by Maya Silver for Harmons
The Vikings loved bread so much, they often carried it with them to their graves—literally. Archaeologists have discovered the humble loaf in burial sites. It’s fitting, then, that when the Viking exhibit launched at the Natural History Museum of Utah, Salt Lake’s favorite local grocer decided to create a special bread in its honor. In June and July, all Harmons locations featured a Bread of Vikings based off historic ingredients. They also baked up a batch for NHMU’s Viking Festival in September. While you can’t buy the loaf anymore in-store, you can place a special order (minimum of a baker’s dozen) if you’re dying to try it. Or, you can recreate it at home with Harmons’ recipe:
Bread of Vikings Recipe
6 cups Lehi Roller Mills white whole-wheat flour
1 tablespoon, plus ¼ teaspoon instant yeast
1 tablespoon plus ¼ teaspoon sea salt
2 3⁄4-3 cups warm (not hot) water
In a mixing bowl with a dough hook, combine all ingredients, except water.
With the mixer running on low speed, add the water in a long, slow stream.
Continue mixing for 2 minutes on low speed, then stop.
With a rubber spatula, scrape dough from sides.
Continue mixing on medium speed for 2 minutes.
Stop the mixer and scrape dough from sides again.
Cover bowl with plastic wrap and allow to rest for 45 minutes.
On a floured surface, divide dough into 4 equal pieces, approximately 12 ounces each; cover and allow to rest for 15 minutes.
Form each into desired shape and place on an oiled baking sheet or on parchment.
Allow to rise for 30-40 minutes, until doubled in size.
Spray each loaf lightly with water, then score with a razor or very sharp knife.
Bake at 390 degrees F. for approximately 20 minutes or until its internal temperature reads 190-200 degrees F. (190 for softer loaf; 200 for crusty, chewy bread).
Notes: Times and temperatures might vary; allow to cool before slicing.
To discover more about the Vikings and their diet, visit the Vikings: Beyond the Legend exhibit at the Natural History Museum of Utah before it closes
Jan. 1. For more information, visit nhmu.utah.edu.