Where did I go wrong
A couple of weeks ago I made Peter Reinhart's mother starter (what he calls barm in Apprentice). The plastic never ballooned as he describes, but it was very bubbly and I shaped the final dough into three baguettes. The first and second fermentations took quite a bit longer than described. I suspect the dough (d'oh!) was too hydrated, and I had some trouble shaping them and totally lost the shape of one getting it onto the peel and into the oven. Neverthless, the end result was delicious although I would have preferred the baguettes a little rounder. The texture was fine with nice uneven bubbles in the crumb.
This week I tried again. The fermentation was v e r y s l o w - hours - but the dough was easier to work with in the final shaping. Getting them onto the peel was again a chore - they had the consistency of modeling clay. One ended up looking like a heffalump. Again, they tasted fine if a little dense.
Obviously my starter is lacking in something. Should I leave it room temperature to develop more or start again from scratch?