Sourdough starters can be purchased online or you might even have a friend or relative who’s already making them who’d be willing to share. They’re easy to pass around, and you can use just a small amount to grow as much as you want! That’s the beauty of sourdough.
To grow your own, you don’t need anything more than flour, water, and time. Let’s begin!
What you need:
- a mason jar or similar sized glass or plastic container, no metal
- measuring cups and spoons
- plastic wrap
- flour (at least a pound to be safe)
What you do:
- Combine 3/4 cup of water with 3/4 cup + 2 tbs flour and stir vigorously in your container. Once bubbles are formed and you have a nice, thick, evenly combined batter, cover with plastic wrap and set on your counter. It will need to be placed somewhere that is warm, at least 70 degrees F, where it won’t be disturbed.
- Over the next 24 hours, bubbles should start to appear. During this period, stir the mixture occasionally to attract more yeast and air into the starter. The bubbles mean the yeast is becoming active and alive, that’s what you want!
- On the third day, its time to feed the yeast! Add another 3/4 cup flour and 3/4 cup water and stir vigorously, then cover and let sit once again.
- On the fourth day, your starter should be noticeably bubbly and have doubled in size. You will also notice that very distinct sour smell that is signature to sourdough. It is active when it is light with many big bubbles, like
in the photo.
- If your starter is not this active yet-don’t worry! Just keep feeding it, it might just need another day or so. Every climate and local yeast available is going to be different.
- If your starter is ready-you can use it! Take about half out and use in a sourdough recipe of choice. Just make sure to add the same amount of flour and water back to your starter. Let it become active again, and either continue to reuse, or put it in the fridge to be “dormant”. Just make sure that if you do want to do this, that it is active before adding it to the fridge, and also don’t put an airtight top on it-or it might explode! You can put a sealed top on it after a few days, but let it breathe at first.
And your done! What’s your favorite sourdough recipe?
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