Monday, September 2, 2013


Hier geht's zur deutschen Version dieses Posts

I'm baking a lot, but, since it's summer, mostly for sale.

And then there are other time consuming projects like painting windows (with some tireless mosquitoes for company), massaging my husband's cramped neck (after installing aforementioned windows), and hunting for those friggin' Japanese beetles that turn my raspberry leaves into lace.

Beetle "lace"!

My list of "Equal Opportunity Breads" still waits for more items to be checked off - I did some more, but got a bit listless after a few stubborn loaves just didn't turn out the way I liked.

But in a recent weekend edition of "The Guardian", master baker Dan Lepard published an interesting bread made with whey instead of water. From my last batch of Greek yogurt I had a lot of whey left over, sitting in my fridge, while I wondered what to do with it.

Pumpkin Whey Bread was just what I was looking for!

Ingredients for Pumpkin Whey Bread: pumpkin puree, seeds, and whey

Dan Lepard cooked fresh butternut pumpkin for his puree, but here in the US good quality canned pumpkin is readily available, and preparing and draining pumpkin puree a time consuming process.

I always have a supply of pumpkin puree in my pantry (to satisfy a sudden craving for pumpkin pancakes or pumpkin chocolate chip muffins). But for those who don't (or prefer making their own), I'll include a link to the procedure.

What I like about Lepard's loaves is his minimalistic approach to kneading. Much as I admire Richard Bertinet's breads: compare his 30-minute-complete-upper-arm-workout to Lepards 10 seconds of gentle handling.

Normally I would use a stand mixer, but this soft dough can be easily (and less fussy) made by hand.

Preferring longer fermentation (with less yeast!) I mixed the dough the day before, and let it slowly rise overnight in the fridge. And, (for the good conscience,) substituted some white flour with whole wheat.

The crumb has a beautiful golden color

My Pumpkin Whey Bread turned out really nice. It had a delicate crisp crust, and a rich, dark golden crumb. Very flavorful, it is a true multi-purpose bread, and can be enjoyed with ham as well as jam. It is also good for toasting.

Stored in a brown paper bag, it keeps fresh for several days.

Wet ingredients for Pumpkin Whey Bread plus yeast and seeds

PUMPKIN WHEY BREAD  (adapted from Dan Lepard/The Guardian)
(2 loaves or 24 rolls)

450 g good quality canned pumpkin (like Libby's or 1-Pie) (for homemade: click here)
450 g whey, lukewarm
    5 g instant yeast (down from the 7 g of the original recipe)
200 g pumpkin seeds, toasted and cooled
  40 g olive oil (50 ml)
900 g bread flour
100 g white whole wheat flour
  18 g salt (4 tsp)

In a large bowl, mix pumpkin puree, whey and yeast until well combined. Stir in pumpkin seeds and oil, then add flour and salt. Using your hands, mix until all flour is hydrated, and you have a soft, sticky dough. Cover with plastic wrap, and let it rest for 10 minutes.

The dough will be soft and sticky

Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled work surface and, with oiled hands, knead briefly (10 seconds), then place it in lightly oiled container, turn around to coat with oil, cover, and refrigerate overnight.

Remove dough from refrigerator 2 hours before using.

Mighty overnight rise means the yeast can be safely reduced

Divide dough into 2 equal pieces (or 24 pieces for rolls, about 90 g each). Shape 2 oval or round loaves (or rolls), place loaves, seam side up, in floured rising baskets (rolls seam side down on parchment lined or perforated baking sheets).

Place shaped loaf, seam side up, in floured banneton

Sprinkle breads with flour, and cover with plastic foil or a clean kitchen towel. Let loaves (or rolls) rise for 45 - 60 minutes, or until they have grown 1 1/2 times their original size (finger poke test: a dimple poked in the dough should not fill again, only come back a little bit.)

Preheat oven to 425ºF/210ºC, including steam pan. For the loaves, line baking sheet with parchment paper.

The bread is sufficiently proofed when it has risen by half

Turn breads out onto prepared baking sheet. Using a lamé or sharp knife, score in desired pattern. (Rolls: re-flour, if necessary, and slash across the middle).

Ready for the oven!

Place breads in the middle of the oven, (bake rolls on 2 tiers, using convection mode*), or keep second sheet in a cool place, until the first batch is done), steaming with 1 cup boiling water.

After 20 minutes, remove steam pan, rotate breads 180 degrees, and continue baking for another 20-25 minutes (rolls: 15-20 minutes), or until they are golden brown, sound hollow when thumped on the bottom, and register 195ºF/90ºC (instant thermometer).

Let breads cool on wire rack.

*)I bake breads usually with convection mode, my oven reduces the temperature automatically.

Submitted to YeastSpotting

Submitted to Panissimo:  Bread & Companatico
                                        Indovina chi viene a cena                                            


  1. G'day and how interesting, true!
    As JUST yesterday, I was thinking what with the whey I have would I do!
    Cheers! Joanne

    1. Isn't that a coincidence! I knew you could use it for bread baking, and I randomly took some of it here and there, but here it's a main ingredient.
      Cheers, Karin

  2. Hello Hanseata , I love your breads but I can't do it by grams and can I use something else for the (whey, lukewarm) and (pumpkin seeds, toasted)/ It looks very delicious this pumpkin bread,,,,

    1. Do you measure by volume or ounces, Maggie?
      Instead of the whey you can use a mixture of water and buttermilk, probably like 80% water and 20% buttermilk or yogurt. Instead of pumpkin seeds you can also take sunflower seeds.

    2. The NY Bakers have a pretty good table for volume and weight measures. You might check it out:

  3. BELLISSSSSSSSIMO! grazie tesoro per questa magnificenza!
    a presto

    1. Grazie, Sandra!
      Yes, I was very happy with the result, and will bake it again.

  4. Hi Hanseata!!
    Thanks fo this, it helps a lot to me..make my day good..
    Filipino Food Recipes
    try also :

  5. I made this bread using delayed fermentation and used less yeast. However, I shaped it shortly after taking it out of the fridge and I am wondering whether I should have waited like you did. I really like this bread.

    1. Great that you liked the bread, Simona! How much yeast did you use? I reduced it already from the original amount, but if it can be reduced more, all the better.
      You can shape the bread as well cold, it only takes longer time to rise.