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sourdough bread , no open crumb , slightly vinegar scent

restless baker's picture
restless baker

sourdough bread , no open crumb , slightly vinegar scent

 hi, it has been a long time that I haven't posted anything, I have been practicing, 

my sourdough starter smells fine especially after I feed it, within 5 hours it smells like yogurt and sour. I feed my starter 2 times a day every 12 hours with 50 grams water 50 grams water, I am using bread flour.  my sourdough is 3 weeks old.

here is a picture of my starter around 3 hours after feeding, sorry it was early in the morning the picture is dark, sorry

 

here is the recipe I used :

( 73% hydration !!! )

140 grams starter

250 grams water

8 grams kosher salt

400 grams white bread flour

mixed 3 min on slow ( only mixed water and flour and salt and left for 3 hours for autolyse )

then added sourdough and mixed  6 min on high speed to form a strong gluten structure 

covered and left to ferment for 4 hours room temp, “folding” at the 1-hour mark

Formed loaf  ( it was hard to work with it dough because it was so wet and I was trying to avoid adding extra flour ) and transfer into a prepped banneton ( covered with bread and rice flour ) 

Retarded dough in the fridge for 12 hours at 6 degrees C

Left it to rise for 2 hours at room temperature 

Bake on a stone at 450 F. for 15 min with steam and 10 min without steam and here is the result 

 I am sure I was gentle with the dough while transferring, didn't have oven spring, no open crumb, slightly vinegar scent, not so much of good taste. please guide me, what am I doing wrong. I am not happy at all. 

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

The crumb looks pretty good.  A clean cutting edge might help and more focus, please  :).  

My first question is in the beginning, feeding details... how much starter did you feed 50g each water and flour? Are you discarding before feeding?    No trick Q's but it makes a difference.

without any more details, I would guess that it might do better baking directly from the fridge skipping the room warm up.

restless baker's picture
restless baker

 well, I haven't discarded for 4 days now, but whenever I feel its about to overflow, I will discard half of the sourdough. I don't smell any alcohol on my sourdough, it smells something like old vinegar and several hours after feeding smells sour. I guess used a blend 50 grams wholewheat flour and 50 grams bread flour and 100 grams water to make my sourdough at the first day and it was around day 7 that it started to smell sour and got doubled in size. 

you know I want those big air holes, my bread seems so dense and it doesn't smell so nice it smells something metallic. 

I used my sourdough to make this bread 2 hours after feeding it. i think maybe my sourdough is not strong enough to make the bread rise. or I think maybe 12 hours of refrigeration don't allow it to ferment enough. I say this because the other day I fermented my bread 18 hours at room temperature ( bulk ferment not in the basket ) and then after shaping I gave it 4 hours rest room temperature in the basket. ( when I wanted to shape the dough kept tearing apart on the top as if there is no gluten structure, it was because I didn't knead the dough and even didn't use fold method ) that bread also turned out dense but yet it had some holes in it. 

since we don't have anyone or any place to make sourdough in my country I don't have anything to compare it with.

focus, gotcha. 

 
DanAyo's picture
DanAyo

Restless, I may have some helpful information. My last dozen or so test bakes have been dealing with extended (16+ hrs) bulk fermentation at room temp. If your starter is healthy, I think your main problem is dough degradation caused by over fermentation.

You wrote, “mixed 3 min on slow ( only mixed water and flour and salt and left for 3 hours for autolyse )

then added sourdough and mixed  6 min on high speed to form a strong gluten structure 

covered and left to ferment for 4 hours room temp, “folding” at the 1-hour mark

Formed loaf  ( it was hard to work with it dough because it was so wet and I was trying to avoid adding extra flour ) and transfer into a prepped banneton ( covered with bread and rice flour ) 

Retarded dough in the fridge for 12 hours at 6 degrees C

Left it to rise for 2 hours at room temperature

That’s 9 hours fermentation at room temp. The ambient room temperature is very important. For example, I Bulk Ferment for 16 hours a 74F and the dough is fine. But if I Bulk Ferment @78F for 16 hours it is slop. Here is an image of degraded dough. And for this failed test I used KA Sir Lancelot flour (14.2%).

The gluten is “shredded” and will not form a cohesive ball. The dough will not hold a shape. It baked flat with no real rise.

I suggest you not autolyse when doing an extended BF @ room temp. Also try to keep the temperature of your dough cooler, not above 72 - 76F for your initial test trial. Hydration and heat speed up the enzymatic action (break down) of the flour. Also, I would not develop the gluten using a mixer. The long BF will develop the gluten for you.

You could also simplify the solution by using much less room temp fermentation. And why not bake straight out of the refrigerator. Doing this produces huge oven spring and makes scoring much easier.

That looks like a huge amount of Levain for a dough that is to be fermented for that amount of time. Way too much enzymes... I’ve discovered that flour can withstand water (and salt) for a long time, but when the Levain is mixed in, things start to happen at a very accelerated pace. To see for yourself. Mix 100g flour + 100g water. And at the same time mix 100g flour + 100g water + 25g Levain. Set them both on your counter covered. Every hour or so pull a windowpane on each dough and note the difference. In my testing the dough without the Levain stayed strong for over 30 hours, but the levained dough degraded much more quickly. Take away- - - the percentage and also the strength of the Levain added to the dough greatly affects the rise time but also the possible dough degredation.

My ultimate suggestion would be to enroll in this online baking class taught but Teresa Greenway of Northwest Sourdough.

https://www.udemy.com/bake-san-francisco-style-sourdough-bread/learn/v4/overview The cost is $20, and in my opinion worth every single penny. My “sour” sourdough baking has improved drastically after learning from this course.

The bread below rec’d a total fermentation of 18 hours @ 74F. I baked it cold after retarding in the refrigerator for 16 hours. The flavor is sour, and to me, that’s a good thing.

In my experience a dough can handle 24 hours (maybe more) in the refrigerator. But warm temperatures have a great affect on the gluten and can harm the dough strength given enough time.

Well, I rambled on for a while. I hope some of this will help.

Dan

bobblehead's picture
bobblehead

Hey Dan,

I'm a new baker and was just browsing through threads to get information. Thanks for this post, lots of great information that I'm sure is going to help me along. Have a great day.

Gabe

restless baker's picture
restless baker

hum, DanAyo you are correct, yes my previous bread was degraded but what about this bread that I did today? I think this one didn't ferment enough at all. this bread I made today went around 12 hours cold and 6 hours room temp and that's 18 hours max, but I guess it wasn't enough for my sourdough to make those nice bubbles. and I guess I need to balance my recipe a little. I guess its better try to lower hydration for sake of finding the right schedule first, I will update soon. 

DanAyo's picture
DanAyo

Please add an image of today’s bake.

If you can afford it, please consider both of these suggestions.

https://www.udemy.com/bake-san-francisco-style-sourdough-bread/learn/v4/overview

And

https://trevorjwilson.selz.com/item/open-crumb-mastery-for-the-intermediate-sourdough-baker-1-1

A total investment of $30 for years and countless hours of hands on baking. Your goal of open crumb and extended fermentation are goals for bakers with intermediate to advanced skills. Both are art forms and can be achieved. But experienced help will greatly accelerate the learning process.

You may be interested in this link. It is gynormous, but contains loads of information pertaining to the elusive goal of Open Crumb. http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/55230/anyone-interested-champlain-sd-bake  The Formula/recipe is specific. In this link we used a single bread (Champlain Sourdough) and baked it over and over again. If you decide to try this loaf, you can document and photograph your progress. That way others can join in and help.

Dan

Lechem's picture
Lechem (not verified)

Not very long before your starter smells over fermented. A starter peaking and smelling yeasty in 6 hours is more the norm. I'm curious if your starter has enough yeast activity going on. It could be your starter is too acidic and it's breaking down the gluten.

restless baker's picture
restless baker

Lechem , no the starter smells sour after 5 or 6 hours of feeding, it smells slightly like vinegar after 10 hours or so.i don't smell so much alcohol. no extra water on top. I get my sourdough doubled in size within 5 to 6 hours. 

DanAyo thanks for the links, actually the pictures I sent in this post are the pictures of my bake today. 

 

Lechem's picture
Lechem (not verified)

 Sour, vinegar at different stages but no yeasty smell?

If you have answered above then I do apologise but what is a typical feed like? And at what temperature is it allowed to ferment?

What is the gluten like within the starter? Especially 5 hours after mixing.

The picture, 3 hours after feed, looks nowhere near ready even though bubbles are breaking the surface. Could be trapped airbubbles surfacing. And if that is how it looks close to peaking then there is definitely not enough yeast activity within the starter.

restless baker's picture
restless baker

yes, yeasty too something like yogurt at when it has the most volume, and when it claps the smell change with it.

a typical feed = 50 grams water 50 grams bread flour - discard half of the starter every 2 or 3 days. room temperature around 23 to 26 degree C.

after 5 hours it was covered with a lot of bubbles but not crazy a lot, at this stage, it's becoming foamy. after like 8 hours to 9 hours you can see the sponge on the top and I you start stirring it, you can hear bubbles blowing up. after 12 hours everything become liquid like. the same thing happens every day. 

my bread yesterday was for some reason underfermented, I guess refrigerator make my starter very weak to work even after 12 hours the big air holes are not there.

is it a must to use your starter at its peak ? or you can use it almost any time as long as it passes the floating test???

here is what I did this time and I learned new things, I used 4 hours room temperature fermentation and stretch and fold then 11 hours resting in a basket, my dough was super big, to the point that it was kinda stock to the fabric that I was using to cover it , unforchunetly I deflated the gas when I was trying to take it out basket , I belive this time my bread was over fermented because it was about to claps on itself and it was way too big, iam gonna send some pics now .

here is the dough after 4 hours of stretch and fold, felt very good and elastic. 

this time for shaping, I didn't use any flour and I used some water and my scraper to shape a perfect dough ball soi could build up the tension on the top. 

you can see the marks on the bread, that's because it stock to the fabric, my attempt to release it was not so successful so by accident I deflated all the gas. but the point is after 15 hours of room fermentation I guess it was kind over fermented, the bread didn't smell bad this time, and the color was far better than my bread yesterday.

as you can see there are some holes in different parts of this bread. 

I want to try this recipe, let me know what do you think :

100 grams starter

310 grams water

11 grams kosher salt

500 grams white bread flour

4 hours stretch and fold every hour.(  room temperature )

shaping 

resting in the basket for 9 hours (  room temperature ) and then bake.

DanAyo's picture
DanAyo

I’m pretty sure I know one of your problems. You said 4 hours S&F and 9 hours in basket at room temp. The is an extremely long time to ferment at room temperature, unless your room is really cool. Any idea what the temp was in your room? My best guess is that the dough degraded because it fermented too long in a warn environment.

Which recipe/formula are you using? Does it instruct you to ferment (at room temp) that long?

Since you said,  I used 4 hours room temperature fermentation and stretch and fold then 11 hours resting in a basket, my dough was super big”, I don’t think your starter is the problem. Have you baked good bread with it before?

Dan

restless baker's picture
restless baker

Dan i think you are right, the starter seems to be fine, as you said the long fermentation at room temperature has degraded the dough, my room is around 24 or 25 most of the times. here is some picture of my starter after feeding today I took pictures of each stage.

3 hours after feeding :

4 hours after feeding :

5 hours after feeding :

dave, though international circumstances that my country is facing, I cant buy anything online, so I am searching online to find my path.  4 + 11 hours at room temperature seems to be a lot more than what it needs, so I guess next time I will try total amount of 1 hour of autolyse flour and water and salt, followed by 4 hours of stretch and fold marked on each hour, and 4 hours final rest in basket, all at room temperature . the recipe is the same i used before : 

100 grams starter

310 grams water

11 grams kosher salt

500 grams white bread flour

I have some questions, I hope you could help me with 

1- is it ok if I don't use my starter at its peak if my starter passes the floating test?

2-how many hours do you think is good enough for the sourdough bread to ferment at room temperature ( 24 to 26 c)?

3-in my first attempt after 4 hours of room fermentation, I gave my dough 12 hours bulk fermentation  + 4 hours at the room to warm up but my bread become dense, I feel refrigeration won't let my yeast to work well enough. what do you think about that? 

 

DanAyo's picture
DanAyo

Your starter looks extremely active. I assume you have been using this starter for some time.

 

1- is it ok if I don't use my starter at its peak if my starter passes the floating test?  Yes, especially with the high percentage of starter you are using.

2-how many hours do you think is good enough for the sourdough bread to ferment at room temperature ( 24 to 26 c)? Hard to say. It depends on different factors. Flour characteristics, Levain strength, temperature. Try to learn to watch your dough. Err on the side of underproofing.

3-in my first attempt after 4 hours of room fermentation, I gave my dough 12 hours bulk fermentation  + 4 hours at the room to warm up but my bread become dense, I feel refrigeration won't let my yeast to work well enough. what do you think about that?  I am assuming that the 12 hour BF was done in the refrigerator below 40F. If so, you should expect the dough to be dense and not airy. It is my understanding that the dough will absorb the CO2 during the cold fermentation (proof). Experience has taught me that cold ferments are not very sensitive to time. I know that 18 hours is fine for me, and I think it could go much longer. I don’t bench rest the cold dough before baking. Have faith, and try this. Pull the dough out of the refrigerator, score, and bake cold. The oven spring will shock you!

Dan

DanAyo's picture
DanAyo

We’ve been working to improve your bread. But it occurs to me that I don’t actually know your goals.

A few questions

  1. What recipe/formula are you working from?
  2. You mentioned open crumb, and flavor. Please list your goals in the order of importance.

It is important to understand the answers to the above.

Dan

restless baker's picture
restless baker

Dan  so my sourdough is very active, I see I thought it's not active enough LOL, I am sorry it's because we don't have any place that makes sourdough bread here so I am finding it with trial and error.  yes, you are right so many elements that affect the dough while proofing. That BF was at 6 degrees C for 12 hours and I gave it a long warmup but the result was a dense bread as you could see in those first pictures. oh I see so you suggest it's not so necessary to warm up the dough after refrigeration, I see that's something to consider, I will try that as well.  I took my recipe from a video on youtube HERE . i wanted to make it work with my scandal. my goal is to have a bread that's not dense and has those beautiful holes in it, it happens whenever I get those big holes by a chance the bread also taste good, so first an open crumb is a goal. 

I also used a recipe that called for one gram of active dry yeast and 18 hours room temp BF and then 2 hours final rest, and the bread comes out amazing with no problem, the flavor was also amazing.

DanAyo's picture
DanAyo

Ah, Trevor is our “main man”. Take a look at this link, and consider baking his Champlain SD. It’s not that the recipe is better. Consider baking that one because there is so much experience available in that link and others on the site.

http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/55230/anyone-interested-champlain-sd-bake

I also used a recipe that called for one gram of active dry yeast and 18 hours room temp BF and then 2 hours final rest, and the bread comes out amazing with no problem, the flavor was also amazing.”

I get that. Makes complete sense. You’ll notice that the amount of yeast is tiny. That makes all the difference with long, warm, ferments.

Dan

 

restless baker's picture
restless baker

ok, dan I am gonna try 2 different ways : 

4 hours room ferment with stretch and fold and 4 hours room BF in the basket and bake it.

4 hours room ferment with stretch and fold and 12-hour refrigeration at 4 degrees C and bake it straight after that and no warmup. 

I will update here soon . thanks for the link I will take a look. 

jmoore's picture
jmoore

For the room temperature final proof, I would cut it down to 2 hours for now, at least until you are sure you're under the over-ferment threshold.

DanAyo's picture
DanAyo

http://www.breadwerx.com/easy-sourdough-baguettes-beginners-video/

Trevor is great, but I like to mix the ingredients differently. I dissolve the starter into the flour very well. Then in another bowl I mix the salt and flour well. After that I mix them both together. It creates more of a mess and takes longer, but that’s ok for me. I want to make sure the ingredients are thoroughly mixed.

I have never been able to knead the dough with the rolling action of my hand like he does. Others have also found this difficult, if not impossible. But if you mix like I described above there is no need to worry about the Levain being mixed properly.

Dan

restless baker's picture
restless baker

about incorporating my ingredients first I mix flour and salt in one bowl and my starter with water in the other bowl and then knead my dough with an electronic mixer for 3 min on slow so the dough comes together and 6 min on high speed for good gluten development. when my dough is strong and came together perfectly, I put for fermentation for 4 hours and usually around each 30 min or hour i will give it stretch and fold (5 folds and stretch), then on countertop, I use a hand motion to make a perfectly tight ball exactly like Trever and then put it in basket for BF . 

I have seen the link my recipe I got it from the same link except instead of 495g All-Purpose Flour I am using 500g All-Purpose Flour . and i am making it rough not baguettes, I don't think that makes so much difference. 

DanAyo's picture
DanAyo

Your kneading of the dough in a mixer for a total of 9 minutes is not good for this bread. I say this because when you mechanically knead the dough for 9 minutes you are most definitely developing the gluten, which sounds like a good thing. But the recipe relies on time and hydration with an occasional stretch and fold to develop the gluten. Since the mechanical kneading is fully developing the gluten, the premix time coupled with the BF time is degrading the dough.

I am assuming that you are doing the extended premix rest described in his instructions.

Once again, I highly recommend you follow Trevor’s instructions as closely as possible. When it comes to bread dough, small things can make a big difference.

It is my understanding that open crumb is best produced with an extensible (relaxed) gluten matrix. It requires a balance between gluten that has become weaken, but not so much that it can’t hold a shape. It requires a sensitive balance.

If other experienced bakers disagree, please write in to share your experience and opinions. I want the Restless Baker to succeed. I am positive that some of my opinions are incorrect. The problem is, I don’t know with ones they are. :D

Dan

restless baker's picture
restless baker

dan so what you mean is that intense development of gluten with my stand mixer can cause ( strong gluten structure ) which my yeast won't be strong enough to push it up and make those air bubbles inside it ??? is that what you are saying? ok ok wait take a look at these pics 

here is the dough after 3 min slow mix and 6 min of intense mixing on speed 7 :

 

here is the dough (( without )) any stretch and fold after 4 hours of room temperature rest , ( 40 % more volume ) :

I continued 4 hours BF at room temperature and I baked it, I got some good oven spring ( i made a mistake and deflated some of the gas again ) here is the result : 

baked 15 min with steam at 260 C and 15 min without steam and here how the inside looks like 

 and I must tell you that I bake it straight on the stone if that makes any difference ( preheated one hour ahead ) 

 

ok please firstly tell me what do you think? 

here my questions 

1- so do I repeat the same thing that I did here but instead of intense mixing with the mixer, I do 4 hours of stretch and fold so I could have more relaxed gluten structure? 

2- does the shape of the loaf have any effect on the end result?  I mean if I shape it like round loaf or make baguettes does it matter? 

Thanks 

DanAyo's picture
DanAyo

It looks to me like you are getting improvements. The image of the mixed dough looks great. But you are deviating from the recipe. Trevor intends the dough to weaken in order to produce the open crumb.

Keep on experimenting and enjoy the process.

Dan

restless baker's picture
restless baker

Dan this time i will fallow his recipe exactly and i will report here 

restless baker's picture
restless baker

I mixed everything together, shaggy mass, left it 1-hour room temperature to rest

here is how it looked after one hour of resting :

I tried to shape it exactly like he did but no matter how much I tried I couldn't make as tight as he did, my dough was way to sticky, gave it several folds and stretch around 7 times, I tried to press with my thumb so the dough gets tight but I couldn't turn it into a ball like he did . could it be that my flour absorbs more water ? I don't know. I wonder why my dough didn't round up like his. I transferred the dough bowl to another lightly oiled bowl, left it for 3 hours room temperature rest for it to get 30 % volume.

my attempt to make it round ball and tight wasn't successful :

then here is after 3 hours rest in any other bowl :

then I separated the dough from the sides of the bowl gently and transferred it on the lightly floured surface like this :

i divided the dough into 2 parts made the oblongs shape and left it 30 min so the dough relaxes a little bit, my oblongs were ok but still, it was not very tight. 

shaped my baguette :

and left it under a wet towel for 1.5 hours and 30 min without wet towel so the surface gets dry for scoring :

 

a bad thing happened and my towel stock to the top of my baguettes I tried to separate it as gentle as possible : 

then after 30 min i scored the top of the baguettes :

and baked it 15 min with steam at 260 c and 10 min without steam, in 10-minute parchment paper started smoking and burning and getting dark and a lot of smoke came out of the oven but I continued baking 

they had a good oven spring, the bread was kinda heavy ( 380 gram after baking ) 

the bread was stuck to parchment paper really bad :

 

and here is how the inside looks like, I see some improvement and yet it's not good enough for me. 

 

I have so many questions now, please help me, 

Dan, you were absolutely right, by just following the recipe I was able to get closer to what I expect. 

still, I have some problems that I hope you guys could help me with, 

1-i mixed my dough exactly like Trevor and left for 1 hour of rest and when I came back and I tried to give it folds and make it round and tight, I wasn't able to make it tight and round, why do you think that is , I mean could it be because of my flour or something ? what should i do about it ?   

2-wet towel stuck to my dough what should I do about that part? when I want to separate it from dough it will deflate the gas and ruin all my hard work.  

3-i am not sure why but parchment paper started smoking really after 10 to 15 min at 260 c and started smelling really bad,  can I just don't use parchment paper or is it necessary? 

4- any other suggestion for more open crumb will be appreciated. please guide me.

Dan, I tried to buy Trevor book with my friend credit card but when I want to add my address, google chrome can't find my zip code and I cant do anything about it, I sent him an email so maybe who could help me out with it. 

 

 

restless baker's picture
restless baker

Could bread lovers help me with my questions above? I desperately need help with it. 

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

instead of baking parchment and it stuck to the baked bread.  Check the paper and look at the pictures on the package carefully.  The pictures on butter paper tend to show unbaked food and used more like tray liner for display than for baking foods.  When wet, butter paper falls apart or tears easily, baking parchment has a waxy aroma and feel to it.

What kind of flour do you have?  Know any details?

I am still wondering about the starter.  I cannot tell how much starter is being fed.  This information helps to answer any starter and loaf questions as starter will behave differently depending on the amount of starter. 

Now for some experiments...    

Yogurt aroma is not yeast aroma.  Yogurt aroma tells more about the bacteria in the starter and tells me, there may be too much bacteria in the desired ratio of yeast to bacteria.  Try this:  Let  about 50g of ripe starter discard sit in a separate small jar and cover it.  Mark the level and date, time, temp.   Do not feed it until it starts smelling very yeasty and fermented.  See if you can make it separate and turn into beer.   Mark rises with date and time.  Just watch it for 3 or more days.  Uncover just to check aromas.  Let's call it:   "George"  to avoid confusion with other experiments.

Take some more starter,  stir 20g of ready to use peaked starter and feed it 100g flour and 70 g Water.  Pack into the bottom of a tall narrow glass or jar that has space about 4 to 5 times the starter volume to rise up.   Mark the level and cover to prevent drying out.  Note temperatures and allow to rise.  Do not stir.   Mark the levels once it starts rising and every hour or two after that.  I like to use a piece of tape and then transfer it to my notebook later.  

     The starter should maintain a domed surface while rising.  Mark where it touches the glass.   When peaked the dome will dimple and start to level out.  Then it may fall down or deflate and start to rise again.  This whole experiment will take about 8 to 12 hours and maybe longer so start it early, while you are awake and can watch it.  

     Normally, in the first 3 hours not much appears to be happening (yeast number should be increasing but you can't see them, doubling population about every 1 to 1.5 hours)  then the starter should be rising first slowly and then speeding up to peak at about 6 to 8 hours (maybe longer) into the experiment.  Be sure to note the temperature during the experiment, any change in aroma and how the starter tastes.  It should first taste like wet flour in the beginning.  Remember no stir once the starter starts to rise.  You can repeat the experiment later and play with it as it rises but with this first starter test experiment it is good to have a "base line" for comparison.  

I hope We can answer more questions about the starter and sourdough bread after we see what is happening with the starter.   

Mini

DanAyo's picture
DanAyo

Maybe you could try plastic wrap with a light coating of non-stick spray to place over the bread to avoid tearing the gluten with a wet towel.

Or use a light weight dry towel instead.

Dan

restless baker's picture
restless baker

Mini Oven, I have decided not to use the parchment paper and bake it in the tray straight, its ok if it gets dirty.  on the package, it has written ( wax paper - no sticking no cleanup ) there are pictures of cookies and pizza on covered. I used it to bake cookies but my temperature for my cookies was way lower than 260 C.

as up for the type of flour I use, we don't have so many types of flour like other countries, so I go to the bakery and get some white flour, they use it to bake bread and so many other stuff, I assume its all-purpose flour. I am not sure about protein percentage. 

I don't remember the amount of my seed ( my basic starter ) but I feed it 2 times per day, each time around 50 grams flour and 50 grams water. my room temperature is around 24 to 26 C. 

I will do the test and let you know.

Dan, I will keep that in mind. 

Thank you aIl

i will update soon 

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Use a scale, no memory needed.   Does it weigh 10g? 50g? 100g?  200g?

DanAyo's picture
DanAyo

For flour, have you thought about going to ayour best bakery and asking to buy some of their flour? They should have the best quality available.

Dan

restless baker's picture
restless baker

dear Mini Oven , I have some news and reports, my seed is 200 grams now I added 50 grams of flour and 50 grams of water and making a time lap video I will update soon. but the thing is that my sourdough is very active and alive when I feed it gets bubbly within 4 to 6 hours ... it doesn't smell bad like before. you can eat the sourdough on its own and it doesn't taste bad and doesn't make you wanna throw up.

Dan I did what you said and this is all they have. I believe the quality of the flour for bread that we have here is weak and at the best, it's more like all purpose flour.  

I made bread 2 times. 

once I went low hydration 60% and I tried to shape my dough like Trevor but I wasn't able to do so, 3 hours bulk fermentation and instead of room temperature final rest, I left it in the refrigerator overnight for 12 hours and here is the result. ( not that I used my starter after 7 hours of feeding ) 

here is my second try, 65% hydration, this time I learned the trick and I was able to make the tight ball perfectly like Trevor in the video. 4 hours bulk fermentation, 30 min bench rest and preshaping,d shaping , 2 hours final proof, I was able to transfer the dough carefully but I had problem shaping my baguettes that's so noticeable in the final product.  ( not that I used my starter after 3 hours of feeding) here is the picture of my sourdough starter inside some water floating, just before mixing and also my final baguettes... ( baguettes did have holes but it was not many, and they were not so big )

crack on the side indicated bad shaping 

I left the dough straight on the try, so the back of my bread is so flat, this time I didn't use parchment paper because it seems like my parchment paper works up until 200 C and above that temperature, it starts smelling really bad. I covered my dough with a towel but I didn't wet it and it didn't stick.  

please let me know what do you think. show me the way with your wisdom. 

Thanks

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

and grow the yeast population in the starter.  Starting a starter takes a method and then that method has to change to maintain the starter once the yeast are growing.  Feeding 200g seed starter only 50g flour is underfeeding.  Underfeeding is promoting the bacteria over the yeast.  The seed starter would have to be fed at least 200g flour at 24° to maintain a yeast population, more flour if more yeast is desired.  More yeast is especially desired when the flour is weak and lacks the strength to endure the aggressive sourdough process of raising bread.  You want to get that dough risen before the protein bonds in the dough break down.  You will want a lower bacteria to yeast ratio than what you have now.    

A smaller amount of starter should be fed or the feedings should be larger.  A general rule is to feed a starter equal weights flour or more.  Try reducing the seed starter to just 10 g and adding 50g flour and 50g water and let it rise to peak.  At peak, discard and feed 10g starter with 50g water and 50g flour.   The times may vary and the starter will be slow to rise and peak at first but as yeast numbers increase, the time it takes to peak after a feeding will speed up.  So watch the starter and be flexible with the clock times.  

After about 3 to 4 feedings at peak (not less than 8 hours apart)  let the starter fall and deflate to get back to a 12 hour  discard/feeding schedule so that bacteria numbers can rise and protect the seed starter between uses.  Keep track of the time it takes for the starter to peak.  This does make discard keeping the starter constantly at room temperature.  At first combine the discard with instant yeast for bread until the seed starter yeast is stronger.  ( a few days)

Once the starter is yeasty, most of the other dough problems will change for the better.  

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

 Try One or both of these ideas when mixing up the dough:

Add salt while adding sourdough starter.

Add an egg white as part of total water or liquids.   Egg whites are loaded with more than 40 different proteins and can strengthen protein bonds in the dough.  One white per 500g flour.

 

restless baker's picture
restless baker

 Mini Oven , it seems like this is a very expensive pet to feed. if I want to sum it up you are basically saying for weaker flours more feeding is required in order to keep the yeast population high in compare to bacteria. for some reason feeding it this much makes me feel so bad especially when I have to discard some of that. I know that must feed it at least 2 or 3 times more than this for 2 times per day and on hot days maybe 3 or 4 times but the thing is, I don't bake that much and I just have to discard it and it makes me feel bad, I just wanna have good holes in the bread that I bake LOL ,  sometimes its frustrating . thanks for the awesome tips. 

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

of flour is fed, weak or strong (I prefer weak, won't overflow so much) as long as the food contains carbohydrates the beasties can survive.  In a pinch, I've fed them starch, day old bread, cake crumbs, etc. but you will not see the trapping of gasses as they escape quickly from the starter, you will smell and taste the changes and when added to recipe flour, yeasts will still make gas and raise a loaf if one is carefully not to under or over feed them (that can happen too!). Chilling slows everything down except certain enzymes.  More can be found with a search.

restless baker's picture
restless baker

Mini Oven :

if I get 10 grams of starter and add 50 grams flour and 50 grams water I can use it as starter several hours after? 

then your suggestion is to have a little amount of starter and feed it more often so yeast population grows, but I am worried about the amount of flour that I am feeding it and the fact that I don't bake that much because of my schedule. 

 

pcake's picture
pcake

if you throw away most of the starter before you feed it, you can keep it at 100 grams.  once it's mature, you can mostly refrigerate and only feed a few times before you bake.  or you can do what i do - i keep more starter but i make pancakes with it most days, so it uses more flour but it's for a meal.  

restless baker's picture
restless baker

dear cupcake, my mom and dad cant eat much they are mostly on diet, and I have no one else to bake for so I am doing it mostly for myself, I guess maybe I have to keep everything on control by just disturbing a lot more, it seems like there is no other way. I have saved some sourdough in the refrigerator as a backup in case I don't have starter left I feed that one once a week. 

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

twice a day but the starter will be better for it.  Wait for it to peak and then use it right then or stick into the refrigerator for up to 24 hours.  To be fed after removing the amount you need.  One can play with the feeding amounts but most will keep a small mother seed starter in the fridge and then use 10 or 20g of it to make a fresh active at room temperature or warmer for the recipe.  The ratio I gave of starter to flour, 1:5 feed ( water can vary) can be played with from 1:1 up to 1:20.  Times will vary depending on the amount of yeast in the starter and temperature but a healthy starter should double the yeast population and eat thru the starter accordingly.  The more food given a starter, the more it will rise and peak, and the longer it takes to start rising and continue to peak.  Weak flours will fall apart if too much flour is used (or too little starter) compared to the amount of yeast.  We can't see yeast but we can use indicators like aroma changes, stickiness, feel, rise and bubble formation to check fermentation.  One can also use pH, floating, volume, taste, etc.

I would wait until later to chill the seed starter.  Right now I think the starter isn't  "there" yet.  It sounds like it went thru the "stinky" stage and into the good "LAB" stage but has not completed the "Yeasty" stage like it should have before using.  I think most of the rise is bacterial with a weak population of yeast.   The experiments will tell more.

Good to know you won't be baking everyday, we have solutions to those itty bitty little problems and how to save more flour too.  Discards can be stored in the fridge and used in a variety of ways, at least for the next few days while working on getting the starter yeasty.  

restless baker's picture
restless baker

dear Mini Oven, I have prepared a small jar, I have decided to follow what you said, I have some room temp starter, so what I am going to do is, take 10 grams of that seed, and 50 grams water and 50 grams flour, I will save only 10 grams of this starter after each discard and I will keep feeding it . I have read that its ok to use starter from any time between 4 or 5 hours after feed up to 10 to 12 hours after, it depends on the room temperature and straight of the sourdough and so many other elements, so what I am trying to ask is that, do I have to use the starter at its peak ? I mean I know that the time with the most yeast activity, but is it really a must? 

restless baker's picture
restless baker

dear Mini Oven I did what you said and here is the result please let me know what do you think?

I am gonna continue this cycle 2 times per day, my room is around 24 degrees C , is that enough or you think I must

feed it more? please let me know

Thanks

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

bake with this starter!   I am so glad it is on track.  I think you need a slightly larger jar. :).   Lol!

How are the aromas?   The feeding looks right for this amount of expansion and room temp.  How does it seem to you?  I would repeat it like you suggested a couple of times.  It will speed up with the next feeding.  Repeat for a third time, and when 1/3 risen, chill the starter to save on flour.  How long you can chill it depends on the temp in the fridge.  

Photos.  At hour 4, I would call that one third (1/3) risen and is about the volume to put into the refrigerator when you want a break from feeding.  After about 4 days in the fridge, at 4° to 6°C you can use it directly or take a 10g sample from it (keep the seed starter in the fridge for a week or two, no feeds) and build a levain for a recipe.  Use more seed starter if you need more levain or need it sooner or wait a little longer if you feed it more flour.  There are many ways to build  Levains and manipulate fermenting times.  

restless baker's picture
restless baker

Dear Mini Oven, I promise as soon as I find the time I am gonna bake with that starter, after feeding this expensive pet, I leave 4.45 am in the morning to avoid heavy morning traffic. ( yeah definitely a bigger jar is necessary LOL ) about aromas, I must say it varies from the start to the end at the beginning it starts like nothing after an hour or 2 it smells more like cold mud ( if that even make sense ) then after 3 to 4 hours the smell become complex smells of yeast and other things ( not the best smell ) after that up until 8 hours it changes to something more yeasty and pleasant and the as you can see in the picture very sponge-like. hum good question, to me, it seems like after 8 hours up until 9 hours it tries not to break down on itself. the dome falls apart after 10 to 12 it has gone down but still not totally a liquid. I guess I can feed it in 8 hours windows and my total discard per days would be around 150 grams flour except for the days that I bake.i think its the good amount of starter for me to keep, I just have to keep up the pace. "and when 1/3 risen, chill the starter to save on flour." now that's smart thinking. chill it at 4 hours after a feed so we could have some sort of activity action going on I ok I got it. my fridge is usually set on 4 to 6 degree C and I will chill it at the bottom because if I put on the top shelf it's gonna freeze.

Thanks for your help, I will update soon.

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

well described and photos help a lot!   You can make it more yeasty if desired.  This same pattern also applies to a one to ten ratio feeding for a 12 hour fermenting time.  A few more feedings and you will be there...if you desire a faster rising starter with more yeast.  The 1/3 rise and chill still applies.  :)  

Watch the starter ...and sort of glanz at the clock. 

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

would only be done to boost yeast and if you had a lot of demand for starter.

I would do it only once for a home starter.  If you were in production, a 8 hour feeding schedule helps to keep the bacteria and yeast in balanced with a 1:5:5 feeding at 24° to 26°C.    

You can also slow down the peaking time by reducing the water% making a firm starter, which usually boosts yeast as well and keeps longer in the fridge. The first thick feeding takes a little longer to peak than consecutive feedings and after a few firm feedings, the seed starter will keep longer in the fridge, months even.  Use 10g to build a levain.

restless baker's picture
restless baker

dear Mini Oven. so using a 1 to 10 ratio can be used for 12 hours time window, that's cool. I was also thinking about using cool water and maybe even take the starter in a colder place that way it will rise slowly and I guess I could make it last longer.I guess I keep this schedule for a while to make my yeast colony strong.lowering the hydration of  starter ?? will keep that trick in mind for later, it's better to do one thing at a time  don't want to confuse myself a lot LOL

hope you have received my message

restless baker's picture
restless baker

Mini Oven , quick question, do you stair your sourdough when you want to spoon out your 10 grams seed starter? the seed I picked this morning was from the top of my sourdough starter now that I have come back home it seems like nothing has happened and fed it was a failure. any idea?

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

the top contains many protective by-products that float to the top as the starter uses up remaining food.    

If a starter has been standing a week or more in the fridge, I use starter near the bottom of the seed starter and stir only if the surface looks healthy.  If the starter has a skin or dry surface, move the top aside with one spoon and take a clean spoon to remove a clean sample for making more starter.    

Check the taste of the starter, perhaps it rose and fell so quickly that it looks like nothing happened.

give it a good stirring.   

restless baker's picture
restless baker

I am trying to revive it, let's see what will happen. next time I will give it a good stir first. " the top contains many protective by-products that float to the top as the starter uses up remaining food.   " I didn't know that thanks. "Check the taste of the starter, perhaps it rose and fell so quickly that it looks like nothing happened."maybe, but it's too late not I throw it away.