Wednesday, 15 December 2010

Sourdough Starter: New Beginnings

I recently documented the death of my first attempt at a sourdough starter.  After all the lovely encouragement to start again and tips from some lovely blogs, I’m pleased to announce that Starter II is all good.  

The new starter... Lovely clean jar

Day One
Sunday 28th November
It’s alive! Finally! Took three times as long as the first one but then I don’t want to compare it to the first one in case it goes down the same route.  Must have been a particularly un-yeasty day in the cottage kitchen.  I am worried about keeping it at a constant temperature, our heating is on a timer and the cottage is one drafty place to live… Hmm…

Day Two
Monday 29th November
Nice amount of bubbles on the top.  Again not as ferocious as the other one but it does look healthier! Disposed of half and whilst I had a dinner of parsnip soup, she had a lovely warm flour/water soup! Yummy!

Day Three
Tuesday 30th November
Has separated a bit with floury poop at the bottom, brown water in the middle and floating bubbly flour on top.  Google confirms the brown water is called hooch.  Hooch.  Remember Hooch?
Just me?
Ok, disposed of half again and fed it, but still looking a bit watery.  Thickened up the feed a bit. 

Day Four
Wednesday 1st December
Looking good.  The thickened feed has worked better than I thought it would be.  I think giving it what it looks like it needs rather than what the recipe calls for has worked a lot better.  And on the plus side Jim has been stuck at home all week because of the snow so the heating is on constantly! (Jim + office in London + snow + South Eastern Rail = bad times) The poor boy has cabin fever!

Day Five
Thursday 2nd December
Nothing much to report.  Looking good though and smelling good, well as far as starters smell! Starter II has sought refuge in the airing cupboard, toasty but not too warm. 

Day Six
Friday 3rd December
I don’t think I have ever been this committed to something out of the ordinary that I have to do on a daily basis.  I’m generally terrible with stuff like this.  Like those ridiculous fiddly teeth whitening trays and gels the dentist gave me.  “Oh yes Hanna! You can pop them in for 30 minutes before your lunch at work!” Like heck I’m actually going to do that…

Day Seven
Saturday 4th December
So technically it’s done and ready for use and can go for weekly feeds and can be kept in the fridge.  I am dubious about this.  I emptied her out, chucked her jar through the dishwasher and sterilised it again with hot water.  I don’t want any nasties grown on/in her.  And into the fridge she goes.  Right… Now I just need to find some time to use it!

It’s 15th December and she has been having weekly feeds and it looks ok.  I’m intrigued by sourdough chocolate cake but will have to wait until after Christmas to do some bread baking!


  1. thanks for your posts regarding your experiences with sour dough starters. I've yet to try making sour dough. I've bought the River Cottage BREAD book and am hoping to have a play with sour dough in the holidays