The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

sourdough burnout

winsey's picture
winsey

sourdough burnout

Is there a limit to the number of times you can refresh a sourdough starter? I left mine for a while and took out a bit to restart a few days ago hoping to bake a loaf today. The consistency was really weird, almost as if the liquid and solid wouldn't combine no matter how much I mixed it and it hardly smelled like sourdough at all. I've restarted it a couple of times in the past and had no problem with it.

I've had it for about two years now and feed it regularly. Have I just lost it?

andrew_l's picture
andrew_l

Almost cerainly not. Just take 30 grams of your tired starter and mix with 50 grams flour, 30 grams water and leave overnight. Do the same the next day (discarding the excess) and by day 3 it should be back to strength.
If there's enough of your original starter, begin three or four new ones - at least one will take. And if you use organic rye to feed it, the success rate is almost guaranteed.

Some starters are reputed to be over 1000 years old! I think 20 is certainly possible. And a year dormant is certainly retrievable. How long since you last used it?

Andrew

winsey's picture
winsey

I used it to bake with probably about three months ago but I've fed it since then.

I did refresh it yesterday so I will do it again this morning and see what happens. Thanks for your help.