I later learnt that this fruit bread was well known bread in German spoken countries (Austria, Germany), where it is called kletzenbrot. Kletzen is a German word for dried pears and brot means bread. Kletzenbrot is traditional Christmas fruit bread (besides stollen).
This year I decided to bake this delicious bread (in simplified and non- traditional version) on my own and share it with others.
Rye flour, orange peel, roasted hazelnuts, chocolate chips, dry plums, dry apples, and roasted rye malt - MAGIC.
Roasted rye malt? It gives the bread that special brown color and little bit of sweetness.
" Breaking bread is the best way to feel connected. "
And since I'm sure you'll also be sharing your breads with others, I've prepared printable gift tags, which you only need to cut out and then simply decorate your delicious bread gift. Download the tags below.
And now, let's hop to the recipe.
Gratitude sourdough bread (with dry fruits, chocolate and nuts)
Yields: one medium-sized loaf
This bread was mixed in the evening (late afternoon), left to rise for 3 hours at the room temperature until slightly risen, shaped and then put in the fridge until passing the poking test (in ny case 12 hours). It was baked in the morning of the following day.
Baking schedule alternative:
Mix the dough, leave it to rise for 3 hours hours until the dough gets alive, slightly risen and puffed, shape it and leave it to rise at the room temperature until passes the poking test (time is dependant on the ambient temperature).
50 g whole grain rye flour
50 g water
1 tablespoon of your base starter (the one you keep alive)
all of the above sourdough starter (appr. 100 g)
225 g whole grain rye flour
225 white wheat flour (or bread flour)
2 tablespoons of roasted rye malt*
350 g water - 77% hydration dough
(pay attention to the water level, adjust it to your flour's absorbance - if you flour absorbs less water, add less water in the beginning, it is easy to add it more later if necessary)
9 g fine sea salt
40 g dry apples, chopped to small pieces
100 g dry prunes
50 g rum
60 g chocolate chips (I used these)
orange zest of 2 organic oranges
70 g roasted hazelnuts, chopped (roast them for 8-9 minutes at 230°C/446°F)
* if you don't have roasted rye malt at hand, substitute it for cocoa powder but make sure you add some (appr. 1-2 tablespoons) sweetener (honey, maple or agave syrup) to compensate for the bitterness.
1. In the morning, first prepare your sourdough starter. Mix 50 g of whole grain rye starter, 50 g of water, and 1 tablespoon or your base starter. Leave it to ferment until risen, puffed, active and bubbly, so you will be able to mix it into the dough in the late afternoon.
Next, prepare a fruit soaker. Mix rum, dry prunes and dry apples and let them soak until you are ready to mix the dough.
2. In the afternoon, mix the dough. First, dissolve all of your starter in 350 g of water. Add all of the flour (450 g) and rye malt. Mix well, knead for couple of minutes, cover the bowl with a lid, kitchen cloth or plastic wrap and leave to rest for half an hour.
3. After half an hour add salt, all of the soaked fruits, roasted hazelnuts, and chocolate chips and knead them well into the dough.
4. Leave the dough in the bowl for another 2.5 - 3 hours at the room temperature. Cover the bowl with a kitchen cloth to prevent the surface of the dough from drying out. If it's too cold, you might put the bowl in a slightly warm oven. What we aim for is nicely puffed and slightly risen dough after this first rise (bulk fermentation) - the proof that the dough is getting alive. You don't want to ferment it too much, as it can overproof in the fridge.
In the meantime prepare the rising basket and flour it well. I lined my rising basket with a kitchen cloth and floured it with whole grain rye flour and white wheat flour.
5. After 3 hours the dough should be puffed and alive. Take the dough to unfloured (!) working surface and use your wettened hands to gather the dough into ball. The dough is very sticky, so don't bother too much with shaping.
Transfer the dough to a rising basket, dust it with flour, cover it with the rest of the kitchen cloth, and then put everything into a plastic bag to prevent the dough from drying out in the fridge. Transfer the rising basket in a plastic bag into the fridge and let it rise until passing the poking test (when the indent you make with your finger springs back slowly and not all the way up). The dough should also be nicely risen.
My dough needed 12 hours, yours might need less or more, depending on how well was the dough developed after the first rise and activity of your starter.
6. At least 30 minutes before baking preheat your oven to the maximum temperature of your oven along with dutch oven or a baking stone. I used dutch oven.
7. When the oven is preheated, take the loaf out of the rising basket and transfer it to dutch oven. Don't score the bread (it will make a beautiful pattern by itself) and put your dutch oven into oven.
8. Bake the loaf for 20 minutes with the lid on at 240°C/465F°F and 20-25 minutes with lid off at 230°C/445°F and until bread gets nice dark color.
9. Cool on a cooling rack before cutting for at least 1 hour and then enjoy every bite of it.
What is your favorite way of bread sharing and what are your favorite Christmas surprises and breads? Tell me in a comment below.