The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

rye leaven need help

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Dorothy's picture
Dorothy

rye leaven need help

Trying to make sourdough bread rye flour starter. I can't get mine to double after 7 days. Should I start over? I added 100 percent white flour to the 2nd feed.  Could this be the problem???

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susanfnp's picture
susanfnp

Hi Dorothy,

You've come to the right place for help with your starter! There are many people here who will be happy to try and help.

I think it would help if we had more information about what you did to get things going, how you are feeding it now, and what kind of activity you are seeing.

Susanfnp

Dorothy's picture
Dorothy

Thank you for your reply.  I re-read my recipe last night after posting my problem.  I had mis-read the recipe.  I should have, starting with the 2nd feeding, substituted small amounts of other flour (I choose white) until I was feeeding 100 per of the desired flour. So, for it's p.m. feeding (I should name him) I changed to rye flour.  I gave him it's 3oz of rye, 3oz water and 6 oz of the same starter.  To my surprise this morning it had doubled.  Now I am not sure what to feed him.  Should I just start over.  This is the 8th day.

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

just fine.  Reads like your starter is longing for nourishment.  Take out a heaping teaspoon of starter (more is not needed) and feed with 2 oz rye and 1 oz white and enough water to make it liquid for a few feedings and then go to 1/2 rye. You can keep reducing the rye (at least I think that's what your goal is) but I find a little rye is good for the starter, they just seem to love the stuff and are easier to manage. (And I can be sometimes very abusive to my starters) --Mini Oven

Dorothy's picture
Dorothy

Thank you Mini Oven!  Will try your suggestion.

rcornwall's picture
rcornwall

 Whole wheat and rye are preferred starter flours partly because they contain a higher percentage of natural yeast than does white flour. That is probably why you get more activity after adding rye flour than when you add white flour. White flour will work, but it has been my experience that it takes more time to really become active. You could also consider adding another ingredient which will give your starter more oomph. I added red grapes to my starter. You can rinse them off before using but do not "wash" as there is natural yeast on the skins of many fruits as well. If you do this put some red grapes in cheesecloth and tie it up. Crush the grapes slightly and ferment in your starter for 5-6 days, stirring once per day. Once the chessecloth has inflated then deflated, simply squeeze out the extra juice into the starter. This may thin out your starter a little, so just add a little more flour to get the right consistency. you should give it one good feeding after a couple of days, then you should see alot of activity, no matter what flour oyu use.

rcornwall