Author Topic: Starter activation from sourdo.com  (Read 5823 times)

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Offline anton-luigi

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Starter activation from sourdo.com
« on: September 21, 2008, 11:28:34 AM »
I've been reading about problems people are having with the initial activation of the sourdo.com starters.   I bought mine about 2 weeks ago myself, and recently finished with the activation of both the Camaldoli and the Ischia.  I had several questions for Ed Wood and did email him at sourdo.com's contact email.  He emailed me back VERY quickly,  great great customer service there!!!!  

Anyway,  I had questions about the activation,  I started with the Camaldoli,  and saved the Ischia until after I determined that I knew that the process was working correctly and knew what I was doing.  I built the proofer box with a stryo cooler, an edison socket with dimmer switch and a meat thermometer punched right through the side of the cooler with the tip basically in the middle of the enclosed area.  temps were on average 88 degrees.  

After 8-10 hours in the proofer I had a nice layer of hooch about a 1/2 inch thick on top,  so I figured I was doing fine.  I went to bed that night,  and when I went to do the first feeding at the 24 hour mark, I noticed that the layer of hooch had moved to the bottom of the jar.  I performed the first feeding anyway,  and at one point,  the jar was pretty full so I ended up splitting the jar into two jars and continued with the routine feedings.  Now,  both jars smelled wonderful,  and there were no strange colors at all.  at the next mornings feeding time,  there was no hooch on the bottom,  and the first jar had about an inch of foamy bubbles on top,  then 2nd jar had 3-4 inches of foam on top.  I emailed Ed about this,  and explained as above,  he said that it sounded like both jars were ok.  I did the feedings and then went to work that day.  when I got home,  both jars now had a thick layer of foamy bubbles on top.  So my jars ended up being in the proofer for about 3 days total before I did my final feeding prior to refrigerating.  

My question I guess,  is,  do you think it is possible for a culture to initally be contaminated,  and then clear itself due to acidity without doing the washings? My jars all smell wonderful,  originally very organic/yeasty/earthy,  now VERY reminiscent of wine.  They look EXACTLY like the pic that was posted by Bill, of his activated starter. 
« Last Edit: September 21, 2008, 11:30:27 AM by anton-luigi »


Offline tdeane

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Re: Starter activation from sourdo.com
« Reply #1 on: September 21, 2008, 12:36:17 PM »
I recently activated the ischia and the camoldi also. I had the exact same problem but I washed them and they were fine. I only had to wash them once so I'm sure splitting them into two and feeding them did the trick for you. It seems everyone has had this problem with these starters recently.

Offline Bill/SFNM

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Re: Starter activation from sourdo.com
« Reply #2 on: September 21, 2008, 02:08:39 PM »
Your cultures will be in a constant but very one-sided battle against invaders. In reality, the only important thing at this point is whether or not the cultures are suitable for baking with respect to flavor and leavening. Only one way to find out.

You may also find that the characteristics of the culture will "mature" (I think that was  marco's word) with time. The fun has only just begun as both of these cultures can be influended by different feeding/fermenting/proofing/storage regimens to produce a range of behaviors.

 

Offline anton-luigi

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Re: Starter activation from sourdo.com
« Reply #3 on: September 21, 2008, 03:19:49 PM »
Well,  I actually did use a bit of the Camaldoli a couple days ago for a batch of pizza dough,  BUT  I do not have a kitchen scale yet,  it is in the mail right now.  So I ended up with an experimental batch,  and did a guesstimate on flour/water/starter.  I can say right off the bat,  I had nowhere near enough starter in it,  and there was very little rise in it.  I have a batch of the "Pane Cafone" bread dough from the Sourdo.com informational book in the mixer right now,  4PM will be five hours,  then punch down and proof again for another 3 hrs,  then bake,  time will tell. 

Offline Bill/SFNM

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Re: Starter activation from sourdo.com
« Reply #4 on: September 21, 2008, 04:16:36 PM »
None of my pizza or bread doughs with these starters ferments/proofs for less than 24 hours, often more.

Offline anton-luigi

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Re: Starter activation from sourdo.com
« Reply #5 on: September 23, 2008, 11:21:45 AM »
Time has told,  I need ALOT more work.   ;D

Offline Jraducha

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Re: Starter activation from sourdo.com
« Reply #6 on: September 30, 2008, 03:55:17 AM »
I am having nothing but problems with my starters from sourdo. I just sent an email to them.  I have been washing my starter for a week now.  No progress????

Offline anton-luigi

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Re: Starter activation from sourdo.com
« Reply #7 on: October 05, 2008, 08:05:20 AM »
Any update on your starters Jraducha? 

Offline oscar

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Re: Starter activation from sourdo.com
« Reply #8 on: October 17, 2008, 03:26:14 PM »
Hello everyone, first post here :)

I seem to have similar problems, today I posted my experience at sourdough.com/forum/starters-gone-wrong-or-something. (Excuse the crappy linking, but as a new member I'm not allowed to use links. I hope what I have done is "fair use" of the forum, if not, tell me and will reproduce the full post here.)

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Starter activation from sourdo.com
« Reply #9 on: October 17, 2008, 04:00:55 PM »
oscar,

What you did is fine. Based on forum policy, you will be able to post links once you get to five posts. That policy is an anti-spamming policy that has worked out really well.

The full link is http://sourdough.com/forum/starters-gone-wrong-or-something.

Peter


Offline oscar

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Re: Starter activation from sourdo.com
« Reply #10 on: October 17, 2008, 05:54:03 PM »
It's a good policy. Thanks for clarifying and linking to the post, Peter.
« Last Edit: October 17, 2008, 06:31:08 PM by oscar »