The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Ed Woods starter and Tartine bread recipe

kathyon's picture

Ed Woods starter and Tartine bread recipe

Hi,  I'm using Ed Wood's Ischia Italian starter and getting great rising and flavor out of it.  However,  I just tried using it to make the Country bread recipe in Michael Pollan's book which is a modification of the Tartine basic bread recipe.  I apparently used way too much of my Ed Wood starter as I was thinking it really was similar to the leaven that the Tartine recipe calls for.  Used 1 1/2 cups or maybe 250g of my starter.  Cooked it in regular bread pans,  and it way overflowed the pans.  Maybe just too much success but I'm confused on how the Tartine and the Ed Wood "starter" and "leaven" compare.  


Any help would be appreciated,



gmabaking's picture

I'm certainly no expert but was having similiar experiences until I changed the way I used starter/levain. For the Tartine bread, Chad Robertson recommends feeding a tablespoonful of starter with 200 grams water and 200 grams flour (50/50 all purpose and whole wheat, I vary a lot on this blend depending on what I have on hand). If you do this the night before, in the morning you will find a lively levain, ready to bake delicious Tartine breads. The recipe calls for only 200 grams of this starter.

There is a lot of oven spring so maybe that is the only issue in your overflowing pans of bread, and not the starter alone. I almost always use a Dutch Oven.

Hope this helps

Les Nightingill's picture
Les Nightingill

if you're following Ed Wood's starter feeding instructions, your starter is maintained at 120% hydration. In contrast, the Tartine levain is 100% hydration. This is a significant difference, especially considering the amount that you added to the final build.