Author Topic: IT'S ALIVE! Now what?  (Read 274 times)

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Offline ChristianVerschaeren

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IT'S ALIVE! Now what?
« on: June 28, 2014, 09:48:13 AM »
Meatboy was so kind to send me some Ischia starter. I pretty much read everything on this section so I was able to make it come alive through all the trial and error I found here.
Well, it just tripled in volume and came back down, so success!!!! ;D 

But...now what? I won't make dough for another two days, what do I do in the meantime with it?

Thank you!


Offline Totti

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Re: IT'S ALIVE! Now what?
« Reply #1 on: July 02, 2014, 03:54:42 AM »
If you keep it out, feed it every 24 hours or so till you're ready to bake. I find it most suitable to use if you feed it 4-8 hours before you are ready to bake. Depends how active yours is and what the temperature is like. Its winter here now, so it takes about 6-8 hours to peak.

If you fridge it from now till you're ready to bake, it will still be plenty active. So just take it out of fridge, give it a few hours to normalise to room temp, feed it and then it should double and you're good to go.

Offline ChristianVerschaeren

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Re: IT'S ALIVE! Now what?
« Reply #2 on: July 02, 2014, 06:52:50 AM »
Thanks, I just let it come back down and kept relatively calm for a few days.
Yesterday I took it to work (left it in the car) and fed it 4 hours before making the dough and put it on the dashboard, by the time I drove home it tripled in size, but it wasn't as active as these pictures I sometimes see on here that blow the lid off.

Tonight I'll bake using the Ischia dough, curious to what the results will be.
  ;)

Offline ChristianVerschaeren

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Re: IT'S ALIVE! Now what?
« Reply #3 on: July 03, 2014, 05:31:36 AM »
Well, pizza was mediocre. :(
I did a 48 hour dough, the bulk ferment was okay I think, but the balls became shiny flat pancakes, so the last few hours I put the dough trays in the sun hoping the warmth would cause more rise, to no avail. I did get some oven spring, but not as much as I think I should have had. Also, some dough balls developed a skin, which is weird as they where in a tray. I don't know what went wrong, starter not active enough? I put the trays in my barn because it's 64 degrees there, but it was a cold night, maybe the active fella's froze to death?

Offline TXCraig1

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Re: IT'S ALIVE! Now what?
« Reply #4 on: July 03, 2014, 08:27:35 AM »
The cold night probably didn't kill them, but it's likely that it slowed them down. If the temperature is not fairly steady throughout the fermentation period, you will probably need to make corrections - like you attempted (or the opposite if things are warmer/progressing faster than expected).

The key to corrections is being proactive.  Adjust the temperature as early as possible. It's usually too late to do anything in the last few hours, and you might actually make your situation worse. Start watching the balls at least 8-10+ hours ahead. With more time, you can make smaller corrections, and more importantly, it gives you plenty of time to get the dough back down to the temp you want to work it. Making pizza with hot dough sucks.
Pizza is not bread.

Offline ChristianVerschaeren

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Re: IT'S ALIVE! Now what?
« Reply #5 on: July 03, 2014, 10:06:33 AM »
Thanks. Tonight I'll make dough and keep it in the house for the entire time. Temp is a stable 75, I'll adjust accordingly. 

Also, I think I know what caused the skin on the dough balls. Earlier today I fed the starter and put it in the sun for some extra warmth and after half an hour a skin developed, so I'm thinking putting the dough trays (they're white) in the sun 'caused the skin on the balls.

Pretty cool how every bake you learn something from your mistakes and even though my pizza was lightyears from where I want it to be, most people agreed it was the best pizza they ever had.

In the land of the blind.... :D