The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Hamelman's Sourdough Rye Culture

golfermd's picture
golfermd

Hamelman's Sourdough Rye Culture

It's been awhile since I've posted here. A move and 5 major surgeries have been a major distraction. I have a few questions concerning this topic (Bread: A Bakers Book of Techniques and Recipes, pgs 430-431). I've followed his technique for 6 days. I assumed that after each waiting period for development you pulled the 3.2 ounces of culture then discarded what was left. Perhaps my assumption was wrong. Then for culture maintenance (page 434) he said to take an ounce or two and incorporate more rye flour. Should I discard the rest? I plan to refrigerate the culture. Sorry for these basic questions but I have never done a starter before, although, I've baked a lot of breads. I am trying to venture into new territory for me. Any thoughts or guidance would be very much appreciated...

Dan

barryvabeach's picture
barryvabeach

Dan, no problem, this is the place to ask questions.  I have his book, but don't recall reading the section on sourdough, but in making sourdough, there are a thousand different approaches to building and maintaining sourdough, and there is one thing that most have in common.  When you build, or refresh, starter, you typically add flour and water.  There are different ratios, though it is common to see -  1:1:1  or 1:2:2 -  the latter being to one part starter, add 2 parts water, and 2 parts flour.  If you started with 10 grams of starter, then added 20 of flour and 20 of water, you would have 50.  At the next refresh, if you did not discard, you would have 50 starter, 100 flour, 100 water   equaling 250 grams.  At the next refresh, you would have 250, + 500 flour, + 500 water -  and pretty soon you would need a swimming pool to contain your starter.  So most regimes have you refresh with only a portion of the ripe starter, and the rest is either discarded, or used in other recipes for ripe starter.  BTW, I have gotten down to only 1 gram of starter, and there is still enough going on in that one gram, that I quickly rebuilt it up to a more manageable size. 

golfermd's picture
golfermd

Thanks, Barry. Just based on his words that's kinda what I guessed but wanted to check. I'm keeping mine in the fridge for maintenance. I'll be starting my first rye bread tomorrow. It's likely going to be the Deli rye.

BTW, my son lives in Chesapeake.

barryvabeach's picture
barryvabeach

Dan,  hope your son enjoys it, we had about 2 days of spring here, and the last few weeks have been extremely hot.