Andebubrød, a Traditional Vestfold Bread
I recently found some treasures in our local second hand shop (thrift store). It was 2 vintage cookbooks featuring local dishes. I grabbed them immediately and rushed home with them and spent days pouring over the recipes. Many of the recipes are really vague and have clearly been written by someone who assumed that everyone knew the basics of cooking and what was going on in her head. I love the vagueness of the recipes and the guesswork that I have had to use to fill in the blanks.
Bread is something that is a staple in Norway. Not a day goes by without bread being eaten either for a simple breakfast or for the famous (or maybe infamous) "matpakke". Many regions in Norway have their own type of bread and this traditional recipe is from my local tiny town of Andebu. Andebu is in the heart of rural Vestfold south of Oslo and not far from the coast. It's primarily a farming area with small farms nestled into the rolling hills and river valleys. People here have always enjoyed robust Norwegian dishes and with so much physical activity from farming it's hardly surprising that a wholesome bread recipe is one that has endured through the years.
This recipe is a classic from Andebu and is usually only made at the bakers, so the quantities were huge (10kg of flour!). I've reduced it down to work in our domestic kitchens and this recipe now makes two good sized loaves. The fun part of this bread recipe is the glaze - coffee and sugar. I wonder if that is all they had to hand to glaze it, but decided that they liked so much it would stay.
Andebubrød (Andebu Bread) Makes 2 loaves
For the dough:
10g / 1 teaspoon salt
75g / 2.6 oz coarse ground rye flour
150g / 5.3 oz wholemeal wheat flour
40g / 1.4 oz oatmeal
75g / 2.6 oz coarse ground whole grain wheat flour (this has more fibre than a normal whole wheat and is coarser, but you can substitute a wholemeal if you have trouble getting this)
750g / 1 lb 10 oz plain, all purpose flour
1 1/2 tablespoon oil
25g / 1 oz fresh yeast
650ml / 22 fl oz warm water
Small cup of black coffee
1 1/2 teaspoon sugar
Blend the yeast with about 100ml / 3.5 fl oz of the warm water. Put all the dry ingredients and the oil for the dough into the bowl of a stand mixer and attach the dough hook. On slow speed blend the ingredients together and then gradually add the yeast mix and enough warm water to make a soft pliable dough. Knead on slow speed for 10 minutes. Cover with a damp cloth and allow to rise for about an hour until doubled in size.
Once the dough has proved, turn it out onto a floured surface and knead lightly. Divide into two equal pieces and shape each one into a round, like a large bread roll. Place on a baking tray that has been greased lightly or lined with baking paper. Cover with a damp cloth and leave to prove once more for 30 minutes.
Preheat oven t0 200C/400F
To make the glaze dissolve the sugar in the hot coffee and leave to cool. After 30 minutes proving time remove the cloth from the loaves and glaze them with the coffee and sugar mix. Using a sharp knife make 3 slashes across the loaves and bake in the oven for about 45 minutes, until they are golden brown and the bottoms are lightly browned. Be patient with your cooking time. It's tempting to take the bread out when it's brown but not quite cooked but it will benefit from a few minutes longer in the oven to cook the middle properly.
Cool on a wire rack. This bread is delicious warm straight from the oven, but it slices best when it's several hours old.
Vær så god!
Do you enjoy Nordic baking and the Nordic lifestyle? We have a Facebook group, called Living a Nordic Life and we'd be delighted if you joined us there. We are chatting about all things Nordic with members from around the world. You can find us by clicking here.