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.
PAIN DE CAMPAGNE
(2 round loaves)
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
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.
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.