Hey it's Wendy here with a new starter project. :)
While waiting on my other cultures to grow, I read about harvesting yeast from water used to ferment raisins. SCIENCE!! I'm a sucker for experiments. It's part of the reason I like bread baking to begin with. So this, I had to try. I put it together about an hour ago. (see photo) Doesn't look too appetizing does it? Lol
My research found that splurging on organic raisins is the key to getting results. Regular ones may contain grapes grown with substances that prevent yeast development on the surface. They may also be processed with additives like oils to make them shiny. If anyone can confirm or deny this stuff, let me know because it woulda been nice to use the Costco Sun Maids I already had.
Anyway, the process takes about a week. I'll post photos daily.
These instructions came from a video on Ryoya Takashima's YouTube channel Peaceful Cuisine. He's vegan chef, instructor and blogger (PeacefulCuisine.com) based in Japan. The video was part one of a three part series titled Baking with Natural Yeast. It's high-res and very well produced. He also answers a lot of questions in the comment section. Go there and see. :)
You Will Need:
- 16 oz. Jar or Container w/lid
- ½ cup Organic Raisins
- 1½ cups Water (filtered or spring)
*Can be scaled using 1:3 ratio, raisins to water. Just make sure container is large enough leave a little space at the top.
- Put ingredients in the jar
- Close the lid
- Gently shake the jar
- Set in a warm place
Daily Regimen (for 5-7 days approx):
- Open jar briefly to allow gas buildup to escape (could that be construed as a jar fart? Lol)
- Close & gently shake
- Keep an eye out for white mold floating on surface and spoon out before shaking
When the Raisin Water is done, there will be 3 major indicators. ALL the raisins will be floating on top and there will be lots of smaill bubbles. After opening the jar, you will hear a fizzy sound. Lastly, the smell will be very strong.
At that point, it's ready to use, either strained or unstrained. You can use it to replace the water in your starter recipes or to replace both the water and the yeast in your pre-ferments.
I plan to feed the Raisin Water to my sluggish white starter and see what happens. Haven't decided if I'm gonna use it strained or not.
The jar can be stored for a month or two. After that, the yeast will start to weaken. If there's a way to refresh it without starting over, let me know.
See ya on Day 2 :)