The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Final Starter Feeding Before Baking

paralegal2001's picture

Final Starter Feeding Before Baking


I'm feeding my 100% hydration starter with a 1:4:4 ratio.  However, I'm not sure how much to feed to arrive at the amount needed for the dough.  I need 10 oz. for my recipe, so thought that for doubling I should feed 5 oz. of starter.  I ended up with WAY TOO MUCH starter for my baking project.  Any thoughts?  This site has been very helpful-thanks to everyone!

Doc.Dough's picture

X+4X+4X=10 oz

9X=10 oz

X=10/9=~1.2 oz of starter

You do the rest. 

paralegal2001's picture

Thank you so much!  It seems so straightforward when you put it in those terms.'s picture

As always, Doc is spot on.  But that will give you exactly enough for the bake.  If you bake it all away, you'll have no starter left for your next bake.  So, forgive me if this is insulting, but don't kill the goose that's laying your golden levain eggs.  For example, make 20 oz of starter (and think about getting metric about this) from 2.4 oz of seed, using half of it for the bake and returning the unused half to the fridge to seed next week's.  That's the "always" of my subject line.

As I mentioned in reply to a blog comment this week, there are those who feel growing up (not necessarily "WAY") more levain than a routine home kitchen bake requiries is advisable from a flavor perspective:  larger volume fermentations yield sweeter (read: higher lactic/acetic ratio) products.  That's the "sometimes" of my subject line.

Happy baking!