A Journey Into Bread Baking World

Borodinsky from 1934 but wholegrain

While semi-refined rye flour plays important part in 1934 Borodinsky bread recipe, it is possible to make whole grain version with one slight modification. I would suggest you first read history post and then read original recipe post so you can understand the whole process. This post will only focus on how to make whole grain version and why I chose specific modifications.

Without further ado, let’s get into this!

The main reason to use refined or semi-refined flour in Borodinsky is to improve the quality of a scald. Only starches and pentosans gelatinise and saccharinify during the process. Fibre present in the bran is basically a dead weight which only steals water and makes the whole process less efficient. Scalds from white rye flour tend to be more sweet with more intense flavour and aroma. Gel structure of a refined flour tends to improve crumb noticeably as well improving overall rise and holding more moisture for longer periods of time.

This has led me thinking that we, as home bakers, can easily sift the bran away, use sifted flour during scalding and then incorporate our bran back into final dough. I tried both this method and original recipe and I have to say that it is virtually impossible to notice any difference between the two loafs unless you have them side by side. Whole grain version turned out to be slightly denser, but the flavour is exactly the same!


The recipe is basically the same, we just replace semi-refined flour with whole grain one.

Overall formula

Ingredient % Weight
R2500 100% 409.00g
Fermented rye malt 5% 20.45g
Sourdough 17% 69.53g
Anise/caraway 0.3% 1.23g
Salt 1.3% 5.32g
Sugar 4% 16.36g
Water 68% 278.12g
Total 800.00g

#1 Sourdough

Ingredient Weight
Starter 25.75g
R2500 25.75g
Water 18.03g
Total 69.53g

#2 Scald

Ingredient Weight
Sifted R2500 107.36g
Fermented rye malt 21.47g
Anise/caraway 1.29g
Water (+100C) 292.02g
Total 422.15g

#3 Sour scald

Ingredient Weight
Sourdough 69.53g
Scald 402.04g
Total 471.57g

#4 Final dough

Ingredient Weight
Sour scald 471.57g
R2500 306.75g
Salt 5.32g
Sugar 16.36g
Total 800.00g

Spreadsheet for this recipe is available here. Whole grain version is on a separate sheet. To modify total ingredient weight, your starter hydration and buffer size for a scald, either download this spreadsheet as XLS file to edit in MS Office or copy to your Google Drive to edit in Google Docs.

Before you start, sift your whole grain flour until you get enough for your scald. For 800g loaf you will need 107g of sifted flour. Then save the bran and mix it into the flour you will use for the bread. The rest of the recipe is the same as in original version. Here’s a copy/paste from there.

Step 1: sourdough

Mix your starter with flour and water and let it ferment for about 5-6 hours at +29C. You can use different flour to starter ratio to slow the process down if needed.

Step 2: scald

Some scald will stick to your cookware, but it contains all water from the recipe. It is crucial to make slightly more. I recommend making 5-10% more than required in the recipe. You can adjust this buffer size in the spreadsheet if needed. The formula above lists ingredients weights for 5% buffer.

To make this scald at home, reserve about 10% of required flour amount, then mix all dry ingredients apart from reserved flour. Add required boiling water to dry ingredients in three stages mixing everything very fast to get rid of lumps and without letting your mixture to cool down excessively. Once mixed with all water, wait for your scald to cool down to +65C and mix in 10% of flour you have reserved previously. Cover tightly and let it do its thing at +65C for about 2-3 hours. Cool it down to +30C and make sure your sourdough is ready by this time.

Step 3: sour scald

Mix your sourdough and scald, let the mixture ferment for 4 hours at +30C. It should become bubbly.

Step 4: final dough

Add remaining ingredients to you scald and mix well until no dry spots left. If you’re making a single loaf, then shape straight away and let the dough proof for 50 minutes at +34C. You can also either follow original method or longer process to improve crumb structure and rise.

Step 5: baking

Spray the surface of your dough with water and bake at +240C to +250C until done. The book doesn’t specify time, but it should take about 30-40 minutes. Once baked, let it rest at room temperature for 8-12 hours on a wire rack.