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Author Topic: Got starter?  (Read 1712 times)

Offline Paul

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Got starter?
« on: February 26, 2012, 05:05:53 AM »
If you haven't done so yet, it would be a good thing to start making your sourdough starter now so you'll have it available in time for the first set of breads in April.

Hint: there's a sourdough rye in the April line-up and I would suggest you schedule that sourdough for later in in the month to allow as much development time for your new starter as possible. This would give you all of March and some of April to build up your baby starter's strength and flavour profile. Don't put it off too late.

HOW TO BUILD A BRAND NEW STARTER

Hamelman describes his process starting on page 351 with a fair bit of background info included so you actually understand what's going on in that flour soup. Be sure to read over pages 351-356 before tackling the actual make-up instructions on p. 357-359.

You can also follow the Yumarama Starter From Scratch instructions, complete with day-to-day photos as I get TWO different starters going, one a simple flour and water mix, the other the Pineapple method which helps reduce the risk of foreign bacterias taking over. Both make fine starters but the latter skips an unpleasant stage where a lot of folk think their starter is "bad" or gone dead and toss it out. There are also a lot of comments from people who've doen the process and you may find more helpful insights in these discussions.

Whichever method you decide to follow, you can always ask for hep from your Fellow Mellows over in the Starter University section of this board, should you run into issues or have questions about your new pet.
Paul
Yumarama Blog

I used to think I was indecisive, but now I'm not so sure.

Offline paulo

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Re: Got starter?
« Reply #1 on: February 26, 2012, 06:19:59 AM »
Good reminder. I do have some dried starter from last year. Let's see if I can revive it. :)
My bread baking blog (in Portuguese, but google can help you!): Zine de Pão

Offline paulo

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Re: Got starter?
« Reply #2 on: February 28, 2012, 12:32:21 AM »
[Queue suspense music..]

IT'S ALIVE!!!

Time to feed it now.  pompom
My bread baking blog (in Portuguese, but google can help you!): Zine de Pão

Offline jefklak

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Re: Got starter?
« Reply #3 on: February 28, 2012, 02:42:58 PM »
[Queue suspense music..]

IT'S ALIVE!!!

Time to feed it now.  pompom

Congrats! What did you feed it with, rye or wheat?
I'm going shopping tomorrow trying to find whole rye flour and also create a starter. I got a nice container to put it in a few days ago. Exciting!

Edit: paulo, I checked out your bread blog, great articles, thanks for sharing!
Especially this one is interesting, as I was wondering how to bake the breads during the week. 

Offline paulo

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Re: Got starter?
« Reply #4 on: February 29, 2012, 12:19:21 AM »
I'm doing wheat this time. Usually, I do follow a Michael Jackson strategy (as the baker who teached me calls it), i.e. 30% rye 70% wheat. It works quite nicely. I think there are some myths about rye being easier than wheat when it comes to starting a starter. I think it's just important that you use a bit of whole wheat because of the bran (that's where most yeasts are).

Thanks! Hope that Google does a nice job translating it :)
My bread baking blog (in Portuguese, but google can help you!): Zine de Pão

Offline jefklak

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Re: Got starter?
« Reply #5 on: March 02, 2012, 01:27:37 PM »
Okay it's day 2 and I'm following Paul's nice howto, it's already looking good.
I'm also doing a "PJ" one :)

I don't want to keep both a wheat and a rye starter yet, is a pure rye okay for the April lineup?

Offline paulo

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Re: Got starter?
« Reply #6 on: March 02, 2012, 02:08:45 PM »
I usually just keep a wheat starter and then change it to rye if I need it (just start feeding it with rye). I find it works, although some people do say it shouldn't work.
My bread baking blog (in Portuguese, but google can help you!): Zine de Pão

Offline Paul

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Re: Got starter?
« Reply #7 on: March 03, 2012, 02:50:11 PM »
You can easily switch a white starter to rye ove a few feeds or simply use the white starter in a rye build-up. Alternatively, you can keep a purely rye starter and a white but that isdouble the responsibility of a starter parent. Still, plenty of people do it so it's not impossible by any means.

Hamelman himself keeps just two versions going for his bakery: his white at 125% and a stiff rye. He suggests that if you want to keep one starter, say a 100% white, you can adjust that as needed as this is much easier and logical for a home baking schedule.

In the end, tough, you should do what works better for you. "There are many roads to the same destination" as they say.
Paul
Yumarama Blog

I used to think I was indecisive, but now I'm not so sure.

Offline jefklak

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Re: Got starter?
« Reply #8 on: March 04, 2012, 01:16:42 PM »
Thanks for the info, I've gone for the white wheat version then. As it's my first starter it would be kind of ridiculous to parent two versions if I'm not even sure the first one will survive.

It's alive! (day 4, just switched from PJ to 2:1:1 water)



Obviously with a *lot* of notes from all interesting blogs and posts here.