Well, its that magical time of year again, where I fuck up batch after batch of sourdough

wildflower

OT Supporter
May 17, 2002
121,780
No place for older men
I made several nice loaves of regular bread - yeast courtesy of Normie. And much appreciated.
But I've been struggling with the sourdough, though. I seem to have a starter that is doing well. I leave it in the oven, it doubles in size overnight and then collapses.

But I start making the sourdough loaves, and therein lies the problem. By the time it is ready for bulk fermentation, the dough is too sticky to touch.
The first batch was outright soupy, and I just threw that one away. So I've been using a little less water in the beginning, and it seems ok, but I leave it for about 45 minutes,
come back, and it's sticky - too sticky to work with without putting some more bread flour on the outside. Dont know what I'm doing wrong, but I'm doing something.

If I cant figure out what I'm doing wrong after the next three or four tries, I'll give up and start concentrating on nice, regular loaves. And forget the sourdough.
 

nine

OT Supporter
Jun 23, 2004
21,009
so. cal.
For the regular loaves, I've been using oil. For the sourdough, flour, because its TOO sticky, and the flour seems to help.
wet hands, make sure you're developing enough gluten and it will just stick to itself.

i only flour the outside skin of the dough for final shaping, and that's for the part of the dough that i don't handle.
 
TS
TS
wildflower

wildflower

OT Supporter
May 17, 2002
121,780
No place for older men
That's normal.

Try this recipe?


What recipe are you using?

But I'll give the one you recommend a shot. Not like it can go any worse.
 

nine

OT Supporter
Jun 23, 2004
21,009
so. cal.
I bookmarked it. I'll try it after I fuck up the one Wolf suggested.
Don’t bother with anything other than tartine

learn how to stretch and fold, or even better coil fold

always handle the dough with wet hands, don’t ever add flour except a small dusting to the skin side on the final shaping.
 
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Wolf

Slow Suicide's No Way To Go
OT Supporter
Mar 23, 2003
116,955
San Jose, CA

But I'll give the one you recommend a shot. Not like it can go any worse.
:hmm: Yeah, that one says to add olive oil. I have a hunch that's where your "soupy" consistency is coming from.
I once used a recipe that just specified oil to coat the bowl to prevent sticking, and even that small amount resulted in liquidy, oily dough.

Also, "no knead"?? I've found kneading to be the best way to mix the ingredients: peel the dough off the sides of the bowl, fold it over on itself, then punch it down a few times, grinding it with your knuckles, then repeat. If you find the dough to be overly sticky, give a light dusting of flour, knead it it, then re-evaluate if another dusting is required. Tacky to the touch is okay, but it shouldn't be like molasses.

I'd suggest sticking to recipes which just use flour, water, and starter (and some salt for flavor).
 

JaimeZX

Formerly of :Sep 2001: fame - Also: Sprout Crew
Nov 7, 2005
7,164
Back in VA
OK so what's the best way to cook my starter in a bread machine?

Asking for a friend.
 

Wolf

Slow Suicide's No Way To Go
OT Supporter
Mar 23, 2003
116,955
San Jose, CA
Don’t bother with anything other than tartine

learn how to stretch and fold, or even better coil fold

always handle the dough with wet hands, don’t ever add flour except a small dusting to the skin side on the final shaping.
Wet hands? No flour? WTF?

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Wolf

Slow Suicide's No Way To Go
OT Supporter
Mar 23, 2003
116,955
San Jose, CA
Come to SF, the air in LA probably kills it
The cold nightly temps produces a more tangy/sour flavor. I forget the process, but it's something about the yeast produces a different chemical when cold that it does warm.

edit: https://truesourdough.com/best-temperature-for-proofing-sourdough-full-guide-how-to/

Why Does Proofing Temperature Affect the Flavor of Sourdough?

As mentioned earlier, the different bacteria and yeast found in sourdough starter will have different ‘optimal’ temperatures in which they ferment best. When yeasts are fermenting efficiently, they produce very little byproduct. BUT, these byproducts are what give sourdough bread it’s wonderful sour flavor. With this knowledge we can learn to manipulate the flavor of our bread.


  • Yeasts tend to ferment most efficiently at 80F – 90F (27C – 32C). At this temperature range, they consume sugars from the dough with the least amount of byproduct, and will give bread a milder flavor.
  • Bacteria strains tend to ferment efficiently at temperatures outside of those ranges, and this produces byproduct which affect flavor.
    • At higher temperatures, they produce lactic acid, which give one type of base sour’ flavor.
    • At lower temperatures, they produce acetic acid, which give a different type of sour note, that has more of a ‘tang‘.
 
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