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rye sourdough help, newbie here

Fabulousmiriam's picture

rye sourdough help, newbie here

I'm using this recipe

And I finished the 6 days, and I know there's hooch at the top but the instructions don't say what to do about that. I know it's from under feeding but again I don't really know what I'm doing.

Anyway I fed it again before making the sourdough, and I left it for the 12 hours but it smells like acetone which I know is the same issue, even though for that part of the recipe it's fed a lot more flour - what gives?

How do I proceed with this recipe?

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

lets find out where your starter is along the beginning timeline.  Six days is still not a lot of time. (4th ingredient ---> patience).  Important is the temperature of the room and starter.  And do you happen to have a picture of the starter before you feed it?  Has it increased in volume, changed color, or risen between feeds?  

I have to add that I disagree with not using boiled water.  Just don't use boiling HOT water, it should be cooled down to 30°C before using.  This can help eliminate a lot of problems.  I see no need to feed the starter on day 2 of the process unless the temps are very warm, over 30°C.  Your aproximate location can be very helpful as well in touble shooting.  

You can test the starter before making bread with it.  Take out several teaspoons, double the volume with water and add enough flour to make a toothpaste consistency.  Drop into a clean narrow glass and level out carefully with the spoon or by banging the bottom of the glas with the palm of your hand.  Mark the level, cover to prevent drying out and watch the stuff rise starting in about 6 hours.  If it does rise, take this starter and let it peak to fully risen, then use it in the recipe or feed it as your starter.  If it doesnt rise in 24 hours at temps above 24°C the starter was not ready for baking.  Throw it away and return to the original starter jar, perhaps skipping a feeding.  (This assumes the starter has been over fed letting the pH in the starter drop lower to encourage the desired bacteria and ev. yeasts.)  

I'm not sure the starter has hootch unless it smells like a brewery, it could be simple separation of flour and water.  Will know more with more information.  :)