The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Foam on top of starter

jr07's picture
jr07

Foam on top of starter

Hi all

I developed a starter following the tartine method about six months ago and I use it strictly for making pizzas every weekend at home in a wood burning oven. I keep it in the fridge, I feed it on Friday mornings, mix the dough Friday early afternoon, shape dough balls Friday night, leave in the fridge and make pizzas on Saturday night. With great results. 

Recently, my dough has not risen as expected, usually it doubles in size in 6-7 hours. I use 20% starter by weight in my dough mix, so after feeding 100gr each of water and AP flour to the starter I use it for 1KG of 00 flour and 650gr of water. 

Also recently, my dough balls have been flattening out instead of holding a ball form... so after asking on other pizza forums it seems my starter is too acicid? and is curring through the gluten. 

After reading that this can be fixed by feeding, I feed it in 12 hours intervals for 2 days and did notice after the 3rd feeding a white foam had developed on top of the bubbly surface of the starter. I discarded and havent fed again.

 

Is this normal? Is my starter ok?

 

Thanks

 

J

Lechem's picture
Lechem

A higher ratio of fresh flour to starter is normally the key.

jr07's picture
jr07

I usually add 100gr of All Purpose flour and 100 gr of filtered water then mix with a spoon until consistent 

Lechem's picture
Lechem

20g starter? That is a feed of 1:5:5.

How about upping the anti and going for 1:10:10 or more?

Wait till it has matured and peaked then feed again. At room temperature.

jr07's picture
jr07

OK I can try that. 

Was the white foam that formed on the top normal? I had never seen it

Lechem's picture
Lechem

very high hydration starters. Instead of rising they bubble and foam. You can try lowering the hydration a tad to 80%.

An example build would be 10g starter (100% hydration = 5g flour + 5g water) + 79g water + 100g flour = 80% hydration.

Now it's been converted to 80% hydration subsequent feeds can be 10g starter + 80g water + 100g flour

jr07's picture
jr07

thanks