Zedl: Innviertler Zelten Bread Rolls from Austria

 

Spending some days at home in the Austrian Innviertel last week, I got to indulge in one of my all-time-favourite breads: Zedl (also referred to as Innviertler Zelten or Zeltl). Zedl are enriched Austrian bread rolls, traditionally baked in the Upper Austrian region of the Innviertel. My mum bakes Zedl every week, as did her mum and her mum before that. It’s a recipe passed on for many generations.

Zedl (Upper Austrian Yeast Dough Breads) in a basket
Freshly baked Zedl – A family recipe

Zedl taste absolutely amazing with butter and honey or a typical Austrian Jause. However, they have another brilliant purpose: they make the best bread dumplings you’ll ever taste!

Slices of Zedl with Butter, Honey and Jam
Slices of Zedl with Butter, Honey and Jam

Recipe for Zedl / Innviertler Zelten

Ingredients

  • 1kg plain white wheat flour
  • 42g yeast (or 14g dried yeast)
  • 710g full-fat milk, lukewarm
  • 2 eggs
  • 19g salt
  • A pinch of sugar

How to make Zedl / Innviertler Zelten

  1. Put the flour in a large plastic bowl (Teigschüssel in German language).
  2. Heat the milk in a pot until lukewarm (make sure it’s not too hot so not to destroy the yeast), add a pinch of sugar, then crumble in the yeast. Allow a few minutes to ensure the yeast rises to the top before you continue. If you use dried yeast, you can simply add all ingredients into the large bowl.
  3. Add the milk, fresh yeast and sugar mixture, the eggs and salt to the bowl with the flour and mix thoroughly until the dough is elastic and smooth in texture. Traditionally, the mixing of the dough is done by vigorously handling the dough with a large wooden spoon. This is typically done by holding a large wooden spoon with both hands and getting right into the dough to shift it towards you in quick movements. However, I prefer to knead the dough by hand. It will be quite soft and a little sticky but simply use your dough scrapers to better control the dough.
  4. Place the dough back into the bowl and cover with a lid or clean kitchen towel.
  5. Keep in a warm place until the dough has doubled in size (approximately 1 hour but this could take a little longer if the temperature in your room is cooler).
  6. Beat the dough down with the wooden spoon or punch it down by hand and fold it a few times until fully deflated.
  7. Cover again and leave for approximately 45 minutes.
  8. Prepare a clean working surface and dust with flour.
  9. With a dough scraper, take or cut out eight equally sized individual pieces of dough from the risen dough and form flattish buns. Make sure the surface of each bun is smooth. Tuck any rough outer edges under the bun.
  10. Cover all buns with a kitchen towel and leave to prove for another 30 minutes. Ensure this process takes place in a draft-free environment.
  11. Preheat the oven to 190°C (gas mark 5).
  12. Line a baking tray with baking paper.
  13. Just before baking, very carefully move the Zedl onto the baking tray (take care you don’t deflate the dough) and bake for 30 minutes.
  14. Cool on a wire rack and enjoy!
Zedl ready for baking
Zedl ready for baking

More about bread baking in the Innviertel

While doing my research on Austrian breads of the Innviertel region in Upper Austria, I came across an excerpt of an essay about Upper Austrian bread baking. This is a special treat for all German speaking readers and I guess it will be of specific interest to those of us who come from Austria and the Innviertel in particular:

Ein Auzug aus den Oberösterreichischen Heimatblättern, herausgegeben vom Institut für Landeskunde von Oberösterreich, Jahrgang 20, 1966: Das Backen des Bauernbrotes im unteren Innviertel – Josef Andessner St Martin im Innkreis.

 

Potato Bread Recipe with Sourdough (Kartoffelbrot)

 

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

We are celebrating here. With potato bread and champagne, great combination, try it!

Potato bread makes use of potatoes to replace some of the wheat flour. The addition of potatoes keeps the bread moist and prevents it from crumbling.

Usually, potato bread recipes use either raw or cooked potatoes. In this recipe, I’ve combined both methods and also included rye flour (my favourite).

Potato bread just out of the oven
Potato bread just out of the oven

Sourdough

  • 15g wheat sourdough starter from the fridge
  • 150g white bread flour
  • 150g water

Mix ingredients in a bowl, cover with cling film and keep at room temperature overnight  – approximately 16 hours.

Wheat Sourdough
Wheat Sourdough

Sponge

  • 100g white bread flour
  • 1oog water
  • 1/2 tsp dry yeast (or 1g fresh yeast)

Mix ingredients in a bowl, cover with cling film and keep at room temperature for 2 hours, then transfer to the fridge for 14 hours.

Wheat Sponge
Wheat Sponge

Final dough

  • 300g wheat sourdough
  • Sponge as above
  • 170g white bread flour
  • 50g spelt flour (or use 220g white bread flour if you don’t have spelt at home)
  • 200g strong rye flour
  • 200g water, lukewarm (cooled down potato cooking water can be used)
  • 70g potato (scrubbed, unpeeled, grated)
  • 70g potato (peeled, boiled, mashed)
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
Mashed and Grated Potatoes
Mashed and Grated Potatoes

How to make pototo bread

  1. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl, mix together and knead for 12 minutes. It’ll be a little sticky, but the gluten strands make it easy enough to handle.
  2. Cover the dough with the bowl and leave to rest for 30 minutes.
  3. Fold the dough like an envelope – take each corner, fold it to the middle and shape the dough into a ball. Cover the dough again.
  4. Leave to rest for 30 minutes, then flatten and fold again.
  5. Leave to rest for another 30 minutes.
  6. Flatten and fold again, shape into a boule, then place (seam-side up) in a well floured proofing basket.
  7. Cover the proving basket with a polythene bag.
  8. Leave to rest for several hours, depending on the temperature in your kitchen. Alternatively, proof in the fridge overnight.
  9. Preheat the oven to 220°C.
  10. Line a baking tray with baking paper.
  11. Carefully turn out the dough onto the baking tray and place in the oven.
  12. Bake for 15 minutes then turn down the temperature to 180°C and bake for a further 40 minutes.
  13. Cool on a wire rack.
Potato bread - Just before baking
Potato bread – Just before baking

Great with Kerrygold butter and honey but potato bread goes well with most toppings.

Also great with this amazing Omelette Arnold Bennett!

Potato bread - Lovely with just butter and honey
Potato bread – Lovely with butter and honey