Smell of sourdough starter and dough consistency
I am new to making sourdough bread. I was given a starter last week which I fed yesterday morning then used to start my first loaf in the evening. I have some questions which I'd really appreciate help ..
I'm using a recipe which required me to make a "sponge" last night and this morning (around 12 hours later) I added in the remaining ingredients and kneeded to a slightly tacky dough, more so than a regular loaf of bread. When I shaped to a ball for the first proof it relaxed and flattened a little in the bowl - does this mean the dough was too wet?
The dough is now rising nicely and has increased by about a 3rd in 2 hours. The smell of the dough is slighly sour and reminds me of the taste of a sharp rye bread. The smell of the starter this morning is a lovely sweet smell which I prefer. Does the sharper smell of the dough mean I started the loaf too early or let it ferment as a sponge too long?
I'm ultimately aiming for a milder tasting sourdough, and appreciate it will be trial an error, but any advice as to whether I am on the right track would be appreciated.