The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Cleaning/Changing of container....

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tom_belte's picture

Cleaning/Changing of container....

Hello,  I'm on day 5 of my starter, using a medium sized tubby kilner jar. I was wondering about jar cleanliness and once I have my starter ready to use is it a good idea to change to a cleaner jar ? Obviously there will be continuous feeding so is it a worry which needs no worrying ? Just a little nervous/excited at the moment and very new to this all.  


saradippity's picture

Personally, I like my jars to look tidy. On my large tub for pancake starter I just squeegee the sides with a spatula, on my small jars I change the jar every feeding (my spatula doesn't fit in them and I maintain very small starters until I'm ready to bake). Every now and then I put the pancake starter in a clean container and clean off its normal home, but most of the time I don't bother. I don't seem to be having any problems with my system. I make sure that jars have been drying at least 24 hours before I put starter in them to let chlorine evaporate, but I don't know whether or not that is necessary.

saradippity's picture

Oh yes, and I mix my starter for feeding in a bowl before pouring into the new jar, so it's as tidy as possible.

Jé's picture

I clean the container once a week. After each feeding, I scrape the sides with the fork I used to stir.  It's been going for two months without issue.

@saradip: when you say "very small starters", how much is that? 1/4 cup? 50 grams?

saradippity's picture

Sorry for the late reply, been busy lately. By small, I mean 20g each of s/f/w, so 60g. I do that when I don't plan on using the starter for a while, then build up a day or two before if I want to use it.

Jé's picture

Thanks.  knowing that, I'll reduce the quantity I leave in the fridge between the batches (for now I make it 200g).  This will result in less discard when getting the starter ready for a bake.

Also, based on others comments, I'll be cleaning the container less often: actually only when switching containers when building larger quantities for a "big bake".

MisterTT's picture

plastic container that my rye starter is in for about nine months or so. There's no need to clean it really since the contents are getting gradually replaced.

In the olden days, people kept old dough in wooden bread buckets which never got cleaned. When the dough is mixed, there's enough residue on the sides of the container to act as leavening for the next batch.

phaz's picture

when i can't see inside my starter jar, I know it's time for a cleaning! well, a little sooner. that seems to be about every month or so. I've never had mold forming, so nothing to really worry about.

Davo's picture

I have kept a starter for 4-5 years now. It's in a 1L or so ceramic crock, and mostly stays in the fridge, coming out for a day or two of waking up before baking. I have cleaned out that crock maybe 3 or 4 times ever, and not for at least a year. I just periodically scrape the dried starter from the sides with a spoon each time I feed. Never had any mould.