The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Ancient But Not Mini Oven's No Muss No Fuss 'Leave me Alone' Starter - 8 Days Later

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

Ancient But Not Mini Oven's No Muss No Fuss 'Leave me Alone' Starter - 8 Days Later

We took up Mini Oven's see what happens starter by mixing up some unbleached flour with some water - golf ball size, putting it into a brown paper bag with some extra flour, no peaking for 7 days, and see what you get in a week.   Paul McCool and other TFL'ers have done this before but I coudn't help but give it a go since I just love all kinds of starters and am a sucker for smart ladies with a tendency for insane thoughts :-)

 

Here is where we started 8 days ago on the left.  I promised Mini I wouldn't look but forgot about it and it was 8 days before I remembered it and here is what it looked like on the right.  Do you see that tumor like growth on the right side of what once was a round dough ball?  The whole thing looks a little bigger too!  Hard a s rock though.

Here is a close up.  It actually was two growths.  When i cut into it it was still moist on the inside but, the inside center  was hollow like baked Pate Choux.......  This would be very weird if it wasn't one of Mini's hair brained ideas she is so famous for being right about.  With the tumors and the hollow honeycombed inside this thing looks like it might be alive!  Thank God I watched both parts of 'When Aliens Arrive'  on the Science channel this  past week and am ready for anything similar.  I say bring it on !!!!

 I decided to try to make 2 starters out if this.  There was only 15 grams of moist stuff in the center so we, I say we but my apprentice wasn't having any of this science oddity experimentation and fish with teeth scare her to no end for some reason, scoped that out, mixed it with 15 g of water to get it watery again and then added 15 g of whole wheat flour.   I had whole wheat out to feed the Piranhas nutritious wheat balls for our converting them to be Vegan experiment.... but that is another story.

The remaining 47 grams of hard stuff, including the two tumors,  I chopped up with a knife while fending off upset, flesh eating fish.  We then chopped it to a powder in the coffee mill and liquefied it in 47 g of water before adding 47 g of whole wheat.

 I personally think that the tumor bearing,  hard portion will be a viable starter long before the moist middle part will but others might disagree.  We will look at them in 4 hours bacillus willing.  Nothing happened in 4 hours so I'm going to bed after feeding them again and hopefully in 8 hours we will see little alien tumors tomorrow.

After 4 hours of growth last night, we started to faintly smell that SD  sweetness in both cultures and we fed them again before going to bed.  I am so pleased to announce that we have a mini liftoff this morning .  After 8 hours both showed expansive growth with bubbles on the bottom side and top.  It looks,  through rubber band  measuring techniques, that the growth in volume was about 33% in 8 hours after a fresh feeding.   This is pretty week for my normal starter but, this one is very young and was abandoned and abused as a child.   Plus, it was severely hampered by diseased tumors early in its development and likely also from an alien planet and not used to conditions on earth which may be unique in the universe.  Will keep feeding them until they can double in 8 hours.  Here is a pix.  The center moist goop is in the glass bowl on top of the  plastic container with the rubber band  which has the dried exoskeleton of whpo knows what in it.   

 

We called this a double in volume at 14 hours from the last feeding - not quite the bare minimum we look for to make bread.  So we weighed them, discarded half of each and then added that amount of flour and water each.  We hope they will both double in 12 hours or less this time - or, we shall see if the piranha like failed SD starter any better than WW flour balls.

 

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Nice one... I missed mini's experiment, she is invaluable asset to community.  Should be a good start for no SD beginner bakers.

I'm watching the progress on this one, DA!

 

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Now who has the insane thoughts?  I can see using the flour.  I imagine the corpus is protective shell and layer upon layer of beastie progression that I would not want in my starter, dried battlefields,  dead and pushed out micro flora and waste products.   ... put an armored guard on that sample and don't let it near the new one!  Seriously.       --cool pics!--

I think the "tumors" are gas bubbles that found their way out taking with them some of the inside starter.  When the escaping goop hit the flour it encapsulated as the flour stuck to it and dried the surface.  How thick were the nodules?  If very thick, they might have been formed in the very beginning.  (Double yuck.)  

Well, now that you did it, nothing more to do than wait them out.  Do be aware that if the feeding of the inside starter or shell did not raise the pH high enough to stimulate growth (minimal feeding) you may not see any change in the starters.   If you see no visible changes, do not discard but feed more water and flour.   You did not mention if the inside starter goop was sour tasting or not or if it resembled anything familiar or had aroma. 

As a fellow mad kitchen scientist, your results I eagerly await.  :)   

Oh, it is not my method but one much much older than my demicentenarian years.  

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

a hard geode that was hollow in the center except for the cool crystals.   I tactually smelled like a weak sweet SD starter.  The nodules were just like the big one only in mini-ature with the same proportion of wall thickness to the hollow center.   But the center was much drier and nearly completely dry.  I think the pressure building up inside found the weakest part of the shell before it completely hardened and burst through.   The pressure must have been intense.

The exoskeleton one seems to be the more active but it too smells SD sweet - maybe because it was 3 times larger and got fed 3 times as much?  It's not as fast as Joe Ortiz's cumin, milk, WW flour and water one that we took from start to bread in 3-4 days but this was more interesting with the anticipation and fun in that you had to wait, without looking, for 8 days and then you get hollow geodes, tumors like growths, exoskeletons with moist insides and things we cant really talk about if it takes over this world for its home planet :-)  Still, we will take a chance and feed them to see if we can get them to full strength before long.  

Thanks for the inspiration Mini! 

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

for starter strengthening?

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

weekends I'm not allowed to bake any bread.  I can still maintain starters, grind grain and feed the piranha no problem. But this week, since St Paddy's day is on Sunday, I'm making  Ballymaloe, Brown soda bread and Brown Yeast Bread but I am doing the latter with a biga Italian style instead of fresh cake yeast.  Might do a scone made from a Bannock too.

If one of these starters doubles in 12 hours I will add it to the yeast bread, remove the biga and maybe add in some YW if the starter is a little weak.

The piranha Fodder will be fed!

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

in th super market,  500g blocks and a choice of brands!    (also itty-bitty cubes at 38g if you're not so ambitious)  Do let the starters peak and not just double before discarding & feeding!  (can't help myself)  

Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

I like it!

Looking forward to more Amazon baking

Juergen

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

post I might have to feed the exoskeleton one to the piranha and see how tough they really are compared to aliens bearing tumors :-)

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

If you don't here from me again Khalid, either the piranha got me for trying to make them Vegans or this thing consumed me in its quest to take over the planet.  Don't know which one would be a worse death..... but I don't want to find out!

isand66's picture
isand66

I feel like I'm part of a Monty Python episode gone bad!  

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

a new bread ingredient that you haven't used before.   Have been trying to get piranha eating grains instead of other fish so that they aren't so ......fishy tasting as an add in for my apprentice's new fish bread she is working on.  Her problem is she eats her catch and the bread never makes it off the drawing board. 

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

>> Ancient...  <<        Lol! 

Most piranhas are vegitarians, you got carbiranhas?

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

is trying to make carbiranhas out of piranhas so that they are less fishy smelling and tasting.   She is trying to make a  new bread with an ingredient Ian hasn't used in bread.

I thought you would like the Ancient But Not Mini ...... tag after you said it wasn't yours and predates  you :-)  Glad you weren't upset.  There can be no love in the world without humor!

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Before the carp and trout are harvested from fishponds the fish are fed cut up bread.  It makes the fish taste milder.  I have often cut up old bread for this purpose.  If you have a lot of old bread, that's one place where it can be used to support another food source.  

Yes, thank you for the complement!  I can almost see you in your smoking (jacket) and pipe as you type.  

How are the starters?

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

going through their odd I'm not near ready stage right now.  Neither has been able to double in 14 hours like they did the first time and the 2 - 4th, 12 hour feedings I dumped half, weighed it and fed it its weight in WW flour plus that amount in water.  I added a few grams of orange juice on the 4th feeding hoping to speed things along a little faster.  They still don't smell quite right yet but hopefully we will start to see some improvement soon.

I'll have to tell my cousin about the bread trick for his catfish tanks in Cat Springs Texas.

We are in morning today even though it is St. Paddy's Day.  My apprentices good wire hair Doxie friend - Auggie, a chef's apprentice in KCMO, died yesterday from some kind of blood disease they think it got from eating a diseased rat it caught.  Doxies are good ratters. 

Got a take on Ballymaloe yeasted Brown Bread that we made with a biga, rising on the counter and made some Enchanted Irish Lemon Curd Fairies for desert.  I figured that since I learned my favorite Italian pasta sauce from a Black Irish friend, that I could use an Italian biga to make Ballymaloe Brown Bread.

It is hard to replicate Irish WW flour since it is made from red soft wheat, so we used 200 g of WW pastry flour, 250 g of WWW and 50 g of home milled WW to go with the 422 g of Guinness (not used at Ballymaloe)  1.5 % salt and 45 g of Molasses (about twice what they use) and the 175 g of 24 hour, overnight refrigerated biga.  It is supposed to be a  no knead, cake yeast,1 rise in a tin, 100% WW bread.  Bu,t we cut the hydration to about 85%,  French slapped and folded it for 5 minutes to incorporate the biga and give it a little structure and then tinned it up.  We will see how close it comes to the real thing.

What are you baking for SPD?

Got to go fill the Fairies.

Happy St Paddy's Day Mini