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  • #16
    Re: Interesting Dough Experiment

    Great feedback - thanks! I am beginning to understand the process now at last. It is quite complex, but interesting at the same time.

    I am eager to give the starter a try ASAP - is this evening too early to use it?

    How long does the yeast starter need to be in contact with the main mix in order to get its full effect??

    BTW My starter has a faint sour smell to it at this stage but is doubling and more within a couple of hours. Is this a good sign?
    / Rossco

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    • #17
      Re: Interesting Dough Experiment

      Yes, use it!

      With a very lively starter, I would expect proof times to be in the neighborhood of what you are used to with yeast, but like yeast, this is also related to temperature and recipe. The thing about sourdoughs is they are going to take however long they are going to take, and it is only with experience that one can predict this. The state of the starter is another variable. If I bake using starter that was fed same-day, my proof time will be different than if I bake with a starter that was last fed two or three days ago.
      It sounds like it's doing what it should do. An experiment worth continuing at the very least. Do give it a taste, for no other reason than it would be nice to have a reference for a couple of weeks down the road. It won't hurt you, I promise.

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      • #18
        Re: Interesting Dough Experiment

        Ok thanks ... I'll give it a go this evening and leave it proofing over night and bake some pizza tomorrow.

        When I get home this evening I will sample some of the brew. If you don't hear from me again you will know that there was a problem. But on the positive side, I will bequeath you my WFO and favourite peel and have it shipped over to you.
        / Rossco

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        • #19
          Re: Interesting Dough Experiment

          Sorry about the delay in updating this one.. BUT an amazing breakthrough...

          I did taste the mix and it was sour. It developd well over the next few days and today I took the plunge and actually used it.

          Now the interesting thing is that it is very similar to the original dough that I bought from the local pizzeria. The smell and texture are the same and I am sure with an overnight fermentation, this dough will be superb.

          There is no "marshmallowing" that I experienced with the IDY method, but there is still some action on the go as I can see small bubbles forming. I am just going to divide it up (after 1 hr on the bench) and will now wait to see how it turns out in the morning.

          If this works well I will only use this method in the future. I will have to generate a fair bit of the starter though when I have a large number of people around, but I am sure that I can manage the process OK....

          More later....
          / Rossco

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          • #20
            Re: Interesting Dough Experiment

            Just another thing ...

            The original dough had a distinctly yellow colour to it - is this possibly a sourdough characteristic?

            Tonight's batch is rather white - but I am wondering if it will be yellow in the morning after fermentation...
            / Rossco

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            • #21
              Re: Interesting Dough Experiment

              Hi Rossco/Splatg!

              You tend to ask questions that no one can answer without a lot more information, Rossco, such as "What is the difference between the starter you developed from the dough and the one you started with pineapple juice?" At this point, without a detailed microbiological study, not one can answer that with any confidence.

              Your responses were good, Splatgirl which is why I didn't comment - though being traveling and therefore out of sequence contributed as well.

              Let's get back to basics Rossco. There are many things going on in dough - most notably enzymes breaking down starch to sugar, yeast converting sugar to alcohol, and bacteria breaking down sugar and metabolic products from the yeast and making a range of chemicals and acids.

              IF your dough based starter was based on commercial yeast, there will be a diversity of bacteria in the flour which will create all sorts of products that may or may not taste good and may or may not be particularly good for you. And, as it is the acid from bacteria that keep a sourdough "pure" (i.e. rid of bad bacteria) the lower acid dough will be vulnerable to contamination.

              Over time the lactobaccili will tend to take over and the acidity of the starter will rise. IF it was based on commercial yeast the yeast will lose vitality and the starter will lose "power" (i.e. the ability to leaven the bread/make it rise). At that point some other wild yeast will tend to take over - and given you should have wild yeast spores from your sourdough in relatively high numbers you will probably end up with the same starter - but the past will be different.

              Recent research indicates the wild yeast populations in well-cared for sourdoughs tend to be relatively stable and able to resist entry by other yeasts. However, the bacteria populations tend to go become infiltrated by local bacteria. I.e. a San Francisco sourdough starter with near 100% Lactobaccilis sanfranciscus will experience the development of a complex bacterial population over time when NOT in San Francisco. (I am well aware of the debates over this and do not wish to start another debate and I don't say it can't remain distinct but rather that it has a tendency to lose distinction and shift to a new profile - especially if it is not well maintained).

              WRT yellow, sourdough starters do tend to lose their brilliant white as they age. I haven't done the experiment but I suspect flour mixed with water and held for a week will change color too as the starches break down.

              Hope this is useful!
              Jay

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              • #22
                Re: Interesting Dough Experiment

                YAY! Photos?

                Re yellow color...my guess is that this is a function of the type of flour used. Semolina flour comes immediately to mind. Those that I have seen and worked with are always more the color of corn flour than wheat flour.
                I have not experienced any appreciable change in color with starters or doughs with age other than noticing that if my starter hasn't been fed for a while and has a layer of hooch on the top, stirring that in sometimes makes it very slightly grey. I have always assumed this is just due to oxidation.

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                • #23
                  Re: Interesting Dough Experiment

                  Sorry ... things have got a bit hectic here. I leave for Africa today and thought that I was only flying out tomorrow. Lucky I checked the ticket!!

                  Didn't manage to test the dough out fully as planned but now I want to put the starter to sleep for 10 days while I am away. Any suggestions on that one??

                  PS - apologies if I ask "stupid" questions, and thanks for your patience in responding. So much to learn and often this can be confusing.
                  / Rossco

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                  • #24
                    Re: Interesting Dough Experiment

                    I've done that...totally messed up a travel date. in my case I didn't realize it until after the fact.

                    just put it in the fridge. Might need to refresh it a couple of times to get it going nice and strong again, but it'll be fine.

                    cheers

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                    • #25
                      Re: Interesting Dough Experiment

                      Ha - it can happen so easily can't it...

                      I have packed a pizza stone in my luggage and will be making some pizzas for my dad when I get there as there are no decent pizzas to be had. Have also made a copy of the Reinhart ciabatta recipe to take along so I will get some practice.

                      I won't be taking any flour along as airport officials may mistake it for some other similar looking white stuff. They have got some really good flour there so it will be interesting to see how it all turns out...

                      I'm taking the iPhone along so I will be able to post on the adventure.

                      Just running out the door now to get some travellers cheques....
                      / Rossco

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                      • #26
                        Re: Interesting Dough Experiment

                        Good luck, Rossco!

                        Bake On!
                        Jay

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                        • #27
                          Re: Interesting Dough Experiment

                          Thanks Jay... Arrived here a few hours ago and i've already been shopping for flour. Obsession ... What obsession??
                          / Rossco

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                          • #28
                            Re: Interesting Dough Experiment

                            Hi Rossco,
                            great experiment!

                            I must admit I've never had much luck with sourdough.

                            bread or otherwise!
                            -------------------------------------------
                            My 2nd Build:
                            Is here

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