Monday, 15 April 2013

Getting Started - again! (part 2)

Well, a lot has happened over the weekend! The starter took off, bubbled away merrily and seemed to be increasing in size see pictures below. Filled with enthusiasm and probably not in full posession of the requisite level of patience for this business we decided on day 3 to give it its first feed... and that is where it all started to go wrong. There was a bit more bubbling but by the next day the starter was covered in a puddle of liquid.
Day 2 More bubbles Day 3 Lots of bubbles Day 3 After feeding
Day 4 Oh dear! Day 4 Fed again Day 5 Still not looking good

Thinking back I tried to work out what could have gone wrong. I used water out of the kettle which was room temperature. And the same type of flour. Closer examination of the flour bag revealed that I had used an older bag which I usually keep just for dusting when making bread. Its a bit past its sell by date and didnt really want to waste it. So I then turned for advice to the Sourdough Home Website. Mike seems to have a lot of knowledge to impart here although he seems a bit pessimistic about the chances of an old duffer like me being able to get this thing working. However, I was encouraged by the news that the liquid is called "hooch" and is alcohol being produced by the yeast and not a problem but possibly suggests it may need feeding again. On Sunday afternoon, I gave it another feed. This time with the freshest four and left it to do its thing.
This morning we have a jar with the same amount of starter and the rather ominous puddle on top again. So what happens now? Mike seems to think that this is no biggy, give it another feed. I'm contemplating starting from scratch again. Just to give you the full picture the only slight diversion from the recipe was the use of black non-organic grapes instead of green organic. Any thoughts anyone? 

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