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Wachauer rolls and a new book (Upd. 23 Jan 2008)

with 11 comments

A new bread baking book has arrived – “Brot backen” written by the Austrian baker Gerhard Ströck from Bäckerei Ströck and Jörg Ehrmann.

I do not know much about Austrian bread, one thing I noticed instantly while browsing through the book was that the recipe section retains all the linguistic differences that exist between the German and the Austrian languages. “Yeast” is “Germ” in Austrian, “Hefe” in German, dried sourdough is referred to as “Gerstel” (instead of “Trockensauer”). “Bannetons” are called “Simperl”. Instead of “Brötchen” the word “Weckerl” is used.

The book has 156 pages, the first 89 of which are filled with a couple of general chapters on bread history, a bit of general cereal chemistry, milling and background on various ingredients up to a remark that sesame “probably originated in the tropical Africa and nowadays is cultivated in Egypt, Asia Minor, China, Japan and East India”. The book is filled with such side-notes.

There are 28 recipes. They are:

  • Baguette
  • Bruschetta mit Tomaten
  • Butterstriezel
  • Ciabatta
  • Curryweckerl
  • Dinkelbrot
  • Dinkelweckerl
  • Focaccia
  • Gemüseweckerl
  • Hefefreies Roggenmischbrot
  • Joghurtbrot
  • Karottenbrot
  • Kürbiskernbrot
  • Kürbiskernweckerl
  • Olivenbrot
  • Oliven-Ciabatta
  • Pizza Romana
  • Roggenmischbrot mit Hefe
  • Rosinentraum
  • Sojaweckerl
  • Sojaweckerl mit Teriyakihendl
  • Sonnenblumenkernbrot
  • Thunfisch-Wraps
  • Vinschgauer
  • Vollkornbrot
  • Vollkornbrotweckerl
  • Wachauer
  • Walnussbrot

Most of the the breads made with predominantly wheat flour use a firm yeasted starter, the rye breads use dried rye sourdough, the “Gerstel”, which is refreshed prior to baking. There is only very little on sourdough in this book, only a small description on how to start a culture. No options besides drying it are given. This is done by adding flour until the mixture gets crumbly, which is then stored in the fridge. No explicit directions on maintaining a liquid sourdough culture are given. The book has frustration potential for someone who has not baked with sourdough before.

A listing of the different breads of Austria is identical with the product range of the bakery Ströck displayed on their site.

Apparently in Austra instead of white flour of Type 550 one of Type 700 is used whenever strong white flour is called for. I think this makes sense, because German 550 can be a little too soft for many breads and suffers under a long fermentation. Since I did not have Type-700-flour I added 1050 to a 550. The resulting mix is a litte darker then white flour and probably needs more water than the original Type-700-flour. I had to add some in the first recipe I tried – “Vachauer”:

Wachauer (makes ten round rolls)


  • 50 flour, Type 700
  • 30g cold water
  • 3g fresh yeast
  • 2g salt


  • 300g flour, Type 700
  • 75g rye flour, Type 960 (light rye flour)
  • 250g cold water
  • 20g oil
  • 5g mix of ground and whole caraway seeds
  • 7g salt
  • 7g fresh yeast
  • 5g barley malt

Bulk Fermentation: 45-60 minutes
Cut into 10 pieces of dough. Shape each round by pressing down and making circular movements. Do not seal the bottom, instead dunk the rolls with the irregular bottom into a bowl of rye flour. Prove flour side down.
Final Fermentation: 60-75 minutes
Turn the pieces of dough over and bake them at 240°C for 5 minutes, then reduce heat to 200°C and bake for further 13 – 15 minutes.

These rolls are nice, the caraway flavor is barely there. They are a bit dry, but have a smooth mouth feeling. I find the floury top quite attractive too. I am tempted to make my own Wachauers with a little sourdough and maybe butter instead of the oil. Brotzeit is!

Errors, etc.

Recipe for Foccacia, p. 108. In the directions a reference to a starter is given, but in the table a recipe for such a “Vorteig” is missing.

Recipe for the “Hefefreies Roggenmischbrot”(naturally leavened light rye bread), p. 112 . A yeasted starter is given instead of a rye sourdough starter, which is used in the dough.

Recipe for “Kürbiskernweckerl”, p. 120.. “500ml Weizenmehl” —> “500g Weizenmehl”.

Additional information:

There is a selection of recipes from this book on Link to the recipes (it has a corrected version for the Foccacia recipe).


Written by theinversecook

6 January 2008 at 22:30

11 Responses

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  1. Ich nehme auch manchmal Type 815 …


    8 January 2008 at 09:35

  2. Ja, das würde ich auch verwenden, wenn es das hier zu kaufen gäbe. Oder ich müßte öfter bei der Adler Mühle bestellen.


    8 January 2008 at 18:57

  3. If anyone made these rolls and they came out a bit dry, firm or even crumbly (despite the rather high water content), I can confirm that. I have made them twice now, the second time with a sourdough starter. I don’t know why they are that way, but read that this was a desired quality of this type of bread roll. Still … strange.



    22 January 2008 at 20:27

  4. The Wacher Rolls sure look good. My past roll baking experiences have not been very successful. Very dense,
    not light and airy with a crusty outside as I was used to from Germany. What is 700 flour? somebody told me that the flour may be the culprit – but I can bake bread and it comes out good????
    How much dry yeast has to be used when fresh yeast is asked for as in this recipe – I cannot find fresh yeast in Charleston, SC – Regards Elke Williams

    Elke Williams

    24 January 2008 at 01:11

  5. Hi, Elke!

    I think in Germany most commercially sold airy rolls are made with “Brtöchenbackmittel” – a certain mix of acids, enzymes, malt and fermented milk products. Only little skill is required to bake with it, and the dough rests for only about 20 minutes for the 1st rise. Yes, the rolls get bigger an airier with it, but won’t taste as good. I don’t use it.

    Type 700 is a strong white flour, but I don’t know which part of the grain is milled and added to Type-500-flour (very white strong flour) to get Type 700. It was the first time I’ve come across this type of flour.

    To get airy rolls one can look at adding yeasted preferments or sourdough. Also a lot of steam and a hot oven help. I am only starting to bake rolls regularly, so I am not too sure of what I’m doing. But I am 99% sure, that the secret is not in the flour.

    As far as I know, 7g of instant dry yeast is equivalent to 21g of fresh yeast.


    24 January 2008 at 01:55

  6. Hi Nils!
    I really liked your blog, it will help me a lot since I’m starting to baking bread. I lived in Germany but Ich spreche fast keine Deutch… :S
    Could you please help me to find what is the equivalence for the instant yeast in German? Is the Sauerteig? I think Hefe is the active dry, is that correct?
    Thank you very much for your patience!


    4 June 2008 at 18:55

  7. @ Silvia: Thanks for the kind words and sorry about replying late.

    Yes, instant yeast is “Trockenhefe” in German, which is just dried yeast. I’m not sure about it being “active dry” though. But if you use Trockenhefe, those little granular things that come in small 7g (1/4 oz) sachets, you should be okay. In Germany, both kinds – fresh and dry – of yeast are widely available. All supermarkets carry them.

    Sauerteig on the other hand is a naturally grown colture which you get when you let flour and water rest for a couple of days and replace this mixture in between with fresh water and flour. A natural fermentation will kick in and produce acidity and also natural yeasts. But those yeast cells are different from commercial yeast found in instant yeast (or fresh yeast). A loaf made entirely from Sauerteig and no commercial yeast usually is much more flavorful, has a better crust and shelf-life.

    Thank you for your patience too :-)


    22 June 2008 at 12:04

  8. I am in the United States and am trying to figure out what type of U.S. flour to use in place of Austrian Type 700. Do you have any recommendations by chance? Thanks for any help you can provide!


    15 April 2009 at 15:56

    • All-purpose flour, I think, Tracy, but not sure. Jeremy from Stir the pots might be of help. I think he compared Swiss and US flour once.


      17 April 2009 at 00:37

  9. I use Type 700 as Bread flour. It makes very heavy pancakes and absorbs water like bread flour. I use it with my sourdoughs. I maintain a rye sourdough. Is this book also in English?

    I’m in Austria.


    26 September 2010 at 16:49

    • The book is in German. Have you tried plain flour in your pancake batter and tried not to mix too much? I find that mixing makes them heavy too.


      26 September 2010 at 17:06

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