I have seen (at least) two types of recipes…
One calls for a preferment which is made the night before and makes up only a portion of the total weight of the dough’s water and flour.
- 2 oz Sourdough Starter (fed 12 hours previously and left out on counter. i.e. just starting to sag)
- 3 oz Water
- 5 oz Flour
This is mixed and sits overnight before being added into a recipe.
The second type (i.e. Pan Au Levain) calls for mixing the entire dough (all the flour, water, starter, salt, etc) and putting in the fridge overnight.
When is it appropriate to mix up a preferment as a component, and when should I simply ferment the entire dough recipe?
Today I am making a brioche dough enriched with eggs, sugar, and oil. Since I did not know how all of these extra ingredients would react with the starter, I chose to create the above preferment. Not sure if that was the best way to do it or not.
Also, most sourdough preferments (and Pan Au Levain recipes) call for letting the dough sit over night in the fridge. But standard preferments are left on the counter. I left my Sourdough Preferment on the counter.
Is it better to refrigerate the sourdough preferment or leave on counter at room temp?