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Sourdough cultures, Camaldoli, Ischia

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  • Sourdough cultures, Camaldoli, Ischia

    We are about to experiment with sourdough cultures from Italy. They have been cultured from very old bakeries in the Naples region. It should take a while to re-activate the freeze dried culture. We plan on doing one at a time so as to not contaminate them. Have any of you tried this method of leavening your doughs for both pizza and bread?http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/imag...s/confused.gif
    Bill & Jeannie

  • #2
    Re: Sourdough cultures, Camaldoli, Ischia

    Bill,
    being relatively new to sourdough cultures, not having much success (as I was not too keen on the taste when compared to normal dried yeast) and then let them starve to death.
    However, with this in mind, will the yeast that you are going to re-activate and by feeding them with your home based flours (that I believe have some natural yeasts in them already) and your water (whether tap, mineral or purified/filtered water), will the cultures still maintain the flavors that are bread into the culture in Italy, or will they gradually change to adopt the flavors within your feeding flours?
    Just a thought.

    Neill
    Prevention is better than cure, - do it right the first time!

    The more I learn, the more I realise how little I know


    Neillís Pompeiii #1
    http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/n...-1-a-2005.html
    Neillís kitchen underway
    http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f35/...rway-4591.html

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    • #3
      Re: Sourdough cultures, Camaldoli, Ischia

      Originally posted by nissanneill View Post
      Bill,
      being relatively new to sourdough cultures, not having much success (as I was not too keen on the taste when compared to normal dried yeast) and then let them starve to death.
      However, with this in mind, will the yeast that you are going to re-activate and by feeding them with your home based flours (that I believe have some natural yeasts in them already) and your water (whether tap, mineral or purified/filtered water), will the cultures still maintain the flavors that are bread into the culture in Italy, or will they gradually change to adopt the flavors within your feeding flours?
      Just a thought.

      Neill
      We use Caputo 00 flours almost exclusively for our breads and pizzas lately as they seem to work best so that might not be an issue. Our source of the wild yeasts also include an inoculate of symbiotic bacteria that works with the yeast in the same way as wine & beer fermentation interactivity occurs. They said that the freeze dried yeasts are strong enough to overcome any local wild yeasts and will render the flavors of the original sources. We will see. Our water is carbon block filtered deep well water and I don't think it will impact the flavors because the other breads, beer and ale that I make comes out fine. As soon as I get some results I will post them. Our source for the sour dough cultures is Sourdoughs International: sourdough bread starter, sourdough bread recipes, bread machine recipes They also provide cultures from many countries including, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa as well as San Francisco in the US.

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      • #4
        Re: Sourdough cultures, Camaldoli, Ischia

        Recent research seems to suggest that the yeast can stay relatively pure if kept healthy. The bacteria are more troublesome. The original bacteria strain TENDS to hang around but is usually augmented by flour bacteria (maybe no problem with Caputo 00) in this case and local bacteria. This should be an interesting experiment!
        Jay

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        • #5
          Re: Sourdough cultures, Camaldoli, Ischia

          Thanks for the information. We will be starting up the cultures in a week or two after our painting is complete and airs out. Whew! Moving all the furniture is the hardest part of that job.

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          • #6
            Re: Sourdough cultures, Camaldoli, Ischia

            "We are about to experiment with sourdough cultures from Italy."

            It may start out that way. Local yeast and bacteria is always in the air and before long your sourdough culture will be from "Ocean County New Jersey".
            Last edited by Neil2; 01-06-2010, 04:18 PM.

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            • #7
              Re: Sourdough cultures, Camaldoli, Ischia

              Originally posted by Neil2 View Post
              "We are about to experiment with sourdough cultures from Italy."

              It may start out that way. Local yeast and bacteria is always in the air and before long your sourdough culture will be from "Ocean County New Jersey".

              Yes, that may be true but if the cultures are strong to start and are fed properly they will not be impacted by those found in the air locally. Why then doesn't baker's commercial freeze dried instant yeast change character and taste? Because it uses maltose and competes with the lactobacilli for that nutrient.
              What current scientific data tells us is that it is the complex process of fermentation of paired yeast and lactobacillus working together, will produce the flavors we are seeking. The yeast gives the leavening effect, the texture and the bacteria the sourness.
              If we generate enough strong sour dough cultures at the proper conditions and temperatures, the flavors will be the same according to what I've read.
              We'll see soon enough, empirically, if it is true.
              Maybe the wild yeasts here are something I should cultivate and strengthen and market? If San Francisco can have Candida humilis and Lactobacillus sanfrancisco maybe Ocean County NJ's Candida and L. oceancountynj would make a good tasting leavening agent? Thanks for the idea.

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              • #8
                Re: Sourdough cultures, Camaldoli, Ischia

                I've been looking for more info. Found some at: Camaldoli and Ischia Sourdough Cultures
                Hope it helps ease the confusion.
                Bill

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                • #9
                  Re: Sourdough cultures, Camaldoli, Ischia

                  so I have a sourdough culture and I have activated and it is now ready to use. How much sourdough starter do I use in our standard recipe (500, 325, 10, 6) to replace the 6g of active dry yeast?

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                  • #10
                    Re: Sourdough cultures, Camaldoli, Ischia

                    Joey,

                    Rose says to make a SD starter at about 30% of your total flour and water. Skip the yeast altogether, save the salt for the final build. In this case you would subtract 150 flour, 97 of water to mix with your SD, give it your 12-16 hour to mature and then do your final build. I assume you know it takes more time SD vs. yeast.

                    Mark

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                    • #11
                      Re: Sourdough cultures, Camaldoli, Ischia

                      Thanks for the info, I haven't tried to use my SD starter yet but it is ready to go.
                      I figured it would take longer to rise than yeast does.
                      So "final build" will be at what part of the process exactly? is it after autolyse?

                      I got alot of info from this site:
                      Jeff Varasano's NY Pizza Recipe

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                      • #12
                        Re: Sourdough cultures, Camaldoli, Ischia

                        The final build is when you add the SD starter to the remaining ingredients.

                        Mark

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                        • #13
                          Re: Sourdough cultures, Camaldoli, Ischia

                          I just finished baking my first run with the Ischia Island sourdough yeast.

                          I must say, I am very pleased. I've never made sourdough before, I've never even managed my own cultures. I couldn't be happier.

                          I followed the instructions bringing the culture to life over 3 days, this wasn't difficult at all. I think the advanced temperature initially is what is needed to awaken the yeast from what I read (85 F), I then let them continue at 75 for 2 more days.

                          I used a ratio of 1 to 3 starter to flour ? But as I got to thinking about things, the starter is going to feed on the new flour when I go to make the dough, so I am tempted to think if I add less starter and more new flour and increase the time to proof ? I think I might increase leavening as there will be more sugars in the new flour for the starter to consume. With this reasoning, even though you might want too add more starter thinking you'll need more ? I think it probably works out that the less starter the more leavening, I haven't tested this theory yet. I do observe an initial higher temperature though brings the yeast into action. I know 120 kills yeast, and anything over 100 isn't terrific, but I started my final build at approximately 100.

                          I'd say intuition and careful attention to trying to understand just what's going on will bring success, I am very pleased with the first product, the second product I mismanaged as to timing and let the dough proof for 14 hours. I do say- it's got a nicer sourness to it - I use Farino "00" I order from Penn Mac in Pittsburgh, they ship it - it's like $30 for a 55 lb bag, you can't beat it. I am truly amazed at the difference in crumb the yeast makes. I FINALLY got the texture of a bread that could alone bring a great happiness in food consumption.

                          I poured off the 'hootch' before making my dough though, I was afraid the alcohol might inhibit the yeast growth in the leavening process... I wonder though if that would bring a richer more complex flavor !

                          Hope everyone gets a chance to try the Ischia Island starter. I'll be keeping that culture cared for for the rest of my life.

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                          • #14
                            Re: Sourdough cultures, Camaldoli, Ischia

                            Tim, how would you compare the taste to commercial yeast?

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                            • #15
                              Re: Sourdough cultures, Camaldoli, Ischia

                              I could compare the two as the difference between a bad macro beer and a good micro beer.

                              It is the difference such of a chicken soup made with one cube of generic flavoring with some salt vs a soup made with chicken stock, fats, rich intense flavors.

                              It is such that I can understand with this bread product from this yeast ? Someone being quite content in life with this as a daily staple item.

                              I've ordered various yeasts - some from Italy, over time and each time I think - ah, maybe THIS will give me that rich flavor I'm looking for.

                              I've used this Farina "00" Caputa flour quite a bit and while it can create some interesting 'crispy' features to breads, pizza crusts, I wasn't expecting to get a real intense tough crust, with even a tough crumble - but to my surprise - I'm on attempt #3 now, each successful (#3 is cooling), I get a REAL strong crust and crumb, I'm in part concerned I might lose my dental bridge - heh, chewing it - but the flavor is what a hefewizen bock is to a clear macro beer, complex, fruity in some ways. My last attempt I let the bread proof much longer - I sampled a tiny bit and I've achieved what I was hoping, an real sour taste.

                              I can only say if you're asking in that you MAY try this strain ? (I'm sure many sourdough starters and wild yeasts would probably be as delicious, I just figured, okay, this is from a 200 year old bakery, must have something going for it!) I highly recommend doing so.

                              I could describe it also as such: After experiencing it ? I think my life would be incomplete without this ! heh - seriously.

                              I plan to take care of my starter for life, and I will probably use it daily, if not a couple times a week.

                              I've bought bread at bakeries, even out west when I lived in Santa Cruz, San Fran area, I always thought it was the dough that did it, now I realize SOMEHOW the yeast has a critical role in texture. I wasn't expecting this... Btu that's what I've observed.

                              I got my yeast from Sourdoughs international, Sourdoughs International: sourdough bread starter, sourdough bread recipes, bread machine recipes for about $15, it also came with another strain I'm just now activating, I've tried the Ischia Island strain. The booklet that comes with the starter yeast mentioned Forno Bravo and one fellow at Forno Bravo, I forget their name, they specialize in pizza's and wood fired ovens...

                              Now, next step would be a Forno Bravo oven, but i'm afraid that's out of my reach financially, but it's on my list if I can get my software engineering career back on track.

                              Giving time to planning and patience is all I'd recommend for success with this yeast. I will try it with other flours next, but I do like this "00" farina flour, doesn't require heavy kneading, no need for olive oil, very silky - I can see why top chefs seek it for pastries.

                              I do think between this yeast, flour and a Forno Bravo oven ! The path to happiness is very simple indeed.

                              Gee, I'm tempted to give away this bread I've made so far just because I think people would go "wow, that is what bread is all about"- but I do say- I bet I'd be content opening a bakery over software engineering at this point ! heh...

                              Bottom line - it was the yeast that made the difference for me in reaching what I can now say is - the best bread I've ever made, AND I actually didn't have to DO that much, it was just waiting and timing it- and making sure I had the temp high enough to get it nice and active. SOMEHOW it makes my Farina seem like it's high gluten -

                              I do 450 for about 5 minutes, then drop it to 400 for about 10 minutes, then I drop it to 335 for about 30 to 35 minutes. My thought is to get serious heat in fast for steam to create larger pockets. I finally see 1/2 inch pockets in my bread. I'm not sure if my theory tests true, but that's my typical approach, higher heat at first, then lower it.

                              I would write all day, so I better stop before I bore anyone !

                              Thanks for asking though.

                              One thing for sure, EVERYONE should have a good sourdough culture around I think, so simple to find so much happiness through such a basic process and product.

                              Tim Miltz

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