Total Time
Prep 4 hrs
Cook 1 hr

We like this soft dark rye bread with soup or sauerkraut type of meals. Atthough this bread takes a while with three rises it makes four loaves and freezes great. Recipe source: Bon Appetit (March 1985)

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. In a large bowl stir together the first six ingredients (water-fennel seed) until smooth to make the sponge. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let rise for one hour or until doubled.
  2. Stir down the sponge with a wooden spoon and add oil, salt and 3 cups of flour, stirring until combined and smooth.
  3. Stir in remaining flour (1/2 cup at a time) until you have a soft dough.
  4. Place dough onto a floured board and knead for 10 minutes or until dough is no longer sticky (you will need to add more flour as you knead the dough).
  5. Grease a large bowl (or I use a large pot) and add dough, turning to grease all sides and then cover bowl (or pot) with plastic wrap. Let dough rise for 1 - 1 1/2 hours or until doubled. Punch down. Let rise until doubled (1 hour).
  6. Grease baking sheets.
  7. Put dough on floured board and knead dough for a minute or two and then divide dough into four pieces.
  8. Working with one piece at a time, knead each piece into a round loaf and then place each round on a baking sheet. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise for one hour or until doubled. (Optional) With a sharp knife mark an "x" on top of each loaf.
  9. Preheat oven to 350-degrees F.
  10. Bake loaves for one hour or until done. To test for doneness tap loaves on bottom and if it sounds hollow loaves are done.
Most Helpful

i have stuggled with bread my whole life. this recipe WORKED! i loved it!

5 5

Very good rye bread. I followed the recipe exactly except I used carroway seeds instead of fennel. I baked the bread in loaf pans and 1 hr. was perfect baking time. Thank you for posting this easy and delicious recipe.

5 5

This bread is excellent. The only change I made was a little less molasses and I used caraway seeds instead of fennel seeds. This recipe is a keeper !