Easy Sourdough Starter

Updated: Feb 1


The power of sourdough starter comes from the relationship between yeast and lactic acid bacteria.

Bacteria give sourdough its distinctive sour flavour and yeast work as a gas-producing agent. Both contribute to the unique flavour and texture of your bread.

The prepared starter can be stored in the fridge until needed.




Ingredients to start:

  • 50g (1.7oz) of country grain malted flour or wholemeal or mixture of both.

  • 50g (1.7oz) bottled room temperature water.


Ingredients to feed:


  • 50g (1.7oz) plain flour or wholemeal flour

  • 50g (1.7oz) bottled room temperature water.


Some things to keep in mind before you start:


  • Use clean equipment as you don't want any other microorganisms to colonize your starter.

  • Use water without chlorine as it kills microorganisms.

  • Yeasts and bacteria thrive on the grain coating, more unprocessed flour with parts of that coating results in more complex microflora = stronger starter.

  • Feeding flour doesn't have to be wholemeal.

  • Use a non-reactive container like a glass jar or crockery.

  • Give your starter a good stir after feeding.

  • Discarding part of the starter helps to maintain the right amount of yeast/food ratio.


DAY1


Morning:

In the clean 1litre jar, mix malted or wholemeal flour with water. Cover and place in a warm place in your house, preferably between 20C-26C (70F-80F).


DAY2


Morning:

Feed your starter with 50g (1.7oz) of plain flour and 50g (1.7oz) of room temperature water.


DAY3 - You should see the first activity.


Morning:

Feed your starter with 50g (1.7oz) of plain flour and 50g (1.7oz) of room temperature water.

Evening:

Remove and discard 100g (3.5oz) of starter.

Feed your starter with 50g (1.7oz) of plain flour and 50g (1.7oz) of room temperature water.


DAY4


Morning:

Remove and discard 100g (3.5oz) of starter

Feed your starter with 50g (1.7oz) of plain flour and 50g (1.7oz) of room temperature water.

Evening:

Remove and discard 100g (3.5oz) of starter

Feed your starter with 50g (1.7oz) of plain flour and 50g (1.7oz) of room temperature water.


DAY5 - After this day, your starter should double in size after feeding. If not, repeat on day 6 or until it happens (in some scenarios this can take up to 14 days).


Morning:

Remove and discard 100g (3.5oz) of starter.

Feed your starter with 50g (1.7oz) of plain flour and 50g (1.7oz) of room temperature water.

Evening:

Remove and discard 100g (3.5oz) of starter.

Feed your starter with 50g (1.7oz) of plain flour and 50g (1.7oz) of room temperature water.


  • When the starter is ready you can store it in the fridge covered loosely (allowing your starter to breathe).

  • Feed it once a week or when you take some out for the recipe, simply feed it with the same amount of water and flour.

  • The cold starter requires reactivating before use, simply take out 100g (3.5oz) of starter and mix it with 50g (1.7oz) of warm water and 50g (1.7oz) of plain flour and leave in the room temperature for at least 3 hours (I leave it overnight on the counter in the bowl).


Insight:


  • The growth of yeast and bacteria depend on three key factors: the availability of nutrients, acidity, and temperature.

  • The makeup of a starter will be very different if the feeding schedule or temperature is inconsistent.

  • The liquid that collects on the top of the starter is called "Hooch" and it indicates that the starter is hungry. This liquid is the alcohol given off as wild yeast ferments. Simply scope it out and feed your colony.

  • Use the starter for this bread recipe Easy Sourdough Bread.





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