May 17 2012

Sourdough Starter Adventure – Day Four

Day four of my sourdough starter adventure and nothing much to report. It seems to be getting along nicely and looks about the same as it did yesterday.

Here is a photo looking down showing the foam which seems to be a bit more bubblier than yesterday.

Day Four

The starter now has quite a vinegary smell which, if what I’ve read is to be believed, should now start to mellow out and become more refined.

I fed it again this evening by discarding half of it and adding 100g water and 75 flour.


May 16 2012

Sourdough Starter Adventure – Day Three – We have action!

Today is day 3 of my Sourdough adventure and we have action!

I checked on it this morning and there is a distinct layer of foam above the liquid layer so I think things are starting to get moving.

Day three action!

Looking down into the jar you can see loads of foam now.

Day 3, more bubbles

Now things are starting to happen, the “feeding” changes slightly. I got rid of about half the starter and added 100g of water and 75g of flour. However, from now on I am adding plain white flour rather than the wholemeal as I want this to be a plain starter. I only used wholemeal in the first place as I had read that it’s more likely to have the yeasts etc. that are needed.

I put the starter back in my office and checked on it an hour later and there was already a layer of foam (about 3mm high) so it looks like the yeast is starting to move into overdrive.

It will be interesting to see how much it grows overnight.

May 15 2012

Sourdough Starter Adventure – Day Two

Today is day two of my Sourdough starter adventure. At some point my starter is supposed to start making bubbles which is the yeast starting to multiply and do it’s stuff. I checked on my starter late last night and there were a couple of tiny bubbles on the surface but I’m not sure if they were yeast bubbles or bits of trapped air.

This is what my starter looked like this morning:

Sourdough Starter overnight

As you can it has separated out a little bit. Here is a shot looking down into the starter, are they bubbles?

Sourdough Starter bubbles?

Anyway, I now need to give my starter it’s first “feed”. So, I added 75g of flour and another 100g of warm water. I then gave it a good stir up, put the clingfilm back on and put it back in my office. I’ll keep an eye on it overnight to see if any more bubbles start to appear.

Starter after first feeding

May 14 2012

Sourdough Starter Adventure – Day One

Recently I have been making more and more of my own bread and one type of bread that I’ve read a lot about is sourdough. I’ve been wanting to try my own for a while now and as you probably know, you can’t make sourdough without a starter.

A sourdough starter is a strange and mythical beast. Traditionally there is no yeast added, it just uses the natural yeasts that are in the air all around us.

So, to get me started on my adventure I read several of my bread books and loads of articles on the internet. From all of these, I found that there are lots of do’s and don’ts and it all seemed over complicated. Even though man has been making it for thousands of years, there is no “correct” recipe, the only thing that everyone agrees on is that no-one can agree on one recipe.

So here is the beginnings of my adventure to make a sourdough starter. Will it work? Stay tuned and we’ll find out!

To start with I got an old glass Kilner jar and put in 75g of strong stoneground wholemeal flour. To this I added 100g of warm water and mixed it all together with a fork until I ended up with a thickish batter. I covered the top with cling film and put it in my office (which usually stays around 20 degrees). And that’s it! I now need to leave it a day and see if anything happens and give it it’s first feed.

Sourdough starter - day one.

Sourdough starter - day one.

If you are going to try this yourself, make sure that you use a jar/tub/whatever that is big enough to hold at least 4 times what you add at the start otherwise it’s going to get messy.

If everything goes to plan and I end up with a usable sourdough starter then I’ll put everything together into a “How to make your own sourdough starter” post.