A Simple Sourdough Starter

Follow our step-by-step guide to making a successful Sourdough Starter from scratch and in just 5 days use to make a delicious Sourdough Loaf.

Sourdough Starter in jar and sourdough bread

Ingredients

Strong white or rye flour

Water - at room temperature

Method

  1. Take a large glass jar or plastic container, it helps if it has quite straight sides as these are easier to keep clean.
  2. Weigh in 50g flour and 50g water, stir, put on the lid and set aside at room temperature.
  3. The next day, add 50g flour and 50g water, stir and set aside again.
  4. On the third day, repeat the process again.
  5. By the fourth day, you may see the mixture starting to bubble up and smell yeasty.  This time, discard most of the mixture and add 50g of flour and 50g water.
  6. On the 5th day, test the start to se if it will float in water in which case it is ready to use.

Storing a starter

  • Once your starter is going, it can be used everyday to make bread, simply take 100g to make a simple loaf (see recipe) and feed the remaining spoonful as above.
  • If you don’t need the starter to make bread, just put it in the fridge then discard and feed 4 - 6 hours prior to needing it to make bread again.
  • To increase the amount of starter to make more loaves, instead of discarding, split into separate containers to create a new jar of starter or increase the amount of each feed.  

Reviving a Neglected Starter

If you have stored the started in the fridge and not used or fed it at all for a few weeks, it will develop a strong vinegary-smelling liquid on the top. To revive a starter and use it again, pour off the liquid, discard most of the pasty-looking flour mixture that is left and proceed with normal feeding.  For reviving a starter, feed twice a day for a couple of days until the starter looks bubbly and floats when tested.

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