Wholemeal Country Cob Basic Wholemeal Bread 

 April 1, 2021

By  Gareth Busby


 5 hours


These wholemeal country cobs are great healthy breads that can be enjoyed all year. A great loaf to learn if you are a bread baking beginner. The hint of rye adds an extra depth of flavour to the bread, almost like it is asking a question. I love it!

This basic wholemeal loaf evokes feelings and character like only artisan bread can. This recipe makes two wholemeal cobs.

How to make wholemeal country cob video recipe


For the dough:

   480g  Wholemeal bread flour 

   130g  White bread flour

     40g  Dark rye flour

   460g  Water

     10g  Fresh yeast (5g dried yeast)

    13g  Salt

   6.5g  Vegetable oil

Method for wholemeal country cobs


Prepare the ingredients

Weigh all the dry ingredients in one bowl and the wet ingredients in another. If using dried yeast follow the instructions below.

Combine into a dough

Add all the ingredients to a mixing bowl or dough mixer fitted with a dough hook attachment.

By hand:

Using a plastic dough scraper incorporate the ingredients together using a fluid half turn method until the dough forms. Remove from the bowl and place on a worktop.

Using a dough mixer:

Mix for 7 minutes on slow speed and then increase the speed and knead at fast speed for 5 minutes. Remove the dough from the mixer, place into a mixing bowl and skip to step 5.


Slow knead

Set a 8 minute timer and slowly knead using the heel of your palm in a stretching motion. Continue slow kneading until the timer sounds, then, place back in the bowl, cover put in the refrigerator for 15 minutes.


Fast knead

Remove from the bowl from the fridge and turn the dough back onto the table. Start a timer for ten minutes and this time we'll knead the dough more aggressively. Use the stretch, slap and fold technique for best results until the timer sounds. Place the dough into a mixing bowl.


Bulk fermentation

Cover and leave to rest in the fridge for 1 hour.


Stretch and fold

Remove from the bowl and stretch and fold or knocking it down to remove the air from it.


Bulk fermentation part 2

Take a temperature check, if above 28C (82F) put it in the fridge, if it’s under this temperature, leave it on the kitchen table. Either way, allow to rest, covered for another hour.


Divide and preshape

Place the dough on the worktop and divide into two equal peices using a metal dough scraper or palette knife. Round both doughs into balls leave to rest on a lightly floured area of the table for 20-30 minutes.


Final shape

Prepare a board or peel by lightly dusting with flour and semolina. Knock out the air and shape into rounds again. This time, put the dough pieces on the board. Cover with a mixing bowl or loosly fitting bag and let it rise.


Final rise

Proof for 2 ½ hours whilst preheating the oven at 230C (440F) with a baking stone and a tray below it.



Once the dough has doubled in size, loosen from the board by running a metal scrapper underneath. Dust some rye flour over the top of the dough, cut with a bakers lame in a cross pattern.



Using a peel, drop into the oven directly on the baking stone, adding a cup of hot water to the tray beneath to make steam. Bake for 35-40 minutes.


Remove and cool

Bake until the crust is a golden colour and the base of the bread sounds hollow when knocked. Remove from the oven and allow to cool on a cooling rack. Enjoy....

Using dried yeast

If using instant yeast, divide the amount of fresh yeast used by 3 and follow the same method as fresh yeast.

Active dried yeast needs to be activated before use. In this case, warm 20 grams of water to 35C (95F) - no higher! Add the yeast with half a teaspoon of sugar, whisk and leave to stand for ten minutes before adding to the dough. Remove 20 grams of water from the recipe.

Top tips for the best Wholemeal Country Cob

Open the oven door after 20-25 minutes to release the steam. This helps form a nice crusty crust.

For a lighter bread, increase the white to wholemeal flour ratio. White flour contains gluten that is easier to break down, this generates better gas retention properties.

Wholemeal flour absorbs more water than white flour. It also takes a bit longer to absorb so don’t worry if the mix seems too wet at first. Give it a bit of time for the water to incorporate before thinking about adding more flour.

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Average: 4 (from 20 votes)
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