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Old 09-24-2010, 06:20 AM   #1
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Sourdough Questions

I am going to make my first sourdough bread and would like some suggestions as to what to bake it in and if there is a way to get a softer crust.
I've looked at the pullman and that would be nice to use as i would like to use the bread for sandwiches, but will sourdough bake well in it?

I have also looked at the sassafras bread baker. Though a little pricey, i wouldnt mind if it will work well with sourdough.

Most the recipes i have found state bread has a crisp crust. I would also like to avoid this as we like a softer crust.

Any suggestions, tips and hints would be MOST welcome as this is my favorite bread and i would like to make some.

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Old 09-24-2010, 07:45 AM   #2
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Typically, sourdough takes a bit longer to rise than do the fast-acting bread machine yeast that you purchase from the store. Bake you bread in an ordinary oven after letting it double once, punching it down, and then filling half of a bread pan and letting it double again. Place it in a 350' oven and bake for about 30 minutes. Tap the outside of the bread when the time has elapsed. If it sounds hollow, then the bread is cooked through. While the loaf is still hot, remove from the bread pans and brush all over with butter. The butter has a bit of water in it and will help make the crust soft.

Oh, and if you can make the dough the day before, and let it rest in the fridge, it will develop phenomenal flavor. Then, and hour or so before you are ready to bake the bread, put it in the pans for the 2nd rise.

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Old 09-24-2010, 07:49 AM   #3
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Sour dough is the very same product as white bread with the exception that the yeast starter has aged before using it.

Until the advent of Wonder Bread, ALL bread was what we call "sour dough" today. Until the last fifty years or so, all bread had flavor. But now we've become accustom to flavorless white sandwich bread.

Just treat it as you would regular bread.

Note: Adding water to the crust or spraying it makes it more crusty.

Go to Wikipedia:

Pre-ferment - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Old 09-24-2010, 08:22 AM   #4
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Sour dough is the very same product as white bread with the exception that the yeast starter has aged before using it.

Until the advent of Wonder Bread, ALL bread was what we call "sour dough" today. Until the last fifty years or so, all bread had flavor. But now we've become accustom to flavorless white sandwich bread.

Just treat it as you would regular bread.

Note: Adding water to the crust or spraying it makes it more crusty.

Go to Wikipedia:

Pre-ferment - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Not to be argumentative, but true sourdough bread gets its leavening from wild yeast that floats about in the atmosphere. It can withstand a more acidic environement than can store bought yeast. As the yeast organism eats carbohydrates from the flour, it gives off acid as a by product, along with CO2. The wild yeast gives off more of the acid, which makes the dough sour (acids are sour in flavor). Yeast purchased in stores isn't as robust as is the wild yeast and will start dying off before enough acid is created to make the dough sour. Now it's true that if you make a batch of dough and let it sit in the fridge for a day or two (this is called a preferment), then you will have a more pronounced yeast flavor in the bread. But it's not sourdough. You need wild yeast. To make sourdough starter, make a thin paste of water and flour in a ceramic or glass vessel. Place cheesecloth over the top and let it sit on the counter for a week or so. When you see it start to bubble and it smells sour, then you have a proper sourdough starter.

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Old 09-24-2010, 09:06 AM   #5
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Love those sock puppets! Oh, good information too.

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Old 09-24-2010, 09:08 AM   #6
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Sourdough bread is great but so are sourdough pancakes. The recipe that I used and that I no longer have was thinner as were the pancakes. That just meant you could eat more of them.

I made my sourdough starter just as Goodweed of the North described and it worked great as long as I was using it and feeding it often enough. I kept mine in a French canning jar and that worked well. Cleanliness is also essential.
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Old 09-24-2010, 11:13 AM   #7
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I wasn't attempting to give an entire treatise on the making of sour dough (I've already done that on another link), only to point out that it can be treated the same as white bread baking for the purpose of crust development and load shape.
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Old 09-24-2010, 12:02 PM   #8
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So, I'm guessing that either pan will do? or i can just use regular loaf pan?

Thank you for the tip on softer crust
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Old 09-24-2010, 07:22 PM   #9
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I wasn't attempting to give an entire treatise on the making of sour dough (I've already done that on another link), only to point out that it can be treated the same as white bread baking for the purpose of crust development and load shape.
I apologize if I appeared condescending. I assure you that it wasn't my intent. I was just trying to give a little more info about how sourdough works. I am by trade, and engineer and tend to go into detail about everything. I figure that the more I know about how something works, the better I can use it and assume that everyone is the same as me. At times, I do get wordy, or seem like I'm trying to upstage others. But I'm not. I'm only trying to be helpful.

And Selkie, just so you know, you're one of the people whose posts I trust without question. You are well respected around these parts.

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Old 09-24-2010, 07:49 PM   #10
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GW, you're fine! I was just "off" this morning and I apologize for my "mood"!
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Old 01-29-2013, 08:16 PM   #11
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Hi All, I need Help.

I've cultured a sour dough starter for 8 days. I've been feeding it daily. The container that i'm using is almost full and I took out 2 x 1/3 cup of starter and added 3 x 1/3 cup of bread flour and 2 tsp of salt. I've mixed it together and left it out to rise. After more than 10 hrs the dough still remains the same. Can any one help ? TQ
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Old 01-30-2013, 12:14 AM   #12
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Hi All, I need Help.

I've cultured a sour dough starter for 8 days. I've been feeding it daily. The container that i'm using is almost full and I took out 2 x 1/3 cup of starter and added 3 x 1/3 cup of bread flour and 2 tsp of salt. I've mixed it together and left it out to rise. After more than 10 hrs the dough still remains the same. Can any one help ? TQ
Where did you leave it to rise? It needs warmth to rise. If your oven has a light in it, turn the light on and put your dough in there. The bulb will give off just enough heat to help the dough rise. If you have no light in your oven, turn your oven on to warm or no higher than 200ºF. Leave it on for about one minute. Just long enough to make the oven warm. Then place your dough in. Keep the door closed and let the warmth of your oven do its job.
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Old 01-30-2013, 11:31 PM   #13
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Addie,

I don't think it's the temperature coz I'm living in a tropical country. Do you think it's the dough and it's not strong enough yet ? Can you share some tips on how we know if our sour dough is ready for bread making. Should the sour dough should be like a dough(dry) or watery? TQ
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Old 01-31-2013, 12:17 AM   #14
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Addie,

I don't think it's the temperature coz I'm living in a tropical country. Do you think it's the dough and it's not strong enough yet ? Can you share some tips on how we know if our sour dough is ready for bread making. Should the sour dough should be like a dough(dry) or watery? TQ
It should be a soft dough and a little sticky. Your starter should be on the liquidy side. And your dough needs some heat to rise even if you live in a tropical area. Feel the container of the outside. Does it feel warm to the touch? Warmer than your house? What does your starter look like. Does it have bubbles on top and throughout? Does it smell sour? It should have a strong yeasty odor. Depending on where you live, it can take up to a month to develop the wild yeast from the air. You have to feed it every day. Flour and water. A starter is a live being. It has to be fed regularly.

Anyone else have anything to add? Chime in.
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Old 01-31-2013, 08:07 PM   #15
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http://img37.imageshack.us/img37/741/20130131204907.jpg

My dough looks something like this after feeding it with wholemeal flour at night. I think it went to sleep because the temp around my kitchen (outdoor) is not warm enough. During the night it tends to cool down even more. I'll try moving it back inside my house. The outside of the container (plastic) is cool this morning and there was absents of bubbles when I look at it this morning.

After feed it with wholewheat flour this morning the bubbles are present again (similar to pic). Can I use it to make bread now ? Thanks for your help or any help.
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Old 01-31-2013, 11:01 PM   #16
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Dip your little finger into it and have a taste. Is it sour tasting? If the answer is yes, then that, along with the bubbles tells you that the yeast is alive and growing. As it feeds an the starches, the yeast gives off an acid, which makes the starter taste sour. It also produces CO2, which produces the bubbles.

If the starter isn't sour yet, then you need to let it sit a while longer. The yeast is alive, which you can tell from the bubbles, but hasn't reproduced enough yet to create the number of little yeast critters to make the dough sour, or leaven you bread. When you add it to the bread, it has to be mixed in thoroughly. And then, know that sour dough takes longer to rise than does dough made with commercial yeast strains. But, it will rise, and give you that wonderful sourdough flavor you are looking for. Obviously, heat will help. The dough should be kept at about 110 degrees for fastest action. Much more than that will kill the yeast.

A trick I often use is to fill my sink with 120' water, then set my dough bowl into the sink. The water cools rapidly enough so as not to overheat the dough, but transfers enough heat energy into the dough as to jump-start the action. After the dough is warm, place it in a warm location, covered of course.

Hope that helps.

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Old 01-31-2013, 11:50 PM   #17
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Hi All, I need Help.

I've cultured a sour dough starter for 8 days. I've been feeding it daily. The container that i'm using is almost full and I took out 2 x 1/3 cup of starter and added 3 x 1/3 cup of bread flour and 2 tsp of salt. I've mixed it together and left it out to rise. After more than 10 hrs the dough still remains the same. Can any one help ? TQ

The first question that needs to be asked is did the starter double itself between feedings? Was it able to do that in 7 to 10 hours? If not you are not going to leaven bread.

How were you feeding? What ratio? How often? What sort of temperature are you letting the starter work in?
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Old 02-02-2013, 10:12 AM   #18
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The first question that needs to be asked is did the starter double itself between feedings? Was it able to do that in 7 to 10 hours? If not you are not going to leaven bread.

How were you feeding? What ratio? How often? What sort of temperature are you letting the starter work in?
No it didn't double. Could it be coz my dough is watery?
Feeding daily - 2 x 1/3 cup of normal flour & 1/3 cup filtered water.
Temp around 32°c.

I've been going without bread for 2 weeks while waiting for this. Help !!!!!
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Old 02-02-2013, 10:23 AM   #19
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If it can't double itself it can't raise bread.

There is a thread around here about starters but basically mine started as 50g flour and 50g water. Every feed I did I discard down to 50g of starter and add 50g water and 50g flour (a 1:1:1 ratio).

When I get ready to bake I do a feeding at 75g on the 1:1:1 about 8 hours before I think I need it.

It absolutely has to double to do you any good. If you starter is on the counter plan on 12 hours between feeding. When mine is in the fridge I usually plan 36 hours out (3 feeds) before I get to the bake (another 8 hours) so about 44 hours ahead of my bake I pull it out of the fridge.
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Old 02-03-2013, 10:16 PM   #20
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I've finally got my sour dough to work. I think it's because earlier my dough is not matured enough and that's why it's not rising. While I was mixing the dough last night, the sour smell from the dough is strong and this morning it has already rised 2 x it's original size. I'll bake it tonight and will upload the pic once it's done.

TQ
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