#21  
Old 05-12-2008, 10:54 AM
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Default Re: Starter and bread formulas/methods

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Originally Posted by gjbingham View Post
do you know what the effect of over-proofing dough prior to baking has on the final outcome of the bread?
Funny you should ask that... we went walking yesterday and stopped off for a picknick, with a fire and dampers... and I baked the left over dough when we got back. Bare with me, there is a point to this tale...

The dough (made with regular yeast which calls for one hour's rise) was in a hot rucksack for three hours, got punched down with a vengance when everyone helped themselves for the dampers and then rose again (in said hot rucksack) for another five hours before baking. Tasted ok for breakfast today though. Bit yeasty maybe, but the same texture I always get with regular yeast...

The morell () to this tale? Maybe that rise times are more flexible than you'd think? ...Or that I can't tell good bread from bad if it came and hit me over the head? Either way I'd be interested in the answer to your question, too...
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  #22  
Old 05-12-2008, 01:17 PM
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Default Re: Starter and bread formulas/methods

fredjana
Unfortunately I don't own Crust and Crumb so I can't look at the formula. Tough to call because you mention that the bread ripped but turned out a bit dense. Do you think you possibly overhandled the dough, and maybe that is why it was a bit more dense. Did you bake the loaves immediately or did you allow them to proof? Generally oven spring results from the combination of a hot hearth and high hydration and both of those result in the open-ness of the crumb. We have in the past had some ciabatta with a small rip in the crust but never something quite so large. If you can elaborate on the formula and your technique we might be of more assistance.
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Dutch

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Originally Posted by fredjana View Post
Too much spring?? Is there a way to regulate oven spring? Yesterday I made Ciabatta (Reinhart recipe from "Crust and Crumb"). Casa 90 was about 550 degrees on the hearth, I steamed it for 10 seconds or so. Two loaves sprung so much that one literally ripped the crumb apart so there is a hole running down the middle of the loaf. Taste was good, crumb looked okay, although a little dense. Sorry no pictures we ate it too fast. What determines the amount of oven spring?
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  #23  
Old 05-12-2008, 01:30 PM
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Default Re: Starter and bread formulas/methods

Overproofing to us means that the yeasts have consumed all of the food in their general vicinity and have gotten somewhat dormant. It makes the dough very sensitive to handing and hard to score. Generally should not see much oven spring because of the somewhat dormant yeasts. And will have a more yeasty flavor, although it is really not the yeast you taste but rather the alcohol that is present as a by product of the yeast activity. There really should not be a hard and fast way to determine all of the effects as yeasts react differently. Point being that we could use bread yeast to brew beer or make champagne but, since bread yeasts would not tolerate alcohol as well as brewer's yeast or champagne yeast it would not be as good as possible. I hope this kind of "Cliff's Notes" answer did a good job on the questions...I tend to be more empirical rather than technical.
All the best!
Dutch

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Originally Posted by gjbingham View Post
Also, do you know what the effect of over-proofing dough prior to baking has on the final outcome of the bread?
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Last edited by Dutchoven; 05-12-2008 at 01:33 PM.
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Old 05-12-2008, 03:00 PM
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Default Re: Starter and bread formulas/methods

Thanks Dutch. To be clear, the crust did not tear, I just had so much oven spring that the internal crumb separated top and bottom. I did proof for 3 hours or so and did not handle roughly. Is it possible to over-hydrate?
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Old 05-12-2008, 04:44 PM
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Default Re: Starter and bread formulas/methods

Ahhh! OK, misunderstood. I don't think it's possible to overhydrate unless the dough becomes batter
As for the separation in the crumb...did you kind of poke your fingers into the dough when you shaped them before you proofed them...you can then flip them before loading. We generally do it when we do ciabatta loaves but not the rolls. Perhaps that will help. I don't know if that has ever occurred with ours.
Hope this helps!
Dutch

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Originally Posted by fredjana View Post
Thanks Dutch. To be clear, the crust did not tear, I just had so much oven spring that the internal crumb separated top and bottom. I did proof for 3 hours or so and did not handle roughly. Is it possible to over-hydrate?
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Old 05-12-2008, 05:11 PM
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Default Re: Starter and bread formulas/methods

I'm curious to see the remainder of this conversation, but I want to report back on some of the earlier suggestions in this thread too!

I tried a couple of things with my starter. First off, on someone's (George, maybe?) suggestion, I tried expanding the starter a couple of days ahead of time so it would be good and ripe when I made the dough. This didn't affect sourness, but it did give a very nice well-developed flavor.

I also split the starter as CJim suggested, and started feeding one version with half organic rye flour and half KA all-purpose. This definitely gives a nice rich flavor, but so far it hasn't made it any more sour. This after a couple of weeks, including daily feedings the first several days.

So both of these suggestions made my bread better, but neither has made it more sour. I know there's a lot of luck, superstition, and randomness involved here too, so maybe I'll never get sour from my home-made starter.

(I remember my initial half rye half white starter smelled really sour at first, but that subsided in a few days and never appeared in the bread.)

Ed
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  #27  
Old 05-12-2008, 09:49 PM
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Default Re: Starter and bread formulas/methods

Thanks Dutch! Good answer.

Ed - I fed my wild yeast starter with rye and it definitely improved the sourness. While I like rye breads, I still prefer a less chewy texture. I'm back to feeding with regular bread flour. I'm pretty much monkeying around anyway. I've never loved sourdough that much. I figured that considering the amount of ink spilled on these breads, I must be missing something.
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  #28  
Old 05-13-2008, 05:26 AM
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Default Re: Starter and bread formulas/methods

You don't have to if you don't want to George. Nothing bad will happen... of course no one will answer any of you posts anymore, and you oven will be dimantled, but apart from that...

I never liked sourdough either, becuse its... well, not to put too fine a point on it... sour. But this stuff is so good, I'm finding it hard to like any other kind of bread anymore! Like those people who give up smoking and then become militant non-smokers....

Dutch, thank you for your answers. Its so nice to know you'll be able to explain what's happening, because even after reading several bread books there are plenty of questions left.
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Old 05-13-2008, 05:37 AM
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Default Re: Starter and bread formulas/methods

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Originally Posted by Ed_ View Post
I tried a couple of things with my starter. First off, on someone's (George, maybe?) suggestion, I tried expanding the starter a couple of days ahead of time so it would be good and ripe when I made the dough. This didn't affect sourness, but it did give a very nice well-developed flavor.

I also split the starter as CJim suggested, and started feeding one version with half organic rye flour and half KA all-purpose. This definitely gives a nice rich flavor, but so far it hasn't made it any more sour. This after a couple of weeks, including daily feedings the first several days.

So both of these suggestions made my bread better, but neither has made it more sour. I know there's a lot of luck, superstition, and randomness involved here too, so maybe I'll never get sour from my home-made starter.

Ed
Ed
In much the stuff I've read about wild yeast breads is that not necessarily all of them are sour. You can manipulate them to be more sour by using different flours and different levels of hydration in the starter, exposure to different temperatures during fermentation(touchy because you don't want bad bacteria to get in). The flavor has a good bit to do with the environment and what yeasts and bacterias are present in yours. I am sure you will see some other threads speaking about purchasing wild yeast starters from exotic places like Egypt and such, 6-12 months later the owner finds that the bread tastes the same as the one made from a starter they started themselves.
Good luck on your quest!
Dutch
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  #30  
Old 05-14-2008, 05:57 AM
Ed_ Ed_ is offline
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Default Re: Starter and bread formulas/methods

Thanks for the encouraging responses.

I have to admit the quest for sourness comes more from curiosity than from a desire to make really sour bread. I'd like to understand better the variables that affect the flavor. I have to believe, though, that environment is far and away the major factor--no matter how I've neglected my poor starter in the past, it always makes good bread.

Honestly, I'm not sure how much more improvement I'll see until I get to baking in the WFO. On that front, I think we've given up on finding recycled bricks. We just need to get a final estimate of how many we'll need and then I can start posting build photos.

Ed
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