Bauernbrot with Spice Crust

The farmer’s bread with spiced crust is a mixed rye bread using rye flour type 960 and whole grain spelt flour. Since the farmer’s bread you find at outdoor markets always has a strong flavor, 50% of the rye flour used in this recipe has been soured. Instead of the usual dough hydration (TA) of 200-230, the sourdough is made with a TA of 172. This stiffer sourdough method affects how actively it can rise, but it has a stronger taste. 

The weaker activity of the sourdough is balanced out through a whole grain spelt poolish. All the whole grain spelt flour is used in the poolish, allowing the whole grain flour to become completely saturated, which in turn leads to a moister crumb in the baked bread.  

A farmer’s bread typically uses spice. It doesn’t have to always be fennel; coriander, caraway or anise are also popular bread spices.  



  • 275g rye flour type 960
  • 200g water
  •    20g starter

DT: 25-27°C   RT: 12 hours

If the sourdough matures over a longer period of time, the amount of starter must be reduced! 

Whole grain spelt poolish:

  • 250g whole grain spelt flour
  • 250g water 4-6°C
  •       1g yeast

Mix the ingredients and let mature at room temperature for 12 hours. 

Main dough:

  • 485g mature sourdough
  • 501g mature poolish
  • 275g rye flour type 960
  • 120g water 35°C
  •   20g salt
  •   20g pork lard
  •   10g finely ground bread spice
  •     2g yeast

Soaked old bread ensures it stays fresh longer.


  • Mix all ingredients together slowly for 5-7 minutes. If the dough appears too stiff, you can add additional water as you go. 
  • Then let the dough rise for 30 minutes. 
  • After resting, shape the dough into a round loaf and place it seamside-down in a proofing basket that has been well sprinkled with spice. 
  • Cover it and place it in a warm place to proof (45-60 minutes)
  • The bread is baked at 250°C with strong steam. 
  • Release the steam after 5-7 minutes. After 5 more minutes, lower the oven temperature to 200°C.
  • Total baking time: 60-70 minutes