Where does your starter come from?
Does anybody have more than one starter going at this time?
Do you keep cultures well apart for fear of contamination?
I am considering dumping my old starter for my new one, but i think i will make two pizzas side by side and taste test before taking drastic action.
Is there any merit to having a starter fight? ie combining two cultures and seeing which wins?
If you search back to previous posts you can learn a lot about starters from our resident expert Pizzanapoletana.
According to him the chance of contamination is much much greater when the starters are at room temp, so having a few in the fridge is not a problem. If you were to pull two out at the same time then it might become more of an issue.
Also, the notion that the yeast comes from the flour is incorrect. It comes from the air around which the culture is being "caught".
Apparently f you combine cultures in a dough, or even a culture and commercial yeast you actually upset the balance of the microflora and end up getting less flavor. It is better to just stick to one yeast at a time.
Marco has collected two really amazing starers that are sold through sourdo.com. They each taste and behave differently, and they both have their strong points. The cammadoli is a little bit more mild throughout most of the fermentation cycle, but when it goes for a long time has a very strong tang, When it goes too long the flavor is almost like citric acid (to me, sorry if this is the wrong terminology), or sweet tarts minus the sweet. The Ischia starter is my favorite because it has more flavor throughout the fermentation cycle, and to me just tastes more elegant. The downside is that it is not quite as active as the Cammadoli.
The bonus is that you get both of these starters for under $20, and there is nothing that I have found that can duplicate the amazing flavor that these can impart to your dough. For me it is now hard to enjoy pizza that has not been made with a starter. Contrary to what most people believe it is very possible to make a dough without any perceptable "sour" flavor. It is just a matter of learning how to work with this unique ingredient. What you get when these are used properly for pizza is a crust that just has more of a "doughy" flavor, and ends up with a better texture.
Marco, I hope I got this all right!