Random quick “discard” sourdough bread
Incidentally there have been discussions here recently about using “weak” or unfed starter from the fridge, and I just baked some bread like that yesterday.
Ran out of bread, and my plan for a specific bake yesterday was not meant to be (starter was not quite there yet). Didn’t even have much of my normal refrigerated rye starter that I would use in a bread without issues. But I had relatively recent discard from the last week or two, a mix of whole rye 100% hydration and white 50% hydration stiff starter. I took all discard I had and some of the relatively fresh starter, mixed with some bread and whole wheat flour, salt, and water. I was roughly weighing ingredients, but I didn’t know the exact hydration of the discard, and there was quite a lot of it, so I had to adjust the hydration by adding extra flour after the dough turned out to be way more liquidy than I expected from my rough calculation.
Here is the approximate formula, take the numbers with a grain of salt: https://fgbc.dk/1ab1
At first it appeared that everything was going well, I did some stretch&folds and slap&folds, it seemed to develop some strength. Then I left it to ferment for a few hours with occasional stretch&folds. However in the end the dough was weak and sticky, as if overfermented – although there were barely any signs of fermentation visible. I think the discard brought too much acidity and the gluten never formed properly, or got degraded very quickly. So I just dumped the dough into two small tins (could have put in one, but I was worried it might decide to grow), sprinkled sesame seeds on top and left in the fridge overnight. Didn’t notice much growth by morning, but when baked the bread had a nice oven spring, and generally looked good!
It is on the sour side of my typical bread, the crumb is a little moist, but soft. On the picture it looks a little better than it is for most of the loaf, for some reason it’s more open close to the end, and a little more closed and dense inside – but it’s still actually good throughout. The crumb tears just a little when cutting, like into shreds… A bit like rye bread with not perfect crumb does. But it’s a very minor issue, which doesn’t really affect the eating experience.
Overall, it’s a surprisingly good bread!
Just wanted to share this as an example of baking with unfed starter, it can cause challenges, but bread can also turn out well!