Sourdough (rec.food.sourdough) Discussing the hobby or craft of baking with sourdough. We are not just a recipe group, Our charter is to discuss the care, feeding, and breeding of yeasts and lactobacilli that make up sourdough cultures.

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Old 12-09-2006, 03:42 AM posted to rec.food.sourdough
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Default yeast/bacteria balance

My understanding has always been that no matter where the culutre came from,
within a couple of months, your local microflora will take over in your
starter. If that's true, then that would explain why your cultures change
their flavor characteristics.

Is this true? Or am I repeating a sourdough urban legend here?

Sure seems true. My starter has always had a very, very mild flavor unless I
work the Dickens out of it by keeping it stiff and doing two long, slow bulk
rises before the final proof. However, when I gave some to a friend of mine
who lives just 6 miles away (though it's not near the river, like me, but is
instead at a higher elevation near a wetland), within three months, she had
super tangy bread. And I know she's not doing anything differently from me.
I taught her how to make bread, myself.




--
Jeff Miller


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Old 12-09-2006, 05:25 AM posted to rec.food.sourdough
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Default yeast/bacteria balance

Jeff Miller wrote:
My understanding has always been that no matter where the culutre came from,
within a couple of months, your local microflora will take over in your
starter. If that's true, then that would explain why your cultures change
their flavor characteristics.

Is this true? Or am I repeating a sourdough urban legend here?


The bread I have been baking for a couple of years with two different
starts (or are they the same?) tends to be on a range of mild to sour to
really sour. When it's the middle sour it tastes like the california
sourdough I finally got to try a month ago. But my start has never been
to california, I can assure you, and the climates in the three different
places I've lived during that time (and the supposed origin of the old
start) are quite different from california (and eachother) as well. In
my experience technique and flour make more of a difference.

I'm waiting for a fresh start from Brian Mailman which I will carefully
keep isolated, at least long enough to see if it has a different taste
than mine.
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Old 13-09-2006, 06:05 PM posted to rec.food.sourdough
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Default yeast/bacteria balance

Jeff Miller wrote:

Is this true? Or am I repeating a sourdough urban legend here?


I asked Ticker and she said that cultures that tend to remain stable ,
tend to remain stable.

From my experience, stable strains of sourdough culture can remain
stable in different geographic locations for years - at least. That
said, I have observed the same culture behave differently with different
environmental and care conditions.

The culture that lives mainly in the refrigerator during the hot months
and brought out for use infrequently behaves differently than the same
strain that lives on the counter and is fed several times a day during
the cold weather baking season. In other words, a culture can be stable
in different states. There is some biological inertia because changing
the environment and care routine (within limits) does not cause an
immediate change in observed behavior.

Regards,

Charles


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