Ron 2006-07-17 01:15:34
Here is a list of the major Russian bread websites (around 90). Some
have English sections and most have photos, so they may be useful even
to those who don’t know Russian.
I got the list from www.kolobok.biz, but that site is down down and I
had to use the cached pages via Google.
Anyway, it might be interesting just to look around some of the sites.
Hofer 2006-07-17 01:21:29
See also http://www.niixleba.spb.ru, especially
Last time I ordered (and got!) from Russia several books on bread
including y2005 9th edition of Auermans “Technology…”. I read it now
comparing it from times to times with the y1948 edition you posted as
..pdf in the past.
Cordial and sincere thanks for inspiring me into Russian bread with all
the info you posted at the group consistently from early 90’s. Reading
the archives on this subject about 3 years ago excited me and
challenged for a quest for perfect Borodinsky loaf.
I have posted two threads on Borodinsky bread:
It would be very interesting to know your opinion.
Ron 2006-07-17 01:23:04
Actually, I bought the 9th edition of Auermann and I was comparing the
The 1948 edition is actually more interesting, since they have removed
all of the recipes from the new edition. The reason is simple: they
have now published the recipes as a separate book, which I saw when I
visited the bread bookstore at the Krasnosel’skaya Metro in Moscow. It
is a very small book, but very expensive (around $20. US), because
everyone wants the official GOST recipes, which used to be included
freee as part of the Auerman book. I think that this shows us that the
change in the profit motive from pre-Soviet to post-Soviet days. I’m
glad I have the earlier edition of Auerman.
I have not had a chance to look at your threads yet.
Ron 2006-07-17 01:23:29
By the way, here’s another Russian bread freebie on the Internet:
There are a total of 10 Bogomolov food chapters (01.pdf-10.pfd), but
only 03.pdf is about bread.
Here’s an Australian bread freebie in English (but not sourdough):
Dave bell 2006-07-17 01:23:43
“New milk”? Site titled roughly “Everything on milk and milk products”
Hofer 2006-07-17 01:24:48
I think the 1948 edition only has an historical value. Amazing, how
much was known about making bread that years but the last edition is
really state of the art. Concerning recipes, they are a way
“old-fashioned”, an example is 2-days and more Rizhskij bread recipe.
For the recipes I can recommend the book:
“Sbornik receptur na hleb i hlebobulochnye izdelija (sost. Ershov P. S.
)” – 192 s.
“Sbornik soderzhit receptury i fiziko-himicheskie pokazatelja na hleb
iz muki rzhanoj i pshenichnoj, bulochnye, sdobnye, baranochnye,
suharnye i dieticheskie izdelija, luchshie nacional’nye sorta hleba.
Obshhee kolichestvo receptur sostavljaet 259. Krome togo, v sbornik
voshli 6 receptur i tehnologicheskih instrukcij na hleb soglasno GOSTam
1986 g. Sbornik javljaetsja objazatel’nym dlja vseh predprijatij,
zanimajushhihsja hlebopekarnoj dejatel’nost’ju, nezavisimo ot form
sobstvennosti, sistem i vedomstv.”
Costs about $7 (before s/h). I can send you .jpg first 33 pages with
the 6 above-mentioned tech. instructions.
Yeah, profit motive. I wanted 3 books including “Sbornik…”, from
They asked for $200. It looks like very developed profit motive.
I bought two more books but hadn’t time to read them yet:
Tehnologija hleba, konditerskih i makaronnyh izdelij, Puchkova L.I.,
Polandova R.D., Matveeva I.V., Giord, 2005, 559
Tehnologija hlebopekarnogo proizvodstva: Uchebnik, Cyganova T.B.,
ProfObrIzdat, 2002, 432
What kind of bread you bake now?
Ron 2006-07-17 01:25:44
The sentence in the new edition of Auerman that annoyed me is on p.
200, and reads:
“A detailed description of these methods with respect to individual
types and sorts of rye and rye-wheat bread is contained in the
collection of technological instructions and in the technological
directory. Therefore, only a very brief description is given here as an
example of several of the major types of rye dough preparation.”
I also picked up copies of Cyganova and Puchkova. Puchkova is going to
be multi-volume, but now only volume I on bread is out.
I would like to see the jpg’s by Ershov. You can send it to me at
After returning from my month in Russia, my culture was not in good
shape and I made the mistake of trying to bake by feel, instead of
weighing the ingredients. The first results all were inedible and went
into the garbage can, which I hate to do.
I started a new culture and decided to follow the Royter recipe for
Borodinsky bread. The result was not bad at all! My adaptation of his
recipe for around 500 grams of flour is as follows:
100 grams rye flour
270 grams water
1 TB kvas concentrate (koncentrat dlja susla xlebnogo kvasa)
1 tsp coriander
200 grams of starter at 75% hydration
Add starter to zavarka when zavarka reaches 85 F. Ferment for 4 hours.
205 grams rye flour
80 grams wheat flour
30 grams sugar
1 tsp salt
Bake at around 325 F. for 1.5 hours.
I’ll post the original and give the URL a little later.
Ron 2006-07-17 01:25:52
I have now posted the original Royter Borodinsky recipe at:
Hofer 2006-07-17 01:26:52
Excellent translation! But I really think that, how to say it,
ideologically, the recipes should be at another place, and official
“Sbornik” is the naturally appropriate one. I am reading the Auerman’s
book now and have a feeling that it is the best book of this kind (for
professionals and students). Dan Wing’s book also has no recipes chapter.
What is your culture?
That is a point I’d want to discuss! It is in the threads mentioned
There should not be any concentrate of any kind or molasses at the
stage of “zavarka” in any rye “zavarka” based (“zavarnyh”) breads! The
Royter recipe calls for “krasnyj solod”: “red malt”, that is rye malt.
Without rye malt (or barley malt: “belyj solod” as for Rizhskij bread)
and their amylazes and keeping the mixture at the temperatures of about
62-65C there is no sense for zavarka stage at all!
Waiting for your comments very much!
Ron 2006-07-17 01:27:24
That’s easy. It’s just whole rye flour and filtered water. Now it’s in
very good condition.
This is a question that I have thought about many times. I have grown
my own rye malt for flavor, but I always heated it to make it
non-diastatic. The reason is this: once I used a diastatic malt syrup
and it converted all of the flour’s starch to sugary liquid and ruined
the dough. I thought that it would be too difficult for me to determine
the “strength” of diastatic malt and that if I used diastatic malt in
the zavarka, the dough would have a high probability of converting into
a liquid sugar and would get ruined. So, I tried to get the malt flavor
and the other benefits of a zavarka, but without the diastatic activity
of the malt.
You ask an interesting question: is there any sense in using a zavarka
at all if it has no diastatic malt, since saccharization is one of the
reasons given for using a zavarka in the first place! I am not a
chemist and cannot give you a specialized answer. However, I can give
you some examples of books which recommend the use of a zavarka both
with and also WITHOUT saccharization. Firstly, the booklet Domashnij
Xleb gives a home recipe with a zavarka and no malt. The reason for it
.” (Bread with a zavarka is tastier than the
simple sweet and sour taste of rye and doesn’t get stale for a long
time.) You can argue that the author of this booklet is not an expert
and does not really know what he is talking about.
However, a recent specialized book, which you mentioned, also says that
you can have a zavarka both with and without malt saccharization. I
have in mind Puchkova’s new 2005 book, Texnologija xleba. On pp. 234-5
she talks about the saccharized and non-saccharized types of zavarka,
1. Non-saccharized. She says that you get some saccharization even
without the addition of malt: ” ,
.” (It’s considered that the
gelatinized starch of the scaled flour will be saccharized to a
significant degree by flour’s amylases during fermentation and during
the initial period of baking, without a special stage of saccharization
of the zavarka.)
2. Saccharized zavarka. Both fermented (red malt) and non-fermented
(white malt) types are listed.
3. Highly saccharized zavarka. New developed (artificial?) malt
preparations are used.
4. Saline zavarka. (p. 236) The recipe’s salt is diluted with the hot
water that is added at the zavarka stage.
5. Bitter zavarka. Hops are added to the zavarka water.
So, it looks like there are many kinds of zavarka.
By the way, I have some very active malt syrup from a Korean store and
I can always sprout active malt. How do you control it? Do you follow a
rule such as adding only one teaspoon per kilo of flour, which I have
heard? Did you ever get dough which was ruined by completely changing
to liquid sugar?
If you do not yet have the Puchkova pages or you would like a scan of
the Domashnij Xleb page, let me know and I can scan them.
Ron 2006-07-17 01:27:35
By the way, I looked at the subject of “red malt” in some more detail
and Bolgov defines it as inactive anyway, which I understand as
non-diastatic. ( :
, , see
http://www.hleb.net/ingred/430/solod430.html). (There are two kinds of
malt–white, which has active ferments and red, which has inactive
If this is so, then my use of kvas syrup in the zavarka is exactly like
red malt, since the kvas syrup is mainly a syrup made from
non-diastatic rye malt in the first place! So, maybe my adaptation of
the zavarka recipe was not so wrong after all.
If I let my zavarka sit for several hours at around 65 C., containing
the rye malt syrup, it may still undergo saccharization. The result
seemed satisfactory, in any case.
Jonathan kande 2006-07-17 01:27:45
I’m glad to see this threat up again, Ron, for, as you know, I love
Borodinsky. If only I could get my wife to like it; she just doesn’t
enjoy the flavor. I was delighted on a recent trip to Vancouver to
discover that the borodinsky I make tasted almost exactly like the one
I bought from European Bakery. Since I’d never had the “real thing”
this was reassuring.
I know it’s unorthodox, but I leave out the sugar entirely (too sweet)
and substitute honey for mollasses or syrup. I find the honey flavor
complements the corriander better, for my tastes.
Last week I tried Lionid’s “four stage” recipe. His bread was slightly
different tasting than your’s, but not really that much different.
Leonid insists you keep the zavarka at 145F to 150F for 1 to 2
hours, then cool till 86F for 2 to 3 hours. Your recipe leaves out the
“hot” stage. Did it make a difference? None I could tell, to be
I read on some site that “Borodinsky” was invented by the famous
Russian chemist Borodinsky; I had to laugh at that one.
Ron 2006-07-17 01:27:53
What a coincidence. My wife hates any bread that’s not 100% white and
she’s in Vancouver now.
Leonid’s point is that the zavarka only is there for saccharization.
But others claim that it helps the general consistency of the crumb. In
any case, I laid out some of my thoughts about the use of malt in the
I’m glad that my recipe worked at least. Especially since it’s made
it’s way around the internet and must have been used by several others.
The inventor you mention was supposed to be the great composer Borodin,
who also was a chemist.
Hofer 2006-07-17 01:28:05
I won’t argue with the author. It is a known method of using the rye
(or wheat) flour own amylase for amylase-fermentation
(saccarification). The method is recommended in some recipes with the
malt when a part of the flour (about 10%) is added to zavarka at the
end, after mixing in the hot water.
Right. The book is here. It is chapter 7: “Preparing dough from wheat
(!) flour”. Before years, in Auerman’s book the conclusion was that
there was no support found for use zavarka for wheat bread.
To the contrary, the rye bread made with zavarka called acc. to Russian
classification “improved” bread as opposite to the (poor’s) bread w/o zavarka.
It is in the threads that were posted earlier. I buy (post order) rye
malt grains from US homebrew stores (you are lucky, there are plenty
Ask not to crush: it stales fast. Grind it coarsely before use. And I
use it strictly as for the recipe (Royter’s or any other): 5%, 50g for
every (800g rye + 150g wheat) of the flour.
I had numerous fiascos for different, most often not clear for me
reasons. Now the bread rocks, but sometimes disasters happen: my batch
is 4 loafs, it is 2 weeks bread supply. Then all my family suffers, but
they encourage me saying that the bread anyway better than the store
In any case the flaws are not on the over-sweet side. For my
understanding, there is no other reason for keeping zavarka for 2 up to
13 hours at about 65C as for saccarification of starches.
And why you use kvas or other concentrate instead of molasses? Are
there not molasses in US? The joke is, I use US made molasses and
Carl’s starter and, I suspect, US grain rye flour.
It could be, that these amounts of sugars frighten. For 4 loafs: 100g
rye malt (makes sugar), 80g molasses, 120g (!) table sugar. Hands are
shaking. But sugars are the fuel for fermentation. Zymazes transfer
them to alcohol and CO2. I give all the credit to people who formulate
the recipe! It is GOST! End eventually the bread should be as it should be: sweet-sour.
Thank you. I have Puchkov book. Would be glad to get Domashnij Xleb
Ron 2006-07-17 01:28:14
The reason I use kvas concentrate is that it is a syrup made almost
entirely of dark rye malt and I sometimes use it instead of the dark
rye malt grain that is specified as an ingredient for the zavarka. I
consider molasses as a substitute for the syrup called “patoka,” which
is added to the final dough. There are Russian grocery stores in all of
the nearby cities and they almost always sell the koncentrat kvasnogo
susla. In the old days, I could only buy it in Russia, but now it is
easy to find in the U.S.
Where are you located? I understand from you message that you are not
in the U.S.
Hofer 2006-07-17 01:28:32
I thought that there was not any reason for looking for something to
substitute rye malt when you could get rye malt. This concentrate is obviously non-diastatic.
Yes, but it is not seen in your translation for Royter’s Borodinsky,
when it is there.
I am in Haifa, Israel from 1987. Formerly from Ukraine.
Ron 2006-07-17 01:28:39
In the first place, I have posted the recipes from Domashnij Xleb
(http://www.indiana.edu/~pollang/dom_xleb.pdf), where you can see the
Zavarnoj Xleb without malt on the second page.
Secondly, my recipe was not a translation of Royter, but an adaptation.
That means that I keep the basic idea, but change it in certain ways,
according to the way I actually make it. I did not want as much sugar
as Royter uses, so I omitted the molasses when I made it and I was
satisfied with the result.
If Bolgov’s website is correct that red (=roasted) malt is not
diastatic anyway, it doesn’t matter if I use red malt, red malt syrup,
or some other malt flavoring. Now, white (active) malt would be a
different matter, as I understand it, unless Bolgov’s website
(http://www.hleb.net/ingred/430/solod430.html) is wrong and red malt
really does have diastatic properties
Ron 2006-07-17 01:28:49
I have now found more information that saccharization is not necessary
in the 9th edition of Auerman’s book. By the way, it is now a new
tradition to place the Zavarka chapter under wheat bread preparation,
instead of rye bread preparation. Both Puchkova and the new edition of
Auerman also put the Zavarka chapter there, even though the discussion
also refers to rye. I would have put the Zavarka chapter in the rye
If you look at page 175 of the 9th edition of Auerman, the paragraph
beginning “Prezhde osaxarivaniju…” explains that saccharization used
to be used for two kinds of zavarka: one used to create natural yeast
starters and also the one used only to improve the structure of the
bread. The latest conclusion is that saccharization is NOT necessary
for improving the bread structure:
(Experiments carried out in the VNIIXP lab…permit us to consider that
the saccharization is unnecessary for scalded dough which is used for
Ron 2006-07-17 01:31:59
Here’s a website (http://www.inagro.ru/i_solod.htm), from the malting
company Inagro, that explains the difference between “red malt” and
“white malt” for the purposes of baking bread. The red malt is first
roasted at 65 C., but then dried at 90-100 C., which inactivates it.
This type is also referred to as “fermented rye malt.” It specifically
states that this type is used for Borodin bread (I’ve come to the
conclusion that this bread should be called Borodin and not Borodinsky,
since it was named after the composer Borodin.)
( 90-100 ),
On the other hand, unfermented “white (or light) rye malt” is never
brought up to a high temperature, so its enzymes stay active. This type
is used for other types of bread, such as Riga and Vitebsk bread.
Hofer 2006-07-17 01:32:38
The quotation you have brought apply specifically to wheat bread. The
title (in the Auerman’s 9th edition, p. 173) called explicitly
“Zavarkas and their use for preparing w h e a t bread” in chapter V
“Preparing of w h e a t dough”.
The tradition to place the Zavarka chapter under wheat bread
instead of rye bread preparation is not new: in Auerman’s 1948 edition
it is in “Basic techniques for preparing wheat dough” chapter (p. 197,
As I have posted earlier: “Right. The book is here. It is chapter 7:
“Preparing dough from wheat (!) flour”. Before years, in Auerman’s book
the conclusion was that there was no support found for preparing
zavarka for wheat bread.
To the contrary, the rye bread made with zavarka called acc. to Russian
classification “improved” bread as opposite to the (poor’s) bread w/o
zavarka.” Ron wrote:
Inagro doesn’t bring the whole picture. As you now can see in Ershov’s
“Recipes compilation…” (that even has a law at his side, as for the
funny preface of the author), there are two kind of red (rye) malt:
fermented as for “Lubitel’skij bread”, p.5: the same as for Borodin
bread and unfermented as for “Delikatesnij bread”, p.12.
Giving instructions for making zavarka for “Lubitel’skij bread” the
following words appear (p. 6): “For better starch saccarification a
part of the flour (5-10%) is brought at the end of zavarka preparation
at the temperature not exceeding 65C. The prepared zavarka is left for
saccarification”. “Say no more!”.
But two more things:
– As for “Rossijskiy” (70% rye/30% wheat) (p. 22) and for “Stolichniy”
(50%/50%) p.25 zavarka is made (optionally) with no malt at all (at the
rate 1:2.5 flour to water)
– “Rizhskij bread” alternatively could be made with unfermented rye
malt (and not “white” barley malt). The only recipe for “Rizhskij
bread” I have found except the antique “two days-two nights” Auerman’s
recipe is the following one:
Summing up, my conclusions are:
– There are enough amylases in rye flour for saccarification even w/o
malt at all (fermented or unfermented)(at the right temperatures of
about 62-65C). It could be that fermented rye malt has some residual
diastatic power: should see the standard for this malt.
– In zavarka the starch gelatinized, and if not saccarified at zavarka
stage, will be easily saccarified by flour amylases at dough or
sponge-dough stages. In Fig. 22 p.175 Auerman’s 9th (the same in 1948
edition) you can see the influence of different kinds of zavarka on
sugars content in zavarka and bread. My comments: no zavarka – no
sugars, no fuel for gas-processing; no matter, zavarka with or w/o
saccarification: residual sugars are the same.
I made “my” Borodin accordingly: not having fermented “red” rye malt
prefer to make zavarka with compromising unfermented rye malt at 62-65C
for at least 90 minutes.
Ronald, do you have a full copy of Auerman’s 1948 edition? If you have,
is there any chance to see it on the net? It is thrilling but when
pieces are absent…
Ron 2006-07-17 01:32:47
I’m sorry that I do not own Auerman 1948. Our library also does not own
it. I can borrow it via interlibrary loan. I did that once and decided
to scan only the sections of most interest to me, concerning rye. The
reason was that it took a lot of time to do the scanning. I was
thinking about getting it again and trying to scan more, but I don’t
have the time for this right now. If your library subscribes to the
“interlibrary loan” system, maybe you can get it too. I’m not sure if
they have that system in your country, but we have it in university
libraries in the U.S.
I now have a new question concerning hydration percentages of rye
bread. Outside Russia, it is common to give an estimate of the quantity
of water in a recipe. However, in Russian recipes, the water quantity
is only given for the “zavarka” and “zakvaska,” but not for the dough
(“testo”) stage. In the dough stage, you are told to “calculate” the
amount of water (“po raschetu”), based on the final moisture needed in
the crumb (“mjakish”).
Well, the zavarka type breads, such as Borodinsky, seem to be using
around 67% hydration, but the final moisture level in the crumb is
never above 50%. The loss in baking is only supposed to be around 1-2%,
so why is the zavarka hydration so much more than the final crumb
moisture (“vlazhnost'”)? Is it because the gelatinization of the
zavarka changes the moisture ratio or is there some other reason?
An example of the calculation of hydration can be seen in Cyganova’s
book, pp. 155-6. This is also on the Internet, see:
In fact, there is a rather big Russian bread library on the Internet,
D*** adams 2006-07-17 01:32:56
Well, here is a question:
Why would one expect any more amylase in rye than in any
other grain, like wheat, for instance, unless it had been malted
(sprouted), as might occur spontaneously if it had been harvested
in a damp condition (as may have been usual in recent historic
in certain climes)?
Possibly the ordinary rye flours available in north america are
different in that respect than those from various other geographic
Ron 2006-07-17 01:33:04
With the caution that I am a total non-specialist, I could only hazard
the guess that the amylase quantity in rye results from genetic, rather
than environmental factors.
page 25 for further amplification.
Samartha deva 2006-07-17 01:33:16
I am not sure what’s the issue with 67 % and rye based breads, that’s
Apart from that, one factor of weight loss is making the Zavarka i. e.
dump boiling water into the flour. The cause is evaporation. That’s why
those recipes have much higher hydration when taking total water used
and the molasses into account.
(For the casual, non-Russian reader:
What I find interesting is that you haven’t noticed a significant weight
loss (around 10 % in my home baking environment) when making the Zvarka
or any scalding of rye for that matter and I conclude from that you
The other fact which evades you despite all your apparently
knowledgeable posts is that you can go much higher in hydration with
rye. 70 % with light rye, 80 % with full grain rye, as seen there:
(for the geneticists here, that was with US and possibly Canadian rye)
Seems you are not doing any rye baking either and then you try to tell
the Russian folks how they should name their bread correctly?
Get a life!
Ron 2006-07-17 01:33:27
1. I am familiar with higher hydration rates for rye and have used them
many times. What surprised me was my Russian book’s guideline about
using a quantity of water which is close to the final moisture in the
bread, which is never listed as over 50%. I usually use 70% hydration
or above and my question was directed at the passage in the particular
Russian book that I quoted.
2. My comments about the name of Borodin(sky) bread were not an attempt
to tell Russians what they should call this bread, but a comment on the
problems of how to translate this term into English. My field is
actually Russian linguistics, so I don’t think that I have strayed too
far from my territory.
Hofer 2006-07-17 01:34:05
Thank you. Indeed, I can try to order it at work or in the Technion library.
Thank you once more. As for me, in all that is concerning Russian bread
you have a magic ability to inspire answers and solutions. “My” Borodin
or here at the Group, in broken English.
Let the above English version be the example.
For the first, definitions. What is called humidity in Russian is, for
every stage, total of water content that takes into consideration the
water content of every ingredient of the dough, divided by the whole
weight of the stage. Water content of flour 14.5%, of malt 10%, of
salt 3.5% and so on (see p.291 Aurman 9th).
Final crumb water content is experimentally found and is a reference
value for us. It is 0.5-1% higher than dough w.c. and there is no – at
all – contradiction with the fact that during baking bread losses about
8-10% of its weight because it crumb water content and not bread water
content. Knowing standard for Borodin 1kg loaf crumb water content:
48.0% you find the dough w.c.: 48.5-49%.
Now you have an equation with only one absent: last water addition.
In the example we will find it and also find the hydration for English
Working starter: 70g storage starter (40g rye, 30g water) + 60g rye
flour + 40g water.
Water in rye flour – 14.5% of (40g + 60g): 14.5g
Starter water content: (30+40+14.5)/170=0.497; 49.7%
The recipe says 48-50%: very good start!
Zavarka (mash) stage: 150g rye flour + 500g water, 50g rye malt and 3g
Water in rye flour – 14.5% of 150g: 21.7g
Water in rye malt and coriander – 10% of 53g: 5.3g
Zavarka water content: (500+21.7+5.3)/703=0.750; 75.0%
The recipe says 74-76%: very good approximation!
Sponge: 170g of the working starter and 350g of rye flour + all!!!
zavarka – 703g. Any at all imaginable evaporation “angels share” loss
of weight for zavarka: as the recipe states – what you put is what you
They (homebrewers) say that to evaporate 10% of liquid one should
rolling boil for 40-60 minutes.
Water in rye flour – 14.5% of 350g: 50.8g
Sponge water content: (84.5+527+50.8)/(170+703+350)=662.3/1223=0.542;
The recipe reads 53-55%: almost too good to be true!
And eventually the dough: the sponge + 200g rye flour + 150g wheat
bread flour + 10g salt + 60g sugar + 40g molasses + 2g coriander + X
additional water. The known water content for the dough is 48.5-49%.
Water in rye flour – 14.5% of 200g: 29.0g
Water in wheat flour – 14.5% of 150g: 21.7g
Water in coriander – 10% of 2g: 0.2g
Water in salt – 3.5% of 10g: 0.35g
Water in sugar – 3.5% of 60g: 2.10g
Now, molasses is not “liquid”: it is about 70-80% sugars and
subsequently 20-30% water only.
Water in molasses – 25% of 40g: 10g
The equation for added water:
X=196g additional water.
“Clear” water: 30+40+500+196=766g
Flours and malt grains: 40+60+150+50+350+200+150=1000
Hydration: 76.6% – not drinking water but quite substantial.
This sado-mazo calculation procedure seems not having sense when
amounts are measured in cups and Tbs. When production is millions of
tons a year 3.5% water in salt doesn’t seem a joke. Even for the
hobbist like me it is educational.
Thank you again for the inspiration.
Hofer 2006-07-17 01:34:22
There are (in flours) alfa- and beta-amylase. Beta-amylase mostly
converts starches to maltose and less to dextrins.
Alfa-amylase mostly converts starches to dextrins and less to maltose.
Not sprouted wheat flour contains plenty of beta-amylase. Sprouted
wheat flour also contains alfa-amylase.
Not sprouted rye flour contains beta-amylase and active alfa-amylase.
Sprouted rye flour contains even more alfa-amylase. Rye flour amylases
are more temperature stable. Starches of rye flour are affected at
lower temperatures than that of wheat.
Baking with different amylase count wheat and rye flours could be
fine-tuned by dough acidification.
I would say rye flour from US is not different in this respect or any
Ron 2006-07-17 01:34:32
Thank you for your reply.
The reason for my not understanding the difference between “hydration”
and “moisture percentage” is that I failed to realize that the
hydration percentage (e.g. 70% hydration) is measured only as the
percentage of water compared only to the DRY ingredients, while the
Russian “moisture percentage (vlazhnost’ testa)” is measured as the
percentage of water compared to ALL the ingredients.
If you take simple 100% rye bread (see the chart
http://www.indiana.edu/~pollang/royter_table.pdf), you need a final
moisture of 51%. The only real ingredient other than water is rye
flour. If we assume 15% moisture in the flour, you have 85 kilos of
pure dry flour left. So, to get the required final 51% moisture, you
add 73 liters of water for a 73% hydration, which gives a dough total
mass of 173 kilos. 49% dry ingredients (flour minus moisture) and 51%
water (added 73 liters plus 15% moisture assumed in flour).
The only remaining problem is to calculate your flour moisture. This is
guessed for us in most recipes I’ve see outside Russia, but you’re left
to estimate it for yourself in these Russian recipes.
I’m slow (apologies to Samartha!!!), but I finally got it.
Hofer 2006-07-17 01:34:50
There is no even 1% (one percent) of weight loss at zavarka stage.
Leaving for 1-2 hours flour-water mixture at about 65C in a closed bowl
or pot doesn’t cause any perceptible weight loss. And even wanting
deliberately to dry zavarka out by keeping it open, there is no chance
to succeed in getting 10% weight loss, only in miraculous baking
environment. Which you definitely have (I can’t assume that you never made zavarka before).
One can make good bread when the recipe is from reliable source, even
miscalculating the humidity. Misinterpreting the source is quite
Hofer 2006-07-17 01:34:58
”Outside Russia” it is just assumed as an average, not allowing you to
“fine-tune” the recipe for optimal “real” hydration. But I’m almost
sure that everywhere in mass-production of bread (mostly cursed
supermarket bread) the “Russian-style” is the procedure: nobody wants
to throw money “to the water”.
See, for example, opus named “Determination of Mathematical Relation
for Necessary Mass of Dough for Obtaining Bread with Defined Mass” at
I am pleased that molasses water content is 25%: exactly as was
Ron 2006-07-17 01:38:38
If you go to
page 73, there is a very clear discussion of the difference between
“Baker’s Percentage” and “Formula Percentage,” including even a formula
to convert between the two. As I said, my original problem was that I
was confusing the two methods.
Hofer 2006-07-17 01:39:26
I wouldn’t say that this is the major difference. “Hydration” and
“Baker’s Percentage” and “Formula Percentage” and “Dough Yield” (the
German method), any of the above methods don’t take into consideration
the water content of what you called DRY ingredients. The Russian
method only allows you to optimize a c t u a l water content of the
dough: not so much relevant to the fellow hobbyist goal but
educational; knowing the average water content of DRY ingredients one
can easily find the last stage (dough) additional water and to
calculate “regular” Hydration or Formula Percentage or Dough Yield
whatsoever for reference.
Russian super 2006-07-17 01:54:48
The name Borodinsky is related to the battle at Borodino village
during the Russian – France war with Napoleon at 1812. No translation
of “Borodinsky” needed. Just call this bread as a “Borodinsky mashed
=== Native Russian Translator on ANY subject ===
Russian super 2006-07-17 01:54:56
The name Borodinsky is related to the battle at Borodino village
during the Russian – France war with Napoleon at 1812. No translation
of “Borodinsky” needed. Just call this bread as a “Borodinsky mashed
=== Native Russian Translator on ANY subject ===
Ron 2006-07-17 01:55:08
If it is indeed true that the Battle of Borodino is the source of the
bread’s name, then “Borodino bread” and NOT “Borodinsky” sounds better
The term you proposed “Borodinsky mashed bread” makes no sense at all
in English. To a native speaker of English (using myself as an
example), it would mean that the bread itself has been mashed, not a
pretty sight! I wonder if you are trying to translate “zavarnoy khleb”
as “mashed bread.” If so, you are correct that zavarka can mean “mash”
in brewing. But, that does not allow it to be translated as “mashed” in
reference to bread.
So, then how do you get the English adjective to translate
“zavarnoy”??? Well, since zavarka can be translated as “scald,” you
might try “scalded bread.” Hamelman refers to zavarka as a soaker,
which sounds pretty strange to me.
In any case, the choice for “Borodinsky zavarnoy khleb” may just turn
out to be “Borodino scalded bread.” Not perfect, but I think better
than “mashed bread” (which makes me want to think of “mashed potatoes.”
Russian super 2006-07-17 01:55:45
Hello Ron and others,
Yes, “Borodino scalded bread” will rather do. Though, the verb “to
mash” means (in particular)
” zavarivat’ solod keepiatkom dlia peeva” , but not only
“razmeenat’ ” (to knead).
The Russian verb “zavarivat’ ” has the following translation:
1) boil, make, brew 2) pour boiling water (over); 3)scald
(according to the “Lingvo-9”
At the Russian baker’s this bread is called “Borodinsky khleb”
(by the way, I like it, and buy it frequently. There are some other
types of zavarnoy khleb available at the Russian baker’s: “Moskovskiy”
and “Rizhskiy”: “Moskovskiy” is quite the same
as “Borodinsky”, but without coriander strewing. It is rather dietetic
kind of bread. On my taste – Borodinsky is better than Moskovskiy.
Resuming: name of the bread should be unchanged ( i.e.
being as is called at the country of origin). So my opinion is that
if in Russian baker’s it is called “Borodinsky khleb” the proper
translation is “Borodinsky scalded bread”. (I guess, very few people
are aware about Borodino village 😉 )
=== Native Russian Transltor on ANY subject ===
Graham 2006-07-17 01:55:58
(I guess, very few people
They are if they’ve read Tolstoy:-)
Felix karpfen 2006-07-17 02:01:34
This is where I get into the act.
I have made my own beer for years, so I am familiar with “mashing” as it
applies to beer. And I did speculate about what was being “mashed” in the
posted recipe for
Also, the previous advice to make the “mash” with malted
obtained from a HomeBrew shop only added to the confusion. Does the
described process use the freeze-dried (powder) malt extract? Not
available in my local store (which only sell the vacuum-concentrated
My confusion did not get sorted out by an analysis of the meaning of
words. Hamelman did it in one hit (80 Percent Sourdough Rye with a
Rye-Flour Soaker). His product might be just a poor relation of genuine
is the case.
Public Key 72FDF9DF (DH/DSA)
Ron 2006-07-17 02:01:45
As I mentioned in a recent posting
Russian Borodinsky recipes generally call for ground “red” rye malt
flour and I have made the stuff myself by sprouting and toasting at
around 60 C. in my oven. As I understand it and as the Russian bread
books describe it, the toasting makes the malt non-diastatic, as
contrasted to “white” malt, which is not toasted and retains its
Some breads take red (=non-diastatic toasted) malt, others take white
malt. I think that the red malt is mainly for flavoring and not for any
diastatic properties. I quoted the Russian book by Puchkova to this
effect, in a discussion with Leonid.
It seems that there is a benefit to having a zavarka (aka
“soaker/scald”), apart from any enzymatic effect of the malt. I think
it is mainly to retain moisture and functions something like
mochka/Restbrot/altus, i.e. old soaked bread added to new dough.
Ron 2006-07-17 02:01:53
Furthermore, the Russian webpage
http://www.hleb.net/termin/20/index20.html has definitions of
breadmaking terms, and it is important to note that are SIX different
subheadings for zavarka/soak/scald/Br hst ck:
2.5 Zavarka- a water-flour mixture brought to the stage of
gelatinization of the starch.
2.6 Autosaccharized zavarka- subjected to saccharization due to the
enzymes in the flour itself.
2.7 Saccharized zavarka- saccharized due to either enzymes in flour,
malt, or other additives.
2.8 Non-saccharized zavarka- zavarka is cooled quickly and does not
2.9 Soured zavarka- a zavarka which is fermented with thermophilic
2.10 Fermented zavarka- a zavarka which is fermented with yeast.
Hofer 2006-07-17 02:06:07
Yesterday I have made my first all-grain beer (wort, to say it right).
And now as an experienced homebrewer 😉 I can say you with a l l the
responsibility: there is no another sense for keeping malt-water
mixture for more than an hour at 66C but mashing. To gelatinize
malt-water mixture (to make porridge) one could use higher temperatures
for less time. “To steep the special (toasted) grains” using the
homebrewing terminology, one can make it at lower temperatures. 66C is
mashing, mashing is 66C. Even if you don’t want to you will mash at
Of coarse, it is about rye or barley malt grain and not LME or DME.
I wanted to write “of any kind” but it wouldn’t be right: liquid malt
extract with diastatic power does exist but you won’t find it in HBS.
It is a supply for baking industry as a substitute for malt grain.
Felix karpfen 2006-07-17 02:09:43
That bit was clear in your posted initial recipe.
This bit was not. And references – in different posts – to “rye malt”,
“malted rye” and “rye or barley malt grain” did not help. Only after
consulting my brewing text books (in which rye does not score and
entry!) did I find that “malted barley” is “barley germinated to a
certain degree and then dried”.
When asked about “malted rye”, my local HomeBrew Supply store – playing
it safe – said “don’t stock it; try HealthFood stores.”
And from then on, it was downhill all the way.
Which leaves one unanswered question.
When mashing at home (as a step in bread making), why start with
_malted_ grain? Why not just germinate some grain and then, without
drying, add it to the mash (at 66 C)?
Thank you for the follow-up.
Public Key 72FDF9DF (DH/DSA)
Ron 2006-07-17 02:09:54
I think that the danger of home malting is that you don’t know exactly
when to stop the process. Ideally, you’d stop it when you have exactly
the amount of sugar/malt that you want. For making bread, I don’t think
it is as critical as for brewing.
Anyway, since raw grain is so cheap and easy to get, you can always try
to sprout/malt a pound, just to see how it works out.