The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Is inoculation cheating?

Anonymous baker's picture
Anonymous baker (not verified)

Is inoculation cheating?

I keep a white, sourdough mother starter.

When I need another starter, say rye or wheat or durum, for example, I just make them by inoculating:

  • Wheat starter (1/4 wheat flour, 1/4 water, 1 T white/mother starter, several feedings)
  • Rye starter (1/4 rye flour, 1/3 water, 1 T white/mother starter, several feedings)
  • Durum starter (1/4 wheat flour, 1/3 water, 1 T white/mother starter, several feedings)
  • Etc.

To my mind, that's what a mother starter is for, but I wonder if others agree/disagree.

I also wonder, for example, if I'd get different starters and, as a consequence, different/better breads if I built and maintained each starter from scratch.

What say ye?

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven


wwiiggggiinnss's picture
wwiiggggiinnss (not verified)

Oh, good!

I had a nightmare last night: Daniel Leader admonished me for inoculating the durum starter for the Pane di Altamura. Worse: He secretly exchanged my jar of durum starter with a jar of Folgers Crystals!

suave's picture

It's not like his method for that bread is the most legit.

wwiiggggiinnss's picture
wwiiggggiinnss (not verified)

I was not given this news. Why has no one told me this? Whom do I blame?

No, seriously...

His Altamura has defeated me 3 times, and that was the final defeat before my incoming success.

I am convinced.

Nay, I am resolved!

Note, however, that as far as baking is concerned, the last time I tried Leader's Altamura, I was as incompetent as Mario Batali trying to make a fig tarte–pastry is not his forté, even if his waistline makes you suspect otherwise. What a disaster, Mario!

I'm no longer so incompetent.

This time I shall win or, as Ignatius J. Reilly sayeth, my valve shall burst. 

grind's picture

I do the same, otherwise I'd have to take a course in juggling to keep everything up in the air!!

wwiiggggiinnss's picture
wwiiggggiinnss (not verified)

I tried that for a while, but it felt like I had four children. Enough!