Starter question

A friend (who left for overseas) recently gave me a 250g lump of frozen starter, apparently with a 6-1/2 year history. I thawed it in the fridge over the weekend and fed it last night. Then I went and took a look at the Pain de Campagne recipe he left me.

[quote]
PAIN DE CAMPAGNE
(2 round loaves)

Ingredients

¾ pint warm water
2½ tsp dry yeast
8 oz chef (sourdough starter)
2 oz rye flour
2 oz wholemeal flour
20 oz strong white flour (plus extra up to a maximum of 4 oz)
2½ tsp salt

Method

1. Put the water, yeast and chef in the mixing bowl. Beat with K-beater for 2-3 minutes.
2. Mix the flours with the salt and pour them into the mixing bowl. Beat with the K-beater for about 5 minutes until the dough comes off clean from the side of the bowl.
3. Remove the K-beater and fix in the dough hook. Knead the dough with the dough hook for 5-6 minutes. If the dough is still sticky, add 2 tbsp of strong white flour and then knead for 3-4 minutes. Continue adding 2 tbsp of flour and knead until the dough is only slightly tacky but not sticky to your hands.
4. Form the dough into a ball and place it in an oiled bowl. Cover with a cloth and let the dough rise for 1½ to 2 hours until it is double in size.
5. Punch the dough down, and remove 8 oz as chef for your next batch of bread. [Cling wrap the chef and put it into a sealed plastic bag and place it in the freezer. When you need to make the next batch of bread, ensure you remember to take out the chef and let it thaw overnight in the refrigerator.]
6. Divide the remaining dough into two equal portions, roll them into balls, and place them in two separate oiled bowls. Cover them, and let it rise for a further 1-1½ hours.
7. Oil a tray large enough to hold the two portions of dough, or oil two separate trays, one for each portion of the dough.
8. Turn on the oven to 200ºC.
9. While the oven is warming up, without punching down the dough, turn them out onto the tray. Sprinkle flour over the dough. Let it rise for 15-20 minutes.
10. Just before you place the risen dough in the oven, make three slashes across the dough.
11. Bake for 35 minutes (fan-assisted oven) or 45 minutes (non-fan-assisted oven).
12. Remove them from the oven and place on a rack to cool completely.
[/quote]

Crying or Very sad

Guess why I feel that way?

I was raring to go...thinking I've a new strain of starter to explore. Now I see there's COMMERCIAL YEAST in it....sigh sigh sigh. What would you do if you were in my position? Carry on and bake a bread with it? Dump it? I'm not against making hybrid breads. But, with baker's yeast in the starter, I feel there's too much going on...I tasted it a bit and there was very little sourness.

Looks as if not everyone has the same idea about sourdough.


11 comments

all of our starters most likely contain all of the above.

Cool

nope

that was probably Candida albicans

Wink

d


[quote="Bill44"]
Actually I think you will find that the greater percentage of sourdough starters are based on the Candida Milleri yeast.
[/quote]

Could that be because most of you here Have wheat sourdoughs while for us Ex-Europeans sourdough is always rye, and if we need a wheat one we feed it up on wheat, but continue the rye?

[quote="Bill44"]
Actually I think you will find that the greater percentage of sourdough starters are based on the Candida Milleri yeast.
[/quote]

sounds like something i got once under my arm

Laughing

Bake Me !

Actually I think you will find that the greater percentage of sourdough starters are based on the Candida Milleri yeast.

[quote="bozthebaker"]
i dare say that 99.99% of starters that are maintained by people on this forum have the exact same organisms that are in said yeast.
mate, whatever yeast occurs in your starter (whether its from a packet or your armpit) won't affect the sourness of your final product anyway. As it's the bacteria that produces the acidity in the dough anyway.
[/quote]

Not quite right brenton,
Bakers yeast is a selected yeast which is called Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Different strains of this yeast are used for baking and brewing beer and wine. (There is also another yeast which is used for some special beers which is called Saccharomyces carlsbergensis.)

The reason why most people do not like Saccharomyces cerevisiae in their sourdough culture is that it does not do well in an acidic environment. Which is what a good sourdough is, because the lactobacilli are constantly producing lactic acids which give the bread its sour taste.

So if you start a sourdough culture with bakers yeast it will only become very mildly sour if at all (and will subsequently spoil quite easily). However if you are lucky your sourdough culture will get invaded by other kinds of yeast from your environment (air).

What we are striving for in a sourdough culture is Saccharomyces exiguus (or any strain of this yeast), which tolerates rather acidic conditions.
This yeast is found neither in a packet of bakers yeast nor under your armpits mate!

Happy baking!

Razz

[quote="bozthebaker"]

Question

what does everyone have against 'commercial' yeast anyway?
i dare say that 99.99% of starters that are maintained by people on this forum have the exact same organisms that are in said yeast.

mate, whatever yeast occurs in your starter (whether its from a packet or your armpit) won't affect the sourness of your final product anyway. As it's the bacteria that produces the acidity in the dough anyway.

cheers, brenton
[/quote]

i dare to say it isn't so
crumb is different, taste is different, crust is different
i only baked couple of sour dough breads and i can see massive difference

Bake Me !

Welcome bozthebaker!

I'm sorry, I'm technically challenged where breads are concerned. But, nope, I'm not against commercial yeast; I make breads from it too. It's just that, this being a BRAND NEW starter for me, I was hoping to see pure (for want of a better word...fuzzy head in the morning) starter characteristics. Perhaps the commercial yeast (which cause much faster development?) didn't give this starter (the lactobacillus part?) the chance to develop acidity. That's why I'm thinking of weaning the starter off all commercial yeast. I'd prefer to keep a pure starter and if I want some commercial yeast kick, to add it in the dough stage.

But, thanks, for your input.


Question

what does everyone have against 'commercial' yeast anyway?
i dare say that 99.99% of starters that are maintained by people on this forum have the exact same organisms that are in said yeast.

mate, whatever yeast occurs in your starter (whether its from a packet or your armpit) won't affect the sourness of your final product anyway. As it's the bacteria that produces the acidity in the dough anyway.

cheers, brenton

Nope, I didn't throw it away. I used it to make a granary loaf. After feeding it twice, I see it's a fairly active starter, more active than my current starter. But, it's practically devoid of any sourness....which isn't a bad thing, considering the bread tastes of my country folks. I think I'll keep feeding it and slowly wean it off any commercial yeasties, and see if the sourness increases. Would be interesting to watch it metamorphosize. Meantime, I'll keep it for its leavening power.

I've been reading over the past few days around the net that some people don't see much rise/spring in their granary bread. But I was really happy with mine. Tastewise, having been used to a higher level of sourness, I found it bland, although the intrinsic taste from [url=http://www.rankhovis.co.uk/products/granary.html]the flour[/url] was fantastic, very nutty and chewy.

[img]http://titch.sourdough.net.au/files/2006/07/granaryhovis.jpg[/img]


Yech, toss it! make your own and re-freeze it and give it back!

Twisted Evil

Jeremy