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Old 12-17-2011, 02:13 AM   #391
mr_magicfingers
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Hi folks, just found this thread.

I started baking bread a few months ago and think my loaves are starting to get somewhere now, so planning to branch out into some new types of bread. I've mainly been baking standard white loaves with the occasional wholemeal or rye. Last night I baked bagels for the first time, which came out well but not quite as 'puffed up' as I hoped. They looked good proving but boiling them they kind of contracted a bit, when they're supposed to puff up more. Still, they taste better than any shop bought bagel I've had except the ones from the famous 24hour bagel shop here in London.

So, bread and bagel pics.









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Old 12-17-2011, 09:08 AM   #392
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Those look good. Got a recipe to share?
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Old 12-18-2011, 05:58 AM   #393
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The recipe I used is this one, from the River Cottage Bread Book http://www.telegraph.co.uk/foodanddr...s.html?image=4

It's been suggested, over on thefreshloaf.com that I overproved the bagels,which is why the shrank a bit. The suggestion was to make the bagels then put them in the fridge overnight for a low prove and then boil/bake in the morning. Might try that next time. Also linked to another recipe by a couple of jewish bakers that you might like in a bagel discussion thread http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/627...ing-perfection
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Old 12-18-2011, 05:59 AM   #394
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Oh, and I had a go at brioche too yesterday, which came out quite well. I think the oven was a bit too hot, but I was also using my new fireclay baking stone, so may have to watch how that affects the baking.

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Old 12-18-2011, 06:19 AM   #395
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That brioche looks great, but no way I can eat something like that. Far too rich and way off the diet.
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Old 12-18-2011, 09:13 AM   #396
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That brioche looks great, but no way I can eat something like that. Far too rich and way off the diet.
Then I'll have to take you off the invite list for the brioche french toast breakfast. Darn, was looking forward to meeting you.

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Old 12-18-2011, 08:43 PM   #397
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Then I'll have to take you off the invite list for the brioche french toast breakfast. Darn, was looking forward to meeting you.

I was thinking more along the lines of bread pudding.
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Old 12-18-2011, 10:52 PM   #398
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So, anyone here start their own sourdough starter? If so, care to share suggestions/instructions?
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Old 12-19-2011, 07:56 AM   #399
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So, anyone here start their own sourdough starter? If so, care to share suggestions/instructions?
I have had issues here in Steamboat getting it started in the winter, but it's a piece of cake in the summer. I think there aren't too many active yeasties around when it's -20. So good luck this winter, depending on where you are in Ak.

Stone ground wheat should give you a better chance, as does rye flour. Maybe try 25% each stone ground and rye flour, with unbleached white flour. Use un-chlorinated water, mix a slurry, put it in a clean jar, and cover with something to keep the critters out, but let the native yeasts in, like cheesecloth.

It may get funky for a while. If the water on top turns blackish, pour it off, mix in a bit of fresh water and keep at it. Eventually you will get some active yeasts growing, and the "dough" will get foamy. It will take a while to balance out the lactobacillus bacteria with the yeast, so it may seem to be straight sour with no yeast initially. Keep at it, and eventually the yeasts will build up to where they will keep the lactbacillus in check.

Then you can feed it every few days, stir in the water first, then add the appropriate amount of flour to keep it at the % mixture you want. After it gets going you can use regular city water without killing it. You can also just use regular flour if you want to after it gets going. If you are going away, you should be able to stick it covered in the fridge for a month without feeding it.

Don't ever put it in a sealed jar, because it will build up pressure.

If you buy a starter from somewhere and get it going that way, within a few weeks the local yeasts will have replaced the "exotic" yeasts that you bought, so if you buy a "San Francisco" starter thinking you will have something different, it will end up being your own local starter very soon.
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Old 12-19-2011, 10:02 AM   #400
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Originally Posted by Tellydoug View Post
I have had issues here in Steamboat getting it started in the winter, but it's a piece of cake in the summer. I think there aren't too many active yeasties around when it's -20. So good luck this winter, depending on where you are in Ak.

Stone ground wheat should give you a better chance, as does rye flour. Maybe try 25% each stone ground and rye flour, with unbleached white flour. Use un-chlorinated water, mix a slurry, put it in a clean jar, and cover with something to keep the critters out, but let the native yeasts in, like cheesecloth.

It may get funky for a while. If the water on top turns blackish, pour it off, mix in a bit of fresh water and keep at it. Eventually you will get some active yeasts growing, and the "dough" will get foamy. It will take a while to balance out the lactobacillus bacteria with the yeast, so it may seem to be straight sour with no yeast initially. Keep at it, and eventually the yeasts will build up to where they will keep the lactbacillus in check.

Then you can feed it every few days, stir in the water first, then add the appropriate amount of flour to keep it at the % mixture you want. After it gets going you can use regular city water without killing it. You can also just use regular flour if you want to after it gets going. If you are going away, you should be able to stick it covered in the fridge for a month without feeding it.

Don't ever put it in a sealed jar, because it will build up pressure.

If you buy a starter from somewhere and get it going that way, within a few weeks the local yeasts will have replaced the "exotic" yeasts that you bought, so if you buy a "San Francisco" starter thinking you will have something different, it will end up being your own local starter very soon.
Lots of good info... Much appreciated!

I did try starting one a few days ago with whole wheat flour and filtered water, and I am getting a few bubbles, so I am assuming that something is happening. I am in Anchorage, and the temps have been unseasonably warm the past few weeks. I have set the starter outside when it has been about 40, so I am guessing that due to the lower temps/being winter/ etc., it will take a bit longer to get going than in the summer.

I think I will pick up some rye and stoneground wheat flour as well, and see what I come up with. Why not increase the odds!

Thanks!
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Old 12-19-2011, 02:49 PM   #401
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starter strangeness

All

over the last week or so, my sourdough starter has developed a strong scent -- very alcoholish, if you will -- no pink coloration (which I understand is a sign that it should be 86ed), and the last loaf I baked looked, acted, tasted fine, but this oder is new, and I figured I'd ask the smart people (that'd be you guys). . . .

Is this a sign that I need to do something different?

thanks!
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Old 12-19-2011, 04:18 PM   #402
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All

over the last week or so, my sourdough starter has developed a strong scent -- very alcoholish, if you will -- no pink coloration (which I understand is a sign that it should be 86ed), and the last loaf I baked looked, acted, tasted fine, but this oder is new, and I figured I'd ask the smart people (that'd be you guys). . . .

Is this a sign that I need to do something different?

thanks!
That sounds fine, "beery" is a good smell as long as it grows when you add some water and flour. It just might need freshened up a bit? You could add some water and flour, in whatever percent you maintain, to double the size of the starter. You may need to dump out some of it so it will continue to fit in the jar. Maybe it would smell more "normal" for you with a changeover, but if it smells like rich fermenting beer than that's probably just fine the way it is, as long as it works.

You may have some other, extra, local wild yeast that has taken up residence in your starter. It may be a seasonal thing. If it's objectionable you might try adding a touch of commercial yeast to your brew...
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Old 12-19-2011, 05:17 PM   #403
NICO
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Originally Posted by pilot View Post
I was thinking more along the lines of bread pudding.
Sorry. I do stuff my Brioche French Toast with fresh mad ricotta and blueberry or strawberry compote. Does that make it more palatable?


ETA: On this year's Christmas menu is a panatone bread pudding. Thought I'd give Giada's recipe a whirl.
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Old 12-19-2011, 05:21 PM   #404
NICO
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Originally Posted by Tellydoug View Post
I have had issues here in Steamboat getting it started in the winter, but it's a piece of cake in the summer. I think there aren't too many active yeasties around when it's -20. So good luck this winter, depending on where you are in Ak.

Stone ground wheat should give you a better chance, as does rye flour. Maybe try 25% each stone ground and rye flour, with unbleached white flour. Use un-chlorinated water, mix a slurry, put it in a clean jar, and cover with something to keep the critters out, but let the native yeasts in, like cheesecloth.

It may get funky for a while. If the water on top turns blackish, pour it off, mix in a bit of fresh water and keep at it. Eventually you will get some active yeasts growing, and the "dough" will get foamy. It will take a while to balance out the lactobacillus bacteria with the yeast, so it may seem to be straight sour with no yeast initially. Keep at it, and eventually the yeasts will build up to where they will keep the lactbacillus in check.

Then you can feed it every few days, stir in the water first, then add the appropriate amount of flour to keep it at the % mixture you want. After it gets going you can use regular city water without killing it. You can also just use regular flour if you want to after it gets going. If you are going away, you should be able to stick it covered in the fridge for a month without feeding it.

Don't ever put it in a sealed jar, because it will build up pressure.

If you buy a starter from somewhere and get it going that way, within a few weeks the local yeasts will have replaced the "exotic" yeasts that you bought, so if you buy a "San Francisco" starter thinking you will have something different, it will end up being your own local starter very soon.
Ya ever float a raisin or two in the mix to give it a yeasty jump start? Might be cheatin', but I've gone this route during times of impatience.
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Old 12-19-2011, 08:17 PM   #405
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There was nothing un-palatable in the first place. I still have ten or fifteen pounds to lose, though, so I need to avoid the good stuff.


Quote:
Originally Posted by NICO View Post
Sorry. I do stuff my Brioche French Toast with fresh mad ricotta and blueberry or strawberry compote. Does that make it more palatable?


ETA: On this year's Christmas menu is a panatone bread pudding. Thought I'd give Giada's recipe a whirl.
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