2 Denver sourdough cultures

This is a brand new culture collected over a lengthy period of time, over a week on the terrace. It dried entirely at one point, was refreshed with flour and water, continued to dry in the high summer heat, watered several times. I kept hoping for rain to fall into it, and some did, but I kept it out longer as our weather went through a period of near rain everyday, but alas, little to no rain actually fell. When it did rain it was mere drizzle, barely sufficient to wet the railing. But there were windy days, and that  helped a lot by shoving organisms directly into the bowl. And then high summer heat perfect for this sort of thing that showed the culture was alive, a bubble here and there indicating incipient activity.

Frustrating. I so wanted rain to pour into my collection delivering high altitude organisms into the bowl but that was not to be.

Even so, a few tiny bugs did fly into it and those nasty things carry all kinds of organisms on them, petals of nearby plants blew into the bowl here and there, and besides all that, I had overly ripe peaches that had begun to ferment on their own so I nicked off a small wedge of softened peach and threw that into the jar too while cultivating with a lamp where the soft peach bit was immediately devoured, once the collection was refreshed with scant new flour (with its own organisms on it) and the heat of a 40W fluorescent light, the whole thing, jars and lamp covered with a towel serving as makeshift proofing box. 

The culture sprang to life within just a few hours and that indicates an extraordinarily vital robust virile and complex culture. 

It was put to use immediately. The beginning few tablespoons gross ugly gray collection became one cup of sourdough starter within a matter of just a few hours, quite fast indeed, then onto inoculate a large batch of bread dough to proof at room temperature, its ability not up to question.

Simultaneously an old Denver culture that had been dried and frozen and languishing in the freezer for years was also revitalized along with the dirty ugly culture above. It is understood that some organisms will perish by freezing, that the culture will forfeit some of its complexity and some of its strength. But this culture too rejuvenated in nearly the same length of time, just a few hours, much faster than the Maui culture reserved in putty form.  It appears to be ready to go. But whereas here the bubbles are evident on the surface, the previous newly collected dirty ugly Denver culture shown above this one is all fiercely bubbling foam. The previous culture is extremely active, and this one just back to life. This clean revitalized Denver culture will continue to proof until it becomes entirely foam. It was saved because it was so extraordinary back then so it is worth the trouble of keeping. It might have been the Denver culture collected in winter. If so, then its characteristics are unique. It is cold inured and tends to be unfazed by cold fermentation. In the refrigerator it continues to proof, and room temperature is like a warm proofing box to the culture that was collected in winter. I'll soon know if this is the cold one. There is yet another Denver culture in putty form saved for a few years in the crisper. All of them were worth saving for one reason or another.

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