The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Hydration Ratio

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JonnyP's picture

Sourdough starter Hydration Ratios: Thin vs Thick: How they smell, and how do they affect the final loaf.

August 13, 2011 - 9:41pm -- JonnyP

How "sour" does your starter smell?

When I use my soudough starter (typically about 6 hours after the final refresh), I remix it well, blow off the CO2, and take a whiff: it usually smells like vinegar (acetic acid; burns the nose).

In contradistinction, my home-made fermented pickles and Polish sour rye soup starter (500% hydration ratio), typically smell like lactic acid (sweet to the nose).

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