Cover the bowl with a breathable cloth. Wherever you plan to store it, it’s best to first transfer it to a jar with a lid, however. Feed your fridge starter once a week if you plan to bake with it regularly. In fact, there are those who would argue that if your loaf of bread is sour, you're not doing it right. In this way you can rescue sourdough cultures that have been sitting around for months (I've gone 6 months between batches of sourdough bread before). Once you have an active, thriving sourdough starter, most people will teach you to regularly discard part of it. We have heard of people managing to store it in the fridge for over a year without feeding! The low temperature of the fridge will make your starter inactive. How to Refrigerate Sourdough Starter . When you feed your starter, feed it with approximately equal weights of flour and water. I was determined to keep my sourdough starter alive AND to be able to successfully bake with it. Once your sourdough starter is established (that is about 7 to 9 days after starting and regular feedings) you can slow feedings to once a week (or less) by storing the starter in the fridge long term. Perhaps a metaphor for ourselves in times of crisis, starters are how bread was born some 10,000 years ago. Sometimes batter will need a little more of this or a little less of that. I’ve been making and using starters for about 20 years, and the only answer I can come up with is, it depends. You may have missed seeing her feed the starter, it doesn't take long and really only has to be done every week or two if you aren't making bread regularly. A. Sourdough starter that is used frequently can be maintained at room temperature, 70-85ºF is best. To keep, sourdough starter needs refrigeration, a little attention every once in a while and a go-with-the-flow attitude. I go through a step by step illustrated guide on how to store your starter 3 different ways depending on how long you want to keep it for. If you’re regularly feeding your starter more than you’re removing for recipes, think about it: your starter will keep getting bigger. Starter that is used less frequently can be stored in the refrigerator with a tight-fitting lid. If you have several starters, and do not have a dedicated refrigerator, try storing the extra starters you don’t plan on using for a while in the freezer. To do this, feed it as instructed above, seal the jar and then stand at room temperature for 2-3 hours (to help reinvigorate the yeast) before placing in the fridge to store. As a general rule of thumb, the amount you feed your sourdough starter depends on how much of it you have to start with. You will be happy to learn that storing a sourdough culture isn’t that big of a deal. I have gone as far as 48 hours with sourdough proofing in the fridge. If you forget to feed the sourdough in the fridge, don’t panic. However, keep in mind that overnight is relative to the period between the time you place the dough in the fridge and the time it is withdrawn. Whatever the reason is, there are few ways to store sourdough starter for long term and keep it healthy until next time you are ready to bake. That and the extended effects of protease activity are likely to give you a dough that's degraded. How active was your starter when you added it to the mix? However, there are ways to reduce your sourdough discard so you have very little or sometimes none at all. By keeping the dough in the fridge overnight, you will be giving it adequate time to proof to the maximum. Why? Storing Sourdough Starter in Refrigerator. This is something you can pass on to your children and grandchildren, as long as you keep your starter happy and healthy. Then you can return it to the refrigerator if you don’t plan to use it in the near future. How to Dehydrate Sourdough Starter. 3. After refreshing, let it sit out on the counter for 1 hour or so, then toss it into the fridge. If you aren’t intending to use your sourdough starter every day, it is best kept in the fridge. Start with an active, fed, lively starter. If there is gray water on top of your fridge-stored sourdough starter, that's normal. They have a wonderful flavor--much more complex than your average sandwich loaf--but they are not "sour." Once a starter is well established, its acidity and biological activity will protect it from neglect. It's best to allow 2 to 3 days for the starter to warm up and become active again. During this time, be sure to feed the starter to give it a good jump start and ensure your first loaf is a success. How long can you keep your starter on the counter while using it and feeding it? The table below outlines a few of these factors and how we can modify them to adjust fermentation activity. The more starter you keep, the more flour and water you will have to feed it. Then, your living investment will be healthy and ready for you to jump right back into routine. I’ve been successful, so that means you can be, too. A sourdough starter can either be kept at room temperature or in the fridge. Some starters are more robust than others, and can go two or three weeks between feedings, though that’s not ideal. Instructions on maintaining sourdough starter at both room temperature and in the refrigerator are included with your starter and can be found here. Once your starter is bubbly and active, you have fresh sourdough starter! When stored in the fridge for up to 2 weeks, feeding a sourdough starter weekly or twice a week is just perfect. +1 for 14 days as the upper limit in the fridge, but I'd say you'll definitely want to refresh before trying to make bread with a culture that old. Did you use warm or hot water during mixing? If you would like to store your sourdough starter for a much longer time than a couple of months, have a read of my article “How to Store Sourdough Starter Long Term”. To prepare for the fridge, I will wait until the starter needs a refreshment, discard all but 20g of mature starter, and then refresh it with 100g flour and 80g water (I like the culture to be a bit on the stiff/dry side). If you do not have enough starter yet, continue feeding and building up more starter. That equates to about 2/3 to 3/4 cup of water for every cup of flour. If you have enough in your bowl that you can pull from, you can always make those recipes without having to wait as long as the starter is fed and full. Much better to plan ahead and build a portion of this small starter(15g or so) into a levain(150g or so) and then when the levains matured build that into a final dough. That said, lots of variables in play. And you know what? Or you'd need to allow more time for the initial rise. I pulled mine straight out of the fridge, fed it and gave it enough time to double. You can always switch to a different method at anytime! If you want to keep a larger 12 oz starter than what you’re listing is basically correct. All my recipes use 8 oz of either starter or discard. Simply put, it’s a maintenance routine. Generally up to 6 months. Let me tell you a little something about me and how I consume information: It HAS to be straight forward, to the point, and explained well with no unnecessary step for the sake of it! Assuming you have already done mixing AND autolyse, you can let that bad boy proof in the fridge for a full day if you want. If you only keep one starter, keep it at room temperature and feed it smaller amounts until you are ready to use it, pouring out any excess when there is too much. You can store your sourdough starter in the refrigerator, or on the kitchen counter. How much sourdough starter do you keep on hand? If you want to make a sourdough based bread, whether from gluten producing flours or from gluten free flours you will need to make and maintain a starter. Some people keep their starters alive for decades. Feed the remaining to bring back to 12 oz. It can sleep in your fridge for a long time. (You can freeze it, dry it, or keep it in the fridge; Prepare the Fresh Starter for Baking. How to maintain a starter with discard . With each of these methods, you will always store your sourdough starter, loosely covered, in the fridge between bakes. Read through both methods and choose the one that works best for you. If your starter has been in the refrigerator for a week or two and hasn’t been fed then you will remove and discard (or use in a discard recipe) 8 oz of starter. You can do this and then put the starter straight back into the fridge again. I always like to keep a pretty good amount of starter in the bowl, because there are certain no wait sourdough recipes that you can make like my sourdough skillet and sourdough pancakes. I'd say after 14 days on a bread or A/P flour starter you're more in the area of risky neglect than constructive neglect.