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Another SourDough ???

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
I got 2 sets going one has yeast and sugar,water, milk, and flour. It smells great. I started the othe with Bread flour and water. It stinks. It has a funky smell. Any ideas?
post #2 of 9
I started one a few days ago. It's a new challenge for me. I'd say toss the funky smelling one and start over. Here's a link to the one I'm trying:

post #3 of 9
In case you want to try one that is over 150 years old for the cost of a postage stamp - Here is the link


These folks are great and they were kind enough to send me 15 starters for the 4H kids I teach cooking to. We have been using it for about a year and it makes a real nice sourdough

Here is a link to Mrs Scar's cinnamon rasin knot
post #4 of 9
[quote=Scarbelly;486966]In case you want to try one that is over 150 years old for the cost of a postage stamp - Here is the link


this is what I started with a month or so ago... I have made bread from it every week since!
post #5 of 9

If you want a try sourdough, toss the one with sugar and yeast. Save the stinky one and keep going.

The "stink" is coming from an initial bacteria bloom. Normal. Give it another 24 hours or so and that will go away. It will also go flat and not look like much. The initial bacterial bloom kills itself with acid buildup which is favorable for the desirable bacteria and yeast that is to come. Feed it equal amounts (by volume) of fresh water (not tap...potential for chlorine) and flour. Stir and wait. In another 24 hours or so, you may notice some small bubbles. Keep watching. By another 24 hours, it should be active and starting to chug. At that point, divide what you have in half, and feed the half you save an equal amount ( by volume) of flour and water. If it goes active, do this divide and feed process every 12 hours or so. It should start to bubble and get pretty active.

Or start over with a small quantity of whole wheat or rye flour, some water or fruit juice and give it a week or so to get going. The whole wheat or rye flours are more conducive to the right kind of yeast and bacteria and the fruit juice is already acid, bypassing the initial bloom of "stinkers". Pineapple juice is the #1 choice, but orange juice or lemon juice will also work. Same process as above, but once it goes active, switch from juice to water, and eventually to a larger percentage of white flours.

All purpose UNBLEACHED white flours work for sourdough. So do some bread flours. You need a starter with strong yeast rise and/or long fermentation time to use bread flours, which have a high gluten content. Think strong rubber bands. All purpose also has rubber bands, but not so strong. They will stretch more so you get a better rise. All purpose flours are not created equal. Some are made with hard winter wheat and behave very much like bread flours. Try a bunch. But make sure...unbleached....all purpose or bread.

post #6 of 9
Now that is what I want mine to look like if I ever get a starter going right..That is a great looking loaf of bread..I used to go MuleDeer hunting up in Bridgeport Calif. in the 60`s and there was a bakery there owned by 2 ladies and that is the way their sourdough bread looked like. That is what I am shooting for....Great job...
post #7 of 9
my advice would be to try to obtain some starter and start your batch with that . I only say it because I tried to start some about 10 times and it never worked . I tried different flours and my well water and then spring water and nothing worked for me . I finally just ordered a starter from King Arthur flour company ( I got the one ounce size , it was probably about 3 tablespoons ) When I got it I added flour and water to it per their directions and about 8 hours later it was working pretty good . It was a little cool in my house that day about 68 so I think if it would have been about 75 it probably would have taken off even faster . So I fed it a couple times and made a loaf of bread with it the next day . I liked it but it was pretty sour . My mom didn't care for it though because she thought it was too sour . So I'm not sure what's up with that . I did read a couple posts on other forums that as the starter ages it will make bread a little less sour but I don't know if thats true . The King Arthur way was expensive I suppose , I think it was $12 or so after shipping , but I would have been better off doing it in the first place instead of buying all different kinds of flour and the spring water and the time it took and frustration when it didn't work . I'd say give that one a try for the postage stamp and save your self a lot of hassle.
post #8 of 9
Thanks I am going to do that right now.
post #9 of 9
On the sour.......remember that sourdough culture is a combination of two living things. Yeast and bacteria. With "established" heritage type starters.....those that are handed down from generation to generation....the uniques ones like the San Francisco types, the yeast and bacteria form a symbiotic relationship. One depends on the other. One feeds and protects the other. Those are stable and predictable. The yeasts feed on sugars and emit carbon dioxide for the leavening (and alcohol...aka "Hooch"). The bacteria break down the starches in the flour to fermentable sugars for the yeasts, and in the process, generate lactic and acetic acids, which taste sour. If your bread is sour, you have a culture, or manage your culture in a way that benefits bacteria, or have weak yeast. Most folks that like sourdough like it for the sour flavor. If not for that, you can use commercial yeast, which has no flavor.

On starters, finding or creating a starter on your own that has those established "scratch my back" relationships is rare. You can get a mix of bacteria and yeast going that will leaven bread and taste sour, but it's not likely it will turn out like the ages old ones. If you want to save yourself a lot of trouble and truly find out what a good sourdough is, get an established starter like Carl's, the KA version, one from Bassman or one from a variety of other commercial sources (look carefully and you will notice that some of these "heritage" starters they are selling are actually ones that have been created recently by individuals....they are not centuries old......so it can be done).

Here are a few:




Spend some time on these sites and you will find that things are done different......no right or wrong.....just different. But they usually revolve around three key factors.

1. Sourdough is a culture of flour and water only that contains the living organisms of yeast and bacteria. At the preferred temperature of 65 to 85 *F, they grow quickly, so in these temp ranges have to be fed often (12 hours or so). At refrigerator temps, they go into hibernation and will stay healthy for weeks if not months.

2. The ratio of water to flour is referred to as "hydration" and is expressed as a percentage of content relative to the weight of flour, usually by weight. Equal weights of flour and water is 100%. Equal volumes of water and flour are around 165% (a thin, runny starter). Both work as would one that has half as much water as flour, by weight (50%). Where it matters is that the ideal percentage of water (by weight) in the bread dough is around 38% to 40%, so the recipe you use (amount of starter) has to be adjusted to the percent of water in your dough. Not hard, just have to adjust for it. This is made harder by the fact that a "cup" of flour can vary a lot by weight. Packed vs. loose or sifted for example. Best results are obtained when you weigh ingredients, but a lot of folks measure and it will work.

3. True sourdoughs are only fed water and flour. No sugar, no commercial yeasts. Established starters will go to town on flour and water alone. A lot of sourdough breads are nothing but flour, water and salt. The yeasts and bacteria in the culture take it from there and do all the work to produce the breads.

Caution: This can be addictive!
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