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Author Topic: How Often to 'Wash' a Sourdough Culture  (Read 233 times)

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Offline Riccardo39

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How Often to 'Wash' a Sourdough Culture
« on: August 25, 2021, 03:00:42 AM »
Hi,

For about 10 years I've had two jars of Camaldoli culture on the go. I feed them once a week and make pizza once a week. They've never delivered that much puff, but lately they've been particularly feeble. I know that Ed Wood recommends 'washing' the culture to reduce the acidity and give the yeast a boost. My question is: how often should I 'wash' the culture in this way? Not every time I take it out of the fridge? And secondly, is feeding the culture once a week a viable way to keep a culture, or have I been mistreating them all these years? They seem to deliver reasonable flavour in my pizza, though I do have to use a pinch of IDY, following Jeff Varasano, in my pizza making.

Thanks.

Offline HansB

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Re: How Often to 'Wash' a Sourdough Culture
« Reply #1 on: August 25, 2021, 07:25:24 AM »
I'd take it out of the refrigerator and feed it every twelve hours 1:1:1 for a week or so and see how it evolves.
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Offline jsobolew

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Re: How Often to 'Wash' a Sourdough Culture
« Reply #2 on: August 25, 2021, 04:34:54 PM »
Every time I put mine in the fridge, it takes a few days of regular feedings to get back into shape to be active enough to make pizza again. I usually only make one big batch of pizza a week but I keep my starter on the counter and feed it daily to keep it regular. I agree with the previous post, take it out and feed it on a more consistent basis, at least temporarily.

Offline Pizza_Not_War

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Re: How Often to 'Wash' a Sourdough Culture
« Reply #3 on: August 25, 2021, 05:52:57 PM »
Only washed once when infected with Ed Woods direction. I feed mine morning of the day I use it. Works for me.

Offline Numerator

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Re: How Often to 'Wash' a Sourdough Culture
« Reply #4 on: August 26, 2021, 11:46:13 AM »
Ed Woods says to add water after it is pulled out of refrigeration to reduce acidity.  His argument is that the lactobacilli are always somewhat active making the culture more acidic over time. 

Quote
The activity of the wild yeast is often inhibited by the increased acidity of the culture.  To reduce a culture's acidity, when you take it out of the refrigerator, fill the culture far with warm water while stirring vigorously.

"Washing" is proofing at 90 degrees F to combat contamination.

You don't have to feed once a week.  You may just need to repeat the activation process if it does not respond the first time.
Quote
If the culture has been in the refrigerator for less than two weeks, it is only mildly dormant and will usually become active in approximately 2-4 hours when proofed at room temperature.  If it does not respond well, additional feedings may be necessary.


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« Last Edit: August 26, 2021, 11:55:15 AM by Numerator »
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Offline Numerator

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Re: How Often to 'Wash' a Sourdough Culture
« Reply #5 on: August 26, 2021, 11:57:48 AM »
There is a section specifically for starters/sponges

https://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?board=37.0


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« Last Edit: August 26, 2021, 12:34:23 PM by Numerator »
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Offline Numerator

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Re: How Often to 'Wash' a Sourdough Culture
« Reply #6 on: August 26, 2021, 12:31:42 PM »
I just came across this:

Quote
The high level of activity in a culture can be maintained with storage in a refrigerator for 1-2 weeks. As the time in refrigerated storage increases, the effort to regenerate also increases. After a couple of months in storage, it can take a couple of days to regenerate. With several months of storage, it can take much longer.. If it has been sitting dormant in the refrigerator for many weeks, a continuous process of re-generation may be needed.

https://sourdo.com/2019/10/17/pizza-recipe/
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