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Seele, a artisanal spelt sourdough bread roll from Germany

Baked Seelen fresh from the oven
Baked Seelen fresh from the oven
Ok, this is now going to be a little bit far fetched, so i got to explain a bit more lengthy. The homework for the bread day number 59 (organized and hosted by ninivepisces, a fellow Swabian) is to bake a special kind of bread that accompanies one dish perfectly, or as ninivepisces explains it on her intro to the bread baking day over here: "do you know as well the feeling about a special dish being only perfect with just the right kind of bread?"
The answer is, yes of course. I know many kinds of bread and many kinds of dishes that go so well together. Being from Swabian region in Germany, we love to eat potato noodles (Spätzle) that are immersed in a sheer incredible amount of gravy so the noodles literally swimming in the sauce. We are then having a few slices of wheat dough based farmers artisan bread to scoop up the left over sauce from the plate and to wipe the plate clean (I always used to tell my mom that I only do this we have to wash less dishes after the meal haha). I love the base treated soft pretzel bread rolls (Laugenwecken) with some savory toppings such as cooked or smoked ham, cream cheese etc.

But today I feel like I am not just going to make any kind of farmer's loaf. I will put my heart and soul together in baking the Swabian Seele (soul), which is the name of the kind of homemade bread roll that I will blog about today.
And this Seele is best used to scoop up tons of gravy from your plate as well. My favorite meal to go with that would be a hunter style Schnitzel (Jägerschnitzel), which is a natural Schnitzel (means it is not coated in breadcrumbs) that comes with a rich, creamy mushroom sauce that is so sumptuous that you don't want to waste a drop. And this kind of bread is just predestined to do the job. So here comes my recipe for the swabian soul, made with organic spelt flour to make the spelt sourdough so on top of all it's an amazing organic bread roll.
I found a perfect recipe for this bread roll over here (but I will only be making half of this recipe). But before trying to bake this kind of bread roll please make sure that you understand on how to work this special kind bread cause it's not very easy to work with indeed. I would say that after baking bread for a while you might be ready to try and make this one. But even from my picture you can see that my shaping techniques are being far away from being perfect even in the aftermath i thought that I do an all right job all in all. So I would suggest you first visit this page first to get some inspiration how to work this special, very wet dough. But don't shy away, it's absolutely doable and after a few times baking this bread you will get to slowly master the technique to make this self made bread.

Seele recipe:
  • 150 g spelt flour
  • 100 g water
  • 15 g sourdough starter
mix well and let is for about 12 - 16 hours

Main dough
  • take half of the sourdough that we made above
  • 50 g wheat flour
  • 375 g spelt flour
  • 315 g cold water
  • 1 spoon of honey
  • 9 g salt
  • 20 g lard
  • 5 g fresh yeast

Mix all the ingredient exept the salt and the lard and let it rest for 30 - 60 minutes on a warm place (around 25 degrees Celsius would be ideal). Then add that salt and work everything to a very smooth dough that can be easily loosened from the wall of the mixing bowl. Last but not least, add the lard in small pieces and knead it in. When all the lard has been worked in and the dough is nice and smooth, put everything in a resting bowl that you oiled well in. Put it away in a warm place for about 3 hours. During that time you have to fold it about 3 - 4 times (please go again this page to find out how to fold the dough is being folded - see this picture). The dough is really soft so this need some practice to fold the dough well enough and doing it will give it a good stand.
Wet dough consistency during the folding procedure
Wet dough consistency during the folding procedure
At the end of this, spray some water on a working surface and put the dough on it. Then wet both hands and squeeze 3 - 4 cm broad pieces from the dough. Pull this a bit in length (about 30 cm) and put them on your baking paper to rest. After all pieces are on the baking paper, let them rest another 15 minutes.
Pulled out dough resting for the oven
Pulled out dough resting for the oven
Now you spray some water on top of the dough and sprinkle cumin and rock salt on top of it. Then put the baking paper in the oven that has been well preheated at 250 degrees Celsius and pour a cup of water in the oven alongside so the hot steam will be all over the breads.After 5 to 10 minutes, when the breads reached a good color, open the oven and let the steam off, put the temperature down to 220 degrees Celsius.
Bake for another 15 - 20 minutes until the breads are nice and brown. Short before the ending of the baking, spray one more round of water on top of the breads so they get a nice and glistening effect on the surface.
Now I am normally faced with a big problem. Do I wait for the evening when the Schnitzel with the gravy is ready and eat the spelt sourdough bread then, or do I simply cut one open right then and there just put a flock of butter on it and enjoy it that way. Either way, the very unique consistency of this artisanal bread, the moist inside, the great taste will sure also make your soul sing and get to be a fan of the Swabian soul.
Seele cut open with a flock of butter on top, best enjoyed when fresh from the oven :)
Seele cut open with a flock of butter on top, best enjoyed when fresh from the oven :)
Like always, I will try to post this self made bread to the yeast spotting webpage like every time I am baking one as I thing this awesome blog event always deserves my support
PS: My bread has been published on the yeast spotting page over here.


  1. Die Seelen, und sogar aus Dinkelmehl, wunderbar!

    Irgendwo hab ich mal gelesen dass man den Teig faltet, zu einem Rechteck formt, gehen läßt und dann die Seelen mit einer Teigkarte absticht- das könnte ich mir bei deinem Teig (der ja auch ziemlich weich zu sein scheint) ganz gut vorstellen.


  2. Also am wichtigsten ist eben das Falten, das ist richtig so, der Teig ist nämlich sehr, sehr weich. Bei mir klebt der überall am Tisch, an den Küchengeräte etc. Aber der Geschmack macht es das Alles wert :). Das mit dem Rechteck und dem Abstechen muss glaube ich gar nicht sein. Ich habe mich an diese Anleitung gehalten, die scheinen zu wissen was die machen: http://www.seelen-wie-frueher.de/Bilder/bilder.html.

  3. It looks very good. Still didn't tried bread with sourdough, but I will soon :)

  4. Baking with sourdough’s real easy, just got to take the time to do it. But the taste is so, so much better than just using yeast. Check out my easy recipe for making your own sourdough, right here:
    Good luck with it

  5. Noch nie gegessen, aber oft gesehen. Mit Dinkelmehl sicher super lecker. Danke für das schöne Rezept.

    Liebe Grüße

  6. Anna,
    ist jetzt zwar nichts Süßes, aber wenn Dich mal die Lust nach salzigem packt ist dass das Ideale, so mit lecker Schinken und Käse drauf. Ich werde mal bei Dir vorbeischauen wenn mich die Lust nach Süßem packt, Dein Blog hat da ja einiges zu bieten.

  7. I love your blog!!!
    Have you ever used any starters from a company called Sourdough's International?
    I keep hearing about them but I want some reviews from some fellow bakers.. If anyone knows, let me know! Thanks : )

  8. Rachael,

    thanks for the Kudos. No I have not used any of their starters as I live in China and I don't think it makes sense to send them around the world. But to be honest with you, just make your own starter. It give you a better understanding of how the sourdough works and it is really easy to make. If you need an instruction on how to make your own starter, just go the this page here:
    It will make you enjoy your self baked breads even more.

    Enjoy your baking experience...