The Fresh Loaf

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How to use up my levain dump weck jar this weekend?

Bread1965's picture
Bread1965

How to use up my levain dump weck jar this weekend?

Well, I've been a bit less economical in making my levain as I normally am.  Now I have a starter jar in the fridge which is a bit of a witches cauldron of left overs. It's a blend of white and whole wheat flours. Every time I've made some bread and had left over levain, I'd dump it in with a good stir. Inevitably I get a rise of about 50% which then settles down after a week. There's some hooch in it, but not that much considering the size of the jar.  This is separate from my ongoing starter charlie jar. so I don't need to save any.  I'd like to use it up this weekend. But say it's 500 - 700 grams all in (probably it's a bit more). I'll measure it out when i'm ready.

If I feed it my usual 1:2:2 I'll end up with a lot more starter than I'd like. So, if in a regular recipe 1000g of all in total flour makes me two good loaves I don't want to make much  more than two good loaves this weekend - after all how much bread can one person eat in a week?! How can I use it all up?

Would you recommend ?  That I feed it only 1:1:1 tonight and use it tomorrow? (instead of my usual 1:2:2)  Or how about not feeding it (knowing that there's good life/yeast in it) and let it long ferment?

What would you do if your goal is to make two relatively normal sized loafs and all of it up ??  - likely I'll use whole wheat as  about a third of the total flour content.. Any recipes to share?

Thanks in advance for any ideas..

Lechem's picture
Lechem (not verified)

That has been refrigerated for a week or two straight into a dough. All have been good results. Try it and if all goes south turn it into a yeasted dough. 

Use it up in any other recipe that asks for flour and water. 

Give some away to all your neighbours. 

Rake_Rocko's picture
Rake_Rocko

pancakes! Cinnamon Rolls! Dinner rolls! Sandwich Buns! Like Lechem Said, any recipe calling for flour, water and some sort of rising agent. Since its a witches cauldron, Just have fun with it and roll with the punches! Sometimes I like to just make stuff on a whim. Pick something to bake. make sure the hydration is what you are good with, and then just throw stuff together! That way, it's low stress, and you have somewhat low expectations. and also its a good way to just let go. sometimes i feel like i need that personally. =) Post what you make though!!

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Add a little water,  give it a good stir and take some water out with you.  Pitch it into the compost and rinse out the jar there.  :)  Then you have peace.  

Bread1965's picture
Bread1965

.. just can't see my self ever do that! I get your point.. but I can't do that!  Too much potential bread!

Bread1965's picture
Bread1965

I did some math and added some flour, water and salt this morning.. and after a few folds that were completely tearing I decided to taste it.. UGH.. it was way too sour.. I didn't want to add more flour and water and had enough other stuff to cook tonight.. so  your words echoed in my ear.. and out it went and now I have peace! .. haven't done that in a year or two.. so will get back to being more economical in my levain builds! Have a great weekend!

Danni3ll3's picture
Danni3ll3

I am in the middle of doing the same thing- making bread with unfed left over levain that has been collecting in my fridge for several weeks. 

This is what I am doing:

600 g unbleached flour

302 g multigrain flour

50 g ground flax

600 g water 

410 g unfed levain 80% hydration 

30 g yogourt 

1/2 tsp yeast

22 g salt

+ extra water if needed

Now you have me wondering if I am wasting my time and ingredients. I am only at the autolyse stage with the flour and water. 

 

Bread1965's picture
Bread1965

I always think tasting along the way helps gain perspective - of the levain, of the dough after autolyse, of the dough after each stretch and fold. It's also saved me once from forgetting salt.. I think it's a good habit!

As to this morning, I went "lean" (ie not adding too much flour) and that was part of my problem. I had 700g of 100% hydration starter. I worked backwards from a tartine build and added 200g of flour, some salt and 300g of water. The consistency was good. And I'm sure if I was stubborn enough at it would have made a loaf of some type.. but it's all about flavour with me and I was definitely running down a sour rabbit hole.. so backed off and decided to focus on tonight's braised lamb shanks instead! :)

 

 

Danni3ll3's picture
Danni3ll3

yes I did taste it, and while it is a bit tangy, it is not sour by any means. It doesn’t taste all that different than my usual doughs. The dough itself is behaving beautifully and has almost doubled. I am going to divide it and do the final proof in the fridge. I was originally going to do a one day bake but decided to go with the fridge proofing. The proportions aren't very far from Forkisk’s hybrid breads so I am hoping they turn out. 

Bread1965's picture
Bread1965

I'm sure it will turn out terrifically well ! :)

 

Danni3ll3's picture
Danni3ll3

I do have the occasional disaster as proven by my experience last weekend. 

Danni3ll3's picture
Danni3ll3

sound delicious!

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven
IceDemeter's picture
IceDemeter

All of mine was at 80% hydration, and I ended up using 72g as the levain for one of last week's bakes, and about 240g in some chocolate beet cranberry muffins, and another 200g or so in some banana blueberry muffins, and then the rest in some butternut squash cranberry spiral buns earlier this week.  I did use a poolish as well with the spiral buns, but the 72g in that bake worked just fine all by itself.

All gone, container all washed --- and then I got carried away with doing a 3-stage Detmolder build over the past few days...(anyone need some rye sour?!).

Seriously - I love having a bit of starter in any muffin recipe (for the flavour, and for the added staying power), and have found that the refrigerated remnants of over-zealous levain builds do a grand job of raising a loaf.  The only thing that I tend to do differently when using a "senior" levain is to give it either a bit more warm (oven with the light on for bulk) or just plain a bit more time...  Same things that I need these days, really ;-)

Looking forward to seeing what you come up with!

Bread1965's picture
Bread1965

I like that idea.. I think I have bran and raisins.. so let's see what happens when I wake up tomorrow! Thanks!!

PS. Where do you find the time to bake all that stuff in a single weekend!!

trailrunner's picture
trailrunner

http://www.thefreshloaf.com/recipes/sourdoughbananabread

this is a wonderful way to use it. I change up and use apple sauce and add buttermilk sometimes if I don't have enough leftover starter. I triple the recipe many times. It works great no matter what I do. I  make it in 8x4 pans that are greased and heavily coated with turbinado sugar. I also let the pans set and " rest/rise" for about 45  min before I bake. You won't believe how tender and tasty this bread is. Also it isn't too sweet at all as the single batch makes 3 loaves not 2 so only a 1/3 c per loaf and very small amount of fat. I have never used my discard to make an actual SD bread. I think your sour results would definitely be cancelled out in the banana bread as I have never had a problem. Good Luck !  c

Bread1965's picture
Bread1965

Yum.. sounds like a great recipe. I've booked marked it and will give it a go!

trailrunner's picture
trailrunner

You can substitute just about anything for the bananas. As long as you have equal SD and bananas or other chopped fruit. Add nuts/dried fruits/lemon or orange peel grated/candied ginger/pumpkin puree/ the sky is the limit. Good luck and post back when you try it. c