Ok, it is done, my first pain au levain, sourdough bread done with the starter of April 30, 2010. See here the step by step when I did the starter from scrath.
I am happy with the result. Now I need to tailor it to my fit and adjust as I go to understand the ‘why’ behind this. Baking with artificial yeast is a sure hit, the dough rises as prescribed and it is for me a ‘plug and play’. But with a natural starter, that is completely a different ball game. It takes much more analysing and planning and there is almost no recipe to make a bread because each starter depends of the weather around, the water, etc… So I need to study the ‘how’ and not the ‘how much’.
My first bread is not dark enough, I did not spray enough water in the oven while it was baking.
The rise of the bread could be better, I need to watch carefully when the starter is ready to be used : when it reaches its speak just before going down again and asking to be fed.
My ‘homemade’ banneton was just what I was looking for… (forget about finding these items in the store where I live here, I had to be imaginative here and made my own…)
I did this bread using the method of overnight.
The taste is sour and salty and crusty, just like I remember the sourdough breads I did back in 1987. Very good, so the ingredients used are ok, just need to improve on the ‘how.
This is just a start, my intention is to make this bread again and again, until I have reached perfection. This is what I call real Cooking by Instinct!