Sourdough Diary - Beginners please ask questions here

Please feel free to ask questions or talk about your experiences making your first sourdough.

174 comments

[quote="Bill44"]
What a nice reply to someone who was trying to help.

Evil or Very Mad

[/quote]
Sorry Bill, wasn't meant to be offensive. I'm just trying to get a definitve answer to my questions. I want to know what it is that I'm missing either in the process of making bread with a natural leaven or in the artisan culture. I'm beginning to think that perhaps I'm barking up the wrong tree...


[quote="northwestsourdough"]
I like the texture, chewiness, the wonderful smell, how it has character, toothsomeness, the health and digestive benefits from the grains being fermented...
[/quote]
What are the health and digestive benefits?
[quote="northwestsourdough"]
...why do you think so many become so passionate about it?
[/quote]
I of course do not know and I thought that I was trying to find out, why do you think I'm asking?
[quote="northwestsourdough"]
I think you need to let yourself have more time and a few successful loaves behind you before you can answer your own question...
[/quote]
So I've been unsuccessful to date?


What a nice reply to someone who was trying to help.

Evil or Very Mad

[quote="KazaKhan?®©"]
Well of course, I don't eat fruit

Twisted Evil

But is sourness the point of using a starter, surely there are other reasons that I'm yet to understand?
[/quote]

I think there are a lot more reasons for liking sourdough than the sour. I like the texture, chewiness, the wonderful smell, how it has character, toothsomeness, the health and digestive benefits from the grains being fermented, the extra flavor for the same reason, the ability to work with the yeast to get it to reaveal its potential, like what it can do to certain grains when it proofs this long vs that long, in a poolish or a biga, longer fermentation vs one day fermentation, etc etc. The list is even longer and I like that it has so much potential. After having eaten sourdough for a while now, I almost cannot eat other kinds of breads, I find myself coming up with recipes even for muffins, rolls, pretzels,bagels, etc.
There is something wonderful and addictive about sourdough that almost defies description, why do you think so many become so passionate about it? I think you need to let yourself have more time and a few successful loaves behind you before you can answer your own question,
give it some time!
Teresa

KazaKhan, some people like the flavour of sourdough and some people don't.
That pretty much sums it up.
I like broccoli and Brussel Sprouts, and hate boiled carrots, just about throw up when I smell Caramel.

Laughing

[quote="Bill44"]
KazaKhan, some people like the flavour of sourdough and some people don't.
That pretty much sums it up.
I like broccoli and Brussel Sprouts, and hate boiled carrots, just about throw up when I smell Caramel.

Laughing

[/quote]
Well of course, I don't eat fruit

Twisted Evil

But is sourness the point of using a starter, surely there are other reasons that I'm yet to understand?


[quote="Bill44"]
There are a lot of things that can effect the sour taste, but basically if you keep your starter well refreshed before baking, using only a little bit of the stock each time, you should only have a mild sour taste.
[/quote]
It varies but usually I take 100g of starter and add 100g each of flour and water to refresh. When the starter is ready to use there is a very subtle sour smell and it does not carry through to the end result. I've abused my poor starter the last few days and it hasn't suffered or developed any sourness.
[quote="Graham"]
- when a starter is first developed, it takes 1-2 weeks to make an active, frothing brew with lots of healthy yeasts
- we call it a starter not only because it is how the culture began, but also because it is used to start further brews (leavens) that are fermented specifically to add to a final dough
- keeping your starter healthy is important, and preparing an active leaven...that may or may not be sour, is also important.
- the way your final dough is fermented will also influence how sour your bread is
[/quote]
I'm not sure that any of those points specifically address my question. I was already well aware of why a starter is called a starter, I wanted to know if a 1:1 flour and water starter would eventually turn sour. From Bills answer and my own experience I believe now that it's not likely. Also I was wanting to know if the honey like aroma is normal? This aroma appears after baking with just flour, water, salt and starter.
[quote="Graham"]
You can see why we have decided just to start slowly and summarise as we go. My suggestion is to join in the group bake that starts April 30.
[/quote]
Group bake?

I started my starter on the 26/03/06 and it was used to make bread everyday from the 3/04/06 till just a few days ago when I started to get cynical about the whole sourdough thing. I seem to get the same result with a starter that I get from commercial yeast, the main difference being the starter results in some bigger holes in the crumb and a more leathery crust. And because I'm not wanting a sour flavour to my bread I'm wondering what's the point, maybe I've missed something or perhaps I'm doing it wrong? I retarded a dough in the fridge overnight a few days ago (about 24hrs from mixing to oven) and found the flavour to be pretty much the same as when I let the dough ferment for 6-8 hours. Perhaps the better flavour people speak of when retarding overnight is more related to the sourness of the starter used?
Also is there any harm to accelerating the starter by putting in a prover? And yes I've already done it a few times

Cool


I'm tuff.

Graham, I have been pouring off about half of the starter each time I feed it, so it was probably about two cups all up ... but still ... I've thrown a lot of each one out and thrown a little flour and water in, and poured off most of the 'hooch'.

I will try to pop them in a warmer place.

Safe trip! I'm just trying to find decent, budget accomm in Coffs Harbour in June so the boys can see their Pa for his birthday. Thank heavens for the internet.

[quote]
No. 1 starter actually smells a little bit 'noble'. There is a character to the aroma distinct from the smell of flour mixed with water. I think fermentation is beginning.
[/quote]

...quickly. No.1 starter is definately starting. I just poured off the hooch and gave it a stir...fine bubbles and a beautifully warm, lactic smell. The warmer fermentation (23C - 27C) would have helped. SourYumMum, please do not get dis-heartened. I had ideal conditions here.

Graham

See: [url]http://www.sourdough.com.au/culturecam[/url]

(No.1 is on the bottom)

SourYumMum and SourDom....are these images showing for you yet?

[quote="SourYumMum"]
Separated starter?

I made my current starter with 1 cup flour and 1 cup water ... and it has been fed and watered twice (refreshed with 1 cup starter, 1 cup water, 1 cup flour) and is due to be done again later this afternoon.

I now have a nice goo ... but it has a lot of 'liquor' on the top.

Is that OK? How much is OK? Do I pour it off, leave it, or mix it in?

Graham ... a glossary for the website?

Carol

Smile

[/quote]
The liquor on top is called "Hooch" at this stage just stir it in.

[quote]
I now have a nice goo ... but it has a lot of 'liquor' on the top.
[/quote]

Is your starter bubbling, or would you describe it as stagnant?

Graham

I reckon it has occasional little bubbles.

[quote]
I reckon it has occasional little bubbles
[/quote]

A couple of observations:

[i]If[/i] your 1 cup flour / 1 cup water mixture had been bubbling nicely (indicating yeast activity), then feeding it would be appropriate. Your mixture is not particularly active, so you are looking for a way to encourage activity, rather than feed existing activity.

The separated water, or hooch, is an unknown factor (until someone explains the science of hooch).

My 1st, sloppy starter has hooch. It is much younger than yours, only 24 hours old. I just smelt this mix and compared it to the smell of the thicker No.2 starter with no hooch (which is also about 8 hours younger than No.1)

No. 2 (thick) starter smells 'wheaty'. There is no sign of fermentation yet. No. 1 starter actually smells a little bit 'noble'. There is a character to the aroma distinct from the smell of flour mixed with water. I think fermentation is beginning.

With hooch, you can poor it off, mix it in or add more flour and pretend that it was never there. My only hesitation in mixing it back in is if it adds acidity to the mix (on overly acidic mix is not friendly to the micro-organisms we are trying to attract). You can often smell acidity as a fruity smell. Sometimes it is very noticeable. In my case there is the slightest whif of fruit, so I am going to poor most of it off, and mix a small amount in...just in case it contains the microbes I want!

Arrow

SourYumMum in your case because you have so much mixture, you would probably throw most of it into the compost and add a very small amount (say 10ml) to 30ml water and 30 g flour. You don't want to end up with a 10 kg starter.

I am suggesting the above 'feeding' even though there is very little activity, only because your starter has been going for some time (2 days ?) and its condition is in an unknown state. Plus you urgently need to reduce its size unless you are baking for an army, or group of peace protesters.

After following Bill and SourDom's advice on avoiding water separation, I would then carefully sprinkle in additional flour to thicken your mix to a point where it just begins to "gather" or "clump". It is not thick enough to be a bread dough, but it is not a liquid or wet paste.

I have to rush off to Brisbane now (1.5 hours South). Let me know how it goes.
Graham

Hi KazaKhan?®©, and thanks Bill44

[quote]
Is anyone going to attempt answering questions from beginners?
[/quote]

We are currently building our beginner resources. There is a lot of information out there and we are working on a way of presenting it in a focused way...which has inspired the upcoming group bake at [url]http://www.sourdough.com.au/beginners[/url]

Now, regarding your sour starter question, here are some points:

- when a starter is first developed, it takes 1-2 weeks to make an active, frothing brew with lots of healthy yeasts
- we call it a starter not only because it is how the culture began, but also because it is used to start further brews (leavens) that are fermented specifically to add to a final dough
- the initially developed starter, at 1-2 weeks, may not be sour because it has been consitently refreshed with new flour
- however as the weeks go on, and as the starter is often stored in the fridge, it may not be refreshed as much and can become more acidic, "sour".
- keeping your starter healthy is important, and preparing an active leaven...that may or may not be sour, is also important.
- a stage between the starter and the final leaven will help to recover your starter and can reduce acidity if that is the desired outcome
- the way your final dough is fermented will also influence how sour your bread is

You can see why we have decided just to start slowly and summarise as we go. My suggestion is to join in the group bake that starts April 30.

Graham

Separated starter?

I made my current starter with 1 cup flour and 1 cup water ... and it has been fed and watered twice (refreshed with 1 cup starter, 1 cup water, 1 cup flour) and is due to be done again later this afternoon.

I now have a nice goo ... but it has a lot of 'liquor' on the top.

Is that OK? How much is OK? Do I pour it off, leave it, or mix it in?

Graham ... a glossary for the website?

Carol

Smile

[quote="KazaKhan?®©"]
[quote="KazaKhan?®©"]I started with just flour and water on the 26/03/06 and my starter has a nice wheaty aroma, very far from sour. The bread I make with it has a very distinct honey smell to it and it is particulary strong when sugar is added. [b]Will it stay this way or will it eventually obtain a sour flavour?[/b] And I should note that I don't want a sour flavour to my bread I'm happy with the way it's going at the moment but I was just wondering...
[/quote]
Is anyone going to attempt answering questions from beginners?[/quote]
OK, let me say now that any advice that I offer is purely from my own experience and may be completely wrong, I am happy to be corrected by others.
I'm not sure whether I'm jumping the gun on Graham's tutorial but here goes.
There are a lot of things that can effect the sour taste, but basically if you keep your starter well refreshed before baking, using only a little bit of the stock each time, you should only have a mild sour taste. That's a very basic answer and I'm sure Graham will get into the two stage levain process, and I'd rather leave any further answers to him to avoid confusion.

[quote="KazaKhan?®©"]
I started with just flour and water on the 26/03/06 and my starter has a nice wheaty aroma, very far from sour. The bread I make with it has a very distinct honey smell to it and it is particulary strong when sugar is added. [b]Will it stay this way or will it eventually obtain a sour flavour?[/b] And I should note that I don't want a sour flavour to my bread I'm happy with the way it's going at the moment but I was just wondering...
[/quote]
Is anyone going to attempt answering questions from beginners?


[quote]
I always run my starter at equal weights flour and water (100% hydration).

Apart from anything else it makes the maths easy.
[/quote]

Hi SourDom, and thanks Bill44.

I have now mixed test starter No. 2:

50 ml spring water
50 g Kialla Organic Wholewheat

(will use rye in a starter for the Diary)

50 / 50 = 1
x 100 = 100% hydration

It is much closer in texture to a dough than a paste, which is how No.1 felt. Both starters are now in the culturecam prover at:

[url]http://www.sourdough.com.au/culturecam[/url]

The separated starter on the bottom is No. 1 starter.

Sourdom and SourYumMum the problem with viewing could be that your Java needs updating. My son has a new mac and we don't have a problem on that. Try the link below and let me know if that works...we like macs a lot.

[url]http://www.java.com/getjava[/url]

Graham

No water myths from me! I am a big fan of icy cold mid-winter water straight from the tap! But I also use a couple of filter jugs.

And I can't see the culture cam either, so perhaps Graham's puter has put itself to bed!

Gentlemen, could I please remind you that this is the beginners forum. ie. breadmaking for dummies! I am not too proud to admit that. I want to get to where you all are!

If you are going to start talking 'hydration' etc, please make sure that you dumb it down for us dummies. Now that dummy might only be me, but there you go.

One step (and one maths lesson) at a time, please?

To add a dissenting opinion.

I always run my starter at equal weights flour and water (100% hydration).

Apart from anything else it makes the maths easy.

my starter has much more vigour (and a very pleasing aroma) when it is fed a bit of rye as well as white flour.

cheers
Dom

PS Graham the culture cam seems to be Mac-unfriendly, as unless your picture is of a white flour starter in a snowstorm I can't see it.


[quote="Graham"]
Thanks Bill,

I'm going out for a walk and when I get back will make up a second, thicker brew. Just to be clear...are you suggesting the next brew be equal parts of flour and water, or would you prefer something different?

Graham
[/quote]
Hey mate it's your show, I was just querying the need for so much water.
But now that you have asked, equal [i]volume[/i] flour and water (166% hyd)
[b]Reference[/b]:- 1 cup water = 250g. 1 cup bakers flour = 150g.

[quote]
But now that you have asked, equal volume flour and water (166% hyd)
Reference:- 1 cup water = 250g. 1 cup bakers flour = 150g.
[/quote]

OK. That is interesting already.

Let us refer to the first test starter as starter No. 1

Ingredients:

50 ml water
30 g flour

Bill you have pointed out that it takes less flour (weight) to fill the same [i]volume.[/i] that water takes up. Water is heavier. You gave the example of 1 cup of water and one cup of flour: each takes up the same amount of space but the water weighs 250g and the flour 150g.

By coincidence, Starter No. 1 is the same [i]volume[/i] of flour as there is water (divide 250 and 150 by 5 and that is 50 and 30 respectively).

The amount of water in a dough is refered to as Hydration. Bakers express this as a percentage. The amount of water (50 ml) to flour (30 g) is what we want to know to find out hydration,

50 / 30 = 1.66

x 100 = 166%

Graham

( I have made a late correction ... sorryy. GP)

Thanks Bill,

I'm going out for a walk and when I get back will make up a second, thicker brew. Just to be clear...are you suggesting the next brew be equal parts of flour and water, or would you prefer something different?

Graham

[quote="Graham"]
[quote].
One thing we need input on in the Diary is different perspectives on whether or not we should be bothering with high protein flours in starter and leavens. It can't hurt, but is it a benefit to the leaven? How exhausted are the proteins after long and intensive fermentation? How do fermented proteins contribute to gluten development, if at all?
[/quote] [/quote]
I don't know anything about the supposed (culture shock) effect of a leaven fed with one type of flour being used to bake with a different type of flour. Apparently a lot of bakers just do their leavens with rye flour for everything.

Personally, my stock starters are fed with white bakers flour and are maintained at 100% hydration. When I want to make a 1/3 rye loaf then I just make a two stage 1/3 rye leaven to suit. If the recipe calls for a different mix of flours or a different hydration level to my stock, then I make a leaven to suit.

I have no idea if this is "By the book", it's just the way I do it.

The separation situation begs the question, "too much water"?
Each year I try my luck at "catching" new starters, mainly in the hope of snaring a rare magic Lactobaccilus for its flavour. I have found that much more than 166% hydration (1cup water to 1 cup flour) is too thin to hold the flour in suspension, so is the extra water necessary?

Well folks I hate to be different but I just use water straight from the tap for all my baking. My son is a water treatment operator for the local council and I know our water is chlorinated, flouridated, and has alum and a few other chemicals that I can't even pronounce let alone spell.
Bread seems to turn out fine, and both my starters (Aussie and US) seem happy.
I hope we are not bordering on a myth about water.

Laughing

[quote]
...when I look at some of the wildlife that visits our yard and therefore probably the roof ... doves, cockatoos, butcher birds, magpies, BATS, peewees ... just the thought of some of that ending up in my water is enough to give me giardia!!!
[/quote]

Winter is not good for water quality because of all the slow combustion soot landing on the roof. We divert the first 5 minutes of rain when possible, but sometimes a 5 minute rain shower is all we expect so we might shorten the diversion to only 60 seconds or so.

[quote]
I got hold of some Laucke Wallaby flour today ... so I feel ready to be a REAL baker! It was the last bag and discounted, so I hope this doesn't mean that Coles is ditching it!
[/quote]

That flour has lots of supporter so should be fine. One thing we need input on in the Diary is different perspectives on whether or not we should be bothering with high protein flours in starter and leavens. It can't hurt, but is it a benefit to the leaven? How exhausted are the proteins after long and intensive fermentation? How do fermented proteins contribute to gluten development, if at all?

Perhaps questions like that appear to be of little relevance to beginners, but I think the more clarity we can get from the very beginning, the better.

I am mumbling on. That flour should be perfect. My own 'test' starter mixture shows 3mm of separation after 4 hours.

[url]http://www.sourdough.com.au/culturecam[/url]

Will I or wont I stir...?

[quote="SourYumMum"]
Grew up on tankwater. Know exactly what tends to cark it in it or on it. I filter tapwater. But I would love a tank for the garden and loos, etc. Tankwater is an ideal ... but can be a fairly disgusting ideal! Particularly when I look at some of the wildlife that visits our yard and therefore probably the roof ... doves, cockatoos, butcher birds, magpies, BATS, peewees ... just the thought of some of that ending up in my water is enough to give me giardia!!!
[/quote]
I'm sure you could find all that and more in the dams we drink from. Of course I use a filter for my tapwater as well

Smile

[quote="SourYumMum"]
...so I hope this doesn't mean that Coles is ditching it!
[/quote]
I wouldn't think so, seems to sell like hot cakes

Laughing


Grew up on tankwater. Know exactly what tends to cark it in it or on it. I filter tapwater. But I would love a tank for the garden and loos, etc. Tankwater is an ideal ... but can be a fairly disgusting ideal! Particularly when I look at some of the wildlife that visits our yard and therefore probably the roof ... doves, cockatoos, butcher birds, magpies, BATS, peewees ... just the thought of some of that ending up in my water is enough to give me giardia!!!

I got hold of some Laucke Wallaby flour today ... so I feel ready to be a REAL baker!

Razz

It was the last bag and discounted, so I hope this doesn't mean that Coles is ditching it!

Hi CG,

No, I don't have a clue! Google Knows All! And when you've made some and it's delicious, share the recipe!?!

Graham - nice culture cam! What's in it? Is it just flour and water? Are you herding wildeyeests?

Smile

Yep. Just Kialla Stoneground Organic Wholemeal, and some bottled spring water. Our house in on tank (rain) water which I would have used but a rat died in the leaf filter several weeks ago so I had to add chlorine.

It is 50 ml water and 25-30 grams of flour (my scales malfuntioned and this is a test only...will be precise with measures for the diary). I will get a digital read out thermometer tomorrow and a container that is easier to view. Plus a loose fitting lid is the way I am used to...but I have noticed some current bakers using more tightly fitting lids.

Graham

[quote]
CORN.FLAKES. = OXY.MORON!
[/quote]

I know what you mean about corn flakes. In my defence, I should say that I don't buy them or eat them...but they turn up in the cupboard anyway. I can't say any more than that without causing family grief.

SourYumMum and all, I have just set up a 'culturecam' at [url]http://www.sourdough.com.au/culturecam[/url] It is a very basic setup that will evolve over the next few days. The starter shown is a temperature test. A new one will be made for the diary.

Graham

making licorice????? Have always wanted to know how to make it... ANY CLUES??? I know its not sour dough question- but just asking. I worked in a restaurant where we made a licorice dessert (out of this world yum ) but I bought the licorice for this. ANY INFO appreciated, (sorry its not a sourdough question)


Well I'm pleased to report that my poor slop made with Defiance bakers flour in the rites according to Bill44 has responded to a good feeding and watering. I will give it a little lovin' again this afternoon (and continue to follow Bill's instructions) and see what happens. But I think I'll follow the beginner's diary with Laucke (if I can get some).

Graham - CORN.FLAKES. = OXY.MORON!

Yesterday I found one of my nice clip-top plastic containers filled with purple beans from the vegie patch hidden in one of the kitchen cupboards (4-year old had 'picked them and put them away' for mummy). Only a little smelly, still made last night's stir-fry. But my hubby said, "Oh, I saw them in there yesterday. I thought YOU had put them there! So I left them."

!

I'm off to gaze at my bubbles.

I have been baking with sourdough off and on for many years, at least 25, and almost all of my beginning experiences with sourdough weren't too good because I had some "Alaskan Sourdough" books. They always made their starters with commercial yeast and basically used sourdough as a kind of "buttermilk" ingredient. By that I mean using the acid and flavor but utilizing baking soda and baking powder liberally for the actual leavening. They also recommend feeding the starter with leftovers, and other junk. So my family put up with my trials and felt like they were eating rotting dough.
I finally had to get a hold of Nancy Silverton's "Breads from La Brea Bakery" book to bring me up to date with real sourdough, otherwise I might still be doing "Alaska Sourdough". There are some Alaska style recipes that I still use, like for biscuits, but I have pretty much shied away from most of those kinds of recipes because the real sourdough leaven offers so much more scope for the imagination and tastebuds! Thanks Graham for starting up this interesting topic.
Have a terrific day!
Teresa

[quote="SourYumMum"]
Oh TeckPoh ... maybe the forum members can send you some for your birthday!

Very Happy

[/quote]

SYM...even if it's for my birthday, I think flour is too extravagant a thing to send by mail. The shipping cost would outweigh the price of the flour by tons! You be patient with your yeasties and I'll be patient with my flours...


For beginners: the protein level of wheat flour is a good indication of its ability to develop strong gluten membranes to hold the gas from fermentation (the captured gas is what raises bread dough).

A well developed dough from 'strong' flour will produce an elastic dough. Wheat flour with 11.5% protein is considered strong enough to make bread in Australia (as a general standard...bakers may use stronger or weaker flours than this).

The Tip Top and Woolworths organic plain flours are 'cake flour' protein level, being 9.3%, 9.0%. The White wings flour lists at 10.8% and could be tested for use in some breads, but is probably not a reliable all-purpose bread flour. I purchased all these whites to use as starters next week (we once had a white flour that did not ferment well...I want to ferment these against each other to guage any differences). A wholemeal/rye starter will be my main starter next week.

Laucke have some interesting reading here: [url]http://www.laucke.com.au/understanding.html[/url]

Kialla wholemeal lists at 13.1% and Kialla unbleached plain at 11.8%. It is worth keeping in mind that the sandy bran in stoneground flours tends to interfere with gluten membrane development, so behaves differently to a roller milled (flaky bran) flour of the same protein content.

[quote]
SourYumMum:

I am trying to be patient ... just don't want to end up A patient!

The 'poor slop' has just been fed and watered. Hopefully great hordes of wildeyeests are stampeding toward it!
[/quote]

As Bill44 said, do not give up on your existing brew. Last week I uncovered a bowl of partly eaten generic corn flakes from my 6 year old. It was around a day old and was fermenting pleasantly. Makes me wonder about how important nutrient actually is in fermentation.

Graham

[quote="SourYumMum"]
Fantastic! Thanks Graham.

OK ... what flour should I purchase to start with.

I have Defiance Bakers Flour ... but I'm quite convinced it's 'lifeless'.

I currently have a 'starter' made according to Bill44's instructions elsewhere in the forums ... it's been there a couple of days and has a couple of little bubbles ... and I know it's been a little cool ... but gee. It's a sad little slop!

I look forward to learning more!
[/quote]

Actually, when I really think about it, my starter with Wallaby Flour did have to be threatened after about 7 days - so I intimidated it by starting a new starter from Wholewheat Flour, and guess what, the next day, the Wallaby was working like a beauty, I just hadn't had enough faith and thought it should have been doing more by day 7. So I guess perserverence is the key. Good luck.

[quote="Bill44"]
I'm quite fond of Laucke Wallaby unbleached bakers flour from Coles for $7.50/5Kg.
[/quote]
I love the Wallaby flour

Cool

[quote="Bill44"]
I had a good look at Bibina and had a chat to the boss, they dont stock a bakers flour as such but I did pick up 5Kg of rye for $9.00
[/quote]
Well he\she should check their stock. They stock Centurion's special white flour at $6.75 for 5Kg bag and I don't see any reason why it wouldn't be considered a bakers flour (11.5% protein). I have a bag but haven't tried it yet, I will do a side by side comparison with the Wallaby flour tomorrow if I get the chance...


It's really painful reading all these flour talk. You just don't know how deprived we are in this side of the pond.

So...what do I buy when the family go on overseas fun trips?? FLOUR!


Oh TeckPoh ... maybe the forum members can send you some for your birthday!

I seem to recall (further to Graham's mention of spelt flour), that Neil at Green Grove Organics at Junee is using it to make his licorice!

Maybe someone will send ME some of THAT for MY birthday!

Very Happy

LatestFad ... I have found the Defiance to be terrific for simple things like pancakes for the kids, simple pizza dough, etc ... works a treat when you throw yeast in it! But it has been hard to get it inspired with a starter.

That said, I think we can be 99.9% sure that it's 'operator error' at fault here, and not the flour!

Thanks all for the shopping list!

I'm quite fond of Laucke Wallaby unbleached bakers flour from Coles for $7.50/5Kg.
I had a good look at Bibina and had a chat to the boss, they dont stock a bakers flour as such but I did pick up 5Kg of rye for $9.00. As Kaza said, it is quite light in colour compared to my normal organic rye, but that may be just because it is a fine sift. I havent baked with it yet but will do a rye loaf later this week. The rye still works fine for dusting your proofing cloths so at the price it is a good buy as compared to a health food shop price of $3.75/500g.

[quote="SourYumMum"]
Fantastic! Thanks Graham.

OK ... what flour should I purchase to start with.

I have Defiance Bakers Flour ... but I'm quite convinced it's 'lifeless'.

I currently have a 'starter' made according to Bill44's instructions elsewhere in the forums ... it's been there a couple of days and has a couple of little bubbles ... and I know it's been a little cool ... but gee. It's a sad little slop!

I look forward to learning more!
[/quote]

I've used Wallaby flour for a starter and was very happy with it (for baking as well). Coles was out of Wallaby this week so I have bought Defiance, I hope I have better results with my baking with it than you are with your starter. Shall let you know.

I am trying to be patient ... just don't want to end up A patient!

The 'poor slop' has just been fed and watered. Hopefully great hordes of wildeyeests are stampeding toward it!

I notice, Bill44, that you and KazaKhan have mentioned Bibina for flour ... as they are not very far from my place, what would you suggest I purchase?

(That chocolate room in Bibina should be banned!!!!!!!!!!)

[quote]
OK ... what flour should I purchase to start with.
[/quote]

Yesterday I went looking for different flour types in the supermarket and came back with the following:

[b]Kialla [/b]
Organic Stoneground Wholemeal Plain Flour
Organic Unbleached Plain Flour
Organic Spelt Flour

White Wings Organic Plain Flour
Tip Top Organic Plain Flour
Woolworths Organic Plain Flour

Unfortunately our health food store was closed, but they would have had more. I was also looking for rye flour and rye grain.

For the starter I was thinking of using the Kialla Wholemeal, possibly with a rye component added.

Graham

[quote="SourYumMum"]
I currently have a 'starter' made according to Bill44's instructions elsewhere in the forums ... it's been there a couple of days and has a couple of little bubbles ... and I know it's been a little cool ... but gee. It's a sad little slop!

I look forward to learning more!
[/quote]
Patience, patience, from many a sad little slop many loaves grow.

Laughing

Keep following the instructions.

Fantastic! Thanks Graham.

OK ... what flour should I purchase to start with.

I have Defiance Bakers Flour ... but I'm quite convinced it's 'lifeless'.

I currently have a 'starter' made according to Bill44's instructions elsewhere in the forums ... it's been there a couple of days and has a couple of little bubbles ... and I know it's been a little cool ... but gee. It's a sad little slop!

I look forward to learning more!

I remember using a book which was my first by Dan Leader, the bread was nice, most of the time and of course there was the usual I forgot how much of this or that only to be tossed!
Good luck to all!
Jeremy

fantastic forum for beginners - well done with the idea. I will be a looker (& probably a question asker) constantly. So much to learn about this breadmaking stuff. Bill - my taste testers for my first few dismal attempts could almost have done with stomach pumps when I think about what I made them suffer. Good thing I have some really good friends!!!!

Embarassed