How to Make a Quick Sourdough Starter
Some sourdough starters involve a longer process of fermenting bread and flour on your kitchen countertop. This simpler format makes starters more accessible to modern baking enthusiasts. The starter can be used in pancake, bread and baked goods recipes alike.
Easy Sourdough Starter Recipe
To begin, you will want to choose a vessel for your starter in the glass or stoneware category we dont want a reactive metallic bowl or jar for use with sourdough starters.
2 cups all-purpose flour or bread flour2 cups lukewarm water teaspoon quick-rising yeastIn a glass bowl mix these three ingredients with a wooden spoon or silicon spatula. Pour the mixture into your new starter vessel a glass jar, a 4-cup measuring cup, a crock jar, or the like are popular choices cover with a kitchen towel, or try this trick: cover it with plastic wrap then poke several holes with a pair of kitchen shears or a small knife. Once your starter is covered it is ready to sit in a moderately warmed place in the kitchen, ideally in the low to mid-70s Fahrenheit. If your kitchen is especially cool you can store the sourdough starter in the oven with the light on.Feeding Your Sourdough Starter
Every 12 hours for the first three days, 72 hours, you will be feeding your starter equal parts of water and flour. Here is how to do it:
Remove cover and stir starter with a wooden spoonUsing a measuring cup pour out half of the starter (1 cup out, 1 cup reserved)Add 1 cup flour and 1 cup lukewarm water to remaining starterReturn to clean sourdough vessel and coverRepeat every 12 hoursYou can time your feedings to coincide with morning and evening mealtimes when youre already in the kitchen. I like to feed my starter after I start the coffee pot in the morning, and in the evening I time it around kitchen clean up after dinner.
After 72 hours of feedings your starter should be producing bubbles and a nice sourdough aroma, if the smell is faint you can give it another day to develop more. Once your starter is ready you can store it in the refrigerator giving it a weekly feeding or simply replenishing it after a portion is taken out for cooking or baking.
Alternative Flours for Sourdough Starter Feedings
Once your starter is established you can have fun experimenting with different types of flours at the feedings.
Flours to try in your feedings:
Buckwheat flour a great direction for sourdough pancakesRye flour light or medium Rye, both soak up a lot of moisture so you may need to increase your water at the feeding just a tadWhole Wheat flour does the same as Rye flour so add a bit more water with the feedingYou can build up your starters flavor, or even divide the starter into two jars after the first 72 hours. Experiment with one jar and leave the other one to the standard recipe. Which do you prefer?Troubleshooting Your StarterIf your starter smells off or strange, toss it out and start over.If your starter isnt bubbling by 72 hours, toss it out and start over.If you use most of your starter in a recipe and only have a 1/3 cup of starter just add 1/3 cup flour, 1/3 cup water. At the next feeding dont toss out half of the batter but feed it 2/3 cup flour, 2/3 cup water until you have it built up again.Instead of discarding that 50% of starter at the next feeding share it with a friend! Be sure to include the date of birth (when you first started the recipe), and instructions on how to feed it.