The Fresh Loaf

A Community of Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts.

What's the difference...?

Anonymous baker's picture
Anonymous baker (not verified)

What's the difference...?

Between a small amount of starter and a long room temperature bulk ferment and a lot of starter with a long bulk ferment in the fridge?

Time = Flavour, but does the temperature it ferments at change the flavour?

I've done a small amount of starter, 1%, and 24 hours at room temperature but this weekend's recipe is a large amount of starter with 24 hours bulk ferment in the fridge.

dabrownman's picture

the flavor profile of the bread.  Low fridge temperatures at 70% hydration, about what bread dough is, promotes the LAB to produce acetic acid - the tang in sourdough as opposed to the normal sour of lactic acid the LAB usually produce,  For me a good SD has both sour and tang so warmer temperatures at higher hydration, like when making a levain, in combination with a cold retard of the dough can provide just the Right flavor profile of sour and tang

Happy baking Abe.

Lechem's picture
Lechem (not verified)

Made a new starter for fun which matured just before I went away. First time baking with it. Levain build went very well. Looks and smells good. Just done the dough and it's now in the fridge for 24 hours. I'll compare and contrast the two different methods. 

I won't be keeping this new starter as I don't wish to maintain two. If all goes well it'll join my other starter. Combining them for better health and seeing how it effects the flavour. 

Lazy Loafer's picture
Lazy Loafer

That's one of the things I want to try, actually. This weekend I'm hosting a bread tasting open house, and focusing on a variety of rye breads as well as a series of sourdoughs using exactly the same formula and technique, with the only variation being 25% of the flour. So, I've got one that's 25% Kamut, one is 25% amaranth, etc.

I ran out of prep time (I was away a few days this past week), but I was also going to try a few loaves where the flour blend was the same (probably 85% bread dough and 15% whole wheat), and the variance was in the amount and hydration of the starter. I made a 60% whole wheat "do nothing" bread last week with a very low inoculation and very high hydration, and the bread was very, very sour. The dough (batter) sat at room temperature for 24 hours or so in that case.

Lechem's picture
Lechem (not verified)

The 24 hour one, at room temperature with one percent starter is Yohan Ferrant's "Do Nothing Bread". Logic and previous experience tells me it's be very sour however it turned out very tasty. 

The higher percentage starter with 24 hours bulk ferment in the refrigerator is from Breadtopia. You can find the recipe here

In 9hrs 30min it'll be time to shape and final proof.