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Homemade Sourdough Starter

Updated: Nov 29, 2021


My whole life I have LOVED the taste of sourdough bread! But it's not something I ever thought I would be able to make at home. I honestly didn't even know what process created the sour flavor. After googling it, I happened to come across a recipe for making your own sourdough started so I decided to give it a try. With only 2 ingredients how hard could it be?!


Here, I will be documenting each step and updating daily with the progress. The whole process should take about 1 week.




Here's what you will need:


DAY 1: Add 1/2 cup of filtered water to a wide mouth, 4 cup mason jar. Add 120 grams of organic whole wheat flour and stir with a fork. The paste that forms is so thick that you c hardly stir it! That's normal from what I have read. After the flour has been completely incorporated, place some plastic wrap over the top of the jar and leave it out on the counter.


DAY 2: Look for bubbles in the jar, but most likely you will see it closer to the 48-hour mark. I checked my jar and didn't see anything significant so I decided to check back in on day 3.


DAY 3: We have bubbles! This is the mark of the fermentation process starting to take place:)












So now we start what's called "feeding"(which makes me think of this jar as more of a pet than dough, but hey, let's go with it).


Discard all but 1/2 cup of the starter and then add 1 cup(120 g) bread flour and 1/2 cup of filtered water. Stir until all of the flour is incorporated. Cover with a new piece of plastic wrap as pictured below.


Day 4: When I got home this afternoon, the plastic on the top of the jar was ballooning outward and the starter had expanded to at least double its size! I read that you do not want to feed when it's expanded because that means it's still busy metabolizing the flour from the last feeding. So how do you know when the starter is "hungry" again? Well, you want to wait until the ballooning goes down and you may even see a bit of liquid in the jar. When I checked back again around 6 pm, the plastic had gone back down and the starter had shrunken in size.


As done on day 3, discard all but 1/2 cup of the starter then add 120 grams of flour and 1/2 cup of water. Stir until fully incorporated and cover again with a new piece of plastic.

***Feeding can be done 1-2 times per day on days 4 and 5 depending on the speed at which the flour is being metabolized.


Day 5: Again, discard all but 1/2 cup of the starter then add 120 grams of flour and 1/2 cup of water. Stir until fully incorporated and cover with a new piece of plastic. You can repeat this process 1-2 times as needed. Make sure to wait until the starter has grown and shrunken back down before feeding again.


Day 6: As done before, discard all but 1/2 cup of the starter then add 120 grams of WHOLE WHEAT flour and 1/2 cup of water. Stir until fully incorporated and cover with a new piece of plastic. Wait about 8 hours until the starter has doubled in size and perform a float test.


Float test: take a spoonful of the starter and place it into a jar of water. If it floats, the starter is done and you can choose to make bread the same day or place it in the refrigerator for a later date. Once the starter is stored in the fridge, weekly feedings will keep it active and healthy.


This is a float test PASS! -Courtesy of King Arthur Baking Company



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