Recipe For Sourdough Starter

Before you can make sourdough bread you need a sourdough starter. This is known as a pre-ferment, or levain (French). The starter adds a unique sour flavour to the bread.

Sourdough Starter
Sourdough Starter
Head straight on to the recipe for Sourdough Starter ♥

Every time we go overseas I put Cordelia, my sourdough starter, into the freezer. When we get back I defrost her slowly in the fridge. As soon as she is ready to go I start my weekly cycle of bread baking. However, when we got back from Europe last September something went wrong. My sourdough grew mould. I had only a pinch of the dried starter left which was not enough to revive Cordelia. I was not too concerned as I had queries from readers’ wanting to start their own sourdough from scratch. To this end I had a few recipes to try out. The first one used grated apples and the first day was a huge success but after 3 days it had gone off. So that was binned.

Today’s inspiration ♥ Recipe For Sourdough Starter ♥ can be found on Lavender and Lime Click To Tweet

The second method called for feeding slowly until the sourdough had doubled in size. I managed to get this one to start off well for the first 5 days. But the starter needs a constant temperature of over 28° Celsius and even though my weather app told me we were in for a lot of hot days, that didn’t happen. And so my second batch failed. The third attempt was a huge success. I took a recipe for Levain which is a super quick way to get a starter going and dragged it out to make my sourdough have that perfect smell and hydration. It is super easy to do and if you have a few hot days coming your way then get started. After I had successfully made this I added the pinch of Cordelia I had left over and my new starter is called Cordevain.

The First Sourdough Loaf
The First Sourdough Loaf

Click on the links for conversions and notes.

5.0 from 1 reviews
Sourdough Starter
 
This is the easiest method I tried to make my own starter
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Ingredients
for the pre-ferment
  • 1kg bread flour, divided
  • 1l water, divided
Method
for the pre-ferment
  1. Place 250g flour and 250mls water into a plastic bowl
  2. Mix together using a fork and cover with cling film
  3. Make several holes in the cling film and place in a warm, draft free place
  4. After 24 hours pour off 150g of your starter and set aside
  5. Discard the rest in your dustbin
  6. Feed by placing 250g flour and 250mls water into the plastic bowl
  7. Add the starter, cover as above and set aside as above for 12 hours
  8. Once again pour off 150g and feed as above
  9. Set aside for 12 hours and then repeat the feeding process
  10. Set aside for 24 hours by which time little bubbles should have formed
to create a 100% hydration
  1. Weigh your starter *
  2. Add equal amounts of flour and water
  3. Mix well and store in a sterilised glass bottle
My Notes
* I weighed off 200g starter and added 200g flour and 200g water
I feed my starter each week by removing 125mls and adding 60mls flour and 60mls water

 

Inspiration published on Lavender and Lime March 13:

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Rating: 5.0. From 1 vote.
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20 thoughts on “Recipe For Sourdough Starter

  1. I wanted to try sourdough from scratch for so long. Your recipe is good enough to give me that push. 🙂
    Anu – My Ginger Garlic Kitchen sharing the blog ♥ Jeera Biscuits | Eggless Roasted Cumin Cookies | Video RecipeMy Profile

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    1. Hope you try it Anu 🙂

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  2. Making sourdough from scratch is still on my bucket list…. – http://www.domesticgeekgirl.com
    Gingi Freeman sharing the blog ♥ Frogs and Fairytales at the Fresno Chaffee ZooMy Profile

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    1. I think you will enjoy the result Gingi 🙂

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  3. I didn’t realise that you could freeze the starter while on holiday! Mine died years ago but I would have done that if I had known that 🙂
    Lorraine @Not Quite Nigella sharing the blog ♥ A Tale Behind Saga, EnmoreMy Profile

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    1. I have done it quite often but this time I am hedging my bets and freezing and drying 🙂

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  4. Have never tried sourdough, but I should!
    Abbe@This is How I Cook sharing the blog ♥ One Pot Pasta with Artichokes, Mushrooms and CheeseMy Profile

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    1. I love the result Abbe 🙂

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  5. Awesome job, I have been looking forward to this post 🙂 I have yet to name mine.

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    1. It makes it like a baby if you name it 🙂

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  6. How wonderful that you bake your own bread Tandy, I’ve always wanted to make my own starter. Will come back here when I am ready.
    cheri sharing the blog ♥ Vegetarian Celtic Curry PieMy Profile

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    1. I hope you get as much joy as I do out of baking your own bread 🙂

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  7. Thanks for sharing this recipe, Tandy. I have never tried to make sourdough but there is always a first time.
    Robbie Cheadle sharing the blog ♥ Gingerbread loafMy Profile

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    1. Hope you give it a go Robbie 🙂

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  8. que receta mas original, me ha encantado, gracias

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    1. My pleasure 🙂

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  9. I killed so many starters that I’m ashamed to ask friends for the new one. I assume my only solution is to make one 😀

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    1. And summer is on its way!

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  10. I love working with sour dough… lovely recipe, Tandy. Safe travels.

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    1. Thanks Liz 🙂

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