Refrigeration in Sourdough

If I may, where does the application of refrigeration to a dough fit into this paradigm?  Refrigerating a sourdough is a newer tradition but seems to be an acceptable one.  I've been thinking lately that alot of sourdoughs are starting to have a homogeneous taste without the subtle nuances of LAB and wild yeasts, in part because of these extended fermentations using coolers.  Although these breads can be and are delicious, is the microflora of a dough not altered by the artificial application of cold?  Although I lack the scientific backround to explain this observation, it seems me that the new tradition of refrigeration is flatening out the huge flavour pontential of a dough's unique microflora and creating a predictable flavour profile that we then call sourdough.  Is this artisanal?

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Graham's picture
Graham 2008 March 12

  Exactly, and thats why "mother" is inappropriate,because its masculine "father" is inapplicable.

To elaborate, the symbolic understanding was that the liquid levain is semen, the dough is seeded, and the product is phallically introduced to the receptive (female) oven..."shes got a bun in the oven". So within this symbolic and eternal,really (its lasted 5000 years so far), understanding, "mother" doesnt fit.

People are free to use what terms they like,but within the context of language grammar and communication, there is actually meaning.


So my aversion to "father" was not prejudice, but a consequence of historical gender assignments. I am relieved! But this historical context still does not demonstrate that this is the way it has to be today. If we imposed every historical contextualisation in this manner then we would be stuck solid in the way it was or perhaps, the way it is meant to be (shudder).

There is no progressive reason why someone in the 21st century can not abandon 5000 years of 'one way' and develop a fresh interpretation.  The symbolism of seed/phallus/womb is truly gorgeous or gross depending in your perspective. And that is the point...we are free to have our own perspectives. Symbols are not necessarily representations of truth...if there even is such a thing.

--Actually now I see that we agree that "people are free to use what terms they like". So I guess there is nothing to debate about. Damn. i was looking forward to a good argument )

Graham's picture
Graham 2008 March 13
John, I enjoyed our exchange, but I suspect that this refrigeration thread may have been frozen by our conceptual banter! I wonder, will anyone be game enough to post technical comment after this? Perhaps a new 'History and Concepts' forum is required? (if we are game enough...could get messy)

JohnD's picture
JohnD 2008 March 13

Nobody is saying this is the way it HAS to be today.If you want to allow the introduction of new terms thats fine. I will do my best over the next blogs to utterly confuse everybody, because ive decided there needs to be a "fresh interpretation" of sourdough and im going to start inventing new terms for those silly old ones the way,why isnt "mother" as sexist as "father"?, and thus inapplicable in this oh so post modern context?

I think i will re-invent language too,its all so stale and so pre 9/11 dahling. I will also suggest to maedi that he invents some new terms to make the explanation of "posting" clearer...coz i thort that "posting": was an archaic term which referred to sending a letter(as humans once did).

Really we shouldnt be speaking of "sourdough" either...its a  non-specific term probably referring to some aspect of an unskilled bakers mistakes? And how can it refer to the finished bread when its no longer a "dough"?

You use the word "companion"...mate,its a 3000yr old word derived from latin,and now anglicised. It once meant "with bread", but thats so passe, now it  just means "dude", so i reckon you should change the site to " www.Overfermented and unbaked"

My new terms:

"mother"...actually short for "motherfucker" in common usage in the USA

"starter".... the electric bit which initiates your cars fermentation

"leaven"......means im going somewhere

"dough"..........common usage term for money( or a female deer)

"sour"..........once a flavour,now just a mood

"poolish" need to go to the toilet

"retarder-prover"......a psychiatric assessment test

"refrigeration"......making the same mistake twice, again.

"fresh interpretation" modern new-speak for re-inventing the wheel


"Truth"....not a misrepresentation.............there is such a thing as truth,you cant be serious.





Danubian's picture
Danubian 2008 March 13

this is by far better reading than technical stuff!

Homogenising whole languages including the confusing Australian bakers lexicon, sheesh! Imagine I thought the only redeeming feature of globalisation was access to fly fishing equipment online!! 

TeckPoh's picture
TeckPoh 2008 March 13
:)  :D  :P

Sourdoughbaking via this forum has stretched my vocabulary. Talk about runaway leaven....
Danubian's picture
Danubian 2008 March 13
[quote=JohnD]You fish for flies?

Flies are more of a challenge; with fish, of course!


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