Advice on starter - apple or not?


Hello! I’m new to this forum and have never made sourdough bread before but am keen to get started. I’ve been reading various methods of making a starter and some (e.g. Paul Hollywood) suggest adding an apple while others say additions of this kind simply aren’t necessary. What are your thoughts? Also, is it okay to use tap water for the starter (I live in London) or would bottled water be better? Looking forward to any comments!



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oldman 2018 November 8

Start as you mean to continue.  If you add anything besides flour and water you are feeding microorganisms that grow on whatever you add.  Your starter should be happy with flour since that's what you'll be feeding it as it ages.  Apple isn't helpful.  If you want to get off as well as possible, begin with whole wheat flour, but feed your starter with unbleached bread or all-purpose flour.  Feeding only whole wheat will give a heavier slower starter that's really only good for whole wheat sourdough.

City water is treated with chlorine, fluoride and other thing wild yeast won't find beneficial. Start with distilled or RO water.  It's cheaper than spring water and yeast and bacteria don't have taste buds so won't care if it's tasteless.

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