Author Topic: Whole Wheat Flour vs. White Flour for Starter  (Read 1088 times)

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Offline CycloneFlyer

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Whole Wheat Flour vs. White Flour for Starter
« on: April 27, 2011, 02:23:34 PM »
Hi Everyone,

I am just beginning to take my pizza making to the next level. I can do the Chicago Style Pretty well, but have not had success with others. Part of that is I didn't have a mixer, which just came in the mail yesterday, so I am trying some new stuff out.

Regarding starters, some things say to use whole wheat flour to begin the starter and then switch to white. Is this necessary?

I started a starter with white flour yesterday evening that is bubbling and looks good today, should I start over with wheat flour? Or just try it and see how it goes.


foolishpoolish

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Re: Whole Wheat Flour vs. White Flour for Starter
« Reply #1 on: May 01, 2011, 08:39:36 AM »
Hi Everyone,

I am just beginning to take my pizza making to the next level. I can do the Chicago Style Pretty well, but have not had success with others. Part of that is I didn't have a mixer, which just came in the mail yesterday, so I am trying some new stuff out.

Regarding starters, some things say to use whole wheat flour to begin the starter and then switch to white. Is this necessary?

I started a starter with white flour yesterday evening that is bubbling and looks good today, should I start over with wheat flour? Or just try it and see how it goes.

Three benefits to starting with a whole grain flour:

1) Any "wild" yeast found on the bran and outer layers of the wheat grain would be removed from refined white flours.

2) It's thought that whole grain flours contain minerals which can boost microbiological activity.

3) The high ash (mineral) content acts as a buffer allowing a greater build up of acid before adversely affecting the bacteria producing the acid. This is important in the initial stages of a flour & water-only starter because population of the right Lb needs to establish before significant yeast growth can occur.

If you already have activity in your starter then I'd suggest you stick with it. Don't be surprised if on the third or fourth days the activity subsides significantly. This can actually be a good sign that the initial organisms ( many of which will not and should not sustain over time) have given way to the desired acid-producing Lb strains. Just keep feeding and your starter should eventually take off (it should smell sour).  If nothing happens after 10 days or so, then you might want to consider restarting with a whole grain flour.  Don't feed the starter with too much flour and water during the early stages. You don't want to dilute the acidic environment too much.

Hope that helps. Best of luck!
« Last Edit: May 01, 2011, 08:47:45 AM by foolishpoolish »


 

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