Pumpernickel Pizza dough

is it possible?

You bet!
Pumpernickle is to rye bread as whole-wheat is to whole-wheat bread. When you make bread, or pizza crusts from 100% rye flour, you’re making pumpernickle. Most pumpernickle is made with a portion, generally 20 to 25% rye meal to replace an equal portion of rye flour.
Some things to keep in mind:

  • Rye flour has no gluten as we might think of it, so the dough will be sticky, but not overly cohesive.
  • Rye flour has a higher absorption than wheat flour, so look for a dough absorption of 70% or perhaps a little higher.
  • Rye doughs have a very narrow mixing tolerance, it goes from undermixed, to properly mixed to overmixed in a heart beat.
    *Rye doughs can be improved upon by the addition of vital wheat gluten to the dough formula.
    *Rye doughs do not give finished products with great volume/height.
    *Rye products typically have a “muddy” appearance/color which can be improved through the addition of a little caramel coloring to the dough. This is why you see that attractive dark brown, or almost blackish color in rye breads of any type.
    *Rye doughs have their own unique flavor. The flavor that most relate to rye is due to the addition of caraway seeds to the dough.
    *Rye doughs like to be baked at a lower temperature than white doughs. Think of something in the 50 to 75F range lower.
    *Rye doughs are perhaps the most difficult of all doughs to master.
    Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor