Swedish Limpa Bread

Makes 2 loaves.

Note: From Kim Ode.

• 1/4 c. firmly packed brown sugar

• 1/4 c. dark molasses

• 1 1/2 tsp. kosher salt

• 1 1/2 c. hot water

• 4 tbsp. (1/2 stick) unsalted butter

• 2 tbsp. grated orange rind (from 2 oranges)

• 1 tsp. caraway seed

• 1 tsp. anise seed

• 1 tsp. fennel seed

• 1 pkg. (2 1/4 tsp.) instant yeast

• 2 1/2 c. dark rye flour

• 3 to 3 1/2 c. all-purpose flour

• 1 tbsp. cornmeal, if desired

Egg wash:

• 1 egg yolk, beaten

• 1 to 2 tbsp. freshly squeezed orange juice


In a large bowl, or in bowl of a stand mixer with a dough hook, combine the brown sugar, molasses, salt, 1 1/2 cups hot water and butter. Let stand a few minutes until the butter begins to melt.

Grate the orange rind with a fine grater, then halve and squeeze the juice from the oranges. Strain to remove pulp and set aside.

Combine the caraway, anise and fennel seeds. Crush using a mortar and pestle, or whir briefly in a coffee grinder. (Be sure to wipe the grinder clean afterward.) The seeds needn't be ground fine, just broken. Set aside.

To the large bowl, add yeast, rye flour and 3 cups of the all-purpose flour. Mix to combine. Add orange rind and seeds and continue to mix until a soft dough forms.

Place dough on a floured surface and knead for several minutes, adding some of the remaining 1/2 cup of flour only as necessary. Rye dough is naturally tacky, but adding too much flour will result in dry bread. When dough is smooth and slightly springy when pressed with a finger, place in an oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and set aside to rise until it almost doubles in size, about 1 to 1 1/2 hours.

Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray and sprinkle with cornmeal, if desired.

Turn risen dough out onto the counter and divide in two. Shape each half of the dough into an oval loaf, then place on baking sheet. Cover the loaves with a clean towel and let rise in a warm place about 45 minutes; the dough should swell, although may not double in size.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Mix egg yolk with orange juice and brush over loaves. With a razor blade or serrated knife, score the loaves. Bake 40 to 45 minutes or until loaves sound hollow when thumped on the bottom. Cool completely on wire rack.

Nutrition information per slice; 12 slices in each loaf:

Calories 134 Fat 2 g Sodium 114 mg

Carbohydrates 25 g Saturated fat 1 g Calcium 19 mg

Protein 3 g Chol 10 mg Dietary fiber 2 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 1½ bread/starch, ½ fat.