Saturday, September 10, 2011

Sourdough Excitement!

OK, maybe I need to get a life but I can't wait to make a "Pain Au Levain".  My sourdough starter looked great and I just used Reinhart's book to turn the culture into a "mother starter".  Here's how it's come about:

The culture:                            (click on the pics to enlarge them)

I then took 1 cup of the culture and added more flour and water

I let this sit to ferment at room temperature for about 4 hours or so...  I actually should have put this is a larger container because it doubled in size (and almost popped the lid off it).  

I now have a "mother starter" or "barm".  It's in the fridge at the moment and tomorrow I'll use a portion of it to make some bread.  It's a wild yeast starter, so nothing "commercial" will be used as leaven for my bread.

This is going to be a trial and error kind of thing.  While I've read quite a bit on this subject,  this starter is supposed to "mature" over time (with some careful attention given to it).  There's a lot of microbial action taking place here between yeast and bacterial growth.   How the starter is maintained and how much of it is used in a dough, so I've read, greatly impacts the flavors and acidity level of the finished product.  Again, I have no idea what I'm doing but the results I've seen so far are very positive :)

Tomorrow, I'll fill you in on the process of making bread with this stuff.  It's definitely is going to be a longer process but I'm anticipating some great finished product results in both texture and flavor.   From this point forward, no new bread recipes.  I'll stick with this one until I learn more from each result.