The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Get sure my sourdough doesn't die while I'm away for a week

sasomao's picture

Get sure my sourdough doesn't die while I'm away for a week


I managed to build a liquid levain starter (125% hydatation, following the reciepe in Hamelman book), which is very satisfactory, and gives nice bread.

My problem is that I've to leave for ~7 days for a work trip. Is there a way I can avoid my little colony to die because of starvation??

Thanks for any suggestions!


GermanFoodie's picture

sourdough keeps MONTHS in the fridge to my knowledge. Just discard any dark liquid that may form on top when you return and refresh it a few times before using.

LindyD's picture

As insurance, use a portion of your next feeding discard and build it to about 50-55% hydration.  A firm levain does not require as frequent feeding as liquid and you'll have a backup, just in case.   The morning you're scheduled to leave, do another refreshment, let it sit out for about an hour, then refrigerate.  There will be no hootch to discard upon your return, but it will smell quite acidic.

Have a safe and enjoyable trip!

Le Copain's picture
Le Copain

Greetings, sasomao,

the safest and most sustainable way for me is simply freezing Your leaven in small portions of about 50 g - Dan Lepard described it ( and I did it several times for longer vacations than just a week... All the more - it feels great to have a frozen backup, just in case something goes wrong with Your starter...

Have a nice trip and may the dough be with You!

Aussie Pete's picture
Aussie Pete


My colony has been established for about 3 months now. I bake once a week every week. I just give my starter a new feed at 100% hydration and when it starts to bubble and grow when it's back to room temperature I place it back in the fridge till next weeks bake. It's not died yet.


Davo's picture

Don't bother freezing. My usual feeding routine if not baking is about once a week, but if it goes two weeks it still comes back to full power in two refreshes at room temp over 24 hrs.  I have one that has been left at a weekend shack in the fridge - it goes unfed for 2 months or more at times. Usually this takes about 2 days or even three feeding at 12 hr intervals at room temp to come back strong, but it's never failed yet.

One week - that's just routine!