The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

I'm in love with wild yeast!

MarkS's picture

I'm in love with wild yeast!

I started my sourdough starter on January 18th of this year. I am following Peter Reinhart's method in The Bread Baker's Apprentice. It amazes me how easy this is. Just flour and water. I spent nearly 20 years buying and using packaged yeast. Nothing tastes quite like wild yeast raised bread! I bought a pound of yeast in early January that I have hardly touched and I am hard pressed to find a use for it now.

This is my latest attempt at sourdough. The recipe is from Peter Reinhart's book. This was my first time using proofing baskets and I over-floured them just a tiny bit! Still, I love the way they turned out. They taste amazing, although, not very sour.

Heath's picture

Baking and eating sourdough bread's addictive, isn't it? :-)

dabrownman's picture

struggle when it comes to sour just as they can struggle to raise a loaf of bread.  Hopefully the sour will get better as it matures but it may not.  If it doesn't then you can take some steps to make it more sour too.

The bread looks great and the baskets will need less flour as they age.  I think most folks over flour their baskets when they first use them.  A little bit of rice flour goes a long way.  Love the bread and

Happy baking

David Esq.'s picture
David Esq.

I also purchased a large quantity of yeast at the same time I started my starter created with KA organic all purpose flour and water. I have baked a number of wonderful loaves using the formula/technique in Tartine Bread. 

Some have been tangy and some just chewy and tasty. All have been quite satisfying.  I have not been disciplined enough to keep notes of things like bulk rise and final rise times to correlate with flavor and crumb. 

In part, it is just laziness. But part of it is because I love all of my breads and don't mind being "surprised" by what I get. I understand Chad Robertson's method and use of ripe starter, young leaven and long fermentation periods to get the most flavorful loaf. 

But out of carelessness or necessity, I have baked every possible way: using starter that hadn't bend fed in over a week, starter that was fed withIn 12 hours, leaven used the same day it was created, overnight leaven stored in a cool place, in a warm place, etc. 

Adding to my difficulty is that I may bake today but not eat the loaf until next week. And unless I keep careful notes and label my freezer bags to match my notes, I don't know how any particular loaf is made. Again, lazy rules he day. 

I think my favorites have been fermented overnight after shaping. Those breads release most easily from my towel-lined bowl, are easiest to score and seem to get the most oven spring.