The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

new info rercently published -air vs grain as source of wild yeast

marieJ's picture
marieJ

new info rercently published -air vs grain as source of wild yeast

I've just received a copy of a book on sourdough baking recently published in Australia.  The comment made in the first chapters of this publication is that 'feeding' sourdough starters is just a misnomer, and that when we add flour to our starters as a proposed food source, what we are in actual fact doing is "adding more yeast" (wild yeast). The author states that the wild yeast exists exclusively on the grain.  Interesting because I've never heard it put this way.  Any thoughts??  Are we just adding more yeast to our starters? If that's the case, what are the pre-existing yeast up to?? Just hanging around? I can appreciate what this new author is saying but it doesn't tell the whole story of 'culture'.  Given my prior & extensive knowledge/experience of sourdough processes "adding more yeast" just doesn't generate an image of someone who has a credible authority...  I'm interested to know other's opinion on this author.


Cheers

rockfish42's picture
rockfish42

From what I understand, the number of yeast cells already present in your starter should overwhelm numerically any new strains of yeast for the most part. Also certain starter cultures have defense mechanisms that favor a few dominant organisms. The San Francisco culture is a good example
http://www.nyx.net/~dgreenw/whatisthemicrobiologyofsan.html



http://www.sourdoughhome.com/sdmyths.html
Mentions an experiment done on rec.food.sourdough wherein the participants scalded flour and had a very low success rate with creating a starter. This supports the idea that  most starters are created at least initially with organisms found on the grain.

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven


 I'm interested to know other's opinion on this author.



Me too so why not give us more info?


Mini