Confused About Starters & other Breadmaking Questions
I have 3 Starters - Chef, Whole and Rye. My aim is to bake a whole wheat SD loaf and rye SD loaf. I stay in Asia and has room temperature of 29-31celsius. Right now , it's hot - approaching 33celsius. As such , my starters are stored in the fridge after feeding. Each time, the starters probably increased by 1-1.5 inches (at the peak) and subsided after 18 -24 hours from each feeding. I use chilled bottled drinking water , bought from the store.
I adopted Chef Starter (which was 5months mature with Chef), it's been 2weeks with me and I fed it (#1 - 30-50gbreadflour, 30-50g water). I removed portion to create Whole on 29 Nov and fed with 50g breadflour, 50g water). Chef is looking inactive. I gave it a stir today without feeding since I already fed this week.
Last night (2am), I decided to create wholegrain starter and discard some( as basis for Rye 40gm starter ). Whole was fed 40gm (50%whole wheat;50%breadflour) & 40 gm water.
Rye was fed 40gm (50%whole wheat;50%light rye flour) & 20 gm water.
This morning , I also did a sink test with Chef and whole - they are sinkers! Smell-wise - Chef & Whole smell sourish.
Here's how they look now.
Are they looking ok? Should I just continue to feed equal amounts of flour and water , until I reach level I need?
Q1 . Should I remove Whole from the fridge completely or for Xhrs after each feeding? I want to bake the wholegrain SD load first.
Q2. How to gauge how much to discard per feeding? how much to add per feeding? In order to create 200-300gm of starter to bake. At first I thought since I'm going to bake soon , so I don't need to throw but just keep feeding to reach the weight of starter I need.
Q3. Most recipes only list instant yeast. what's the guideline to covert say, 2gm of instant yeast to ?gm of starter?
Q4. Do all seeds or add-ons have to be soaked before use? I hope to use sunflower, pumpkin, flax seeds, sesame seed either integrated in to the loaf or on the top. If yes, any guidelines on how long to soak them for and normal room temperature water?
Q5. I have non-stick loaf tin, pyrex loaf dish, non-stick pizza tray, non-stick roasting deep pan with rack, round silicone cake mould, corning ware casserole dish with glass lid. With these, can I still create the good crusty loaves? Or I need to splurge on DO? I remembered in the baking class, we just used normal flat baking trays with shaped loaves in professional ovens, water injection sprays. Can't I make do and bake on the non-stick pizza tray? And cover with the non-stick loaf tin to create enclosure?
Q6. I'm also confused about items left in the oven to pre-heat. Except for the corning ware, I think above bakeware can be left in the oven to preheat right?
Sorry I'm so long-winded.
Confused bread maker wannabe.