Sourdough Starter 1
- 1 (1/4-ounce) package active dry yeast or 2 1/2 teaspoons
- 2 cups room temperature, non-chlorinated water (or bottled water)
- 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
In a 2 to 3-quart glass or ceramic jar or bowl, using a wooden or non-metallic spoon, mix yeast and warm water. Let stand for 10 minutes. Add flour; mix until thick batter forms. Batter doesn't need to be smooth. Cover loosely with cheesecloth, lightweight kitchen towel or plastic wrap. Let stand in warm place for 24 hours. Stir; cover loosely. Place starter in a warm place for 2 to 3 days or until it bubbles and smells sour; stirring once a day. Cover loosely with a glass or ceramic lid or plastic wrap and store in refrigerator.
The starter must be fed once a week to keep it alive if not used weekly. Activate by following directions to replenish below. If a clear liquid (an alcohol sometimes called hooch) rises to the top of starter during storage, simply stir it back in. Discard. if the liquid turns a light pink, the starter is beginning to break down and spoil; and begin again.
After using a portion of starter, replenish with equal amounts of flour and warm water. For example, if 1 1/4 cups of starter were removed to make bread, replenish remaining starter with 1 1/4 cups warm water and 1 1/4 cups flour. Stir well to blend, cover and let stand in a warm place until bubbly, 3 to 5 hours. Store starter in loosely covered glass container in refrigerator. If not used at the end of one week, remove 1 cup starter and discard; then replenish with equal amounts of flour and warm water as instructed.