Breads and pastries

During medival times rye became increasingly more important than barley. It was even exported to other countries. Rye flourished in Livonia and was famous because of the aromatic and filling bread that was baked form it. Bread was also often baked from barley. White bread was a celebratory food for ordinary people at that time, only city folk and people in the upper classes ate it daily. It is made from coarse-grained whole wheat flour with natural yeast. Flatbread cakes and pies were baked during holidays.

Rye bread is one of the most important foods of Livonian times. In difficult times also other flours were added to rye bread dough to increase the volume of bread. In accordance with ancient traditions rye bread is baked into large loaves. The flour is scalded with boiled or warm water, the dough is mixed with the leaven and the malt and caraway seeds are added. It is baked at the high temperature in firewood-fuelled oven. The overall process of scalded bread preparation lasts for two days. Pan bread is also baked. It is made from softer dough, poured into shape and can be baked even in electric ovens.

The tempting aroma of traditional Latvian bacon pies takes over the house before the winter and summer solstice, but in bakeries you can enjoy it every day. Pies are made from wheat or rye flour yeast dough, and filled with smoked, finely chopped streaky pork roasted with onions. You can also add caraway seeds for taste. Estonian meat pies are usually made from ham or minced meat.

In Livonian times poppy seed flatbread was baked during holidays from wholegrain flour and sweetened with honey. Nowadays, poppy seed sweet rolls are baked from yeast dough made of fine wheat flour, sprinkled with poppy seeds and sugar. When ready, they are coated with a thick chocolate glaze that was not available in Livonia in those times.