Icelandic Rye (Geyser) Bread
Traditionally baked in a watertight vessel placed in hot ground saturated, with hot water from nearby geysers, this rich rye/whole wheat bread is as versatile as it is unusual. It’s uniform crumb makes it an ideal vehicle for butter and jam, cream cheese and whatever, as well as butter and smoked salmon or trout. The long baking time doesn’t come close to the 24 hours customary in Iceland, but it’s spot on in flavor. Thinly sliced and allowed to get a little hard, it’s uses only multiply.
3 cups (310 grams) rye flour
1-1/2 cups (180 grams whole wheat flour)
2-1/4 tsp baking soda
3/4 cup (250 grams) golden syrup (an English sugar syrup — I found Lyle’s Golden Syrup in a local supermarket). You can also use light or dark Karo Syrup, or some real molasses.
3 cups + 2 Tbsp (730 ml) buttermilk
1 Tbsp honey
Preheat your oven to 210 degrees.
Use butter, and lightly grease a standard loaf pan; or, if you have one, a 9 x 13″ lidded Pullman loaf pan.
In a large bowl, stir together the rye flour, whole wheat flour, and baking soda.
Stir in the golden syrup, buttermilk, and honey, mixing gently until just combined.
pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan; smooth it down to make sure the pan is evenly filled. (NOTE: If you use a standard loaf pan, and pour in all of the batter, it will come very close to the top, and you will end up with a hood-like crust. A 13″ Pullman loaf pan, with lid, should give you a square loaf, 13″ long.)
Bake in the oven for 6 hours, 30 minutes.
Remove from oven. Let cool slightly so you cn safely remove it from the pan. Can be served warm or cool.