The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

How to feed

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christinepi's picture
christinepi

How to feed

My starter is ca 10 days old. I keep it in my oven with the light on, so it's in an environment between 71-77 degrees. I fed it avery 12 hours at a ratio of 1:1:1. Initially it was struggling to develop oomph, and then I came across Mini Oven's suggestion in another thread to feed at a ration of 1:1.5:2 every 24 hours. That did the trick. So I'm getting ready to bake. I found a recipe that asks for 9 oz of starter. My question is this: I currently have 4.5 oz of starter. How do I build this up to 9 oz? Do I keep feeding at the 1:1:5:2 ratio? Or should I use 1:1:1? And over how many days should I build the 9 oz? 

chris319's picture
chris319

Just out of curiosity, how would you describe the consistency of this starter?

christinepi's picture
christinepi

 After 12 hours, when I stir it once to give it air, it's bubbly, like thick batter, easy to stir and it's got super stretchy strands, kind of like mozzarella. Does that sound right?

dosco's picture
dosco

I'm interested ... I've seen Mini post in other thread to "give the starter a large feeding" with some suggested ratios.

I've recently moved from 1:1:1 to 1:0.5:1 (starter:water:flour) ... 50% hydration. Makes for a stiffer starter but the rise is much more evident.

I've also started using rye flour which has made a world of difference. The starter is more active and more "tangy" smelling. I have 2 dough balls (different recipes) that will bake tonight. I'm eager to observe the outcome. Plus the discards seem more interesting, which will (presumably) make for interesting sourdough waffles ... ...

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

of the 9 oz of starter needed in the recipe?  

You have about half of the starter needed.  How soon do you want to bake?  When does your starter peak after you have fed it?

 

christinepi's picture
christinepi

The hydration wasn't mentioned. I'd like to bake Wednesday. I feed the starter every 24 hours at 7pm; I'm therefore not exactly sure when it peaks, because I'm in bed from 10pm until 7am, but when I get up it's certainly strong looking and almost tripled. I then stir it, and it doubles again within 5 hours or so.

chris319's picture
chris319

The consistency and physical description of your starter sound good. Does it smell of yeast yet?

The thick consistency of my starters means only a few bubbles make it to the surface, but there are gas pockets/bubbles beneath the surface.

christinepi's picture
christinepi

Oh yes, it's been smelling like yeast for at least 9 days now. Less so right after feeding, but certainly after a few hours.

chris319's picture
chris319

So what's the problem? Make a loaf and see how it comes out.

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

put it into the fridge until Tuesday, on Tuesday evening take out 50g and combine with 110g water and 110g flour mix well and let it eat covered overnight, then bake with it on Wednesday when it peaks.  Any left overs get fed water and flour for your maintenance  starter.

christinepi's picture
christinepi

Thanks for the hands on answer, mini oven! Right now I still need some concrete advice before I'll feel confident to just experiment, and you've provided that.

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

you might want to add a tablespoon or two of flour and a little water so it has food for the next few days in the fridge.

christinepi's picture
christinepi

I actually just fed it its normal amount (the 1:1.5:2) before I saw your email just now. I'll let it sit for 2 hours and then stick it in fridge. Hope that'll keep it happy.

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

it is rising, then put it into the fridge.   I would give it a few more hours.

christinepi's picture
christinepi

Yikes, I'll go to bed in 3 hours!! Hope it'll have stirred to life by then! If not, what would the downsides be to stick it in the fridge tomorrow morning, if any?

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

before you pop in bed, then you can forget about it until Tuesday.