I've brewed without a starter, pitching a single Wyeast smack pack and it worked. I've pitched the scrapings of 10 petri plates and it worked. I've pitched the scrapings of 5 petri plates and it worked. I've pitched standard starters and it worked. I've pitched aerobic starters and it worked. I've racked new wort on the yeast cake from a previous batch and it REALLY worked! The brewing process can be very forgiving if you are compulsive about sanitation.
I've pampered my yeast and I've abused my yeast and found no difference in the result. Abuse turns out to be easier.
Yeast Nutrient: Use whatever you want
including a B-complex-vitamin tablet. YEAST NITROGEN BASE: DIFCO
Laboratories, Bacto Yeast Nitrogen Base w/o
amino acids. Catalog # 0919-15-3. Contains all essential vitamins and
inorganic salts necessary for the cultivation of yeasts except histidine,
methionine, and tryptophan and a source of carbohydrate.
Usage: 6.7 grams per 1000 ml.
Fill flask and bottles completely with iodophor solution. Cap with foil squares. Flask and bottles should be so full that when capped with foil, iodophor solution should contact foil.
While flask and bottles sit, boil all ingredients for 15 minutes on stove. Keep it covered to cut down evaporation, but watch for boil over.
Decant iodophor solution from flask and bottles into bowl to use later. Drop foil squares into saved iodophor solution.
Fill flask with boiling wort and use to fill bottles to a normal fill level. Re-cover bottle mouths with foil. Fill flask with remaining wort (about 500 ml) and cover with foil. Do all filling with hot wort in sink in case of thermal shock breakage of glass.
Double boil or pressure cook flask and bottles for 45 minutes. You are looking to keep the temperature as high as possible in the containers, but not boil it.
After 45 minutes remove flask and bottles. Cap bottles immediately, and refrigerate. Set flask aside to cool.
When the flask is cool, innoculate with yeast, cover with foil, and aerate by vigorous shaking and swirling. Aerate similarly and periodically, without removing foil, over next couple of days.
After fermentation is complete, let stand for 24 hours, then decant most of liquid. Allow one saved, refrigerated bottle of wort to come to room temperature. Before uncapping bottle may be stood, upside-down, in an inch of iodophor solution for 10 minutes.
Refresh media with this bottle of wort. Re-aerate, and allow to ferment out as before. Repeat process with second saved bottle of wort. Second and third fermentations are much faster.
When last fermentation is complete, refrigerate flask to drop yeast and form yeast cake. Flask may be safely refrigerated for 7-14 days, but 24-48 hours will produce a good yeast cake.
On brew day, remove flask from refrigerator and decant liquid. While filling fermentation vessel, divert enough wort into flask to resuspend yeast. Shake it up to resuspend yeast. Let stand an hour to "wake up", then swirl it up and pitch.