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Sourdough Experiments San Francisco Style…

I’ve been experimenting with two new starters that were sent to me. Both San Francisco starters. The first starter has a stronger aroma and I tried baking with it first, but I had to leave when it needed to be baked, so I put it back into the fridge and waited until the next day and it was too far gone, no oomph left. It also did not raise too well, so I will feed the starter and wait a bit longer to see if it will come up to snuff. I did bake the bread anyway and even though the flatness and color were disappointing, the flavor was really wow! So since it was my fault that it flopped, I will give it another try.

The second starter I baked with today, this is also a new (to me) starter and I may have to let it ferment a bit longer to develop the flavor. Once sourdough starters are dried, they need a bit of time to recover the bacteria that is responsible for the flavor, the yeast recovers more quickly, which is why you can bake a nice looking loaf, and wonder where the “tang” is. That is what happened to today’s bake. I will show you the steps I went through to produce this San Francisco Bread. I started with a preferment early in the morning. After six hours it looked like this:

Preferment

I then added the rest of the ingredients, mixed, autolysed, and then processed the dough for three more minutes. I then poured the dough into an upside down cake saver tupperware:

dough

Then the dough bulk fermented for four more hours and looked like this:

after bulk fermentation

I shaped the loaves into boules, they were about 1 lb 13 oz each:

shaped boules

Then into the proofing baskets:

proofing baskets

After 2.5 hours, ready to bake:

ready

Turn out the dough and….slash:

slash

(That’s one of Bill’s handcrafted lames, beautiful isn’t it?).

Then first loaf:

first loaf

Second loaf:

second loaf

Third loaf:

third loaf

I glazed all of the loaves with melted butter. Here are all three:

three loaves

A finer crumb with lower hydration:

crumb

I am going to try these two starters again with the Two night Super Sour Recipe and see how they come out! Keep tuned….

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