sourdough recipes & wild starters! - Page 11 - Mothering Forums

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#301 of 516 Old 01-29-2007, 01:54 PM
 
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Did you ladies sterilize your bowls before using them? I read that would help in preventing unwanteds from thriving in the starter, and I'm wondering if that's why my last attempt ended up growing mold.

For now, I put it in a quart mason jar with cheesecloth rubber-banded over the top. I figure it could use a head start until I figure this out, and I have a couple of days. I know in NT, it suggests moving the starter back and forth between 2 bowls and daily feedings, but it doesn't seem like anyone else here does that.

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#302 of 516 Old 01-29-2007, 02:58 PM
 
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I didn't sterilize - I mean my kitchen isn't sterile and neither's the flour. Just like other stuff like yogurt, I hope the good guys overwhelm.
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#303 of 516 Old 01-29-2007, 03:19 PM
 
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Everything was clean! Sometimes you get yucky beasties instead of good ones.

I found a sourdough chocolate chip cookie recipe i thought i would pass the link along its about 1/2 down the page or so. I am going to try and make them alittle more nt friendly.

http://www.chocolatemonthclub.com/re...ip-cookies.htm
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#304 of 516 Old 01-29-2007, 03:24 PM
 
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Originally Posted by quietserena View Post
I am disappointed by the number of 'sourdough starter' recipes out there that use active yeast to start it. Maybe I'm a purist. I'm sticking with the recipes posted to this thread for the moment until I figure out how to soak the flout for the other ones.

I'm going to put my starter attempt in the oven with the light on - nothing's happened over night and I wonder if it's too cold.

How about you guys?
Is it bad to use yeast for the starter? Obviously I haven't read thru this whole thread . When I have googled for recipes for sourdough starter, they do usually contain yeast in the ingredients. Does using yeast yield different tasting results?
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#305 of 516 Old 01-29-2007, 05:20 PM
 
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No idea if it's actually bad, and some say that if you do it that way you'll actually eventually end up with wild yeasts taking over, depending on your area.

I just wanted to see how it'd go without commercially made yeast. Something about doing it myself appeals to me.
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#306 of 516 Old 01-30-2007, 11:38 AM
 
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Mine had a bubble on the first night (ew, yeasty air much? LOL) and now is going full tilt. I have yet to make anything from it. I see loads and loads of recipes. Is there a good one for a sandwich-type bread? I went to SF last year and had an awesome sourdough grilled cheese sandwich lol I could totaly dig some of that for lunch. (Of course, Florida sourdough will prolly be totally different than San Jose/San Francisco sourdough. :P)

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#307 of 516 Old 01-30-2007, 12:32 PM
 
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Serena - That's how I felt (regarding sterilizing) but I wondered if I that's what I did wrong the first time.

In any case, I have the new starter sitting out waiting to catch another wild yeast. What a shame I had to throw out the last one... the garbage smells wonderfully sourdoughy now. Too bad for the mold.

The gem cannot be polished without friction, nor man perfected without trials. ~ Chinese proverb
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#308 of 516 Old 01-30-2007, 02:20 PM
 
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Well, I started my starter last night and added a little kefir, so we'll see how that goes. <fingers crossed>

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#309 of 516 Old 01-30-2007, 02:25 PM
 
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It is not actually bad to start a sourdough starter with baking yeast. It just means you will have a starter quicker then if you caught it. I find that it just took a bit of time for my sourdough starter to come to full strength. I only have regular baking yeast in the house for special recipes or emergencies (oh my, we are out of bread and I do not have 24 hours...)

Be patient. Sourdough is about patience. Something I am still trying to learn after all these years
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#310 of 516 Old 01-31-2007, 04:44 AM
 
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My understanding was that baker's yeast was a different type of yeast to wild yeast so was not really that desirable. If you do a starter with it, it'll always be there even if you let the bread rise for ages.
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#311 of 516 Old 01-31-2007, 12:46 PM
 
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Thanks for chiming in, OceanMomma! I thought pretty much the same on the yeast, but I'm no expert either.

My 2nd attempt at a starter is going very well! Bubbles, it's already risen to be 1.5 times as big as it started, and it smells wonderful! Now my only problem is I will be away Friday and Saturday... so if it's not ready tomorrow (which it probably will not be) I'll have to put it in the fridge until Saturday night when I return, right?

The gem cannot be polished without friction, nor man perfected without trials. ~ Chinese proverb
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#312 of 516 Old 01-31-2007, 01:14 PM
 
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Baker's yeast is one of the yeasts that is collected by a starter. It is homogenouse while the sourdough starter is heterogenous (many types). When you start a sourdough starter with baker's yeast, the first batch will be actually the homogenous yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae. As you use the sourdough starter, Saccharomyces cerevisiae will be replaced with what is in your environment (kitchen). If Saccharomyces cerevisiae is in your kitchen, your sourdough will contain some of this, if does not, other yeasties will win out.

Starting a sourdough starter with Saccharomyces cerevisiae, is just a lazy way to do it.
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#313 of 516 Old 01-31-2007, 01:59 PM
 
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Originally Posted by ladywolf View Post
Baker's yeast is one of the yeasts that is collected by a starter. It is homogenouse while the sourdough starter is heterogenous (many types). When you start a sourdough starter with baker's yeast, the first batch will be actually the homogenous yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae. As you use the sourdough starter, Saccharomyces cerevisiae will be replaced with what is in your environment (kitchen). If Saccharomyces cerevisiae is in your kitchen, your sourdough will contain some of this, if does not, other yeasties will win out.

Starting a sourdough starter with Saccharomyces cerevisiae, is just a lazy way to do it.
Thanks for that info. I didn't know that.

Anyway I have a starter that smells pretty bad, I mean really alcoholic (not a mild smell like before). Is this normal? Another question I have is how can I make my loaves less crumbly. I want to be able to slice the bread for sandwiches and not have it to fall apart on me: .
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#314 of 516 Old 01-31-2007, 02:16 PM
 
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Success!

I kept trying to keep my two bowls of starter attempts warm and last night I just kind of gave up and left them on the stove thinking I'd toss them out and start new ones today cheating with kefir.

And would you believe when I came in this morning, one of them (the WW one) is bubbly all the way through. I'm starting to suspect that the other one (just regular white flour from the grocery store) has somehow been treated. I was rooting for the WW one anyways.

So, now I'll (when DD gives me a chance) move it to a jar and toss half and feed it. It's my plan to just keep doing that. I'd like to keep a bunch on hand (like a quart) so I could always make impromptu waffles. That used to be our quick dinner back in college.
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#315 of 516 Old 01-31-2007, 02:18 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Nikki98 View Post
Thanks for that info. I didn't know that.

Anyway I have a starter that smells pretty bad, I mean really alcoholic (not a mild smell like before). Is this normal? Another question I have is how can I make my loaves less crumbly. I want to be able to slice the bread for sandwiches and not have it to fall apart on me: .
If your loaves are crumbly you are either not kneading enough, or not using a hard enough flour, or both. Gluten is what provides the structure in bread that makes it rise and stay together with all the holes in it. Hard flours contain more gluten, and kneading develops the gluten.

You can actually buy wheat gluten at most groceries and add it if you're kneading for 20 minutes and still having this problem. It may not be thoroughly NT but it'll do the trick.

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#316 of 516 Old 01-31-2007, 02:28 PM
 
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Woohoo! I have a good one going now! It's almost double its original size! Maybe I will get to bake with it tomorrow night before I go away.

Serena - Congrats on the WW starter taking off!

The gem cannot be polished without friction, nor man perfected without trials. ~ Chinese proverb
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#317 of 516 Old 02-01-2007, 10:35 AM
 
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Bigger today and even bubblier!

Quick question... how quickly after it falls do you have to use it? I'd rather not throw it in the fridge at this point if I don't have to, but I'll be away all day Friday and Saturday.

ETA: Nevermind... It frothed and bubbled then fell by late morning so I am proofing it right now and plan on kneading and shaping my loaf before dinner tonight. I'll let it rise until 6AM...no later. I have to leave by 8AM tomorrow so at least I'll be leaving fresh bread for DH and DD. Hopefully it's edible.

The gem cannot be polished without friction, nor man perfected without trials. ~ Chinese proverb
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#318 of 516 Old 02-02-2007, 01:24 AM
 
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Nobody else today, eh?

Well, I got impatient. The dough rose nicely from 2:45PM-8:10PM so I gave in and baked it. Unfortunately, I underbaked it. The crust was very nice, the flavor was a little weak though. (I tried the end even though it was underbaked.) Sour but it lacked something... maybe it just needs to mature a little or I need more salt.

I did the basics like OM - just flour, water, and salt. My starter was rye and water... then when I fed it I added 1 cup rye and 2 cups WW. When I kneaded the dough, I used unbleached all-purpose flour (probably 4 cups when all was said and done) to make sure it wasn't too dense. I have no idea how much salt I used... maybe a Tbsp or so of coarse sea salt? Water, of course... no idea how much.

In any case, my starter generation II is in the fridge now until I get home. I had a decent start - better than I expected. So here's hoping round II is tastier (and fully-baked!).

The gem cannot be polished without friction, nor man perfected without trials. ~ Chinese proverb
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#319 of 516 Old 02-02-2007, 01:46 AM
 
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Congrats on your successful loaf! If underbaked, can you slice and toast lightly to use as crackers or croutons? I always worry about underbaked bread so by the end of baking, my head is in the oven a lot in, thumping the bread.

Enough salt makes a remarkable difference in bread! When I first started baking, there were two things my mother used to remind me about. To add enough salt and not to make dough stiff. For the second one, she had me start mixing with a big wooden spoon instead of my hands, which helped a lot! (Now I know what dough feels like, but I still keep the spoon, in her memory. )

I kept stirring and feeding my starter today - it has really taken off! My plan to let it 'mature' on my counter isn't going to work - this starter is very active and I can't keep up with it. By the time I got around to it this evening it had a faint alcohol smell, which isn't what I'm going for. So I tossed some, fed it and put it in the fridge.

I'm going to try drop biscuits tomorrow, in CO to see how coconutty they'll be. I'll just get half the starter out of the fridge early in the morning and let it warm up and bubble, add salt, maybe BS and fry. Oh, how will I sleep thinking about that???
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#320 of 516 Old 02-10-2007, 06:00 PM
 
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So how's everyone's sourdough doing?

Mine's made pancakes a few times and that has been it. I am going to start a sponge for tonight - yay freshly ground wheat!

ETA:
The biscuits I was supposed to make became pancakes because the batter was too runny for biscuits. But I did use CO and there was almost no coconutty flavor.
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#321 of 516 Old 02-10-2007, 08:15 PM
 
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Honestly, mine has been in the fridge for a week now. I really need to take it out but I haven't had the time to deal with it. Tonight I'm working on dehydrating for crispy nuts so there's no counter space anyway.

The gem cannot be polished without friction, nor man perfected without trials. ~ Chinese proverb
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#322 of 516 Old 02-12-2007, 12:00 AM
 
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Okay! I'm taking my sourdough starter out of the fridge tonight and giving it a feeding (I'm supposed to do that, right?). We'll see how long it takes to revive and go from there. Not sure if I'll go for bread right away again or try something else first.

The gem cannot be polished without friction, nor man perfected without trials. ~ Chinese proverb
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#323 of 516 Old 02-12-2007, 02:07 PM
 
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Well my first loaf of bread with my new starter was a total disaster. It didn't rise fast enough and ended up barely leavened and waaaay too sour. So it found a new home in the trash can (That was my kefir starter... tasty in pancakes, not so good in bread.)

I started a new loaf yesterday and I cheated with a bit of instant yeast. Just a teensy bit, less than 1/4 tsp, so I still got a nice slow rise overnight and it's rising now in the pan in the coolest room in my house so it'll be ready to bake tonight. Is that wrong? It's still got the acid from the starter and a long rise time so I figure it's still ok. My starter just doesn't seem very strong.

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#324 of 516 Old 02-12-2007, 03:00 PM
 
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Can I use my kitchenaid to make the bread dough and knead it? I'm curious because it has a metal bowl and metal mixers. I've always heard not to use metal with sourdough, however, I've also seen plenty of recipes and such that say to mix the dough in either a food processor or mixer. Although most don't have metal bowls, they all pretty much have metal hooks, don't they?

I started my starter a few days ago with rye and whey (had TONS left over from making queso blanco). It took off IMMEDIATELY. I've continued feeding it with rye and whey, but figure I could switch to water soon - now that my whey quantities are down to a more reasonable level!

Oh, and if I can use my mixer, how long should I let it knead?
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#325 of 516 Old 02-12-2007, 03:57 PM
 
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Yes you can use your mixer, just use the dough hook. The books I have say to knead for 15 minutes by hand which is like 5 in the mixer. I wouldn't worry about it reacting with metal (though mine is SS) since it's in there such a short time.
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#326 of 516 Old 02-12-2007, 06:05 PM
 
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Can I use my kitchenaid to make the bread dough and knead it?
I never worried about the metal, but my mixer cannot handle my 100% whole grain dough. It's not good for the motor to overload it...
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#327 of 516 Old 02-20-2007, 12:19 PM
 
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I made two loaves yesterday and they taste a bit more "beer" like than I like. This got me thinking about how is sourdough suppose to taste? Is it suppose to have a hint of an alcoholic taste or is it suppose to taste more sour like. I have yet to make the "perfect" loaf yet.
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#328 of 516 Old 02-20-2007, 12:56 PM
 
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This is why I started to put mine in the fridge once I formed the loaves. They still raise while they're cooling off but not overferment imo. My starter is *really* prolific - I'm going to have to start using less of it, I think.

My loaves were slightly sour and could have definitely used more salt. This is a common problem for me, I just need to quit being afraid and use a big spoonful.
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#329 of 516 Old 03-02-2007, 08:13 PM
 
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just bumping because I love this thread so much I hate to see it sink to the bottom

is there a smiley for :bump ?
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#330 of 516 Old 03-02-2007, 10:52 PM
 
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I let my starter die from neglect, as I was too busy dealing with other parts of life to deal with that, too. I made a new one, then forgot about it in the microwave, and it grew moldy. I threw that one out, too. It's too bad, becaue it made great biscuits the first time I used it, and decent bread the second time. Oh well, I'm now doing yet another starter.
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