I am not getting that sour taste I once got. That let me to review this page. I found a very interesting page about sourdough starter in http://yumarama.com/968/starter-from-scratch-intro/ It says among others:
“A simple flour and water paste can be made into a sourdough starter but offers a good environment for much more than the specific strain of yeast and bacteria we desire; these other organisms can impede the growth of our “friendly” critters and make the actual development of a viable starter take much longer than it needs be….(ed. Debra’s) formula introduces an acid, in the form of pineapple juice, which immediately lowers the pH of the flour paste to levels appreciated by the yeast and lactobacilli, “
The article links among others to
- here (part 1) and here (part 2).
- Debra Wink’s post over on TheFreshLoaf com .
- Bread Bakers’s Apprentice Challenge
I share here how you can make a starter that has good lactobacillus and yeast cell culture. The lactobacilli create the acidity of the bread while the yeast cells produce CO2 and make the bread grow. I use the description of a Danish cook, Walter Enoksson that requires you to have ecological apples.
Ceating the starter
www.healthline.com has a link to a Youtube explaining how to make a starter. I learned however to make a starter from Manfred Enoksson.
Manfred Enoksson shows in this video how to do a starter with an apple. He talks Swedish so I wrote a transcript below so you can get a fairly good translation of his words. Read the transcript with the screenshots first of all and then look at the video
Transcript with instructions
- glass can
- a grater
- one apple
- a fork
- water of course
- and “Vetemjöl special” (that is a high-quality flour)
- “Dinkel sikt” (that is a Spelt flour)
- you can grate the apple on the fine part or at the medium grate
You can do a starter only with water and flour only but the sugar in apple helps to get a better bacteria culture.
I would add that you get a good starter in a few days instead of weeks. He adds the grated apple to a glass can and adds little water
1:20 We take some water
1:30 and we add flour
You can add only flour but I like to add Spelt with fibers
Different flour are different in water-absorbing so wait to see how the flour swell.
I like this consistency:
It looks for me like a pancake mix.
2:39 And then you put the can with the mix where it is about 24 degrees over the refrigerator or the oven or in another place in your home.
after 2-4 days you have lactobacilli Acetobacter aceti appeared and yeast cells.
3:04 After 2 days it may look like this
Checking the right culture
It is bubbly (), porous and thready
3:19 And most important of all, you must taste the starter
As it must have acidity.
Checking the left culture
Here we see that it is less bubbly and threaded.
3:33 And when I taste it I smell that it is much much soarer.
Maybe it is that this was ready a few hours before
3:57 Put the starter in a glass jar or plastic jar approved for food
and put it in the refrigerator
How to keep the starter (3:48)
4:05 After 24 hours it moves off to a conserving phase where it is not so thready.
You must add flour every week.
4:20 Add 1/10 flour of the starter volume and add some water and mix
Then put it back in the refrigerator.
Be careful adding the same flour as you used when you created it.
I have a starter that I took with me from Sweden in October 1018.
I had it once forgotten and starving for 20 days but it still works fine.
If you can not find ecological apples like here in Italy, how do you do?
Someone in Italy suggested me to
- try dries grapes
- or do the starter with only water and flour.
I have not tried that yet aw I suspect that these are treated and do not have yeast cells.
The alternative is to find someone who has a good culture. I found that the cook at Kasbah in Lipari has one. He made it with only water and flour but he says it takes weeks to get it good. His bread was super and also acid.
Italians do not like acid bread. So they create a natural yeast culture they call lievito madre” or like this cook, “lievito naturale”. They use it make a bread that is not acid.
Click here to look in youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F2wx1QTQiZk