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5 from 1 vote

Sourdough Starter

Learn how to make a sourdough starter from scratch to be used to make sourdough bread!
Prep Time5 mins
Resting Time5 d
Cuisine: American
Servings: 1 starter

Ingredients

  • 60 g (about 1/2 cup) flour , for each feeding
  • 60 g (about 1/4 cup) water , for each feeding

Instructions

Day 1

  • In a jar (or you can use a bowl at this point until you transfer the starter to its more permanent home once you have completed this process) stir together the 60 g flour and 60 g water.
  • Your day 1 mixture, is going to be very thick at this point. Stir it together and loosely cover the container. And you will let the starter rest for 24 hours in a warm place (75oF/80of) (you can keep it on top of your fridge, in your oven with it OFF and light on are two great places. You want to try to feed your starter at the same time each day.

Day 2

  • At this point, you probably won't see any activity. Or you may see a little bit of bubbling. You want to save about 1/2 cup (60 g) and then discard the rest. (The discard is a little too early to save it, so throw in the trash - not down your sink). Then feed it again with the same amount of flour and water as you did from day 1.
  • Again, loosely cover your container and let the starter rest for 24 hours in a warm place.

Day 3

  • At this point you may see some bubbling and the starter may have a bit of an aroma. At this point, you can switch over to all-purpose flour or bread flour (or a combination of whole grain and AP flour) . And we are also doing TWO feedings a day.
  • You are going to repeat the same feedings as you did on Day 1 and Day 2. You want to save 1/2 cup, and discard the rest. And then feed the starter with 60 grams of flour and water.
  • Make sure to space your feedings out 12 hours apart.

Day 4

  • Repeat two feedings a day, like on day 3.

Day 5

  • Repeat again with two feedings as you did on Day 3 and Day 4. At this point you should see lots of activity, bubbling, a nice aroma, and should double in size within 6 to 8 hours.
  • If you don't see you don't see the starter doubling within 6 to 8 hours then continue with double feedings for day 6 and 7,if needed.

Day 6 and 7

  • Repeat double feedings as you did with day 3-5.
  • Once your starter is ready (doubled in size within 6-8 hours), give it one last feeding and then you can use begin to use in your recipes or store.
  • I recommend transferring your starter to its permanent home - a nice clean jar after the first week (if you haven't done so already).

Maintaining Your Starter

  • Store your starter in the fridge (and feed every 7- 10 days). I take mine out and feed it, let it sit for a few hours to become active and then store back in my fridge if I'm not baking with it.
  • Storing at room temperature you will need to feed your starter once a day (but then is ready to bake bread when you want!)
  • Always keep the new flour to new water ratio the same.

Notes

  • Starter is ready when? Your starter is ready when it doubles in size within 6-8 hours of feeding. Mark the top of your starter's height with a sharpie or place a rubber band around the jar.
  • Water: I have used my tap water but if you're concerned about your tap water quality use filtered or bottled water. Do not use distilled water. Water temperature will affect how quickly/slow it rises. Colder water = slower rise time.
  • Warm place: Place your starter in a warm location between feedings.
  • Mold: If your starter has mold, or a pink/orange streak you need to throw it out. If you see a gray liquid, that's called hooch, and it's harmless. Just pour it off. 
  • Loosely cover your jar while making the starter. 
  • Use A Whole Grain Flour To Start Your Starter. This will help give your starter a boost in the first few days to get it active. 
  • Do Not Use Bleached Flour. The chemicals to bleach the flour can interfere with your starter. 
  • This takes time. Yes the starter will take about a week to get started. Sometimes more. Sometimes maybe only 5 days. Really depends on where you live, climate, flour you use, the type of water. But have faith. Your starter will start. Just keep feeding it.