“Innviertler Backofenbrot” baked in a Wood-Fired Brick Oven

A fantastic recipe brought to you by Annemarie and her son Martin Buchmayr from Franking in the Austrian Innviertel!

These delicious rye loaves are baked in a homemade brick oven. Here are some impressions from a typical baking day in Franking-

Innviertler Backofenbrot vor dem Backen
Loaves getting ready for baking
Backofen im Innviertel
Built by Martin with bricks (bottom part), concrete (middle layer), firebricks (for the dome), plaster and a tongue and groove baking surface made of polished firebrick. The dome has been externally insulated to ensure it keeps a constant temperature.
Innviertler Backofenbrot im Backofen
Beechwood is used to fire the oven. On a normal baking day, the oven is fired up around 11am and the fire is kept going until about 2pm. The ember is then spread evenly and any openings are closed. 45 minutes later the process of clearing out and wiping out starts until the required temperature is reached.
Innviertler Backofenbrot fertig gebacken
Annemarie and Martin bake every second Saturday and usually produce around 15 to 20 1-kg-loaves.

Ingredients –

  • 250g light rye flour (R960)
  • 300g wheat flour (strong bread flour)
  • Approx. 250g water (lukewarm)
  • 250g preferment (see instructions below)
  • 20g fresh yeast or 6g dry yeast
  • 11g Brotgewürz (2.5 g coriander,  3g anise seeds, 3.5g caraway seeds, 2g fennel seeds) – use ground spices or whole seeds, whatever you prefer

How to bake “Innviertler Backofenbrot” –

  • Combine all the ingredients and knead to form a smooth and elastic dough
  • Cover with a moist kitchen towel and leave to rest until it has grown by about half
  • Punch down the dough and form two loaves
  • Leave to rest for another 30 minutes
  • Bake for 10 minutes at 200°C and for 40 – 50 minutes at approx. 150°C

Preferment (uses separate ingredients, not included in the above list) –

  • Start 4 days before baking
  • Combine 100g rye flour with 150g water, add 20g fresh yeast (or 6g dry yeast) and 1 tsp of sugar to form a pulpy mixture.
  • Feed the mixture with a little flour and water (approx. 50g each) on days 2 and 3.
  • Don’t feed the preferment on the day before baking, just stir it and leave it to rest.
  • Store any leftover preferment in the fridge (or freeze it), it can be used again for the next bake.

Thanks for your recipe!