- 3/4 cup (5 ounces) tepid water, approximately 70 degrees
- 1/4 teaspoon active dry yeast
- 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (6.25 ounces) whole wheat flour
Beat ingredients with a wooden spoon in a mixing bowl with high sides. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and allow mixture sit out at room temperature for 8-12 hours. It should have small holes and look a bit look like a sponge.
Final Dough Sponge:
- 4 cups (1 pound 4 ounces) 70 degree water
- 1 teaspoon active dry yeast
- 4 3/4 cups (1 pound 7 ounces) whole wheat flour
- 1 cup (5 ounces) rye flour
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1 tablespoon table salt
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine sponge with water, yeast, whole wheat and rye flours, honey and salt. Mix on low speed until dry ingredients are fully incorporated, 2 to 3 minutes. Increase speed to medium for 3 to 4 more minutes, until dough is smooth and pulls away from the sides of the bowl. If you don’t have a stand mixer, combine ingredients with a wooden spoon until flour is well-incorporated. Knead dough on a lightly floured surface until it is a smooth, elastic, cohesive mass.
Let dough ferment.
Place the dough in a large bowl lightly brushed with oil. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise for an hour.).
Divide and pre-shape dough.
Divide dough into two 2-pound pieces and shape into rounds. Cover and let rest 30 minutes.
Form, proof, and bake loaves.
Pat each dough piece into a disk and roll into a loaf shape. Place each in a well-oiled 4-by-8-inch loaf pan. Cover loaves with a clean plastic bag or tea towel and let rise or “proof” for 2-3 hours at room temperature. Score down the middle with a sharp knife and bake in a preheated 450 degree oven for 25 minutes. Turn temperature down to 400 and bake another 15-20 minutes. Bread will be a rich camel brown color.