The Fresh Loaf

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Experiment: Starter + salt / Starter + lemongrass

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leekohlbradley's picture
leekohlbradley

Experiment: Starter + salt / Starter + lemongrass

I live in Taiwan where it's hot and humid. I love the weather (probably one of the very few!) and so does my sourdough starter. A little too much, in fact. It doubles in 2 hours! It makes great bread but honestly it's too much to handle. I had it in the fridge before but was facing the opposite problem. It was very sluggish and unpredictable.

 

So I've decided to try two experiments: Feed a starter with a low percentage of salt to limit fermentation and yeast / bacterial activity. And feed another with added lemongrass, which grows here and I'm led to believe has antibacterial properties. Given how long it lasts in my fridge I'd say it's true haha. Anyway I will try to post results here and if anyone has advice/thoughts then I'd be delighted to hear!

 

Lee

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

using ice cubes and ice water when feeding?  How about a thermos type container for a starter jar when using ice water?  

Next thought...a unglazed clay pot pre-soaked in water (think wine cooler) and starter in a second container inside keeping cool.  Or a wet sock on the outside of your starter jar...  evaporation tends to cool.  Would also be nice to combine with something that keeps the ants out of the jar... like standing in a shallow bowl of water.

The other thing ... starter doubles in 2 hrs...  how long before it peaks?  

Lowering hydration or thickening will also slow down fermentation as well as using a smaller inoculation (10g? to maybe 50 g of flour?)  Whatever works.  (maybe all of the above?)   

Lemon grass sounds cool!  Very curious what's going to happen!  

I have noticed that lemon grass often has a white powdery substance between the emerging leaves, might even be yeastie.   I wonder, I wonder...

leekohlbradley's picture
leekohlbradley

Wow so many ideas! Thanks Mini Oven... I've been using micro starters (15g water / 15g WW / maybe 10-15g starter) with what seems like low inoculation to me but honestly at that size it's not exactly low!

It peaks at 6 hours or so I'd say. At 12 it's starting to suffer.

I cut a short bit of stock and rinsed it well. Not keen on adding more yeast to be honest, the stuff in there's working great!

I'm going to try this for now and see how it goes. Otherwise I'll move on to some of your other ideas ;-)

DavidEF's picture
DavidEF

lee,

If you are putting in 15g starter to 15g water and 15g flour, your feeding ratio looks like this 1:1:1. Maybe you should try lowering the amount of starter or raising the amount of food, or both, to get a 1:2:2 or even a 1:4:4 ratio. To keep your starter "micro" you could do 5g starter to 20g flour and 20g water for a 1:4:4 ratio. The timing of your starter is well within your control, by adjusting the feeding ratio. Think of it this way, how much can you eat in one meal? Well, if someone gave you three times that amount, it would take you three meals to finish it off. Your starter is being fed one meal, then in a few hours, it should be no surprise that it's hungry again.

leekohlbradley's picture
leekohlbradley

Thanks David, actually I'm fairly well versed on that concept. Trouble is if you keep using the same container to keep the starter in, as I do, it's fairly tricky figuring out exactly how much starter is in there. That and my scale is only so accurate! Hence my interest in exploring other alternatives... Appreciate the advice though!

gerhard's picture
gerhard

When we travel and I want the culture to survive an extended period of not being cared for I cut the hydration to the point were it is a stiff dough ball.  This summer mine survived 5 weeks in the fridge, previous years I had it die in 3 weeks when maintaining normal hydration.

Gerhard

DavidEF's picture
DavidEF

Lee,

Yes, it can be tricky trying to keep track of exactly how much you have in your container, unless you know what your container weighs. Start with an empty container, weigh it and mark the weight on the container itself. I use a Sharpie marker and write something like "Tare = 189g" on the bottom of every container I use for storing starter, mixing dough, whatever. Then, you just scrape out as much starter as it takes to get a total weight of Tare + 5g or whatever you're aiming for. I would think adding salt would be more of a crap shoot than accurately measuring your starter, especially at such a "micro" sized amount. But, I'm not against experimentation by any means, and I'd like to know the outcome of your tests, when you get there. Just a couple weeks ago, there was someone on here experimenting with adding salt to their starter to get it to slow down. I'll try to find the link and put it up here.

leekohlbradley's picture
leekohlbradley

Thanks everyone for your input! What I'm mostly interested in is the two experiments I started today, and wondered if anyone had heard of or tried anything like them. I read the monster raving salted starter post but it gets into a lot of topics. Which this post seems destined to do as well :D

So far both lemongrass starter and salted starter are bubbling up but slower than the original which I have beside them. I'll see what happens after a couple of feeds... What will be most interesting is whether the bread they make is any different.

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

Whole grain, 66% hydration in the fridge all the time.  I use 10-15 g to make a levain out of it once a week then back in the fridge.  It  lasts 4 weeks in fridge with no maintenance and then like today, after 4 weeks., I used 15 g to make a 3 stage levain and 10g  to build a 3 stage starter back up to 100 g.  I make sure it doubles on the 2nd feeding in both instances and then, after it rises 25% after the 3rd feeding, back into the fridge they both go.  Will make bread with one on Friday and the other will be used to make bread the next 4 weeks.

No muss, no fuss, no maintenance,no waste,  no worry starter.  It always doubles after the 2nd stage in about 3-4 hours depending on the season.   I went to this kind of starter because of the warm climate in AZ.  It makes very sour bread due to the retarding so if you don't like sour this isn't the method for you,   A refrigerated starter will always be more sluggish than one kept on the counter and fed 2 time a day but once it wakes up it is no worse for wear - just more soiur. 

Today was feed the yeast water too  - after 4 weeks in the fridge.  

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

come through to the bread.   I have dried lemon grass and wonder if an infusion might also be interesting.

For maintenance you can feed equal parts of starter and flour, especially when the starter is slow or the temperature is cold, but when the starter is fast and in a warm humid climate, you can easily feed a starter more flour, 5, 10 or even 20 times the starter amount.  Lots of options.  When the fresh fed starter starts rising but not peaked, that's the best time to park it into the fridge to slow it down.  If used in the next few days it should be allowed to peak out at room temperature or after chilling 4 days, a sample can be removed and used to inoculate more flour & water to grow at room temperature.  

The starter can be kept in the fridge and you can have a break from babysitting the starter.  I think that's what everyone is getting at.  It lasts for weeks that way. Then you don't have to do something drastic to the starter.  Adding salt is done when refrigeration or cooling is not an option.  I think you can find more in the archives under salted starter or hot climate starters.

Mini Oven

leekohlbradley's picture
leekohlbradley

One reason I want to stop keeping it in the fridge is to minimize sourdough flavor. I like it but my Taiwanese friends here just can't get their er... tongues around it. To them sour = gone off. They also expect bread to have "liao", meaning dried fruit, nuts and other goodies. Bread is way more fun when you can share it out, so I'm looking to minimize the lab/acetic flavors as much as possible. For now! (Good hearted people who will jump at suggesting using instant yeast instead, thank you, but I like making life difficult for myself and want to use SD! :P )

Mini, I have done two lemongrass bakes in the past week and both are/were fantastic! I just replaced all the liquid in the main dough with lemongrass tea—a wrapped up stock w/ leaves, boiled for a minute and left to steep for perhaps five. Lovely with some mixed grains thrown in!

gerhard's picture
gerhard

If you don't want the sour flavour just dump most of your culture and refresh with flour and water.  I do it about 8 hours before wanting to use it but if your temperatures are higher a shorter period may be appropriate.

Gerhard

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

sugar along with maintenance flour.  Much like one of the Amish friendship starters.  :)   Might get you a less sour starter.

Doc.Dough's picture
Doc.Dough

Over the years I have tried lots of different feeding schedules and of course observed lots of different results.

I live in Southern California where my summer kitchen temperature hovers around 78°F and over the last year I have found that I can get extremely reliable (repeatable) results with a refresh ratio of 1:40: 45 (starter: water: flour) with 24 hrs between feedings. For me that is 0.3g:13g:15g always done in the late evening (2100-2200).

Then when I want to bake, I refresh (which uses 0.3g of the mature starter - usually well past its peak volume) and then use the remaining starter (typically 24 - 26g) plus 228g each of water and flour to make a pre-ferment for use the next day.  Overnight in the cupboard above the refrigerator gets it ready in time to mix at 0700 while if left on the counter it is ready to go between 1000 and 1300.  I have also found that if I refrigerate the starter for even a few days, the bread from the next batch (if I don't feed it at least a few times before I use it) tends to be a bit more sour than if I am using a starter that has been propagating at room temperature for a while.

There does not seem to be a high sensitivity to when I use the pre-ferment so long as it is past the point where it has fallen back on itself but is still active [I know, it depends on the diameter of the container that you grow it in and how tall it is, but I always use a stainless mixing bowl so the aspect ratio is about .6 (height/diameter)]. Running the process at a warm temperature (100°F) seems to produce a milder loaf too (but do be careful, too warm and you get on the wrong side of the temperature sensitivity curve and it doesn't rise much at all). A higher fraction of prefermented flour in your formula also tends to both make the batch run faster and produce a more mild end product.

A little sugar will help take the edge off of a sour batch, but doesn't really neutralize the acid.

Serving right out of the oven accentuates the relative strength of the aromatic compounds that result from the Maillard  reaction - but of course just about any hot bread smells good (remember that the smell of sourdough is from acetic acid while the taste of sourdough is from lactic acid).

If that doesn't work for you , try a different starter.  There are lots to choose from.

Doc

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

I minimize the sour in my starter by using fruit yeast water as the liquid.  If you are not familiar with YW you might be interested in checking out THIS link.

YW can be used by itself or, as I use it, with a flour base

 

Janet

leekohlbradley's picture
leekohlbradley

Oh no, another idea and it's really interesting! Haha my current experiment seems doomed to failure due to competing interests haha. Thanks Janet, I read that post and others a year or so ago and tried with raisins but didn't get great results (probably needed organic fruit!). I see now that it's possible to start with SD starter, which I did not have a year ago. Seems like it's time to try again! Because from my re-skim through Ron's post it looks to be idea.

Meanwhile I'll try to bring some completion to my very brief experiments by making the starters I have into English muffins from my No. 1 fav. TFLer...

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

Took me over a year to get a handle on YW too.  REad all of Ron and Akiko's work and did start YW successfully but couldn't figure out how to incorporate it into my baking routine so I dropped it completely.  At the time I was just getting started with baking with sd  so it was too much at once.  Once I got a handle on how to maintain and bake with my sd I ventured back into the YW arena and it all fell into place very easily.  Yes, organic fruit is needed to cultivate a YW.

Sounds like you are having fun with your experiments.  I did too.  At one time I had several starters going at the same time to see what would happen.  I also had a bunch of different ones at different HL in my refrig.  Lots of jars with lots of labels…All were eventually dismissed except the one jar I now maintain and use daily without any waste - all gets used. I just couldn't stand the methods that had me tossing excess starter.  Made me feel ilke a murderer of sorts - here I had worked so hard to bring a starter to life only to trash it shortly thereafter.

English muffins sound good.  

Take Care,

Janet

leekohlbradley's picture
leekohlbradley

Janet,

Your one jar (now I have this stuck in my head!) is YW? I'm really keen to convert some SD starter into YW and see how it goes. I just can't get my head around the fact that it's going to just 'live' in the water like that though!

I'll try Ron's instructions:

  • Using an existing SD: ½ teaspoon of SD to cup of water, stir to dissolve the SD in the water and wait for half hour to get some settlement in the mixture. Then, extract a teaspoon of the top portion of the water mixture and add it to your new starting YW jar.

  • Place a lid on the jar, and leave the jar out of direct sunlight, at room temperature

  • Once a day remove the lid and stir to release any CO2 and to add oxygen

After that I'm guessing you replace any YW removed for baking with fresh water, and feed it (white sugar—organic apples, etc. are NOT cheap in Taiwan!). I'm assuming baking 1-2 times a week like this will be frequent enough to keep it alive and happy? At room temperature?

Really appreciate your threat-altering advice! :D

Lee

leekohlbradley's picture
leekohlbradley

er... "thread-altering"

as in forum thread

and why doesn't this forum have editing functions haha

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

Hi Lee,

What I do is different.  To start a jar of YW:

  • I fill a clean quart juice jar 1/4 full of organic raisins or apricots or apples with skins on and NOT washed.
  • I then cover the fruit with filtered water so the jar is 3/4 of the way full giving the fruit room to expand and room for me to be able to shake the liquid in the jar.
  • I put the lid loosely on the jar.
  • I let it sit at room temp. and shake it 1 or 2 times a day - removing the lid when I do so.
  • I do this daily for about 3 days - until I see life which means I get bubbles when I shake the jar.

Once I know there is active life in the jar (anywhere between 3-5 days) I put it into the refrig.  

When I do my leaven builds I use the YW in place of the water portion of the build.

I replace the used YW with fresh filtered water and put the jar back into the refrig.

After about a week I toss the 'spent' fruit out and add a few more pieces of fruit to the jar and put it back into the refrig. 

You can also feed your YW a bit of honey or sugar cubes as RonRay did.  I do this on a weekly or biweekly basis to keep things fresh.  I know my guys are alive and well by shaking the jar and checking the bubbles released.  If they begin to diminish I know I need to change out fruit and feed.

Like your sd experimenting this will become clear as you do it and make more sense too.  If you watch your YW 'it' will tell you what it needs just like your sd does.

Follow the links RonR. posts and you will see lots of photos of this process.  Akiko (telekeke) did lots of great translating for us non Japanese speaking or reading YW enthusiasts and she posted a lot of great photos of her jars of YW.

Here is a link to one of trail runners posts and it shows her jar of yw getting started.  ONly difference with her method is that she used the YW by itself as the leavening agent in her loaf - not as I do as the water in my sd builds.

Have Fun,

Janet

P.S.  I should mention that once the YW is activated you will not need as much fruit to keep it going.  I toss in about 4 apricots into my apricot jar once every 10-14 days and about 20-30 raisins into my raisin YW.  (I keep 2 jars going because I bake daily and use a lot.)

leekohlbradley's picture
leekohlbradley

Thanks for all that detail! It's great to see how other people do it. 

I read Akiko back in the day when I was first getting into baguettes, sourdough etc., and was intrigued enough to try with raisins but it didn't really work at that point because I didn't have decent raisins to try with haha. Organic fruit is WAY WAYYYYY too expensive here to do anything with but savor bite by bite, raw and unadulterated haha... 

So I'll be giving the SD-to-YW conversion a shot. Starting tomorrow morning when I refresh my now tamed SD starter. (I've opted for the stiff starter option, which I have been trying on the side for a couple days with good results.)

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

What type of fruit have you decided upon for your base?  I gather not raisins due to the expense….

Janet

leekohlbradley's picture
leekohlbradley

I've settled on... not fruit ;-)

Ron seems to suggest you can extract yeast straight from your SD starter. Which is what I'm attempting as we speak.

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

You can't get YW without using fruit or vegetables.  

I looked at Ron's method and his 1st step is to put your fruit into a jar:

 "  1/ Choose the type of YW you want initially. I would suggest picking one that others have had good results at starting. For that, I would say try one of these three types: Grape, Raisin, or Apple, although, feel free to try anything that turns you on."

Where he suggests using sd to jump start your YW is under his heading labeled 'E' which means he is indicating that to your jar with fruit you can then add a bit of sd to get life started in your fruit water more quickly:

"e/ IF Jump-starting ONLY:

e-1/ Using an existing YW: add a teaspoon full of the active existing YW to your new starting YW jar,
e-2/ Using an existing SD: ½ teaspoon of SD to cup of water, stir to dissolve the SD in the water and wait for half hour to get some settlement in the mixture. Then, extract a teaspoon of the top portion of the water mixture and add it to your new starting YW jar."

 Remember that the source of the yeast is the fruit skin. If you only add sd to water you will get cloudy water and no life pretty quickly….

If organic fruits are out of the question you might try organic vegetables - even tea leaves can be used!  I think I recall reading about other items too but i have forgotten.  The original threads on building and maintaining YW were full of ideas that a lot of people were experimenting with at the time.  Ron's blog was a summary of all that had been gleaned prior to that contribution.

Good Luck :)

Janet

 

leekohlbradley's picture
leekohlbradley

That is one way of reading Ron, to be sure. And, I admit that I haven't seen any clear, unquestionable reports that using only sourdough starter can work for making YW. However, there is a small problem with your reasoning.

The source of the yeast is indeed the fruit skin, because there's yeast living on it. But ... there's also yeast living in my SD starter. In fact there's a huge amount living in it, since I've been cultivating it specifically for that purpose.

If Ron says you can "jump start" the YW with SD starter, then it stands to reason that the yeast in SD starter can also survive in the water environment. Otherwise he's just kidding himself, or looking to get a very temporary boost.

It could be that my understanding of the microbiology here is off/lacking, of that transfering to a water medium will break the symbiosis between the LABs and the yeast, or something like that. Anyway, I am trying at this very moment. If it fails, I'll come running back and apologize! ;-)

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

I will be curious to read about your results.  I do know there are yeast in sd along with the LABS as Ron knows too.  YW is simply a different source for cultivating yeast without the LABS.  I just can't see how using a small amount of sd will give you the type of YW he is talking about in his blog or the type that I am using in my breads.

THe yeast water I have is sweet which is what I am seeking to tone down  my whole grain starter so we are simply seeking different ends here.  Many means to an end :)

 I have limited experience but what that experience tells me is that you will be cultivating a sd starter with a really really high hydration level that will need to be fed often with flour to be maintained without it becoming really sour due to lack of food.  

Take Care,

Janet

mwilson's picture
mwilson

Hi Janet. You needn't wonder, I already did this way back here. I fed my SD inoculated yeast water with honey to keep the extracted yeast alive and kicking. YW will not be devoid of LAB. Many, many species of LAB out there.. Pretty much any fermented food stuff will have some form of LAB going on.

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

Hi Michael,

So much for my memory eh!!!  Thanks for chiming in here and reminding me.  I had totally forgotten about your sd yw.  Wonders never cease.  

How long did you keep the yw going?  I didn't think it had LABS in it too so thanks for pointing that out though now it does make sense since the yeast are there - so why not the LABS as well.

So much to learn and i didn't do much science past my high school days - now I regret that decision.

Take Care,

Janet

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

fructose, dextrose, sucrose, glucose, etc.   

I think one needs to think differently.   The abundance of sugar available for the bacteria and yeast makes them lazy in that they don't have to convert so many starches to sugars.  To simplify, this gets "set up" in their RNA and reinforced with each generation.  I bet that the by-products of fermenting sugars as compared to converting starches & sugars  are somewhat different, depending on the available amounts, taste different because they are sweeter with less acid.  

Doc.Dough's picture
Doc.Dough

Saunders, Ng, and Kline (The Sugars of Flour and Their Involvement in the San Francisco Sour Dough French Bread Process.; R. M. Saunders, H. Ng, and L. Kline. Copyright 1972 by the American Association of Cereal Chemists, Inc.,Cereal Chem 49:86 - 91. ) observed that while no sugars are added during the making of sourdough bread, the dough (presumably due to action of amylase enzymes on free starch) soon after mixing contains approximately 5.5% maltose (based on the dry weight of the flour) and an additional 1.7% of other carbohydrates including glucose, fructose and two families of usable glucofructans.  They determined that the LAB consumes only 56% of the maltose while the yeast consumes all of the other available carbohydrates (not including the remaining 44% of the maltose which the sourdough yeast cannot utilize but which contribute to crust browning).

Until relatively recently, different species of LAB were characterized by, among other things, which sugars they metabolized.  In any conventional sourdough starter operating on flour and water (and no doubt with almost any non-selective source of nutrients) there is sufficient sugar of a preferred type to allow exponential growth of both the yeast and LAB for some period of time. When the preferred sugar is depleted, or the growth rate slows down due to another rate-limiting factor (i.e., low pH) the relative growth rates shift to favor a different species in the mix.

The fact is that in any starter there are both LAB and yeast, and their coexistence depends on having different growth limiting factors. The usual growth trajectory has the LAB outpacing the yeast until the mixture becomes sufficiently acidified to slow down the LAB growth rate (well before the food supplied by the conversion of starch runs out) followed by the consumption of all of the remaining compatible sugars and  glucofructans by the yeast.  If the initial yeast population is sufficiently large, or there is some factor (e.g., salt) that suppresses the LAB growth rate, the yeast will finish off the available sugars before the LAB reach their pH-limited population density.

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

I still think that adding sugar may change things.  I think the LABs get stimulated from a pH jump in the starter thru inoculation and stimulate yeast growth, the yeast finding the extra sugar about (not made by the LABs) proceed speeded up (outpacing unsugared starters) devouring all the available food resulting in a sweeter, less sour dough.

leekohlbradley's picture
leekohlbradley

I'm starting a new thread because this is becoming hopelessly off-topic! :D

Please continue discussion of SD to YW conversion here. Thank you!

Doc.Dough's picture
Doc.Dough

LAB cannot tolerate salt above a 4% concentration while the yeast in sourdough starters will tolerate up to ~8% NaCl. So if you want to suppress the LAB concentration in your starter, try about 3% salt.  I am pretty sure that things will progress slowly because everything will slow down, but the LAB will slow more than the yeast.

And I found the reference:

From Michael G. Gänzle, Michaela Ehmann, and Walter P. Hammes in
Modeling of Growth of Lactobacillus sanfranciscensis and Candida
milleri in Response to Process Parameters of Sourdough Fermentation
we have the following:
The growth rates of L. sanfranciscensis LTH1729 and LTH2581 were
virtually identical under all conditions tested. These organisms
tolerated >160 mmol of undissociated acetic acid per liter. Growth
occurred in the pH range of 3.9 to 6.7 and was completely inhibited by
4% NaCl. C. milleri had a lower optimum temperature for growth
(27°C) than the lactobacilli. The growth of the yeast was not affected
by pH in the range of 3.5 to 7, and up to 8% NaCl was tolerated.

leekohlbradley's picture
leekohlbradley

Thanks Doc! I love the scientific references. Let's just hope my "L. formosaensis" here handles salt the same way. A question I do have though is, is there any mention of AAB? (acetic acid bacteria? never actually seen that abbreviation). My understanding is the tang / sour flavor results from AAB, while LAB creates kind of a smooth, not so acidic flavor. I've seen it described as creaminess but I think someone might have been getting carried away by the word "lactic" ;-)

An aside. So much of what goes on in the kitchen is based on superstition. The two 'fields' I'm most into—Bread and yogurt making—seem to be especially rife with it. I guffaw every time I see people on TFL screaming keep your salt away from the yeast! It'll kill it dead! So I'm always especially interested when science weighs in!

Doc.Dough's picture
Doc.Dough

Depending on the substrate, LAB will produce both acetate and lactate.

Debra Wink has put together some very readable posts on the microbiology of sourdough and I highly recommend them as a good place to start. But science continues to enlighten us all, so stay tuned for new answers to old questions.

leekohlbradley's picture
leekohlbradley

I've read Wink, but it's funny what a year of bread making will do for overall understanding, because I'm taking a lot more away rereading her now. Thanks for that!

Also not sure how I came to believe the acetic acid was produced by some other bacteria. Thanks for the heads-up.

leekohlbradley's picture
leekohlbradley

As promised, the results of my experiment, brief tho it was... Was that all three (regular, salted, lemongrass) made pretty much identical bread when used direct method at 28°C, 70% hydration WW... nothing fancy. Taste was good, nothing unusual. As for feeding characteristics, both experimental starters seemed slightly less aggressive than the control. In the end I've opted for using a stiffer starter, since it's simpler and so far has been amenable to a 24-hour feeding cycle at 28°C room temperature here. (Been enjoying this cool fall weather!)

Thanks everyone for your support and interest. Even though I've been reading TFL for over a year this is my first venture into posting, and it's been great. :)

Doc.Dough's picture
Doc.Dough

What did you settle on in terms of hydration for your 28°C/24 hr feeding cycle?

And what are your actual quantities for maintenance feedings?

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

doughs... rolled up with coconut & a little palms sugar for a new kind of cinnamon roll?  

I can't wait to get back to Asia!

Mini

leekohlbradley's picture
leekohlbradley

Doc: I'm using WW, and 5/10/15 g (inoculation/water/flour) makes for a rather stiff paste. So, 63-65% depending on how steady my hand is ;-) It seems to work just nice.

 

Mini: Taiwan isn't southern enough for pandan (despite being south of any part of the continental US!) but that does sound lovely. Do stop by if you're in the region. As it happens I'm a fan of mini-ovens myself (if by mini oven you mean large toaster oven!)