The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

no yeast in the recipe?

jeanx's picture
jeanx

no yeast in the recipe?

I am a brand new baker. As in, I've never baked more than pies (which I'm really good at.)


I LOVE SOURDOUGH, and my entire family is from San Francisco. Living in Oregon for 10 years now, I really missed good sourdough so decided to learn how to do it myself.


So I have a sourdough starter going and have read the pages at sourdoughome.com over and over and over. I'm about to bake some Black Canyon Sourdough and I realized that the recipe doesn't call for yeast, just the active starter. Is this really enough?


I am not about to change the recipe, after all- what do I know?


But I'm quite perplexed by the thought that my starter has enough activity to make my bread.


Any thoughts?


THANKS!

xaipete's picture
xaipete

I don't know your recipe, but I bake SD all the time without adding additional yeast.


--Pamela

SulaBlue's picture
SulaBlue

The point of the starter :) Be sure that your starter has been well fed & tended. Feeding it about 6-8 hours before you want to use it puts it at its strongest.

benjamin's picture
benjamin

Again, I am also not sure of your recipe, but typically you allow for a longer rise time when using a starter, to account for the lower activity than straight bakers yeast.


Good luck


ben

Kent's picture
Kent

I have made that same recipe many times and it is a very good bread. Just follow the instructions and it will be fine. it takes a long time to proof. You can email Mike at sourdoughhome.com with any questions about his recipe.


 


Kent

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

That is very important!

jeanx's picture
jeanx

Wow.


First off, thank you all SO MUCH for caring to respond to my post, you're all wonderful!


My starter is just now a week old. I've read that it needs to be older to bake good bread, and while I'm not going to argue with that; there's a lot of it and I'd like to try it out!


Mike at sourdoughome.com noted on his site that he's too busy right now to respond in a timely manner to emails, so I'm really glad you're all here!


I do have one more question, are there recipes out there that I will ever need to add more yeast?

SulaBlue's picture
SulaBlue

Just to make sure - you are discarding a portion at feedings yes?


That said, some instructions just make a boatload of starter - such as Reinhart's instructions.

jeanx's picture
jeanx

I haven't been discarding some starter before refreshing it- OMG what have I done? Have I ruined it?

SulaBlue's picture
SulaBlue

Not necessarily. If it's still getting bubbly and frothy when you feed it it's OK, though maybe not as strong as it could be. And, of course, you end up with a metric ton of starter :)


When I feed mine I discard about half, and replace what I've taken out with an equal measure of water and flour. This does make for a rather batter-like consistency starter. I've kept only a small amount of starter to reduce waste - about 4 ounces of the original starter, mixed with 2oz flour and 2 oz water. I keep it in the fridge and plan on feeding it about 1-2 times a week.


When I want to bake bread I take out half the amount of starter that the recipe calls for and then give that 2 good feedings the day before making my pre-dough to build it up so that I have exactly the amount I'm going to need with no waste. I wait until it's good and frothy/bubbly (about 6-8 hours, depending on the temperature) before using it.

davec's picture
davec

I've never discarded any starter.  I'm just too cheap for that.  Leftover starter makes great pancakes, even when it has been sitting in the fridge for weeks.


Dave

xaipete's picture
xaipete

I'm not an expert on this but if your starter is only a week old and you are dying to use it, then go ahead, but add a little commercial yeast to your recipe, e.g., 7 grams (1 package) for two loaves, for a while until the starter gains strength.


--Pamela

jeanx's picture
jeanx

Do I mix the yeast with water before adding it, or just put it in with the dry ingredients?

xaipete's picture
xaipete

If it is instant yeast, then just mix it in the dry ingredients. If it is active, dry, then activate it with some warm water first.


--Pamela

althetrainer's picture
althetrainer

I have just started making soursough breads this year and I am in love with it.  My starter is 6 weeks old and it has pretty good strength; it was not very sour until today.  I like to experiment with different things.  Today, I made a small loaf of sourdough dill bread and boy, was it good!  If some of you can share that Black Canyon sourdough recipe I would love to give it a try.  Thanks in advance!

jeanx's picture
jeanx