The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Starter = Sourdough?

jc's picture

Starter = Sourdough?

Hi Everyone,

I have some questions for starter for so long. First, I would like to know if starter refers to sourdough. If I see 'starter' on a recipe, should I just use sourdough? I usually make breads with instant yeast or dry active yeast, and I don't really know much about starter. I tasted some breads that are made from starter and found them are special. I live around UC Berkeley. I would like to know where to buy 'starter' and how to keep it. I heard that starter can keep long long time if it's being take care well. How to take care of it? Thanks a lot!


Postal Grunt's picture
Postal Grunt

This is the place if you want to learn about sourdough starters. If you go to the top of the page and click on Forum you'll be taken to a page where a bread baker could spend weeks just reading about baking bread. The sourdough and starters category is probably one of the most, if not the most heavily read archive sections.

You can learn how to build up your own starter from nothing more than flour and water in the archived threads. Some threads cover commercially available and free starters. Maintenance of your starter is also covered. Keep in mind that there are starter strains in the US that have been around since the 1840s so maintenance does count for something.

Most of the bakers who post here use a starter but also know how to use yeast in their baking. Many of us started out just wanting to make a better pizza. Take your time to read the threads or do a fast, selective reading. The information is as good as, if not better than, you'll find anywhere. When you come up for air, there'll usually be someone who can answer your questions within 24-48 hours. Welcome to the community.

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven



pmccool's picture

Getting right to the point, as always.


hansjoakim's picture

Silence is golden

DonD's picture

Thanks, Hans for bringing me back to my younger years!