The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Link to Science of Sourdough webinar from Knowable Magazine

Doc.Dough's picture
Doc.Dough

Link to Science of Sourdough webinar from Knowable Magazine

Knowable Magazine sponsored a one-hour on-line Zoom session last week that brought together researchers from North Carolina State University and from Puratos, a baking consulting company in Belgium.  The information covered was interesting though an hour is a little short to go into much depth.  NC State ( specifically Rob Dunn's Lab) has done a lot of work on genetic characterization of the microbes of sourdough, while Puratos maintains a large library of sourdough cultures.

For those who would like to watch the webinar, THIS LINK   will take you to a re-play site where you can repeat sections as many times as you need to in order to understand what is occasionally covered by both a mask and an accent.

The transcript is available at the following link and reposted in a new comment below.

https://knowablemagazine.org/article/living-world/2020/the-science-sourdough-free-online-event#transcript

gavinc's picture
gavinc

I just need an hour when I'm not too tired...

Cheers.

DanAyo's picture
DanAyo

Doc, please post the link to the transcript when it becomes available. I missed a lot of what Guylaine said (strong accent) and am very interested to learn what they have to say.

Thanks for posting...

Benito's picture
Benito

Yes Doc, please post the link to the transcript when it is available, this might be quite interesting.

Benny

DanAyo's picture
DanAyo

Thanks for linking the transcript. I’ve listened to this a few times, and the main take away that my experience does not bare out is commonly accepted belief among these trained professionals that established starters are highly resistant to change. 

As I’ve written on numerous occasions, it has been my experience that when established starters from other bakers around the US are sent to me, that after only a couple of weeks in my home environment (all things being equal including flour, temp, water, etc.) that each and every new starter is virtually indistinguishable from my personal starter. I have no scientific evidence to backup this claim, but using my senses, no unique distinction(s) can be made. On a few occasions the starters became mixed up and I never did know which one is which.

It seems the DNA, and other scientific test say one thing, but my nose and taste buds and what I see disagree.

 

Doc.Dough's picture
Doc.Dough

I got a lot more out of the transcript that I didn't pick up in two trips through the webcast, though I did notice a typo (68°F should be 86°F where they are talking about 30°C).

And my experience matches their observation that an established starter retains it's unique characteristics over long time periods even when used along side other starters in the same kitchen.  I maintain two starters, both with origins in KA starters that lived for many years in two different homes.  I maintain them as separate strains and they exhibit distinguishing characteristics other than taste and smell that remain unique.  Levain builds often combine the post-refresh residuals from both starters with no observed difference from initiating with only a single strain.

Abe's picture
Abe

Please delete