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Misfire! - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community



New Forno Bravo Forum Feature

Forno Bravo Forum Community,

You will notice a new forum at the top of the main page called, "Ask Me Anything". This forum will be used for live one hour "Ask Me Anything" (AMA) sessions hosted by people who are knowledgeable in different areas pertaining to wood fired ovens. How it works:
- Each AMA will have a "sticky" thread where the community can post questions they would like answered during the live session. This will allow everyone to participate even if you can't be online for the live session. These questions will not be answered by the host until the live AMA; if you need an answer quickly, you should post it in the appropriate Forum area for the community to respond.
- Another thread will be posted for the live AMA. Registered users who are logged in during the live session can interact with the host by asking questions and receiving responses.
- The live thread will remain in the AMA forum to view after the session.

To kick off our AMA feature, we have invited author, chef and master bread maker and host of Pizza Quest, Peter Reinhart, to be our first host! Peter will be in the Forum on Monday, February 15th, from 7:00 - 8:00 pm EST. If you are unable to be online during the live session, you can post your questions in the sticky post. Peter will answer those questions during the live session on February 15th. You can view Peter's answers to your questions as well as what happened during the live session in the session thread.

We hope you enjoy this new feature! Please let us know if there is a topic that you'd like to have as an AMA and we'll look for a host!

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  • Misfire!

    Made some bread Thursday that serves as a reminder to all of us and will hopefully serve to help some of you with erratic sourdough experiences.

    I am currently maintaining four sourdough cultures and try to rotate using them so none of them get too far behind and out of shape. Usually that works pretty well but... apparently this week something went astray...

    There is a strong logic that sourdough starters stored in the refrigerator should get at least one feeding/rise at room temp before preparing the levain. IF you feed your starter regularly you can often ignore that but...as this story will demonstrate, going straight from the fridge to the levain can be risky.

    I pulled out two starters one of which I knew I used last week and was robust and the other that I thought I had fed and was okay. Mixed two levains and let them set out overnight. Both were foamy and frothy and looked great. So I mixed the final doughs. And went to bulk ferment. The first levain showed life during the bulk ferment. The second was...sluggish is a kind word. So...I proceeded with the first and baked and watched the second slowly emerge... but basically not do much. The first had been soft and supple and bouncy. The second was leaden and cold and... Yeah...just what I have been telling you about - if it ain't light and bouncy... Yeah...

    I finally gave up and formed and then waited and waited to bake the second. The first was spectacular. The second was a bunch of bricks. Small, dense, heavy feeling. Pale (for even though the yeast was still building - they were overproofed and short on sugar).

    So...lesson... ALWAYS do at least one room temp rise with starter before you begin making the levain! It will do much to make the condition of your starter more consistent (and consider two or three room temp rises if you are an erratic sourdough baker and don't routinely feed your starter).

    Oh well, another short cut I have been getting away with goes down the tubes!

    Bake on!