Rye, Ale and Oat Bread

A recipe for a flavourful bread found on BBCfood
Rye, Ale and Oat Bread

Serve this richly flavoured bread with a ploughman’s lunch of chutney, pickled onions, apple and celery slices, radishes and your favourite cheese.

Recipe by Paul Hollywood

For the loaf:

350 g/12 oz rye flour
150 g/5 ½ oz strong white flour, plus extra for flouring
10 g/¼ oz salt
10 g/¼ oz instant yeast
50 ml/2 fl oz black treacle
140 ml/4 ¾ fl oz water
250 ml/9 fl oz ale
For the beer batter topping:
150 ml/5 fl oz ale
100 g/3 ½ oz rye flour
pinch sugar
handful jumbo oats


[1] Mix the flours, salt and yeast in a bowl. Add the treacle, 100 ml/3 ½ fl oz of the water and 150 ml/5 fl oz of the ale. Using your hands, stir the ingredients together until all the flour leaves the side of the bowl. Gradually add the remaining ale and water if needed – the dough should be soft and all the sides of the bowl should be clean.

[2] Tip the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 5-10 minutes. The dough will be wet initially but will become smooth once worked. When the dough has a smooth skin put it into a lightly oiled bowl. Cover with a clean cloth and leave for two hours.

[3] For the topping, mix the ale with the rye flour and a pinch of sugar to form a thick batter.

[4] Tip the dough out onto a floured surface and shape into a ball. Spread the ale paste over the loaf and sprinkle over the jumbo oats. Place the loaf onto a baking tray lined with parchment. Leave to prove for one and a half hours.

[5] Preheat the oven to 220 C/425 F/Gas 7.

[6] Bake for 25 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 200C/400F/Gas 6 and bake for a further 10 minutes.

[7] The loaf will be golden-brown and should sound hollow when tapped on the base. Leave to cool on a wire rack.