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Old 03-16-2006, 06:51 PM   #1
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Sourdough Bread Starter help.

What I am doing is a first for me.
I am doing starter for sourdough Bread.
I followed the directions, but after a night of sitting out in a warm place, the dough mixture rose! It filled the whole bowl and the kitchen towel kept in! I didn't read anywhere in the directions where it warned the mixture would rise.
Is this correct?

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Old 03-16-2006, 07:03 PM   #2
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Pete,
the day iI started my starter, It surprised my by almost going over the bowl it was in, so I transfered it to a larger one,after the initial rise and feeding it the next day it settled down and bubbled and did it's thing..

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Old 03-16-2006, 07:23 PM   #3
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Well thanks, that makes me feel better!
Tomorrow it's going to be three days so I am going to bake with it.
Will let you know how it turns out.
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Old 03-16-2006, 07:42 PM   #4
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Pete, I used to keep sourdough all the time. If I were you, I'd give a new one a week at least, before you use it. You want it to actually get sour.

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Old 03-16-2006, 07:50 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete
Well thanks, that makes me feel better!
Tomorrow it's going to be three days so I am going to bake with it.
Will let you know how it turns out.
Pete I left mine over a week and each day it got more sour..The bread when I used it was really nice. While it didn't taste just like the San Francisco sour dough I love, it was very good..I now realize that yep the water in SF is what does the trick..I wish you the best of luck and enjoy your bread

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Old 03-17-2006, 04:39 PM   #6
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Okay. I will keep the batter for a week. I shall stir it everyday, right?
This batch tasted just great, but the crust was not slick and shiny and brittle. But I have to admit the taste of the bread waqs very good.

You know, I have to tell you guys, I guess I am going to go the traditional way of baking and buy a mixer. I have been using my bread machine for the dough mixing and then I handle it by hand from there. What do you think?
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Old 03-17-2006, 08:54 PM   #7
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Pete, did you use a commercial yeast for your starter? or did you just allow natural, airborne yeasts to land in the starter?

When I made my starter a few months ago (the first one I'd attempted in many years), I didn't add any commercial yeast during any part of the recipe. I just "fanned" the starter (with a piece of folded paper, a magazine, whatever was handy) when I began the starter, and again each day when I stirred it. (I'm told) this will force a whole lot of the little airborne critters into the mixture.

The natural yeast spores take longer to collect (and to become "active"), because they're fewer & further between than in a packet of commercial yeast. BUT they have the advantage of not being bred/developed to provide a standard leavening performance, or to yield a "neutral" flavor.

It took my starter about 3 days to show signs of life (at the end of day 2, I began to worry, in fact). But by the evening of day 3, I had a beautiful, beige-colored sponge which obviously teemed with life. It had a very distinct, sour-yeast aroma (not unpleasant). I added 1 more cup (each) of flour and water, and allowed the starter to continue growing for another 3 or 4 days.

By the time I got around to making & baking...it worked beautifully. My very first loaf came out a bit dense and moist in the center, but that was totally my fault...I allowed the dough to rise too much the second time around. But the second loaf (and subsequent loaves) had that distinct sourness, and a light but chewy texture. It occurred to me after a while to brush the loaf with some water, about 3/4 of the way through baking. Made the crust more chewy, less crispy (which I like). I suppose that brushing with egg would work, too, but that would be REAL chewy.

Anyway...I hope this helps you out.

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Old 03-17-2006, 08:57 PM   #8
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BTW...I can't see why a Bread Machine wouldn't work perfectly well (for the kneading, anyway). I burned mine up (literally) a few years back, and I haven't used one since then. But before I killed the thing, I thought it worked great!

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Old 03-17-2006, 10:43 PM   #9
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Pete, I do everything with my hands..I have a breadmachine that is what my late daduse to call a dust catcher..I much prefer doing it all my self. It makes you feel quite the baker even tho I'm not..On the sourdough you made was it a french loaf or more a sandwich type bread? When I make french, I baste it with a mix or cornstarch and water sometimes. Most times because I have a hearth kit, I just spritz the oven 3 times in the first 10 min of baking and it gives me a crispy crunchy crust. Also, the directions for my starter has me stirring twice a day..Hope this helps a little.

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Old 03-18-2006, 11:37 AM   #10
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I used commercial yeast.
And I made loaves this time. Next time I will try baggettes.
I also brushed the tops with water and put a loaf pan full of ice cubes in with the bread.
I put photos on my last message, but only three uploaded. I had two other closeups. (I don't know how to make them smaller.)
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