The Fresh Loaf

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Reviving A Starter

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conan's picture
conan

Reviving A Starter

I sheet dried some of my own home grown (SF Bay Area) starter that is now flaked and in sealed bags.  What is the best way to revive this?  Just warm water & flour? 

Very curious since my main starter batch is getting extremely "fragrant" lately.  So much so that my GF said my latest bread was really really tangy!  I'm afraid it might be going south.

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

My observations.... (I done it a lot an plan on doin' it again.)

When the dried starter took a long time to dry up (we're talkin' days...high humidity or whatever) then the starter was pretty darn ripe and could not only use a bit o' water, upon revivaling, but hungry as awnry (as a ol...well you know whar I'm comin' from) an' has to be fed too! But don't ya be flyin' caution to the wind, no sir ree, only a little bit, just a little bitty bit, first ya gotta sofften him up and keep ya ol' watchful eye ball on em. Don't let 'im get away. Let em soak up so he aint thursty and 'e just might soften up to ya. (If he should start winking at ya, thow 'm away! No use raisin' vile temtations.) Now I'd give 'm pound for pound enough to just wake 'm up. Now when he's all woke up, (an he aint winkin') whip some of that vitalizin' water around him and slip him a spoon of ya favorite fla'r for vittles. Shouldn't take ya more than a quarter of ha'f a day. Stir and nudge 'm often so he don't go to sleep. Been szoozin' long e'nuf. Let 'em get good and ripe before ya pinch some away (sneaky like) to feed s'more. I like to thin 'm out and run his guts thru a strainer about now but that's just me, gettin' rid of travel dust.

Now the chances of whipping out a good starter would impove mightily if that ol starter was fed before bein' laid down. Sure was a sweet smell, that ol starter dryin'. (smile)

Now revivaling a quick dried starter is even quicker. If that dried starter dried up in less than a day, than I would just soak the buggar (nicer than a bagaboo) with water just over his head, no fl'r and let 'm just sit there and give 'm a nudge now and again until he started to smell ripe. Then I'd take 'em to the waterin' whole and feed 'em. Let 'em work on that till he gets ripe. The next time he gets hungry, split 'm down and feed 'm again. A par working days and he ou't to be fit.

Fragrant now mister, mister conan, sir, I don't quite know whatcha call "fragrant." My definition is a sweet (an' sour) one and hope ya don't mean that sarcastic wise. I know ya tryin' not to let your starter hear you (they do listen) but sometimes a good dryin' helps a 'hole lot with s.d.b.o. Then again, ya just might find out what a good starter smells like.

Aint nothin' wrong with goin' south,

Mini O

conan's picture
conan

Way funny!  My starter dried in less than a day, and I spread him when he was good and bubbly, just at the end of his feeding & doubling (gosh he was hungry!).  So I think the dried stuff shoiuld be pretty good.  I'll just take it slow, and let you know what's going on.  As for my mother starter.......

I guess he's just downright hungry, and a bit ornery.  Men don't like it when they don't get fed.  And so what if he smells a bit - that's what grown men do!!!  I'll keep the faith and pro-seed forthwith!!!

Thanks

Galley Wench's picture
Galley Wench

 Here's the method I use.   http://www.recipezaar.com/208999

 It's always been very reliable!

 

Galley Wench

http://www.wingandsail.blogspot.com/

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Good instructions also. Like the adjustable converter, can even go metric although I rarely use liters, I prefer grams.

May I ask a Q? Why never use metal? I use metal all the time to stir.  Stainless?

Conan, I used the search machine to find instructions on rehydrating starter flakes but got lost in the information. The process has been discussed a lot so, ...I can relate to your frustration. Galley Wench's instuction is good for a liquid starter over 100% hydration.

Mini O

Galley Wench's picture
Galley Wench

Glad it was helpful.   I believe it's really ok to use stainless steel, but wouldn't recommend storing in a metal bowl . . . why risk it.   I just store in a quart jar with plastic over the top to protect it (lid is not stainless), then put on the screw top lid (with a whole punched in it).

  


Galley Wench

http://www.wingandsail.blogspot.com/

SylviaH's picture
SylviaH

The directions I use to revive my  dried starter.

Combine 1 cup of tepid water with dried sourdough starter (approx. 10 gms) in a non metal container.  Mix.  Add one cup of flour and stir.  Cover lightly, set in a 60-80 degree place.  For the next 3-4 days, add 3/4 cup water (for thicker starter} or 1 cup water (for thinner starter) and 1 cup of flour until you have built up your starter and it is bubbly and active.  If you need smaller amounts of starter use half amounts of water/flour.

Sylvia