The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

sourdough starter

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ggage's picture
ggage

sourdough starter

I have a sourdough starter from fresh ground red wheat. It seems active enough and has a sour taste , sort of yogurty ,not like vinegar , but it is 5 days old and doesn't have an odour like sourdough ,more like tumeric . Should I wait and see or start over ? Regards Ggage

cranbo's picture
cranbo

Don't start over. Give it 10 more days. 

In about 5 more days, start feeding it 2x per day. Leave your starter at room temp. 

Give it time, be patient, you cannot rush sourdough. It will work out just fine! 

ggage's picture
ggage

Guess I should have stated that I'm trying to make a sourdough starter from fresh ground wheat. The instructions i have are to feed it 50 grams of wheat and 50 grams of water twice a day,room temp.  Starters in the past for me have always been going concerns when I got them ,(except I made starter with grapes and wheat a couple times) and smelled like sourdough, they just get dead when I go away or forget.  We'll see about this one .

Chuck's picture
Chuck

There are lots and lots of well-meaning directions for starting a starter that really don't work all that well, including most of the "standard" directions you can find easily (wheat and water should work  ...eventually -- but there may be better ways). There are several long posts by "Debra Wink" here on TFL that are particularly helpful. She's both a scientist with a microscope, and a serious baker who's really tried most known methods. Particularly search out her "pineapple juice" method of starting a starter.

cranbo's picture
cranbo

Fresh ground wheat should be fine for this. 

You should only start feeding 2x per day after the 1st 5 days or so, after letting the initial fermentation happen.

If you're using 50g of ground wheat and 50g of water, how much of the old starter are you saving? You probably want to save maybe 50-75g; otherwise you may not be giving it enough food. A 1:1:1 ratio of starter:flour:water by weight would be best for your starter. 

Be sure if you're not feeding it that you store it in the fridge. There it will keep almost indefinitely...I'm not kidding. You can keep it there for 3 months without feeding, although that kind of neglect won't yield the best-tasting, most active starter. 

It's nearly impossible to kill a starter, unless you cook it, or destroy it in some other way. You might think you've killed it, but it's not likely that you have. Just save 50g, start feeding it regularly again, and it will spring back to life. 

inkedbaker's picture
inkedbaker

i've had my whole wheat starter going for 2 weeks now and a red fife starter....i've used the whole wheat starter for a loaf and the red fife has the same yogurty flavor you mentioned...I found leaving the starter at a pancake consistency didn't allow for proper doubling so I started feeding 1 full cup flour to 3/4 cups water and it seemed to come alive

ggage's picture
ggage

Hey Cranbo - I've been looking at this grow for six days and started wondering if I need a bigger container. the instructions I have don't mention using a portion of the original starter ,just adding to it. i looked again and it just wants ya to keep adding ! What would you reccomend ?-     50 gms wheat 50 gms water  and 75 to 100gms original starter ?

I can start an sideline starter . No problem. The original question was about the lack of sourdough odour.

cranbo's picture
cranbo

At minimum, I would use a 1:1:1 ratio of wheat, water and starter for feeding. That means 50g water, 50g wheat, 50g starter.

I would recommend a 2:2:1 ratio of wheat, water and starter for feeding for optimum health and growth. That means 100g water, 100g wheat, 50g starter..

Always feed as much (but preferably more) food as starter!

To boost sourdough flavor, check JMonkey's thread about making sourdough more sour

ggage's picture
ggage

Well- the original starter took off on about the 7 th day , smelled and tasted right and rose well when fed ,so I made a couple loaves and got good results . Nothing too tangy but I hope that can change with time ,I have to scale up the recipe I made to get more. I put the starter in the fridge for a bit and will get it going again for the weekend. Other starters I have made and used smelled sourdoughish almost from the start so I wondered what was going on.  Thanks   Ggage

cranbo's picture
cranbo

Good to hear Ggage. BTW, if you want more sour flavor, follow the steps listed in this thread:

http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/1040