The Fresh Loaf

A Community of Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts.

Rookie question

RookieBaker's picture

Rookie question

Good morning TFL!

I am brand new to the forum and this is my first post.  And, as the screen name suggests, I'm a rookie.  I could really use your advice/direction on my new starters.

I have two starters;  one with WW and one with APF.  The WW start is 20 days old today.  Although it is a very thick consistency, I typically get very good bubbling throughout and, typically, a pretty good rise.  Some days it will double and other days it might even triple.  But, it NEVER falls.  To whatever level it rises is where it stays. 

The APF starter is an off-shoot of the original WW starter.  It is much thinner consistency and gets good bubbling on the surface, but I get no rise from it.  Both are stored in Wick jars with the glass lid on (no rubber gasket) and they sit in an albeit cool temp kitchen. 

They always smell really good;  some days like fresh baked bread and other days more sour.  But, these last 2 days, for the first time, they smell like nail polish - both suddenly smell like nail polish on the same day.   I've read the forums and my understanding is that this is not too too worrisome;  just mix the starter and continue with your feeding schedule.  So, I guess I'm not worried too much about that. 

But, the lack of rise is more worrisome.  Why doesn't the APF rise?  Why doesn't the WW fall?  Is the fact that BOTH smelled like nail polish on the same day a worry?

Sorry...that's a LOT of questions.  But, any advice you can offer would be greatly appreciated.


phaz's picture

Rising - white flour tends to not rise as much or as high as other flours.

Falling - too thick won't fall

Neither are an issue, they do what they do which may not be the same.

Nail polish - that's an issue. Usually caused by improper feeding - as in to long without sufficient food. Enjoy!