Doin’ a happy dance right now!
Within hours it started to bubble and activate, so I kept it nicely tended and aerated, stirring it every few hours, no more than four times before morning when I came down, like Christmas morning, to find that the starter had doubled in sized!!
So now what? More flour, more water and now we start to divide the precious little seed culture into parts. If you are nervous about moving forward and would rather not throw out half of the starter, put it in a separate bowl and just do this next part to each half of the starter. It’s like an insurance policy, so I did that, I housed one half in a 2C measuring cup and the other in a 4C measuring cup.
- 10-1/2 TBS whole wheat flour
- 2 TBS filtered or spring water
- 1/2 C of the part three seed culture (roughly half of the starter)
Measure out 1/2 C (4oz/113g) of the part three of the seed culture and discard, give away or put the other half in another bowl as a backup. Add the new ingredients to the 1/2C seed culture and mix it to form a soft dough. I found that combining the new ingredients separately and then kneading the new with the old worked the best for me.
Cover it with plastic wrap and leave it at room temperature until the culture becomes active. It should swell and double in size. It can take anywhere from 4-24 hours for the part four culture to become fully active. If there is still little sign of fermentation after 24 hours, leave it at room temerpature until it becomes very active, continuing to aerate it at least twice a day.
When the seed culture has grown and smells acidic (like apple cider vinegar, mine was vaguely so), then you can move on to converting your starter to a mother starter or keep it in the refrigerator for up to three days.
If you are working on a starter, leave a comment! Let’s chat! This is possibly one of the most rewarding and frustrating baking experiences I have had since starting this blog!
For those of you that are new to this bread baking portion of my blog, I am working my way from cover to cover of Peter Reinhart’s Artisan Breads Everyday. Feel free to leave your link and join in the fun!