Double Light Rye Bread

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Yield: 2 loaves

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This sandwich rye bread is super-light and moist; and the recipe makes two loaves, thus the "double." Our thanks to the cooks on the classic Maine schooner Sylvina W. Beal, launched in 1911 in East Boothbay. They shared a version of this recipe with one of their passengers nearly 20 years ago, on a cruise he took out of Belfast; and he kindly passed it along to us. We've modernized it a bit, and are happy to share this bit of Maine nautical/culinary history with you.

Double Light Rye Bread

star rating (15) rate this recipe »
Hands-on time:
Baking time:
Total time:
Yield: 2 loaves
Published: 10/25/2011



1) Mix all of the ingredients together just until everything is moistened. Cover the bowl, and let the dough rest for 15 minutes; this gives the flour a chance to start absorbing the liquid, which will make the dough a bit less sticky to knead.

2) Knead the dough for about 7 minutes in a stand mixer, or 10 minutes by hand. It'll be quite sticky; rye flour does have that propensity. But it should also be smooth, and feel elastic.

3) Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, cover it, and let the dough rise for 60 to 90 minutes, until it's nicely puffy, though not necessarily doubled in bulk.

4) Gently deflate the dough, and divide it in half. Shape each half into a log.

5) Lightly grease two 9" x 5" loaf pans; two 8 1/2" x 4 1/2" loaf pans, or one of each. The smaller pan will make a loaf that "mushrooms" a bit; we prefer 9" x 5" pans here.

6) Settle the shaped dough into the pans. Cover the pans, and let the dough rise for 60 to 90 minutes, until it's crowned about 1" over the rim of the smaller pan, and is about even or slightly over the rim of the larger pan.

7) Towards the end of the rising time, preheat the oven to 350°F.

8) Bake the loaves for 35 to 45 minutes, until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center of one registers at least 190°F. If the loaves seem to be browning too quickly, tent them loosely with aluminum foil.

9) Remove the bread from the oven, and after 10 minutes turn it out of the pans onto a rack to cool.

10) Cool completely before slicing. Store airtight at room temperature for 5 days or so; for longer storage, wrap and freeze.

Yield: 2 loaves.


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  • star rating 04/28/2015
  • mrmoran from KAF Community
  • Very nice sandwich bread. Baked one in a 9x5 and one in an 8 1/2 x 4 1/2 pan. No appreciable difference in rise. Tasty, airy -- yummy with ham and cheese. Once again, thanks, KAF!
  • star rating 04/10/2015
  • Heather from Chicago
  • Well, I just had a slice. It's a really nice and moist loaf, but fairly heavy. (I don't know how you'd get "double light" out of this, given the molasses, brown sugar, and 1/3 rye flour. It's fairly similar, in my opinion, to many homemade whole wheat recipes (again, a heavy, dense, and moist loaf). I did like it, but it doesn't look at all like the picture.
  • star rating 03/21/2015
  • Trina from Meaford, Ontario Canada
  • I used white bread flour in place of the a/p, didn't have powdered milk so used part soy milk and part water, plus put it in my bread maker on dough cycle. It was way too dry and had to add about another 3/4 cups of water. All went well after that. My husband couldn't wait to the morning and just had a piece --giving me a bite to try. Absolutely yummy! As I changed a couple ingredients, I can't honestly comment on the original, but even with some changes a great recipe.
    Glad that the end results was yummie! When substituting more that one ingredient, the result can be different. Good catch on looking at your dough and adding more water. Success! JoAnn@KAF
  • star rating 01/18/2015
  • janeholan from KAF Community
  • I made this first with the addition of rye improver...for whstever reason, was not a great taste...made again just as the recipe recommended...came out great...soft, beautiful color and flavor...used 1 c pupernickel & 1 c rye blend...had for supper with noodles & cabbage...awesome!
  • star rating 01/01/2015
  • Monjambon from KAF Community
  • Delish! My family's new favorite bread recipe. I'm making more tomorrow for the freezer. Very easy too!
  • star rating 07/22/2014
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  • star rating 06/14/2014
  • Katie from Minnesota
  • Very good flavor and crumb. I left out the caraway and used the larger pans. Might try the smaller size next time for taller slices. I'll definitely make this again.
  • star rating 11/12/2013
  • amy from Yorktown, Va
  • Nice sweet taste from the molasses. Light, delicate crumb.. just made 2 loaves and had still warm with butter. This will be great sandwich bread for lunch tomorrow.
  • star rating 07/15/2013
  • Carla from Denver, CO
  • This recipe made two picture perfect loaves. I couldn't wait until they were sliced the thinnest slice off one loaf, smeared with butter and enjoyed with a glass of white wine and a sliver of cheese. Absolutely delicious and SO easy to prepare!! No altitude adjustment needed at all.
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