- Yield: 3-5 cups
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
Dark or medium rye flour makes the best starter. Within a few days my starter is bubbling and ready for bread making.
I am always amused when people say they have a sourdough starter from San Fransisco. If you transport starter to another part of the country eventually the local wild yeast and bacteria move in and change the flavor profile of your bread to reflect the bugs where you live.
For more science behind sourdough and starters read: http://discovermagazine.com/2003/sep/featscienceof
King Arthur also suggests another way to maintain starter, drying. I have never tried this method but if you do, I would love to hear from you.
This recipe is adapted from Wayne Gisslen's Professional Baking.
- Rye flour - 8 ounces, medium
- Water - 8 ounces, filtered, at room temperature
- Bread flour - As needed to feed the starter
- Water - As needed to feed the starter
- Mix rye flour with filtered, room temperature water. I put my starter in a 5 cup container.
- Place on the kitchen the counter at room temperature, loosely covered. The best temperature for starter to thrive is 68-78 degrees F.
- Once or twice a day add bread flour and room temperature, filtered water, 1/3 -1/2 cup of each every time you feed it. Stir it well to incorporate some air into the mixture when you feed it. If the starter starts to get too close to the top of the container, throw some out.
- Your starter will be ready to use in 3-4 days. I will give the starter a good feeding the night before using to make bread. (Do not feed it just before using or you will weaken the starter.)
- After using the starter for bread making I feed it one more time and then refrigerate it. My starter does well in the refrigerator for 2-3 weeks without feeding but as soon as I take it out of the refrigerator, I feed it.