How to make Sourdough Starter

Now, just in case there is no sourdough starter available – just make your own. It’ s fun and easy!

First, how to make Potato Water (you’ll need this for the starter recipe)

Potato Water:

  1. Boil potatoes with jackets on until they fall to pieces.
  2. Lift skins out; mash potatoes into a puree.
  3. Let cool. Add more water to obtain a more liquid consistency, if necessary. The richer the potato water, the richer the sourdough.

Now, take 2 cups of the potato water and mix in the pot with 2 tbsp. sugar and 2 cups flour. Beat until the batter is smooth and creamy. Set aside in warm location to ferment.


A variation on the classic sourdough starter:

Grated Potato Starter:

  1. Grated 2 raw potatoes into the bottom of the sourdough pot.
  2. Add 1 yeast cake, diluted in 2 cups warm water, 2 tbsp. sugar, and enough flour to make the batter smooth and creamy.
  3. Beat well, eliminating all lumps.
  4. Cover and place in a warm location free from draughts to ferment.

This starter takes a bit longer to start working, but it’ll start bubbling in a week.


How Long?

Just how long does it take for sourdough starter to become “ripe” – in prime working condition? Experts differ.

  • 3-day starter: Sourdough starter can be used now, provided those little enzymes have started working. It’s better to wait a few more days, however. Toss in extra fuel for the sourdough to work on – a spoonful of sugar along with a couple of spoonfuls of flour. Add water if the batter is too thick. Leave in the warm location to keep fermenting.
  • 1-week starter: Starter is now effervescing with lots of bubbles. Looks and smells like sour cream.
  • 2-week starter: Disciples of sourdough claim that waiting this extra time gives extra flavor, which can’t be compared to any other batter.
  • 3-week starter: The batter is now bubbling like the old witch’s cauldron.
  • 1-month starter: Sourdough is now a rich, creamy batter that is honeycombed with bubbles.
  • 1-year starter: Old-timers claim a year must elapse before the sourdough matures and offer the distinctive taste that nothing else can imitate.