As you may have gathered by now, I do like to cook and bake with the seasons. When I made my latest Suma order I had some autumnal baking very much in mind. I still have apples from my mother’s garden and although the wildlife got all of our cobnuts this year, hazelnuts are very much on my radar. So, I made an apple and hazelnut spelt rye sourdough bread loaf.
World Bread Awards
A couple of weeks ago, I had the real pleasure of being a judge at the World Bread Awards. Judging took place at Westminster Cathedral no less. There were 15 different categories and I was assigned to the flatbread one. I would have loved to be on the sourdough team of judges, but I learnt an awful lot about focaccia and the qualities that make a good flatbread. The awards will be announced on 11 October.
My recent Suma order not only included a large bag of organic spelt flour, but also some golden wholemeal flour. I thought I might use that to make focaccia. I’ve already requisitioned some of it to make a fabulous toffee apple hazelnut cake. I’ll be posting about that at some future date – see the picture below. Hazelnuts were part of the order and as you can see have been heavily used already. I’m particularly excited by the British fava bean and pea flours from Hodmedods, I nearly included some in this bread, but in the end I thought they’d be better used in their own right. I also have baking plans for the semolina, pumpkin seeds and pistachios. As for the macadamia nut butter, that is so good, I don’t want to use it for anything other than spreading it on bread – this spelt rye sourdough bread.
Apple and Hazelnut Spelt Rye Sourdough Loaf
I’ve just realised that in all my years of making rye sourdough, which I started after attending an excellent bread making course at Schumacher Collage with Andrew Whitley back in 2009, I’ve never posted a sourdough recipe. I’m quite shocked. Normally I make a straightforward rye sourdough, but occasionally I branch out and make something a bit different. This apple hazelnut spelt rye sourdough bread loaf is one such occasion.
Neither rye nor spelt flours need a lot of kneading, which is all to the good. In fact they both make great no-knead breads. The addition of both ground and whole roasted hazelnuts turned out to be an inspired decision. They combined beautifully with the tart apple and a little scented cinnamon brought out the inherent sweetness of the spelt flour. The house smelt just wonderful whilst the bread was baking and for a long time after too. The result was all that I could hope for. The bread is soft with a chewy crust and tastes totally delicious. It’s great spread simply with butter, but also works well with the macadamia nut butter. I have yet to try it with cheese, but I’m certain that will be good too.
Apple & Hazelnut Spelt & Rye Sourdough
- 75 g rye sourdough starter
- 225 g wholemeal rye flour
- 475 g wholemeal spelt flour
- 1 ½ tsp sea salt I use Cornish sea salt
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 75 g hazelnuts - roasted 50g ground, 25g left whole
- 1 large cooking apple - cored and diced but not peeled I used an unidentified Cornish variety, but a Bramley would work well
- The night before baking the bread, mix the rye flour with 450ml of warm water in a large bowl. Add the sourdough starter and stir well. Cover loosely with a plastic bag and leave to ferment overnight.
- In the morning remove 75g of the ferment into a covered glass jar and place in the fridge until the next time a sourdough starter is needed.
- To the remaining ferment, add the spelt flour and knead in a stand mixer for a couple of minutes. The mixture is quite wet, so it could be difficult to do by hand. Add the remaining ingredients and knead for a further 5 minutes or so.
- Form into a freestyle loaf and place on a greased or lined baking tray. As the dough is quite a soft one, a free style loaf will flatten out. For a uniform loaf, place the dough into a 1 kg/2lb loaf tin.
- Cover loosely with a plastic bag, ensuring it doesn't touch the dough and leave to prove until the loaf has risen by about ⅓. This could be anything from 2 to 6 hours depending on the temperature of the room and the liveliness of the starter.
- Dust with a little spelt flour and slash the top 2-4 times with a sharp knife.
- Bake at 200℃ for 40-45 minutes or until the bread sounds hollow when the base is tapped. allow a further 10 minutes or so if baking in a tin.
Other sourdough bread recipes you might like
- Einkhorn sourdough bread via Zeb Bakes
- Rye sourdough via Angie’s Recipes
- Whisky wort barley sourdough via Fuss Free Flavours
Keep in Touch
If you make this apple and hazelnut spelt rye sourdough loaf, I’d love to hear about it in the comments below or via social media. A photo is always good too. For more delicious and nutritious recipes, follow me on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or Pinterest.