The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Warm water bath for the starter...

Pengyou's picture

Warm water bath for the starter...

I keep my house at around 62 degrees when I  am not home.  I would like to start a sourdough culture but need to work around this detail.  I don't want to heat my house up so that the culture will be happy!  My solution - I have bought an aquarium heater...I want to put the starter in a plastic box that is full of water.  The heater will heat the water, which in turn will keep the little sourdough buddies happy.  My question - I want to use a low plastic box with a tight lid to keep the starter in - put that in the bigger box with the warm water, to help facilitate aheat transfer.  Will there be any problems with having a low but istarter container?  All of the videos I have seen you rather tall jars.  Also, is there a problem with using plastic instead of glass?


Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

into a tall jar of water standing next to the jar of starter?  Tip your styro box on end if you need to.  I tuck starters into my vest pocket to keep warm.   I just don't feed them if letting them cool down at night and count daytime as half a day.  Glass or plastic as long as it is clean.

One doesn't need a large jar to make a starter, a pint sized deli container works too.  A tbs each of flour and water and put a lid on it.  Double that if afraid it could dry out.  Most starter recipes use way too much flour.

albacore's picture

I'm sure an aquarium heater will work, but two points:

  • You will need to weigh down your starter jar to stop it floating away
  • You will need a thermostat linked to your heater to stop it overheating


suave's picture

I am concerned that warm, wet, and tightly closed might be a recipe for mold.

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven


flourpower's picture


I use a heat mat which is used for seed germination low wattage 77f all day and safe if I go away I use it in the shed for extra peace of mind obtained at garden centres or internet hope this ight help