen) miso-rye
makes one round loaf:
- dessert spoonful bubbling wheat starter from the fridge
- 65gm 100% whole wheat flour
- 65gm water at body temperature
- 80gm whole wheat (no 100% additives) flour, sifted (reserve the bran for after shaping)
- 380gm unbleached all-purpose (no additives) flour
- 40gm dark rye flour
- 6gm wheat germ
- 5gm malted barley chops
- all of the leavener, bubbling madly
- 325gm water at body temperature
- all of the Pre-Dough mixture
- 8gm salt
- 25gm red miso
- 25gm water at body temperature
- rice flour
- brot-form (or bowl)
- cast iron Combo Cooker (or: either Le Creuset Lidded Casserole Dish, or cast iron frying pan and large stainless steel mixing bowl)
- leavener On the day before baking the bread: Put the dessert spoon of starter (if necessary, drain off any alcohol that is lying on top of the jar) in a smallish bowl, along with 65 grams whole wheat flour and 65 grams water. Using a wooden spoon, mix everything until all the flour is incorporated to create the leavener. Cover the bowl with a plate and leave on the counter (or in the oven with only the light turned on) until it becomes bubbly and frothy like mousse (8-10 hours).
- mixing the pre-dough In the morning of the day you will be baking the bread: Check that a small spoonful of the leavener floats in a small bowl of room temperature water. If the leavener does not float, stir in a little more whole wheat flour and water – even amounts by weight – cover with a plate and leave for about 30 minutes more. Chances are that it will now float. Once it is floating, you can go ahead and mix the pre-dough.
- Put all the pre-dough ingredients, including the now bubbling leavener, into a large mixing bowl. Mix as well as you can, using your dough whisk (or wooden spoon if you don’t have a whisk), until all the flour is incorporated. Cover the bowl with a plate and leave on the counter to rest for about 40 minutes. Chad Robertson says Do not skip the resting period. Working with the nature of the dough, the resting period allows the protein and starch in the flour to absorb the water, swell, and then relax into a cohesive mass.
- mixing the dough: Pour the water into a small container, add the salt and miso, and swirl the bowl to mix it together. Pour the salted water and miso lumps over top of the mass of pre-dough.
- kneading: Use one of your hands to squoosh the salt, miso and water into the dough; use the other hand to steady the bowl – this way you always have a clean hand. At first the dough might be a bit messy. But persevere. Suddenly, it will seem more like dough than a horrible separated glop. When it has returned to being a rough dough, cover the bowl with a plate and leave to rest for about 40 minutes.
- stretching and folding: About 40 minutes after slapping and folding the dough, run your working hand under water. Reach down along the side of the bowl and lift and stretch the dough straight up and almost out of the bowl. Fold it over itself to the other side of the bowl. Turn the bowl and repeat until it’s a little difficult to stretch the dough up any more. You’ll notice that the dough feels significantly smoother. Cover with a plate and leave on the counter for about 30 minutes.
- Repeat the above step 3 or 4 times (Robertson says to do this 4 times in all). Robertson writes [N]otice how the dough starts to get billowy, soft, and aerated with gas. At this later stage, you should turn the dough more gently to avoid pressing gas out of the dough. […] A well-developed dough is more cohesive and releases from the sides of the bowl when you do the turns. The ridges left by the turn will hold their shape for a few minutes. You will see a 20 to 30 percent increase in volume. More air bubbles will form along the sides of the container. These are all signs that the dough is ready to be […] shaped
- proofing: Making sure that the bowl is covered with a plate, leave the dough on the counter (or if the kitchen is cool like ours in winter and early spring, into the oven with only the light turned on) for a couple of hours to allow the dough to almost double. (A good way to tell if the dough is reading to shape is to run your index finger under water, then poke a hole in the center of the dough. If the hole disappears immediately, the dough still need to rise. If there is a slight whooshing sound and the hole remains in place, the dough has probably over-risen. If the hole very very gradually begins to close, the dough is ready to pre-shape.
- pre-shaping: Scatter a dusting of all-purpose wheat flour on the board and gently release the the dough from the bowl onto the flour. (When the dough is ready to pre-shape, it will fall out of the bowl cleanly.) Using wet hands, stretch the dough into a longish rectangle, then fold it like a letter, gently patting off any extra flour that might be there. Continue folding until the dough is shaped in a ball. Cover it with a clean tea towel and leave the ball seam side down on the flour-dusted board for about 30 minutes.
- prepare the brot-form: Put rice flour into a brotform and distribute it as evenly as possible. (If you don’t have a brot-form, you can line a bowl, basket or sieve with parchment paper. You can also use a liberally rice floured tea towel (but then you have to deal with a floured tea towel once the bread is baked). If you do not have rice flour, it is possible to use wheat flour. However, it wants to stick and makes it more difficult for the bread to be released from the basket….
- shaping: Without breaking the skin on the ball of dough, use the dough scraper on the sides to tighten it further, by dragging it a small distance back and forth on the board. The ball will become a little smaller. Once it has been tightened, spray it with water and scatter the extra bran overtop. Then, use the dough scraper to place the boule seam side UP in the well rice-floured brot-form. Cover the brot-form with the tea towel, and place an upside down mixing bowl over top to keep the dough from drying out. Leave the shaped bread, away from draughts, on the counter or in the oven with only the light turned on for about an hour or until the ball has almost doubled.
- baking: To tell if it’s ready to bake: Firmly, yet gently, press your floured finger on the side of the bread. If the dough springs back immediately, re-cover the loaf and leave it for longer on the counter. If the dough gradually returns back after being pressed, put both parts of the combo cooker (or a cast-iron frying pan and large stainless steel bowl) into the oven and preheat all to 425F.
- About twenty minutes later, remove the hot combo cooker from oven (wear oven mitts!!) and place on a rack or stove top (unless you like burn marks on your counter… or board). Take a deep breath, and overturn the shaped bread into the shallow pan of the combo cooker (or the frying pan). Using a lame (or scissors, or serrated knife), score the bread. Immediately put deeper pan of the combo cooker (or stainless steel bowl) overtop like a hat. Put everything into the oven and immediately turn it down to 400F. Bake for 30 minutes. Remove the hat and bake for a further 30 minutes or so, until the crust is a nice dark brown and the bread sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom.
- cooling: When the bread is out of the oven, remove it from the pan and allow it to cool on a footed rack before slicing and eating; the bread is still baking internally when first removed from the oven! If you wish to serve warm bread (of course you do), reheat it after it has cooled completely: To reheat any uncut bread, turn the oven to 400F for 5 minutes or so. Turn the oven OFF. Put the bread into the hot oven for about ten minutes. This will rejuvenate the crust and warm the crumb perfectly.
:: salt: You may want to add less salt – miso is quite salty. But however much salt you use, I urge you to weigh it. For more raving about this, please see Salt is salt, right?
:: miso: I made an executive decision that the amount of miso Scott D calls for is too much miso for our delicate palates. Instead of 14% baker’s percentage that he calls for, I added just 4% baker’s percentage of miso. If we can’t detect the flavour, I will add more next time…. (Interestingly, the CookingBites recipe for Rye Bread with Miso calls for just 2% baker’s percentage of miso.)
:: leavener: The leavener is a 100% hydration, liquid levain. It takes about 5 days to create. (Please see our take on Jane Mason’s Natural Starter made with Wheat Flour.)
:: flours: The amounts of all-purpose and whole wheat flours in the “pre-dough” were estimated. Not only does Scott D use a rye flour leavener, he also calls for more rye flour – I think. Scott D uses a rye leavener, and also adds rye flour to the all-purpose and bread flours in his recipe. As far as I can tell from staring at the measures on his recipe, he calls for about 30% rye in his flour mix (Scott includes weights in his recipe but there appear to be typos). But I forgot to replenish our rye flour. It turned out that the rye flour I thought was in the freezer was actually 40 grams rye berries. I ground them as best I could in the electric coffee grinder. That means I only added about 8% rye to the flour mix – perhaps we can’t really call this a rye bread, can we?
Very interesting! When I added the miso to the dough, the smell was almost overwhelming. And yet, once it was mixed in, I could hardly detect it.
We cannot believe how active this dough is. It was desperate to rise! I was quite sorry that I had to leave yesterday before the bread was ready to go into the oven. T pre-shaped, shaped, and scored it. When I got home very late last night, the moment I got in the kitchen, I was overwhelmed by the fabulous aroma still lingering in the air. The bread was on the counter, already cooled.
I almost laughed out loud to see that the bread had split on its own at the top and that the place where T had scored it had pushed outward. It looks like the bread has a fat lip!
We didn’t cut into it until this morning. The crust had that beautiful crackly sound as the knife bit into it. The crumb is wonderfully soft and moist. But not too moist. It is delicious as bread!
But, as Scott D pointed out several times, this bread makes fantastic toast.
We couldn’t really detect the flavour of the miso; we could detect the flavour of the rye. When we make this again, I don’t think we’ll be adding more rye flour. But we might try adding a tiny bit more miso. However, if we do add more miso, I think we’ll reduce the amount of water a little.
Thank you, Scott, for introducing us to this wonderful addition to bread!
Gontran Cherrier, Artisan Boulanger
Gontran Cherrier opened his first bakery in Paris in 2010, and now has several shops in Paris, as well as a “dizzying” number in various centres in South Korea, Taiwan, Australia, China, USA, Saudi Arabia, and Thailand!
Dans les boulangeries Gontran Chierrer, les baguettes classiques côtoient celles aux curry ou à l’encre de seiche. Découvrez un savoir-faire français maîtrisé accompagné d’une touche créative : les recettes sont uniques et font du pain l’accompagnement indispensable de vos repas quotidiens ou de fêtes. […] Dans les boutiques Gontran Cherrier, on ose et brise les codes de la boulangerie pour vous offrir, en accompagnement de vos repas, le pain qui convient. Laissez-vous tenter par le pain au Seigle et Miso [In Gontran Cherrier bakeries, classic baguettes are nestled alongside curry or squid ink baguettes. Discover real French expertise accompanied by a creative touch: the recipes are unique and make bread a vital accompaniment to your day-to-day meals or celebrations. [...] In the Gontran Cherrier shops, we are bold and throw out the baking rule book to offer you, as an accompaniment to your meals, the right bread. Let yourself be tempted by the Rye and Miso bread]
– Gontran Cherrier France | Notre Savoir-Faire – Nos Pains [Our Expertise – Our Breads]
Our signature bread with lots of flavours, compact crust with hints of coffee and a caramelised taste.
– Gontran Cherrier Australia | Miso Rye Bread 1KG
Some time ago, Ruth (Ruth’s Kitchen Experiments) created this event to urge herself (and everyone else) to actually make the several recipes they have bookmarked in various books, magazines and internet pages. For a time, Jacqueline (Tinned Tomatoes) took over hosting the event. Because Jacqueline is vegetarian, she asked that submitted recipes be vegetarian OR that alternatives be given for how to make the dish vegetarian.
While “Bookmarked Recipes” is no longer officially happening, I haven’t let it stop me from participating in the event…. You might like to look at previous bookmarked recipes:
[M]iso adds a haunting umami element to anything it touches. […] I use red miso, which is a dark mahogany color, for stew and soups that call for long cooking times or glazes that will be cooked under a hot broiler or over high heat. Don’t worry about the brand […] — just remember this distinction, and you’ll be fine when shopping for miso.
– Edward Lee, ‘Birds and Bluegrass’, Smoke and Pickles: Recipes and Stories from a New Southern Kitchen,