Author Topic: Newbie to Natural Starters  (Read 20443 times)

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Infoodel

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Re: Newbie to Natural Starters
« Reply #40 on: January 17, 2010, 02:04:39 PM »
Norma427,
I see the  starters are keeping you very busy, how do they smell? Do they have a special aroma? Don't be in a rush to try them out,  according to what Marco said it takes about a month for the starter to be ready.

With all due respect to Marco, you can use you starter anytime it stabilises (5 or 6 days for a rye starter, longer if you then transition to white). Flavours and the balance of organisms are different in an older, more mature starter to say a fresh one. However both will still raise and make great bread/pizza.
Taking Marco's advice in a different context - since it is certainly true that your starter character will change over the first month or so.  For a commercial pizzeria to rely on a starter to raise large quantities of dough on a fairly tight schedule, it makes sense to be absolutely sure your starter is stable before opening.

Toby



Offline norma427

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Re: Newbie to Natural Starters
« Reply #41 on: January 17, 2010, 03:09:21 PM »
With all due respect to Marco, you can use you starter anytime it stabilises (5 or 6 days for a rye starter, longer if you then transition to white). Flavours and the balance of organisms are different in an older, more mature starter to say a fresh one. However both will still raise and make great bread/pizza.
Taking Marco's advice in a different context - since it is certainly true that your starter character will change over the first month or so.  For a commercial pizzeria to rely on a starter to raise large quantities of dough on a fairly tight schedule, it makes sense to be absolutely sure your starter is stable before opening.

Toby




Toby,

Thank you for the additional information.  :)  I can see how an older starter will change over time.  Hopefully I will be able to keep these starters and experiment.  If not, I can start over again with all the help you have given me.  :)

Thanks,

Norma

ninapizza23,

I wanted to ask you where you found the reference to what Marco said about using a starter that is more mature.  Did you find it here on the forum or did you find it elsewhere? 
I also wanted to ask you one more question.  Do you have experience with starters, and if you do, what kind of starters have you tried in the past or present?  I am interested in the different aromas like you talk about and if you can tell by smelling the starter, how well it would do when making pizza, foccacia, or bread.

Thanks,  :)

Norma

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Offline ninapizza23

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Re: Newbie to Natural Starters
« Reply #42 on: January 17, 2010, 07:21:22 PM »
Norma427,
I read Marco's remark on the starter in another forum but he has not been active for a while.                   I tried a starter that was brought to me 2 years ago from Venice  when the guest that I have came for the first time in NY. Since I did not have a woodburning oven I did not really keep up with it. If I get to finish my oven by the time he comes back I will try again. I do not really have lots of experience with these starters but if a member does not come up with a sample I will eventually try to make my own or buy it from KA.
In the old days, my mother used to make bread without yeast but she used leavened dough from the day before which I heard that Bianco in Phoenix uses also. Does yours smell acid still?

Infoodel

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Re: Newbie to Natural Starters
« Reply #43 on: January 17, 2010, 07:36:30 PM »
Norma,
One thing I'm sure you'll discover when you start making dough with starter is how important hydration, temperature, feed ratio etc. are in the flavours and aromas that you will get from your starters.
There are lots of 'rules of thumb' but it's kind of hard to summarize it all with universal rules which apply equally to all starters. It's best to observe each one closely (keep notes if you like) and learn how it behaves.
You should notice as you transition the rye to white (wheat) how the spicy/winey aroma from the rye starter changes to a ?grassier?(imo) aroma. You'll also start to notice how the smell changes over the course of one feeding cycle (different acidic notes followed by a yeasty smell that ultimately leads to an alcoholic whiff when over-fermented)

Regarding Marco,  I hope I didn't come across as overly dismissive about his advice. However I do think the context of his comments are important. He uses 'heritage' cultures (crisceto is his particular favourite?) and (if I recall correctly) does not recommend 'DIY' starters. To this end he has devoted much time in researching how to use those specific cultures for making pizza napoletana as authentically as possible. Due to the variable nature of starter cultures (different balances and species of bacteria and yeasts), I guess part of the rationale in using specific cultures has to do with limiting your parameters to ensure results which can translate from one pizzeria to the next.

Cheers,

Toby

« Last Edit: January 17, 2010, 07:53:04 PM by Infoodel »

Offline BurntFingers

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Re: Newbie to Natural Starters
« Reply #44 on: January 17, 2010, 07:44:56 PM »
I have two packets of Lalvin Bourgovin RC 212, yeast that I use in wine making.   Each is 5g. net.  Saccharomyces Cerevisiae B.I.V.B.  What do you think would happen if I tried to use it instead of IDY  or to make a starter?

Offline norma427

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Re: Newbie to Natural Starters
« Reply #45 on: January 17, 2010, 08:10:13 PM »
ninapizza23,

Thank you for answering my questions.  I donít think you need a wood burning oven to try to use natural starters.  That is my opinion.  I donít have a wood fired oven.  I only have a standard oven here at home and a Bakerís Pride double deck GP-61 at market, that is propane gas.  I am just going to experiment with the starters here at home to get a feel for what kind of taste I can achieve in pizzas and bread making.  If eventually I find out more about starters and how they behave, then I will try some at market. 
It isnít really that hard to make your own starter.  If you follow the directions Toby gave me or click on one of the links Mike gave me, you can get started very easily.  If you make a mistake, you can just start all over, again.  It is only the cost of flour and water.  I used triple filtered water.  The directions I used are right here, if you want to try your own. 
The leavened dough sounds interesting, but I have to take one step at a time.  I am fairly new to making pizzas so I have to learn.

Thanks,
Norma

Toby,

I will take your advise and take notes.  I will have to learn all what you are teaching me about hydration, feed ratios, and flavors and aromas.  Although each of my starters have a different smell, I will learn from all of this.  I also read about Marco and his heritage cultures and crisceto maybe being his favorite.  I guess all this was passed down from generation to generation.  And yes, I do believe he spent a lot of time researching all of this.

Thank you for taking the time to explain more about starters,

Norma

BurntFingers,

I will let someone more familiar with starters answer your questions.  That sounds like an interesting idea, though.

Thanks,
Norma
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Offline ninapizza23

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Re: Newbie to Natural Starters
« Reply #46 on: January 17, 2010, 09:21:44 PM »
Norma427,
I know I don't need a wood burning oven to try the starter but I like the flavor from the wood. I am hooked on Bianco's pizza and sandwiches done in their wood burning oven to the point that I don't mind waiting 3 1/2 hrs to get in. My favorite is biancoverde. Norma could you please tell me how you search by image? Do you use Tin-eye? Norma,
have you ever noticed the hydroponic unit I built to grow basil without soil?
« Last Edit: January 17, 2010, 09:30:40 PM by ninapizza23 »

Offline norma427

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Re: Newbie to Natural Starters
« Reply #47 on: January 17, 2010, 09:32:40 PM »
ninapizza23,

Wow, that is a long wait.  :o  Don't think I would wait that long.  Since I haven't ever experienced Bianco's pizza, I had no idea what it tastes like.  When I go to New York, I have just tried different NY Style pizzas, never in a wood fired oven.  The next time I go to New York, I am going to experience a pizza made in a wood fired oven.
I plan on coming to New York the end of February if the weather isn't bad and if time will allow me to. 
I search by Google.  Just go to Google and type in images, then type in what you are looking for.  It will come up with all the images of what you are looking for. 
I see your avatar, but I didn't realize what it was.  How to you grow your basil? ( have you ever noticed the hydroponic unit I built to grow basil without soil?)
I buy fresh basil each week at our local grocery store.  It is live with roots and grown all natural..aquaponically grown pesticide free.  For two bunches it is only 1.59.

Norma
« Last Edit: January 17, 2010, 09:37:30 PM by norma427 »
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Offline ninapizza23

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Re: Newbie to Natural Starters
« Reply #48 on: January 17, 2010, 10:00:15 PM »
Norma427,
thanks for the info. Let me warn you Not all pizzas cooked in a wood burning oven are great like Bianco's. There are a few ovens in NY and Long Island that are used like fiireplaces, not enough fire and the dough is not hydrated properly . I challenged a pizzeria in Long Island where when I saw the fire I told the pizzaiolo it was about 400 degrees, so I put my arm in the oven to prove to him. The owner told me that if the temp was 800 that the pizza would burn, I told him he does not know how to use the oven or make the proper dough, they use it to fool customers.  I went to a pizzeria in Manhattan where they have authentic neapolitan oven and dough, but let me tell you I couldn't eat a slice, it was very gummy for my taste. I waisted $42 with trip. Did you notice my hydroponic unit where you can grow basil and other herbs with just water and nutrients, not soil.  The basil grows like a giant! Last year I tried lettuce leaf basil. You can make the unit you see with 1" pvc pipe and water bottles upside down. You,also need a small circulating pump, a timer and a container with water, of course nutrients, when you keep the right ph and TDS you will have lots of basil and fresh. When I used to buy basiil it came with sand!
« Last Edit: January 17, 2010, 10:11:54 PM by ninapizza23 »

Offline norma427

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Re: Newbie to Natural Starters
« Reply #49 on: January 17, 2010, 10:11:10 PM »
ninapizza23,

Your welcome..I know by the reviews that not all wood fire oven are the same or the pizzas produced in them.  I can also see how places can have a bad night and another day their pizzas can be great.  I have read the reviews and other people on this forum have also commented that the quality of the pizza can vary from time to time. 
Wow 42.00 for a pizza is way too much for me. 
As I said in my last post, I did notice your avatar, but didn't really think about it.  Your hydroponic unit sounds interesting.  I guess that is how they grow the basil I buy. I really don't know.

Norma

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Re: Newbie to Natural Starters
« Reply #50 on: January 18, 2010, 12:25:20 AM »




ninapizza23,

Is the article you were referring to?  It was on forum.egullet, but I couldnít get the link to work, but copied and pasted what was said.  I think it is reply #38 that Pizza Napoletana talks about Crisceto and how it is made.  Posted Sept. 08, 2006 Pizza Napoletana says: tiny bit of Crisceto (wild yeast), medium strenght flour, water, sea salt. Mixed in a special way, high hydration dough, long fermentation/maturation at room temperature and finaly but not least, baked in the very special Neapolitan Pizza Oven.

If you look though these posts, you will be able to see it.

Norma

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#31 User is offline   Pizza Napoletana

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Posted 07 September 2006 - 03:33 PM
about the Naples at table recipe:

That is the traditional recipe, fried, candied fruit etc...

my preparation is quite differenet and you end up with a choccolate ball, like a profitterole....

Great!

About the pizza: I grow my own "piennolo" variety tomatoes, and when I have these I could put them on pizza. But rather then normal tomatoes (the round supermarket variety) or salads tomatoes, I better use good canned San Marzano.

Ciao

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#32 User is offline   mrbigjas

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Posted 07 September 2006 - 08:58 PM

Pontormo, on Sep 7 2006, 01:17 PM, said:

mrbigjas, on Sep 7 2006, 01:07 PM, said:
oh man, now i'm inspired--i may have to make a little pilgrimage to two amy's this month.  it's almost worth putting up with the wait and the screaming kids and whatnot to get some of that pie.  i wish we had a place that good in philadelphia...
View Post

Well, now you have one yourself :laugh: . Yes, 2 Amy's is the reason I had to qualify what I said about Paradiso.

Really, not that good in Philly? Too "Americanized"?
View Post



here in philadelphia, we do have a few places that have wood ovens, but they don't hit that peak of genius that 2 amys does.

tacconelli's is famous, but they have an oil fired oven. rembrandt's has a wood oven but overtops their pies. mama palma's has a wood oven but is missing ... something. not sure what. either way, they don't reach that pinnacle that two amy's does when they're on (my last couple visits involved outstanding pizzas, but not the transcendent moment that my first visit did).

but anyway, i'll see what i can recreate at home this month.

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#33 User is offline   Pizza Napoletana

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Posted 08 September 2006 - 01:39 AM
View Post

[/quote]


here in philadelphia, we do have a few places that have wood ovens, but they don't hit that peak of genius that 2 amys does.

View Post

[/quote]

Why don't you organise a trip to Pittsburgh from Philly?

I believ at Il Pizzaiolo you will find one of the very best pizza in america...

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#34 User is offline   Andrew Fenton

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Posted 08 September 2006 - 04:23 AM
Okay, maybe this should go into the "absurdly simple cooking questions", but what's the importance of a wood-fired oven? I mean, heat is heat, right?

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#35 User is offline   mrbigjas

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Posted 08 September 2006 - 04:50 AM
the impression i've always gotten is that a wood fired oven can maintain a higher temperature than a regular oven. those gas ovens that are the norm top out around 600 or something; wood regularly reaches 900. and then there are the dudes who throw a shovel of sawdust on the fire when the pizzas go in to get the super blast of smoky heat...

anyway, i don't know; i'm not one of the super purist types. i've made pretty good pizza here at home--not like that stuff, but good enough for government work, as they say.

PN, with a three week old baby here i have to admit that we're not up for the six hour drive to pittsburgh... but the in-laws do live in DC.

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#36 User is offline   NYC Mike

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Posted 08 September 2006 - 04:58 AM

Pizza Napoletana, on Sep 8 2006, 04:39 AM, said:
View Post



here in philadelphia, we do have a few places that have wood ovens, but they don't hit that peak of genius that 2 amys does.

View Post

[/quote]

Why don't you organise a trip to Pittsburgh from Philly?

I believ at Il Pizzaiolo you will find one of the very best pizza in america...
View Post

[/quote]

This I can agree with. I travel alot for work and I always try to find a great pizza for my dinner after I land from the airport. In Pitt. I had pizza from there (airport cabbies are hit and miss :raz: )and it was once of the best I've ever had.


The only thing I am not loving about the whole wood fire oven movement in pizza is that many places severly burn or scar the bottoms too much so the char overwhelms the rest of the pie. Perhaps they aren't cleaning their oven properly, I don't know.

This post has been edited by NYC Mike: 08 September 2006 - 05:01 AM
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#37 User is offline   danlepard

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Posted 08 September 2006 - 06:40 AM

Pizza Napoletana, on Sep 7 2006, 01:43 PM, said:
Posted Image


What I would give to have one pizza of this calibre here in the UK. Our pizzas are uniformly awful, nothing to match even the middle-rated ones in New York. Here they're all tough, doughy, heavy crusted saucers over-topped and lacking that blisteringly scorched edge.

Pizza Napoletana, that is a mighty fine crust. Is the dough quite mature and/or soft when you bake it?

Dan

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#38 User is offline   Pizza Napoletana

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Posted 08 September 2006 - 07:18 AM

danlepard, on Sep 8 2006, 06:40 AM, said:

Pizza Napoletana, on Sep 7 2006, 01:43 PM, said:
Posted Image


What I would give to have one pizza of this calibre here in the UK. Our pizzas are uniformly awful, nothing to match even the middle-rated ones in New York. Here they're all tough, doughy, heavy crusted saucers over-topped and lacking that blisteringly scorched edge.

Pizza Napoletana, that is a mighty fine crust. Is the dough quite mature and/or soft when you bake it?

Dan
View Post



Hi Dan,

we have talked in the past regarding some italian starters.... I am based in UK

Anyway, After 6 years studying and researching this subject, I am confident to have re-created the Authentic Pizza Napoletana has it was made in 1700s Naples...

tiny bit of Crisceto (wild yeast), medium strenght flour, water, sea salt. Mixed in a special way, high hydration dough, long fermentation/maturation at room temperature and finaly but not least, baked in the very special Neapolitan Pizza Oven.

It is a dough that very difficult to control and handle, and that is the reasons that even in Naples the tradition is disappearing.. Out of almost 3000 pizzeria in the city, only an handful still make it properly....

By the way, try Donna Margherita in London for a Neapolitan pizza (they do not use the Crisceto and have a more modern tradition, but they do a fine job).

Ciao

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#39 User is offline   Pizza Napoletana

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Posted 08 September 2006 - 07:25 AM

NYC Mike, on Sep 8 2006, 04:58 AM, said:
The only thing I am not loving about the whole wood fire oven movement in pizza is that many places severly burn or scar the bottoms too much so the char overwhelms the rest of the pie.  Perhaps they aren't cleaning their oven properly, I don't know.
View Post



Mostly is due to poorly built or mediocre ovens... They do not cook in an even way and therefore the bottom get burned while trying to cook the top.... To cook a proper Pizza Napoletana there is not any alternative to an authentic Forno Napoletano (www.forno-napoletano.it). Many people think that with any wood oven and with an italian flour and other ingredient they can serve a Pizza Napoletana... WRONG!!

On my consultancy service, I start with getting the client an authentic oven and a proper mixer (not a spiral or a planetary so often found in US/UK)...


At times however could be due to the guy cooking the pizza. In Naples usually is a job by itself. The "pizzaiolo" make the dough, form the disc and put the topping and the "fornaio" cook the pizza and manage the fire...
            
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Posted 11 September 2006 - 12:58 AM

Shaya, on Sep 10 2006, 04:43 PM, said:
 
...A16 in San Francisco.  Would you say this is a great example of their pizza?
View Post


Thanks for the compliments.

However, for the reports and pictures I have seen, plus an inside info on their dough production and management, I have to say that A16's pizza should be a BAD example of an authentic Pizza Napoletana and thus of mine.

No offence , but you would have to go in Naples or at least at Il Pizzaiolo in Pittsburgh-PA to see a great example. Nowadays, It is very diffucult to find an outstanding Pizza even in the mother city, where out of 3000 odds pizzerie only few make an authentic traditional product.

Ciao
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Offline Matthew

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Re: Newbie to Natural Starters
« Reply #51 on: January 18, 2010, 05:46:17 AM »
the dough is not hydrated properly .

How do you know this?  In your opinion, what is the proper hydration for Neapolitan pizza dough?

I went to a pizzeria in Manhattan where they have authentic neapolitan oven and dough, but let me tell you I couldn't eat a slice, it was very gummy for my taste. I waisted $42 with trip.


I'm going to guess that you are talking about Keste.  The "gum layer" that you are referring to is a very common characteristic of traditional neapolitan pizza that is caused buy a super hot oven (1000 deg) & sub minute cook time.  At those temperatures, your pizza will be charcoal by the time you cook the gum layer out.  It has nothing to do with the dough, the only way of eliminating the gum layer is to work with a lower the oven temperature. 

Matt

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Re: Newbie to Natural Starters
« Reply #52 on: January 18, 2010, 05:57:41 AM »


talks about Crisceto and how it is made.  Posted Sept. 08, 2006 Pizza Napoletana says: tiny bit of Crisceto (wild yeast), medium strenght flour, water, sea salt. Mixed in a special way, high hydration dough, long fermentation/maturation at room temperature and finaly but not least, baked in the very special Neapolitan Pizza Oven.


Hi Norma, ;D
Marco's reference above is on how the pizza dough is made.  The crisceto that Marco is referring to is likely Ischia.

Matt

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Re: Newbie to Natural Starters
« Reply #53 on: January 18, 2010, 06:15:37 AM »
Hi Norma, ;D
Marco's reference above is on how the pizza dough is made.  The crisceto that Marco is referring to is likely Ischia.

Matt

Matt,

Thanks for telling me that Marco is probably referring to is likely Ischia.  That is a big help!  ;D

Norma
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Offline Matthew

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Re: Newbie to Natural Starters
« Reply #54 on: January 18, 2010, 06:22:34 AM »
Matt,

Thanks for telling me that Marco is probably referring to is likely Ischia.  That is a big help!  ;D

Norma

No problem Norma, just a guess.  If it's not Ischia it's definitely Camoldoli.  My guess was Ischia because I'm pretty sure that it's his preference over the two.

Matt

Offline BurntFingers

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Re: Newbie to Natural Starters
« Reply #55 on: January 18, 2010, 08:49:16 AM »
ninapizza23,

Wow, that is a long wait.  :o  Don't think I would wait that long.  Since I haven't ever experienced Bianco's pizza, I had no idea what it tastes like.  When I go to New York, I have just tried different NY Style pizzas, never in a wood fired oven.  The next time I go to New York, I am going to experience a pizza made in a wood fired oven.
I plan on coming to New York the end of February if the weather isn't bad and if time will allow me to. 
I search by Google.  Just go to Google and type in images, then type in what you are looking for.  It will come up with all the images of what you are looking for. 
I see your avatar, but I didn't realize what it was.  How to you grow your basil? ( have you ever noticed the hydroponic unit I built to grow basil without soil?)
I buy fresh basil each week at our local grocery store.  It is live with roots and grown all natural..aquaponically grown pesticide free.  For two bunches it is only 1.59.

Norma
If you go to NY, go across the river to A Mano in North Jersey.  It is the closest you will get in the western hemisphere to Naples pizza.
http://amanopizza.com/

Infoodel

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Re: Newbie to Natural Starters
« Reply #56 on: January 18, 2010, 08:50:55 AM »
Sorry Burntfingers - didn't mean to ignore your earlier question.
In answer to your question re: wine yeast - It's not a natural starter or culture per se - since it's a single species of yeast which is a different strain of the ?same species? as baker's yeast (if not the same then certainly related).
I've heard varying reports on using brewer's or wine yeast in bread making but really the only way to tell - is to give it a shot! Don't expect sourdough flavours though. It will be very much like your IDY except perhaps slower acting.

Cheers,
Toby


« Last Edit: January 18, 2010, 09:10:24 AM by Infoodel »

Offline norma427

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Re: Newbie to Natural Starters
« Reply #57 on: January 18, 2010, 09:20:52 AM »
If you go to NY, go across the river to A Mano in North Jersey.  It is the closest you will get in the western hemisphere to Naples pizza.
http://amanopizza.com/

BurntFingers ,

Thanks for the heads up and if I get to that area of New Jersey, I surely will stop there and try some great wood fired pizza,  (Naples pizza).   :)

Thanks,

Norma
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Offline ninapizza23

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Re: Newbie to Natural Starters
« Reply #58 on: January 18, 2010, 10:54:39 PM »
Matthew,
FYI      If the dough is "'gummy" something went wrong in the mixer, I will not tell you what the correct term is but it is not a characteristic of impasto napolitano.  Call the experts and verify with them if you don't believe me.     Crisceto is not referred to Ischia or Camaldoli either.  I am still waiting for your reply to my PM.
« Last Edit: January 18, 2010, 11:38:15 PM by ninapizza23 »

Offline ninapizza23

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Re: Newbie to Natural Starters
« Reply #59 on: January 18, 2010, 11:43:22 PM »
Burntfingers,
here is a bigger picture of the unit to grow basil.


 

pizzapan