The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

My Starter seems to have crashed!

Flyingsolo's picture
Flyingsolo

My Starter seems to have crashed!

I've had great success with my starter that's a few months old. I've been using a small amount of starter in a jar and would mix 1:5:5 into it the night before to create a levain (50/50 wh. Wheat/White flour) of ~200 ml for use the morning after.

But last night, I used 50/50 rye/white flour, and got no appreciable rise or volume increase overnight. It looks like a batter, as if I were creating a new starter from scratch again. Very disappointing and I'm not sure what happened or what to do. I may just let it rest overnight a second night. I may also take a small amount off and feed it 1:3:3, creating an offshoot.

Thoughts on what happened? Thanks.

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

What is the complete feeding schedule?  :)

Flyingsolo's picture
Flyingsolo

Well, when it was going along fine, I didn't feed every day but would do a bake ~once a week. The starter would stay at room temp with a small volume, ~25 g. (À la YouTuber, Bake with Jack)

I'd feed it a ratio of 1:2:2 or 1:3:3 to wake it up and then a 1:5:5 to generate a levain.

andykg's picture
andykg

If you are following the method like Jack does then you should be putting it in the fridge between uses and then taking it out the day before when you are going to use it and then feed it. If you are leaving it out every day but not feeding it then you are probably just starving it...

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

into hybernation.  As in nature when the weather and food source changes.  Give it at least three days to wake up. 

Flyingsolo's picture
Flyingsolo

Thanks for your comments above. I've successfully revived it with a couple of feedings this week so all is not lost. As you say, it may have gone dormant.

I had had a long run of success by leaving the starter at room temp for a week between bakes but perhaps that was just good luck.