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Kürbiskernweckerl (Pumpkin seed rolls)

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Austrian bread is flavorful. That is one of the lessons I have learned so far by reading my way through Gerhard Ströck’s book “Brot backen”. Many breads use a soaker including rye meal, flax seeds, soy bean meal, oats, sunflower or pumpkin seeds. And as if that wasn’t ample taste, sometimes “bread spice” (coriander, caraway and fennel seeds in equal quantities) is used as well.

How does Austrian bread differ from German bread? Tricky question. By a far stretch of the imagination, the biggest difference to German baking, apart from the stress on Styrian pumpkin seeds and oil, is probably, that the Austrian wheat breads are more robust and heartier and that the rye breads are a little lighter than their counterparts in Germany.

If there was a perfect breakfast roll, this is it. Grainy, yet light enough to provide an easy going eating quality. You could put the shaped rolls into the fridge overnight and proof and bake them in the morning. The pâte fermentée adds flavor and moisture to the crumb, so does the additional oil. Good.

Kürbiskernweckerl (Pumpkin seed rolls)

Makes 10 round rolls

Pâte fermentée

  • 50g flour, Type 700 (strong white flour)
  • 30g cool water
  • 2g fresh yeast
  • 1g salt

Mix together and let rest for 12 hours in a cool place, or: 1 hour at room temperature and in the fridge overnight, 12-16 hours.


  • 25g coarse rye meal
  • 50g pumpkin seeds
  • 25g flaxseeds (linseed)
  • 100g warm water

Stir the ingredients of the soaker together and let stand covered for about 12 hours.


  • 250g flour, Type 700 (strong white flour)
  • 50g light rye flour, Type 960
  • 140g cool water
  • 10g barley malt
  • 15g pumpkin seed oil or vegetable oil
  • 10g salt
  • 10g fresh yeast
  • Soaker
  • Additional pumpkin seeds
  • Sesame seeds

Combine all ingredients to a shaggy mass and let stand for 10 minutes. Knead for 10 seconds, either on an oiled surface or drag the dough in circles with a strong fork in the bowl. Let stand for another 10 minutes, then knead again for 10 seconds. Let stand fo 10 minutes, then tip the dough onto an oiled surface and fold it onto itself a couple of times. It will be sticky, although not excessively wet like ciabatta dough.

Let stand for 40 minutes at room temperature. Agitate / Fold the dough after 20 minutes.

Divide dough into ten pieces weighing roughly 73g each, shape round, moisten the surface and press with the wet top into a bowl of pumpkin and sesame seeds (I omitted the sesame).

Proof for 50 minutes.

Bake at 240°C for 20-25 minutes reducing the heat to 200°C after 10 minutes.

Source: Gerhard Ströck, Jürgen Ehrmann: Brot backen


Written by theinversecook

16 January 2008 at 18:55

13 Responses

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  1. I made these rolls and now have a post on them! Wonderful rolls or buns! whatever name we give them. I made them a second time with potato . . . I love seeded breads and rolls!! Thanks much for this one.


    24 January 2008 at 17:46

  2. The recipe sounds fantastic. My family lived in Munich for three years, so we became quite accustomed to having great bread and rolls. As far as using a cookbook in a foreign language, it’s certainly doable. I recommend a good German/English dictionary because many cooking terms will not be listed in a small or tourist dictionary. Another point – German recipes give many more detailed instructions than typical American cookbooks so be prepared to translate something that turns out to be ‘then using a medium-sized ceramic bowl stir the batter in a clock-wise direction very slowly, keeping a firm grip on the bowl, while gradually increasing the steady but quicker mixing action needed for this batter.’ Still, I will be making these rolls this weekend and I’m looking forward to the experience very much! Thanks for such a great site.


    2 December 2009 at 08:19

    • Thanks, Susan. Got to love the direcitons in German books. But they are not as nerdy has they once have been, alas. I guess clockwise is the natural direction if you happen to be right-handed.


      6 December 2009 at 03:30

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