I am not a fan of pumpernickel bread, or any other rye bread for that matter. However, my husband enjoys a Reuben sandwich now and then, and I learned that two of my kids now like pumpernickel! Go figure! I'm glad to expose them to new flavors and textures of bread.
You know how smells can evoke memories, both pleasant and unpleasant? When I opened the little jar of caraway seed and took a sniff, I was instantly back in my mom's kitchen. She had a big pot of Sur Kål on the stove. Sur Kål is Norwegian sweet and sour cabbage, and the pungent smell of vinegar, cabbage, and caraway seed is one not soon forgotten!! The caraway seed brought this back to mind, and I was filled with a strong memory of my mom. I sure miss her. I called my kids over to take a sniff and after their "Ewwww" responses, I told them the story of their Norwegian Grandma's cabbage. Precious, precious memories!
This was a fun recipe to make! There was the standard first and second risings, then the shaping of the dough. But then the dough took a nap (rested) in a sling, dangling from a hook, in order to facilitate the dome-shaped loaf. How cute is this?
That tea towel, by the way, is from my Uncle Karsten in Norway. :) More memories!
After a 40 minute nap, the loaf is washed with an egg wash and sprinkled with more caraway seed. Then it's baked until deep brown and hollow-sounding when thumped on the bottom.
My loaves are definitely rustic. And my photos are definitely blurry. (Rainy day equals poor indoor natural light!)
My husband enjoyed a sloppy Reuben sandwich for supper that night, while the kids and I tried a small slice with butter. My favorite? No. But the memories that I enjoyed make it all worth while.
The recipe, found in the Baking With Julia cookbook, is contributed by Lauren Groveman, and can be found on her website here. Thank you Lauren!