The Fresh Loaf

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More San Joaquin Sourdough and fermentation Questions

inlovewbread's picture

More San Joaquin Sourdough and fermentation Questions

I made up another batch of dmsnyder's San Joaquin Sourdough and this is my bake. They are still singing as I type this! I got a better ear this time- I think it was a better scoring, I cut a little deeper than the last try. Also, I used the full 21 hour cold fermentation for this bake as apposed to the 14 hours on the last attempt. I don't know if this has anything to do with the better ear or not.

My question though is (I guess directed at David, but others please chime in): 

Can I apply this same method (fold in the bowl bulk ferment at room temp, overnight/ long cold retardation/ room temp 1 hr. 45 min/ bake) to other types of sourdough? 

I love the way that this formula and method fit into my schedule, and the cold dough is so easy to handle. It seems like a 'reliable' method. I would like to try this approach to other formulas using my sourdough starter, specifically Glezer's "Essential's Columbia", but don't know if this long fermentation would work with the malt syrup included in the formula

David- have you tried your method with any other formulas or have you modified your SJ formula ever including malt syrup? Seeded? With durum flour? Other? What were the results?

Thank you in advance for taking the time on this question. And thanks again for a fabulous formula! These batards and another batch tonight will be for company this week! :-)


dmsnyder's picture

Hi, inlovewbreaq!

You're baking some beautiful breads!

As to your questions, the folding in the bowl followed by some extra S&F's on the board is my current favorite technique for mixing doughs with hydration in the 70-78% range. I've used it on a number of breads with good results. The cold retardation in bulk is another story. I've just used it on a couple other breads with mixed results. My current thinking is that the benefits for flavor development vary with the flour being used. I have used the technique with the Gérard Rubaud flour mix a couple of times now, and the flavor of the bread was inferior to that obtained with no cold retardation. I think Rubaud has optimized his formula for his technique, and altering either detracts from the product.

I wish I were experienced or knowledgeable enough to manipulate these variables at will and get wonderful results every time, but I'm still learning by trial and error.

I am sure that using the Bouabsa method with a 72-75% hydration dough with 90% AP and 10% rye and a 20% sourdough starter inoculation makes wonderful bread. Changing any of these variables makes a different bread ... maybe also wonderful. Maybe not. The same principle applies to other formulas.

I'd encourage you to experiment and share your results. My hypothesis is that "everything matters" and that changing one major variable alters the effects of all the others. 


ehanner's picture

Wow. Those are really beautiful. David's notes are a good bit of advice. So many variables to fiddle with. I tend to try and duplicate good results so I can be sure I understand how I got there before I change anything. Thanks for sharing.


wally's picture

Hooray for your scoring!  Just gorgeous!