The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Liquid Starter Patent

doughooker's picture
doughooker

Liquid Starter Patent

Here is another sourdough formula from the U.S. Patent Office. It uses a liquid starter.

 

LIQUID STARTER

 
Flour100.0%
Water250.0%
Previous liquid starter38.0%
Salt2.0%
Develop 6.5 hours @ 75° - 80° F

DOUGH

 
Flour100.0%
Liquid starter38.3%
Water40.3%
Salt1.9%
Proof 7 hours @ 86° F

Read the full patent here:

https://patents.google.com/patent/US3734743A/en?oq=US3734743

albacore's picture
albacore

Especially the use of salt to slow down lactobacilli growth relative to yeast.

This mixture is such high hydration, would it stir with a magnetic stirrer?

Lance

doughooker's picture
doughooker

I used an old-fashioned crank-style egg beater to mix the flour. It did a very nice job of breaking up the clumps and made a nice, smooth liquid.

I baked a quick loaf last night and only gave it about 6 hours of proofing time. I think it could have used a lot more.

Thinking out loud, this starter has such high hydration that I might try a loaf without any added water; just use the water in the starter to hydrate the dough to about 60%.

I'm going to be making a new starter with clear flour anyway.

doughooker's picture
doughooker

The starter is 250% hydration, So if I wanted to make a dough with 60% hydration, I would use:

Flour: 100 parts

Liquid starter: ??? parts

Final hydration: 60%

albacore's picture
albacore

So, 112 parts of starter would do the trick. But 60% loaf hydration seems pretty low, or are you thinking there will be more "apparent liquid" in the starter because of the fermentation?

Lance

doughooker's picture
doughooker

Hi Lance -

I'm going by the two SF sourdough formulae posted here by Doc Dough some time ago:

http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/17730/divine-inspirationfor-me-it-way-larraburu-brother039s-sf-sd-what-was-it-you#comment-176197

http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/17730/divine-inspirationfor-me-it-way-larraburu-brother039s-sf-sd-what-was-it-you#comment-177563

You're not the first person to comment that 60% hydration seems low, but consider that the dough had to go through mechanical dividers and rounders. These were great big bread factories running 24/7 turning out thousands of loaves and rolls per week. I'm guessing they kept the dough somewhat dry so as not to gum up the machinery. There were two major bakeries in San Francisco (Larraburu and Parisian) and two in Oakland (Colombo and Toscana).

Can you share the math involved in arriving at the 112 parts of starter? Thanks.

One thing about this liquid starter is that it does separate, so you have to keep stirring it.

albacore's picture
albacore

The math was just done on the back of a fag packet (as we used to say over here) - just some successive approximations. Of course it could be done with algebra or an Excel formula, but probably quicker the way I did it for a one off.

It's worth knowing that for a given weight of starter, you can easily work out the weight of flour and water in it, if you know the hydration.

Say I have 50g of 65% hydration starter, then divide the 50 by (1+65/100) [= 1.65] and that will give you the weight of flour in it (30.3g). The water of course is then 50-30.3g.

It still works at 250% hydration: 50/(1+250/100) =14.2g flour.

 

Lance

doughooker's picture
doughooker

Suppose I want to solve for the amount of 250% hydration starter given 100% flour and a final dough hydration of 60%.

Never mind; I got it figured out.

110.5 g 250% liquid starter will give me 60% hydration.

albacore's picture
albacore

This gave me a fair bit of head scratching to do it the "proper" way, but a good bit of brain exercise, nevertheless!

The full version:

  • if x is flour weight, y is starter weight and z is dough weight
  • total weight balance gives x+y=z
  • water balance gives 2.5y/3.5=0.6z/1.6
  • so z=1.905y
  • and x+y=1.905y
  • x=0.905y
  • y=x/0.905
  • so if x=100 (for 100g flour), then y (starter weight) = 110.5

Phew!

doughooker's picture
doughooker

Thank you for slogging through the math, Lance.

I am awaiting a shipment of clear flour (type 00) at which time I will make a new inoculum. Then I will try out this formula, so it will be a little while.

mwilson's picture
mwilson

Are you sure? Clear flour and type 00, that is rather contradictory... Can you provide a link to the flour you have purchased?

doughooker's picture
doughooker

https://www.bakersauthority.com/products/5lb-clear-flour-00-flour-5lb

Perhaps I'm misinterpreting the 00 in the product description?

Nonetheless, I see it has 14.1% protein.

mwilson's picture
mwilson

No, no fault on your part at all. The description clearly states '00'.

It would appear that this miller seller doesn't understand what these grades borrowed from Italy actually mean.. Ha! 🤦‍♂️

Thanks btw

EDIT: On further glance I see the fault lies with the reseller. They are mis-selling this product by calling it 00!

doughooker's picture
doughooker

Thanks for your vigilance, Michael.

Agreed that they are mis-identifying 00 flour.

The Larraburu process says "clear" flour at 14% protein, not type 00, so I'm satisfied this is the flour to use.

idaveindy's picture
idaveindy

For the 50 lb bag https://www.bakersauthority.com/products/ardent-mills-powerful-premium-clear-flour

they show a picture of Ardent Mills flour, but the Spec Sheet has Bay State Milling on the letter-head.

I thought Bay State milled their own, and did not re-sell for other mills.

albacore's picture
albacore

I've been reading some old professional bakers' text books, as I find them rather interesting. In Manna, by Walter Banfield (p 1947) and The Modern Baker, by John Kirkland (p 1911) they both talk of typical water additions of 14 to 15 gallons (UK) per sack or 140/280 to 150/280 = 50 to 54% hydration.

Given that history tells us that bakers have struggled over the ages to get a fair price for their bread, I'm sure a bit more water would have been a welcome addition to a 2 pound loaf, so it could only be that the flour would not stand it.

I presume it must have been the wheat varieties and perhaps growing methods (and climate?) that produced such unthirsty flours, compared to our present day ones.

This might help explain the 60% hydration for Larraburu loaves. I know the time period is a fair bit later than I have referenced, but it certainly wasn't the present day - and US flours are going to stand more water than UK ones.

Lance

gerhard's picture
gerhard

but in Germany a nice even tight crumb was considered a sign of a good craftsman, so the popular open crumb people are striving for today would not have been desirable.

phaz's picture
phaz

And that's how it should be. I've always looked at it this way - what is a hole? Nothing. I'm not a fan of working for nothing. Not too mention the fact that if I'm putting something on my bread, I want it on the bread, not the counter, or flour, or worse yet - me (my cat takes advantage of that). Never could understand (actually I do) why one would want to purposely make such an unevenly proofed bread. I suppose if one is taught 2+2=5 that's what it's gonna be - till someone corrects the math and then tries to convince one their accepted belief wasn't exactly accurate. Tough nut to crack. 

I'll close with - make the bread you like. Doesn't matter what it's is or what someone else thinks of it. You're eating it you should like it - if not - why the heck are ya doing it? Enjoy!

 

albacore's picture
albacore

Phaz, please let's not turn this into another open crumb/closed crumb preference discussion!

Yes Gerhard, the UK was just the same as Germany - a tight regular crumb was expected. Much of the bread produced today by craft bakers would have been considered faulted. But don't forget that 80% of UK bread production is still pre-packed sliced Chorleywood product. At least in Germany I think more of your craft bakeries survive.

I'm sure the bakers of the day would have been just as capable as present day ones at producing nice large alveoli; the only trouble being that they would soon have got sacked for doing so!

Lance

phaz's picture
phaz

Welcome to the world of open forums. You'll get used to it eventually. Envoy!