I baked the porter rye today, but a friend of mine is borrowing my camera for his hiking trip, so no photos today...
Well, it didn't really turn out the way I expected it to, to say the least. I used my trustworthy 40% rye formula, and substituted porter for the water in the final dough formula; apart from water in my stiff levain, all liquid comes from the porter.
What first struck me, was that the dough didn't rise as much as it usually does during bulk fermentation. I found this odd, because if anything, I thought the porter would bring in an increased level of sugars and speed up yeast activity? Anyway, I continued through preshape and final proof. Also during the final proof I noticed that it seemed more sluggish and tired than it usually does. When I put the loaf into the oven, it had reached approx. 70% of the volume I usually attain for these loaves. Still, when I poked it and studied it, the loaf looked fully proofed. Well... When loaded into the oven, I got a massive
oven spring. The thing was really inflating during the first 10 mins., and had by that point reached more or less "normal" volume for these loaves. Some "rustic" tearing of the surface, but still... I was just happy the thing wasn't dead
The crumb looks a lot like yours, Mike; a lovely, almost wooden brown colour, and the scent of the thing is amazing. There's a strong porter aftertaste to each bite. What I didn't enjoy about my loaf, however, is that the crumb feels slightly gummy, or cakey, when I chew it... There's something about the texture to the crumb that I didn't expect and don't particularly enjoy. I'm not sure what kind of bizarre chemistry has taken place in that dough prior to the bake...
I love the idea of combining porter and rye, but I had some serious issues with my trial run today at least. Mind you, I didn't cook off any alcohol prior to mixing the dough, but I was (as always) very careful with time and temperature before baking the loaf. If anyone has any idea about what might happen when a large amount of water is replaced by beer in doughs, please give me a wink
Edited by hansjoakim, 29 April 2009 - 08:29 AM.