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Create a Starter from Sourdough extract

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narabio's picture
narabio

Create a Starter from Sourdough extract

Hello,


Does someone know if I can make a sourdough starter from "Sourdough extract"?


Today I've seen a packet (15gr) of something labeled as "Sourdough extract" and I have bought it. The ingredient list says it contains only "Rye flour and Enzymes". I wondered if this is some kind of dried sourdough culture and if I could bring it to life.


Anyone have any experience with something similar?


Thanks in advance,


narabio

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Let me put it this way.  It may have the correct pH balance to start a starter instead of using pineapple juice.  (Search in site, The Pineapple Juice solution, part 2)  I don't think it is a starter on it's own but a flavoring to lower the pH for rye flour and make a straight dough taste sour.   If it was dried sourdough the bacteria would be mentioned on the label.


I would take 50g rye flour and combine it with 50g water and throw in about 3g of this extract  to get the pH lower to "jump-start" a new starter.  I'm guessing it will work for about 5 feedings.


Shiao Ping's Blog has a good description for making and feeding a new starter using hourly spacing of 20 hours for the first feed, 8 hours for the second, 16 hours for the third and (you can see the pattern) 8 hours for the forth feed, etc.  So.... start mixing at noon and 8 am the following morning discard all but 50g and feed it 50g water, 50g rye, 3g extract.   Same day, 4pm, discard to 50g and feed again.  As you noticed I reduced the amounts from Shiao's class instructions from 200g to 50g.  Less waste.


I personally like the varied feeding times better than every 12 hours when starting up. The alternating 8 hr feedings boost yeast growth.


Other tips:  stir often (about 2-4 times between feeds) cover loosly between stirs and feeds  (plastic and rubber band is easiest)  Sit out at room temperature.  Label so no one throws it away.  Don't expext much rise from a rye starter.


Hope this is helpful. 


Mini

narabio's picture
narabio

Thanks, Mini


Your answer has been useful.


I've made an starter before, following the pineapple juice formula. I made what I considered a decent loaf of the Basic Sourdough recipe from the BBA. Then, I kept my starter in the refrigerator. Two weeks later it was full of mold, so I threw it.


I wanted to start again, but there's a problem with making a new starter... I think that when someone has never seen a true starter before, it is dificult to know when the stuff you have in the counter is more than just "flour and water".


I've gone to several "artisan" bakeries here in Spain, trying to ask for some starter. When I told them about natural leavened bread they didn't know what I was talking about... There was a baker who told me "All the ingredients we use here are natural!!!"


So when I saw this "sourdough extract" I though I had found a real starter... Well... I will try to start a new one on my own again.

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Sounds good.  When it gets going, and about 5-7 days old, you might want to thicken it up a bit to last the 12 or 24 hour feedings.  Give it a few weeks before storing into the fridge.   It will be easier this time, you do know what to look for.


May I offer an experiment?  Could you start two identical starters?  As you plan on keeping the starter in the refrigerator eventually, try this with one of the starters: 


At the end of the first 24 hours of starting your starter, before discarding & feeding it, put one into the fridge for 24 hours and then bring it out to warm up and continue with the discard & feed schedule.  (note I used 24 hours, if you use a 20 hour feed schedule then change it to 20)


Keep them labeled and treat them the same growing on the countertop.  One starter will be one day behind the other due to refrigeration.  But will it stay that way?  Keep notes and lets see what happens.  Don't forget to stir with different spoons.


What do you say? 


Mini

narabio's picture
narabio

Ok, Mini. I think I owe to The Fresh Loaf members this little experiment for all the help I've taken from this community.


Today, I'll begin two new starters and I'll keep you informed.


Narabio

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Mini-O

boathook1's picture
boathook1

Hi Narabio,


If you're seeking a dried starter I can recommend one being sold on EBAY...  If you're familiar with how to use EBAY.. Punch this into the search bar "San Francisco sourdough starter".


You will be shown a few starters that work quite nicely if you follow the directions... I tried it and was completely satisfied with the starter... My problem is that I don't know a thing about baking and I ruin all my loaves...


 


All the best Boathook1