Rye is a hardy cereal grass cultivated for its grain, which grows in Russia and other parts of northern Europe. It will grow in poor soil and has a high resistance to bad weather conditions.
The brown grain is milled into several grades of flour, ranging from fine to wholemeal. Fine rye flour is compara-tively low in calories and is the one usually used in making crispbreads. Heavier wholemeal flour is used in making black bread.
Rye flour has a fairly high protein and calcium content and, when cooked, will keep much longer than bread or cakes made with ordinary white flour.
In breadmaking, rye flour is usually combined with some other flour, since its gluten content is low and, if used on its own, it produces a heavy, close-textured bread.
Some types of alcohol, such as WHISKY and KVASS, are distilled from rye, and the plant left after the grain has been separated is sometimes used for animal fodder.