Author Topic: Best Time to Use Starter?  (Read 1204 times)

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Offline StrayBullet

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Best Time to Use Starter?
« on: October 20, 2010, 09:04:45 PM »
What's the best "time" to use an active starter for a pizza dough recipe?  I've got 2 of 'em currently going, 1 on a 12-hour feed and the other on a daily feed.

I want to use a 5% by total flour and do an overnight room temp bulk rise.  Should I be aiming to use the Starter when it's nice and active, during expansion?  Middle of feeding schedule?  End of feeding schedule?  I know the answer may vary but please chime in with what you're currently doing :)

In the Tartine Bread book, he talks about using a "mature" starter to create the leaven, to be left overnight.  I assume this means using the starter right before it needs feeding again?

Any thoughts or input are greatly appreciated!  Thanks  :chef:

Mark


Offline norma427

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Re: Best Time to Use Starter?
« Reply #1 on: October 20, 2010, 09:21:23 PM »
Mark,

I am only new to using starters, but I used mine when they have more than doubled in about 2 hours after feeding them.  The starter should be nice and active. 

Other members that have use starters more, can probably give you better advise.

Norma
Always working and looking for new information!

Offline StrayBullet

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Re: Best Time to Use Starter?
« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2010, 08:05:25 AM »
Thanks Norma!

Now that I actually have a starter going and have observed by sight and smell at different time points, I'm really trying to get a handle on the stages of growth during the cycle.  What's happening at the different stages, etc :)

Mark

Offline norma427

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Re: Best Time to Use Starter?
« Reply #3 on: October 21, 2010, 09:10:40 AM »

Now that I actually have a starter going and have observed by sight and smell at different time points, I'm really trying to get a handle on the stages of growth during the cycle.  What's happening at the different stages, etc :)

Mark

Mark,

Since I havenít experimented that much with starters and am still learning, there are many good posts on starters and how to feed and maintain them at the starters thread at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/board,37.0.html   Another good post by Peter about learning all about using starters and dough management  http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,8119.msg69908.html#msg69908 He discusses all about dough, reading Marcoís posts, Ischia starter and other relevant posts. pyegal also has a good post about when to used starters and feeding starters at Reply 2 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,1348.msg12213.html#msg12213
and another post by s00da at Reply1 http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,9741.msg84538.html#msg84538   

If you use the forum search feature, there are many posts about how to feed starters and maintain them.  If you want any more links let me know.

I also am on this learning curve about using starters so it will be interesting to me on how you go about using your starters.   :-D 

Best of luck,

Norma
Always working and looking for new information!

Offline Bill/SFNM

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Re: Best Time to Use Starter?
« Reply #4 on: October 21, 2010, 09:25:37 AM »
Mark,

One thing to keep in mind with your experiments. Activation and fermentation temps can have a major effect on the characteristics of the starter. Leaving a starter out overnight at "room temp" may produce different results each time depending on how stable that temperature is.

Offline StrayBullet

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Re: Best Time to Use Starter?
« Reply #5 on: October 21, 2010, 10:38:38 AM »
Thanks again Norma, much appreciated!  I figured a lot of this was already out there but sometimes weeding through the searches for the nuggets of gold is a tad daunting, so thanks for the links!!! 

Mark,

One thing to keep in mind with your experiments. Activation and fermentation temps can have a major effect on the characteristics of the starter. Leaving a starter out overnight at "room temp" may produce different results each time depending on how stable that temperature is.

Thanks Bill and that's why I've started to shy away from questions that involve time because that will be temperature dependent as you've said.  What the starter is "doing" and what it smells like are the indicators I'm looking for now, regardless of time :)

It's a slow curve but I like to learn and I think I'm starting to get a handle on the basics.

Mark