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sourdough recipes & wild starters! - Page 8

post #141 of 516
I made my best loaf yet the other day. I used unbleached white bread flour, and my bread ROSE, too much, really. I should have punched it down and let it raise again, but I was in too much of a hurry, so I just baked it. It was tasty: moist, tangy, and chewy. I used it for sandwiches, and nobody complained, so I guess that's progress!


My last loaf was just ok, and the one before that I finished in French Toast. It was really good French Toast, everyone really liked it and asked me to make it again.

So, perhaps there is hope for my bread after all!
post #142 of 516
I've been following along all the discussions, and I tried my hand at making sourdough. I used the NT directions... made my starter out of rye and my first loaf out of spelt. It's totally a TON loaf...and I've decided I really dont like rye flour... so, is my starter garbage? do I have to start over? or can I just mix in spelt from now on? (i made 2 loaves, one i let rise for a few hours, one overnight. The overnight one rose way more, the first barely at all).

Now that I have starter leftover, what do I do with it? Do I have to keep feeding it every day? It's still out on the counter...

Thanks!!
post #143 of 516
Quote:
Originally Posted by happy1nluv
I've been following along all the discussions, and I tried my hand at making sourdough. I used the NT directions... made my starter out of rye and my first loaf out of spelt. It's totally a TON loaf...and I've decided I really dont like rye flour... so, is my starter garbage? do I have to start over? or can I just mix in spelt from now on? (i made 2 loaves, one i let rise for a few hours, one overnight. The overnight one rose way more, the first barely at all).

Now that I have starter leftover, what do I do with it? Do I have to keep feeding it every day? It's still out on the counter...

Thanks!!
I put rye in mine, then stopped and fed it with wheat flour from then on, and it was fine. When you are not using your starter, put it in the refrigerator. Don't leave it on the counter if it's in a sealed jar, or the jar might explode. It will be fine in the refrigerator, it will be dormant. Feed it the night before the next time you use it. Many sources say to feed it weekly, but I don't. I just feed it when I'm going to need it, and it's fine. Sometimes it sits in my refrigerator untouched for months. In fact, I got the starter from my mother's sourdough starter, which she has had going since 1974.

Ann
post #144 of 516
I use an all rye starter and don't feed it between use. I keep it in the fridge and go several weeks between bakings. So far it's been fine.

Gardenmommy, on the bread.
post #145 of 516
I made the BEST bread so far! It is so yummy. The texture is really good: soft, chewy, light. The crust is good, crusty, but not super hard. The loaf rose very well, and did I mention it's yummy! I'm supposed to be saving it for supper, hopefully it will last that long.

Thank you so much for helping me get started. It has been worth the effort, and I will keep on trying.
post #146 of 516
gardenmommy what did you do different with this loaf ? Mine is back on ww flour as I had run out & only had the white unbleached stuff. I'm thinking about making some more croissants for the weekend. I've got a book on traditional yeasted bread cooking with lots of old recipes in so I may try one of the fruit breads in there too.
post #147 of 516
-Well, I switched to unbleached bread flour (I had been using spelt, which doesn't have as much gluten, and is more fragile than wheat), and I think the extra gluten in it is helping the rise.

-Also, I used a smaller pan, although I don't know if that would make much difference.

-I kneaded it longer, with less flour.

-I used buttermilk (just because I'm trying to get it used up) for my liquid.

-I split my starter, and fed one with the bread flour, one with the rye flour; when I made my bread, I took half of each (both needed to be fed, so I figured, can't hurt to try both!).

-I greased my pan with coconut oil.

So, I don't know what really made the difference, only that it turned out really well. Perhaps my starter is becoming more stable and mature, and that helped, too. The best part is that Dh said he is getting used to sourdough, and doesn't mind it too much anymore. I'm really hoping that he gets so used to it that he doesn't even like the other kind of bread when he eats it again. That may be too much to ask, though! I'm happy he is eating it without complaint.


I'm going to try a few more things, like using half whole spelt, half bread flour. I want to order some grains through my co-op this month, so that I can have fresh flour. I was hoping to have most of my experimenting done so that I would not be throwing out/wasting my good flour, kwim? So I'm thinking that I need to figure out what will work the best.
post #148 of 516
bumping up this thread.

If I put my starter in the fridge, do I need to cover it? If so, how tightly? With a tight lid, or does it need to breathe?

I've been making pretty good bread lately. I think I'm going to try to slow it down, as consumption isn't keeping pace with supply!
post #149 of 516
I keep my starter in a jar with a tight lid in the fridge.
post #150 of 516
I put mine in a ceramic crock with a lid (like a cookie jar) on the lower shelf in the fridge. The top shelf tends to get a little icey. I put it in a little over a week ago when I went on a trip, and when I took it out last night it was still nice and moist, and bubbled right up by morning.
post #151 of 516
Great! I think I will make one more loaf, then put it in the fridge for a week until we need more bread.
post #152 of 516
Okay, so, I am dying to try this. I used to have a sourdough starter that was wonderful--it was actually a wedding gift!--but uh, I had a baby and uh, it died. (One can only tend so many things at once there at the beginning...)

So I wanna try it. One thing--it is VERY hot here. I like the idea of "catching" a starter outside, but will things work in 90-degree+ temps?

Also, has anyone done a half whole wheat/half white starter? That's the way I like my bread, so does it make sense to do the starter that way?
post #153 of 516
I wanna come & live where you are!!! It is so cold here right now

I don't see why you can't do a starter when it's hot. What does the night time temperature do ? Just keep a eye on it & bring it inside when it starts to bubble.

I have fed my starter on white flour for a while & even a mix of WW/white as I had no other flour. Give a mix of WW/white a go for catching the starter & let us know how it works.
post #154 of 516
Total newbie here. I bought some 250 year old starter from King Arthur and have been feeding it for 4 days. I made some in my bread machine and it was a terrible brick. I love my bread machine for everything else but I think I'm going to straight to conventional with sourdough.

Question: what do you all bake your bread in? Meaning, what kind of pan or baker's stone etc. What do you put down first (oil, cornmeal, flour, etc.) to keep the dough from sticking. And what temperature oven do you use? Oh, one more... do you preheat the oven or put it in a cold oven?
post #155 of 516
periwinkle, after much trial and a lot of error, I bake my bread in a medium cast iron pan. I let it rise in the pan once, then bake at 325 for about an hour. I get a pretty good crust, a decent size loaf, and it's easy to clean. Oh, and I grease the pan really well with coconut oil before putting my dough in to rise.
post #156 of 516
OK I have 2 loaves on their 2nd rise. I dusted off my Wild Fermentation cookbook (which I had gotten a couple of years ago for the saurkraut recipes but was delighted to see had sourdough recipes too) and I scoured the Internet including the links given in this thread (e.g., sourdo.com, etc.) and read this entire thread and...

Here's what I did:

Took a cup of my VERY active starter (aka "sponge"??) which had been bubbling overnight after being fed for like the fifth time in as many days, and added in around 3 cups of bread flour and 2 tsp. of salt and about 1/2 cup of water(?). I kneaded it adding more flour or water as needed until it felt good (which should be interesting lol since this is the first time I've ever done this : ) and then I put it in a glass bowl covered by a cloth diaper and set it in the oven with the light on for a little warmth. By noon it has easily doubled in size and was pushing out of my glass mixing bowl. So I punched it down and kneaded it a little again and then divided it and put it into 2 loaf pans (all I have). Then set them in the oven for a 2nd rising. I'm about to turn the oven on.

/takes a deep breath/

I'll be back in an hour with a report.

Thanks for the info Gardenmommy. I read your posts and learned a lot from your trial and error so hopefully I'll have some edible bread some time this weekend. :
post #157 of 516
nak glad my mistakes, aka bricks, were helpful, P.
post #158 of 516
WOW. I made 2 pretty decent loaves of sourdough! The inside was light and fluffy... almost more the texture of French baguette than a more dense sandwich bread, and the taste was sublime. I need to work on the crust though -- it was brittle/thin/crackly. Not bad, but kind of hard to bite through without making a big sound and giving it some good effort. I put it in a cool oven as suggested by WF.

I wonder if the 2nd rise is what gave it that light fluffy texture (really really good with the soup I had today, but again, wouldn't make good sandwich bread). Do most of you skip the 2nd rise?

All in all, I am very pleasantly surprised by how this turned out. My starter or sponge (still don't know the difference ) was bubbling like mad and I used a bunch of it - maybe that's what made it so lofty. But I still have work to do. I'd like a slightly denser bread actually - and one shaped like a boule, not in a loaf pan, but my dough was too soft to just put it free form on a flat pan and bake it.
post #159 of 516
Periwinkle, I've never even read the bit in NT about sourdough bread. I bake mine in a hot oven & I do it in a boule shape. What I do is leave it to rise in a large pot or bowl. When it's risen & I am ready to cook it, I preheat the oven, then I turn the bread gently out onto a baking tray & shape it into a boule & slash the top. Then I put it in the oven. I have found the 10 mins @ 200degC, followed by the rest @ 180degC in my oven anyways consistently gives me a good crust that isn't too chewy. I just need to remember to put the bread on the top shelf or the bottom gets too browned.
post #160 of 516
:

Just reading along until I get it together enough to try again!
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