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 Beginner Breads
 2. Creating a Wild-Yeast Starter (Mother)
 My Mother Day 1
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YellowRose
75 Posts
Sara
Paris TX
USA

Posted - Mar 31 2018 :  05:58:35 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I started my Mother this morning and she is snuggled under her damp tea towel on my counter. I made a list of six days with morning and evening times to check off when I feed her. I don't want to forget her daily feedings.

She is just inches away from two jars I have fermenting - asparagus - snack size tomatoes. I have one bank of cabinets against one wall so counter space is limited. Will have to wait and see have they all cohabitate.

Lord put your arms around my shoulders and your hand over my mouth.

MaryJane
122 Posts
MaryJane
MOSCOW Idaho
USA

Posted - Mar 31 2018 :  09:11:50 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I get as excited for every new wild bread mother like I do new calves. Keep us in the know as she grows.

MaryJane Butters, author of Wild Bread ~ for we were all one family then ~
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YellowRose
75 Posts
Sara
Paris TX
USA

Posted - Mar 31 2018 :  4:19:14 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
MaryJane I fed her the evening snack and tucked her in for the night. Day 1 so far so good. Will let you know how she does during the coming week.

Lord put your arms around my shoulders and your hand over my mouth.
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MaryJane
122 Posts
MaryJane
MOSCOW Idaho
USA

Posted - Mar 31 2018 :  4:49:43 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Here's today's mother photo, cow that is. It's all about nurture and love. All tucked in and cared for at the end of every day.


MaryJane Butters, author of Wild Bread ~ for we were all one family then ~
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YellowRose
75 Posts
Sara
Paris TX
USA

Posted - Apr 01 2018 :  05:31:52 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Precious.

Lord put your arms around my shoulders and your hand over my mouth.
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YellowRose
75 Posts
Sara
Paris TX
USA

Posted - Apr 02 2018 :  08:16:23 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
MaryJane please don't yell at me. I thought my kitchen was warm enough for Mother but apparently not. It finally dawn on me she wasn't bubbling so today after feeding her I put her on my stove warmer burner. Now she has bubbles. I checked prices of bread proofers and they are way out of my budget so it'll be the warmer from now on.

Looking after Mother reminds me of the egg experiment teenagers do where they have to care for a egg to teach them about caring for a baby.

Lord put your arms around my shoulders and your hand over my mouth.
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MaryJane
122 Posts
MaryJane
MOSCOW Idaho
USA

Posted - Apr 02 2018 :  09:16:10 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hopefully, the stove warmer burner isn't too hot and will work. Perhaps a heating pad with a towel on top of it inside a cooler might work. I'll see if Ashley has any ideas. Just curious, what is the temperature of your kitchen?

Hang in there!

MaryJane Butters, author of Wild Bread ~ for we were all one family then ~
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MaryJane
122 Posts
MaryJane
MOSCOW Idaho
USA

Posted - Apr 02 2018 :  09:38:40 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I had to laugh when this triggered a memory. I ran into one of my former employees (photographer) from quite a while ago. He said, "I learned a lot about stick-to-in-ness from you. It was like my camera or something would break and you'd say, 'Use pine cones instead.'"

MaryJane Butters, author of Wild Bread ~ for we were all one family then ~
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YellowRose
75 Posts
Sara
Paris TX
USA

Posted - Apr 02 2018 :  09:57:10 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
FarmGirls always have plan B - sometimes C & D.

I took your advise and ordered a plant heat mat that will raise the temperature 20 to 40 degrees on Amazon. Free shipping because I'm on Prime $15 - fits my budget and I won't have to worry about over heating. I can also start seedlings when not pampering Mother.

How will I know if I should throw this batch out and restart Mother?

Lord put your arms around my shoulders and your hand over my mouth.
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MaryJane
122 Posts
MaryJane
MOSCOW Idaho
USA

Posted - Apr 02 2018 :  10:30:40 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Now that's some stick-to-it-ness. I'm anxious to hear if it works. Regarding starting over, it's hard for me to say because we have two variables going on here, warmth, and a non-organic flour we've never tried.

When we post our Friday recipes on RaisingJane.org, we often get comments asking if another flour would work or a different kind of fruit, or nuts, or a different fluid. We always say, "We didn't test using that ingredient. Give it a try and let us know how it turns out."

It takes a village!

MaryJane Butters, author of Wild Bread ~ for we were all one family then ~
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Nelle
21 Posts
Janelle
Millersburg Ohio
USA

Posted - Apr 02 2018 :  11:30:12 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
That bread proofer looks lovely! Our home stays a pretty steady 70 degrees. Our heat is via water circulating in tubing in the floors and there is tile in the basement bathroom that stays toastier than elsewhere. So when mother needs a little TLC, (donít laugh!) she goes to the bathroom! Haha! We have lots of heat and humidity in the summer, but are spoiled with central air. Bread dough or loaves kind of play musical chairs/rooms here. I think that proofer would be dandy!

Never Been Unloved
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YellowRose
75 Posts
Sara
Paris TX
USA

Posted - Apr 03 2018 :  06:27:34 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Janelle, the bread proofer would be a nice addition to any bread making kitchen. For now I can just dream about it.

Fed Mother at 7a.m. and she is bubbling away. Heat mat should be here for her evening feeding so I can get her off the top of my stove and back on the counter. It's warmer today so I may not need the heat mat until tonight. My kitchen would probably be warmer but I leave kitchen door to the back deck open, there is a storm door, when Annie my dog is in back yard. I like to keep an eye on her because she is quite protective of her backyard and will bark at anyone close to her fence.

Lord put your arms around my shoulders and your hand over my mouth.
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MaryJane
122 Posts
MaryJane
MOSCOW Idaho
USA

Posted - Apr 03 2018 :  07:14:37 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Progress! Hopefully, mother will thrive and you can keep a watchful eye on Annie. It's always a juggling act in any household.

MaryJane Butters, author of Wild Bread ~ for we were all one family then ~
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MaryJane
122 Posts
MaryJane
MOSCOW Idaho
USA

Posted - Apr 03 2018 :  07:15:15 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Janelle, we have floor heat also. Sure do love it.

MaryJane Butters, author of Wild Bread ~ for we were all one family then ~
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Ashley
287 Posts
Ashley
MOSCOW Idaho
USA

Posted - Apr 03 2018 :  11:58:34 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I'm anxious to hear how your heating pad works out Sara.t I love all of the ideas for keeping the mother warm. Bread proofers are really nice and provide a wonderful controlled environment for keeping your mother warm and proofing breads, but sometimes a little ingenuity is necessary. Often in my house, if I'm worried about temperature fluctuations, I'll use my laundry room. The room is small, but has a wall heater, so can stay really warm if I keep the door closed. I even made a faux counter that spans my washer and dryer to give me extra space. This is nice because I can keep my mother and proofing breads at a consistent temperature (especially handy for breads in pans that do not fit in the proofer). I even keep a thermometer in the room just so I know the temperature is staying consistent. I think of it as my custom bread-proofing cave. :)

Ashley Ogle
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YellowRose
75 Posts
Sara
Paris TX
USA

Posted - Apr 04 2018 :  07:14:31 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Ashley, morning one with garden heat mat. Mother did okay during the night but like with the stove warmer a thin skin form on part of her. I stirred it into the Mother and she bubbled.

Test #2. I took Mother off heat mat and put a cooling rack on top of her and put heat mat on that. The cooling rack is upside down so there is room for air to get to Mother. Hopefully the heat mat will warm her just enough without forming a skin.

There is life because nasty little gnats are flitting between her and the fermenting veg. Guess it's time to put out a glass of wine.

Lord put your arms around my shoulders and your hand over my mouth.
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Ashley
287 Posts
Ashley
MOSCOW Idaho
USA

Posted - Apr 04 2018 :  10:09:41 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
It's a good sign that your mother is bubbly, and the little gnats are a bother, but another sign that your mother is active. The skin on top stirs back in easily enough, but there has to be a way to keep her warm without drying out. Has your towel been staying damp between feedings?

Your method for placing the heating pad on top might be a little less heat for your mother, so it could eliminate the skin problem. Keep us posted!

Ashley Ogle
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YellowRose
75 Posts
Sara
Paris TX
USA

Posted - Apr 04 2018 :  10:12:07 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Ashley the towel is always damp.

Lord put your arms around my shoulders and your hand over my mouth.
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Nelle
21 Posts
Janelle
Millersburg Ohio
USA

Posted - Apr 04 2018 :  11:18:19 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I love the ingenuity! Ashley, your bread cave gives me ideas! We have a Coleman ice chest that is approx. 3í x 1.5í that I think has potential...Iím thinking that a yogurt maker set inside might get me a nice steady low (controlled) temp... We are a household of 8, so when I make bread...itís usually 5-6 loaves at a time. I need a big bread cave! I will definitely want to get a thermometer...I hadnít thought of that!

Never Been Unloved
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Ashley
287 Posts
Ashley
MOSCOW Idaho
USA

Posted - Apr 04 2018 :  2:18:46 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Ha! There's all of this hullabaloo about man caves and she sheds. What if instead of a place built solely to "kick your feet up", a person created a strand of functional, useful caves? Off the top of my head, I could use one for bread, cheese, and sewing.

I've been thinking about ways to create a low, constant temperature, without a proofer, and a cooler did cross my mind. It would keep the mother at a consistent temperature, but finding one that's the right size could be tricky.

Ashley Ogle
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YellowRose
75 Posts
Sara
Paris TX
USA

Posted - Apr 04 2018 :  4:57:22 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I like the conversation and ideas on this thread.

Top heat was the answer. Fed Mother evening feeding and there was bubbles with no skin.

Lord put your arms around my shoulders and your hand over my mouth.
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YellowRose
75 Posts
Sara
Paris TX
USA

Posted - Apr 05 2018 :  04:35:16 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Overnight with top heat did wonders for Mother - she's looking good - more bubbling. Being next to fermenting veggies hasn't affected her or them. They're lined up 1,2,3 and all doing their own thing. Life is good in my kitchen this morning.

Lord put your arms around my shoulders and your hand over my mouth.
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Nelle
21 Posts
Janelle
Millersburg Ohio
USA

Posted - Apr 05 2018 :  07:56:46 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Good for you, Sara! I wondered about the controversy about having different cultured things going next to each other. I have kombucha neighboring my mother and they seem friendly!
And Ashley...my ideal she shed would involve sewing and herbs! I have way too many things that interest me to sit around with my feet up...although there is time for that while I am learning via the internet, like right now! Lol! Maybe an awesome chair in there...?
You know they say necessity is the mother of invention...I like to look around and see if there isnít something I already have that could have a multi purpose, rather than have to buy and store another gadget. Improvise! I make yogurt (have for years) in a glass gallon jar which I set inside a 2 gallon water cooler, which has a good inch or so clearance around the jar that I can fill with hot water. It works great! I keep thinking of that in connection with sourdough mother...

Never Been Unloved
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Ashley
287 Posts
Ashley
MOSCOW Idaho
USA

Posted - Apr 05 2018 :  11:47:35 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Sara, I'm glad you found a solution for keeping your mother warm. :)

Janelle, I agree that there are just too many interesting things to do instead of being idle. I think the best "down time" is when I am doing something that interests me and is also productive in some way.

Ashley Ogle
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YellowRose
75 Posts
Sara
Paris TX
USA

Posted - Apr 07 2018 :  09:17:44 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Had pancakes for brunch and I like them. I nibbled on the first one as I cooked the others. Gave Annie a taste then I couldn't get her out of the kitchen so she got another bite.

Mother is fed and in clean bowl so she is happy. The next six days should go much better than the first ones did. I now know how to keep Mother warm.

I put the leftover Mother into freezer safe 8oz jelly jars.

Lord put your arms around my shoulders and your hand over my mouth.
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MaryJane
122 Posts
MaryJane
MOSCOW Idaho
USA

Posted - Apr 07 2018 :  3:24:22 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Yay, Sara. I'm lovin' your mother's daily diary:)

MaryJane Butters, author of Wild Bread ~ for we were all one family then ~
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