Author Topic: How do you keep the starters and dough at constant temp in hot climate ?  (Read 2398 times)

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Offline Martino1

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I couldn't find a matching thread ... Therefore new

How to you create an effective "cool" environment for your starters but also for a rise/ferment of your final dough ? I am trying to activate the starters I obtained.

The surrounding temperature here is 85F, which is good for the initial 24 hours or when increasing the lactobazilli If I understood correctly. whereas the sweet spot for the starters are 65F - 75F and to promote the yeast and a balanced starter. Also my dough rises too quick in 85F.

So far I keep it in a room and turn down the aircon, but that is not really energy efficient and waste of money. If I put it in the fridge, then it is too cold and stops the activity I like.
Craig I think you use a bottle of ice in a container to temporarily cool down, but my concern is whether this would provide a steady temperature ?
I am thinking of using a cooling box and putting some ice, then elevate the starter container higher.

Any suggestions are welcome !
Pizza is the only dish perfect for breakfast, lunch, tea, dinner, late night snack ;-)


Offline RobynB

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Re: How do you keep the starters and dough at constant temp in hot climate ?
« Reply #1 on: September 29, 2011, 10:07:57 PM »
Various members have posted about their temp controls in assorted threads.  Bill/SNF has an intricate setup that he's described a few times; Omid posted in a couple places in his big thread, most notably here:  http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,14506.msg151032.html#msg151032.  I'm sure others will chime in and direct you to relevant places; you might also use advanced search in the Neapolitan section as that's where I think I've seen most info on temp control systems. 

parallei

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Re: How do you keep the starters and dough at constant temp in hot climate ?
« Reply #2 on: September 29, 2011, 10:34:14 PM »
A picnic cooler with a water bottle containing frozen water.  Replace bottles of frozen water as required.  Not expensive or fancy, but works well........

Offline Bill/SFNM

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Offline barryvabeach

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Re: How do you keep the starters and dough at constant temp in hot climate ?
« Reply #4 on: September 30, 2011, 05:56:08 PM »
Martino, if you get a wine cooler without a compressor, it is very quiet in use, but it will only drop the temp about 15 to 20 degrees below ambient temp, so in the summer it may have problems getting to the low 60's.   I bought one from Best Buy - they now offer it for around $100,  and it is pretty small box - which is what I wanted and works very well.http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Frigidaire+-+8-Bottle+Wine+Cellar+-+Silver/9424679.p?id=1218102963979&skuId=9424679   I also bought a digital temperature controller 120 volts, that handles heat and cooling and a hot pad, so I can use it as a proofing chamber as well. 

Offline Martino1

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Re: How do you keep the starters and dough at constant temp in hot climate ?
« Reply #5 on: September 30, 2011, 09:11:41 PM »
Thanks all, smart solutions out there. Can you also deliver an explanation to my wife, that we need a wine cooler, even she doesn't drink wine  ;D ?

What ever i buy these days, she assumes it is for Pizza...hehe.

Will try to store the starter in a cooling box with some bottled ice first and see where i could get my hands on a cheapo wine cooler. Warming works in the oven with light on and 5 cm open door it is exactly 31.9C/90F and the lactos are having a one day party until tomorrow, i will give some attention to the nordic yeasts.

martin
Pizza is the only dish perfect for breakfast, lunch, tea, dinner, late night snack ;-)

Offline Mick.Chicago

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Re: How do you keep the starters and dough at constant temp in hot climate ?
« Reply #6 on: September 30, 2011, 11:35:39 PM »
I've kept starters at all times of the year, in very different temperatures, granted it does behave in different ways but what the heck, it's a living thing not a robot, I just feed them and they have been good to me regardless of the varying environment.  If I wanted to keep it consistent I'd put it in the cellar but I find they are very resilient to change this way.

My current Starter is a Hobo named Lawrence, he wears a towel on the top of his bowl that make him look like an Arab.  Jus-sayin.  :-D

Offline TXCraig1

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Re: How do you keep the starters and dough at constant temp in hot climate ?
« Reply #7 on: October 01, 2011, 12:52:46 AM »
Here is how I do it. The times I use now are a little different, but the set-up is the same. If I change the bottle every 12 hours, it won't vary by more than a degree or two.

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,14356.0.html
Pizza is not bread.

Offline Martino1

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Re: How do you keep the starters and dough at constant temp in hot climate ?
« Reply #8 on: October 01, 2011, 12:15:49 PM »
Yep.. Thats the way i will go for.

Activated the Ischia starter from Ed. Had 90F as in the description.
Now i can really smell alcohol, it tastes sour, but there is a acidic, not so nice-smelling note.
Getting a bit concerned, but will keep the routine.

Craig, you know Ischia well. did the starter after 24 hours smell only nice with an alcohol note ? Hope it is not rotten .... :-\
Pizza is the only dish perfect for breakfast, lunch, tea, dinner, late night snack ;-)

Offline Martino1

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Re: How do you keep the starters and dough at constant temp in hot climate ?
« Reply #9 on: October 01, 2011, 12:50:31 PM »
Just read
http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,12050.0.html
User Parallei faced the same smell....

Think i will just keep feeding and see how it develops.
Pizza is the only dish perfect for breakfast, lunch, tea, dinner, late night snack ;-)


Offline TXCraig1

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Re: How do you keep the starters and dough at constant temp in hot climate ?
« Reply #10 on: October 02, 2011, 10:59:03 PM »
Yep.. Thats the way i will go for.

Activated the Ischia starter from Ed. Had 90F as in the description.
Now i can really smell alcohol, it tastes sour, but there is a acidic, not so nice-smelling note.
Getting a bit concerned, but will keep the routine.

Craig, you know Ischia well. did the starter after 24 hours smell only nice with an alcohol note ? Hope it is not rotten .... :-\


Mine took several days to smell good.

CL
Pizza is not bread.

Offline Martino1

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Re: How do you keep the starters and dough at constant temp in hot climate ?
« Reply #11 on: October 04, 2011, 12:47:54 PM »
Mine took several days to smell good.

CL

its all good now. Just keep cool and keep on with the regime. No stink, after 4 days nice apple and a bit alcohol, like Smirnoff Apple Vodka  ;)

Thanks all and you being experienced members with starters keep on calming the newbies down ! this helps a lot.
Cheers
Martin
Pizza is the only dish perfect for breakfast, lunch, tea, dinner, late night snack ;-)

Offline dellavecchia

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Re: How do you keep the starters and dough at constant temp in hot climate ?
« Reply #12 on: October 04, 2011, 02:32:14 PM »
One of the more interesting aspects of dough making, at least for me, is figuring out starter/yeast percentages based on ambient room temperatures. I find that calculating the amount of starter/yeast for a very specific dough fermentation time frame (in my case, 24 hours) to be enlightening, and helps you understand the process much more. Over the course of a few months, you get the hang of it. Then you don't really need to keep the dough at a constant temp.

There are drawbacks though - inconsistency due to temp fluctuations, especially in a climate like New England, can cause problems. And if you prefer to have the exact same dough week after week, I think the cooler/controlled temp approach might be better suited.

John

Offline Martino1

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Re: How do you keep the starters and dough at constant temp in hot climate ?
« Reply #13 on: October 04, 2011, 09:16:59 PM »
Thanks for the responses.

My prob is, that room temp is between 80 and 88 F depending on the season and day time.
I understand that if I want the starter not too become overly acidic i need to cool
- aircon 24 hours is not the right way (too inefficient and a waste of ressources and money)
- cooler box with ice. i tried it and will come down to 73F. => is this too high for the yeast to develop ?
- for storage i can use a fridge, but of course consider warm up and proofing
- other technical solutions: at the moment i do not know where to get all the sensors and stuff to build it. where i live atthe moment there is e.g. No DIY store and noone cold tell me where is the little special shop, that sells items like temp sensors etc.
- wine cooler: well, i do drink wine here and then and enjoy, but to acquire a separate wine cooler and then store my dough and starters in it...mmmmhhh here i have consensus issues  ;)

So i think i will try to go for the fridge and cooler box solution and try figuring it out, how much time i need to proof. Hope when i am ready to bake pizza from the Ischia starter it won't be too acidic.

But i will see and learn and it will be alrite. Thanks
Pizza is the only dish perfect for breakfast, lunch, tea, dinner, late night snack ;-)

Offline TXCraig1

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Re: How do you keep the starters and dough at constant temp in hot climate ?
« Reply #14 on: October 04, 2011, 09:26:16 PM »
- cooler box with ice. i tried it and will come down to 73F. => is this too high for the yeast to develop ?

Use more ice.

CL
Pizza is not bread.

Offline Martino1

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Re: How do you keep the starters and dough at constant temp in hot climate ?
« Reply #15 on: October 09, 2011, 09:33:54 AM »
Use more ice.

CL

Ok worked out. Seem to be able to balance the temperature using more ice.
However the oven spring was poor.
Did a 24 hours ferment at 64F in bulk, then left it in the cooler without the ice at 73F for 8 hours, then outside, today cool 76F.
The doughball was probably a bit underproofed, but worked very nicely and definitely had airbubbles in the rim, but it didn't puff up. I also used 0,03% IDY, which could have driven the little puff.

what did i do wrong ?
- doughballs proofed to cool/short ?
- should not add IDY ?
- starter had been activated by feeding warm water, discarding and feed a cup of flour to maintain thin pancake batter. It also rose and i had discarded and fed the days before, so it was active and i guess not too acidic.
- Should i take a bit of the active culture, feed it again and do this culture proof and then use that ?

any ideas what went wrong ?
Pizza is the only dish perfect for breakfast, lunch, tea, dinner, late night snack ;-)

Offline Martino1

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Re: How do you keep the starters and dough at constant temp in hot climate ?
« Reply #16 on: October 09, 2011, 09:36:57 AM »
One of the more interesting aspects of dough making, at least for me, is figuring out starter/yeast percentages based on ambient room temperatures. I find that calculating the amount of starter/yeast for a very specific dough fermentation time frame (in my case, 24 hours) to be enlightening, and helps you understand the process much more. Over the course of a few months, you get the hang of it. Then you don't really need to keep the dough at a constant temp.

There are drawbacks though - inconsistency due to temp fluctuations, especially in a climate like New England, can cause problems. And if you prefer to have the exact same dough week after week, I think the cooler/controlled temp approach might be better suited.

John

Thanks John. I will have to experiment changing one variable.
Next time i think i will increase the starter amount and shorten the time a bit to ensure good rise during ball proof. When i have found a combo that works, i will try to use less and longer fermentation time.

Martin
Pizza is the only dish perfect for breakfast, lunch, tea, dinner, late night snack ;-)


 

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