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Old 12-07-2019, 03:05 AM
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Default In which I form a monster so hideous that even I turn from him in disgust

This is the thread about cultures and ferments, in case you couldn't tell.

So I learned just today that there is such a thing as heirloom yogurt cultures, and that cultures propagated from store bought yogurt wither and die after a couple batches.

And yet, I have been perpetuating the same store boughten yogurt culture for about a year now, probably 20-odd batches so far. :emostein:

Could it have picked up local cultures out of the air the way sourdough starter does? Or maybe I started it with a batch of local yogurt with unusually robust cultures? I don't remember what kind I used originally, but it is possible it was Noosa, which is kind of hipstery and also local. So maybe?

(I need a whole thread because I am doing this stuff a lot lately, and I don't really know how it works yet so much. Next I am making a new ginger bug. I had one years ago, but then I accidentally heated up the oven with it inside, and yes, I know that I am the real monster.)
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Old 12-07-2019, 08:55 AM
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Default Re: In which I form a monster so hideous that even I turn from him in disgust

What the hecking heck is a ginger bug?
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Old 12-07-2019, 11:34 AM
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Default Re: In which I form a monster so hideous that even I turn from him in disgust

Google "What the hecking heck is a ginger bug" (with quotes) - no results
But "What the heck is a ginger bug" - several. You are not the first person to wonder.

Quote:
A ginger bug is a culture of beneficial bacteria made from fresh ginger root and sugar. It is similar to a sourdough starter for bread or a kombucha SCOBY.
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Old 12-07-2019, 11:34 AM
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Default Re: In which I form a monster so hideous that even I turn from him in disgust

Google "What the hecking heck is a ginger bug" (with quotes) - no results
But "What the heck is a ginger bug" - several. You are not the first person to wonder, but you may be the first person to hecking wonder.

Quote:
A ginger bug is a culture of beneficial bacteria made from fresh ginger root and sugar. It is similar to a sourdough starter for bread or a kombucha SCOBY.
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Old 12-07-2019, 04:36 PM
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Default Re: In which I form a monster so hideous that even I turn from him in disgust

Yes, it is to make ginger ales and other sodas like that.

When I did that before, I exploded ginger beer all over my kitchen.
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Old 12-14-2019, 09:10 PM
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Default Re: In which I form a monster so hideous that even I turn from him in disgust

What the hecking heck is a ginger bug?

Originally from Sweden, the ginger bug (Teleomorpha pensylvanica) was first found in a field near Penhaligon Island in 1988. Four years later, a scientist noticed the bug. Local volunteer Sam Houston was tasked with raising the little critter and educating the local community. As many call him, Ginger Brian.

The ginger bug is also commonly called the kudu bug or bug friend. It's well-known as a great backyard pest. Several folks have said that they saw a ginger bug inside a barbecue and felt it fall to the ground and then crawl back into a grinder or ice cream maker, where it was crushed and turned into paste. But have you ever seen this happen? Nope, the ginger bug doesn't just hop off a grill and crawl in your cup. Sometimes it will crawl into some sort of foodstuff that's being processed and turn it into a paste. Then you can take it home and put it on your pizza, on some pizza crumbles, on a salad. Maybe even put it on meat! But first it's gonna be dry and/or limp and/or it's gonna have a bunch of zits. And then you'll have to throw it out.
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Old 12-14-2019, 10:13 PM
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Default Re: In which I form a monster so hideous that even I turn from him in disgust

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Old 12-15-2019, 03:46 AM
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Default Re: In which I form a monster so hideous that even I turn from him in disgust

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As many call him, Ginger Brian.
People do name their cultures once they get established, so thank you.
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Old 12-15-2019, 05:41 AM
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Default Re: In which I form a monster so hideous that even I turn from him in disgust

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As many call him, Ginger Brian.
People do name their cultures once they get established, so thank you.

Thank Transformer.
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Old 12-18-2019, 06:02 PM
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Default Re: In which I form a monster so hideous that even I turn from him in disgust

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Old 01-04-2020, 02:27 AM
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Default Re: In which I form a monster so hideous that even I turn from him in disgust

Quote:
Originally Posted by lisarea View Post
Every now and again, I remember that :ff: used to have a cooking questions thread, and I think to myself, "I should find that thread again."

I have read this thread thoroughly and understand it is old, yet still wish to reply.

Will buttermilk cultures survive freezing? I know I can freeze buttermilk for other things, but I specifically want to freeze it to use for creme fraiche later, and that depends on the cultures still being active.
Yes. Just drop one 2 Tbsp. cube of frozen buttermilk into 2 cups of cream, and it should culture just fine. It'll need a little more time just to get to the right temperature, but it ought to work.

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Better yet, even: Could I freeze the correct proportions of heavy cream and buttermilk already mixed together in jars and then just thaw them on the counter and then leave them to culture?
I don't know.
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Old 01-04-2020, 07:00 AM
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Default Re: In which I form a monster so hideous that even I turn from him in disgust

Quote:
Originally Posted by lisarea View Post
So I learned just today that there is such a thing as heirloom yogurt cultures, and that cultures propagated from store bought yogurt wither and die after a couple batches.

And yet, I have been perpetuating the same store boughten yogurt culture for about a year now, probably 20-odd batches so far. :emostein:

Could it have picked up local cultures out of the air the way sourdough starter does? Or maybe I started it with a batch of local yogurt with unusually robust cultures? I don't remember what kind I used originally, but it is possible it was Noosa, which is kind of hipstery and also local. So maybe?
Air almost always contains yeast spores. For sourdough bread cultures usually the yeast lives in a balance with lactobacillii as the two dominants that like that acidity and temperature range and thrive (thereby out-competing everything else that might want to live in there, mostly by maintaining that high acidity). Lactobacilli gives the milkier, creamier, sweeter side of a sourdough starter- almost a ripe banana smell- where as the wild yeast gives more of the acetic side- the vinegar sharpness and acidity.

For sourdough there's a sweet spot for the ratio of sourdough starter to the flour and water added so that the culture is strong enough to repopulate and there is enough food to keep it happy; might it be the same with your yogurt culture?

I'm not familiar with how a yogurt culture is maintained but Lactobacillii are certainly a part of yogurt culture, I am guessing like a sourdough culture it is fed on a regular schedule, and kept in a temperature range, and some part of the culture is always kept and refreshed?
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Old 01-04-2020, 06:16 PM
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Default Re: In which I form a monster so hideous that even I turn from him in disgust

I am nowhere near as fussy with the yogurt as I am with sourdough. I'm not super-fussy with that either, but yeah, I keep it at room temperature when I'm using it, discard some, and weigh the flour and water to feed it once or twice a day to keep it active.

So some time, well over a year ago, I bought some plain yogurt at the store and made a batch of yogurt with that. Since then, whenever we start to run out of yogurt, I make a new batch with the previous batch. I'm not careful about it at all, in any way. I don't measure anything, I don't keep a separate starter, and I'll just use whatever milk or cream I have. I'm very much sloppy and imprecise about the whole thing.

But I was reading different fermenting and culturing forums recently for other reasons, and I found a bunch of people saying it doesn't work that way, and that if you want a perpetual yogurt, you need to start with an heirloom culture and be careful in maintaining it. They were saying that a store bought culture will last two or three cycles at most. But Matlock eats yogurt every day. It's been dozens of batches. I started a new batch last night and it came out perfect like it always does.

But then I'm thinking, well, yogurt got started somehow originally, probably accidentally at first. And maybe my yogurt either started with a robust local culture (the default yogurt cultures are Streptococcus thermophilus and Lactobacillus bulgaricus), or it picked something up out of the air like a sourdough starter does.

Maybe I should sell my fancy Colorado heirloom yogurt culture.
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