As part of the characterization you instruct us to transfer some of the starter into a new jar. What should I do with the leftover starter? Which jar do I keep for making bread?

We’ve asked you to transfer your starter to a new jar on day 15 to ensure that you (and we) can get a clear visual of maximum height and bubble production. After you’ve submitted your data and pictures on day 15, you can maintain and use the starter(s) however you like!  […]

As part of the characterization you instruct us to transfer some of the starter into a new jar. What should I do with the leftover starter? Which jar do I keep for making bread?2020-05-04T14:58:24-04:00

My starters keep failing – help!

A failed starter can be humbling and discouraging – but it’s still scientifically important! Anecdotally, we know that starters DO fail sometimes – but we don’t yet understand the reasons why. This is partly because folks may not want to share their failures, and partly because there are so many different factors that […]

My starters keep failing – help!2020-05-04T11:13:54-04:00

Can I use a starter I already have? / Do I need to make a new starter?

The Wild Sourdough Project is a new, separate effort from the original global sourdough project, with the goal of addressing different questions. Most importantly: we want data about NEWLY GROWN starters (not pre-existing, old, or revived ones), to eliminate any differences in age or travel histories among starters.

Can I use a starter I already have? / Do I need to make a new starter?2020-05-04T11:13:46-04:00

Can you convert the recipe to weight in addition to volume?

We chose to provide our protocol and recipe in volume because we suspect that more people have measuring spoons at home than scales. That said, it is certainly possible to convert a recipe from volume to weight; but each participant would have to make this conversion, separately, for each flour and starter. (This […]

Can you convert the recipe to weight in addition to volume?2020-05-04T11:14:09-04:00

I’ve noticed a dry layer appearing to form on the surface of our starters. What should those of us with dry tops do to best stay in line with the experimental procedure/goals?

The dry layer may be unavoidable in some cases. The only reason we would absolutely recommend discarding a dry layer is if it has a lot of (fuzzy) mold growing on it. Otherwise, just go ahead and mix it back in. We do NOT recommend a solid lid, since this might prevent colonization […]

I’ve noticed a dry layer appearing to form on the surface of our starters. What should those of us with dry tops do to best stay in line with the experimental procedure/goals?2020-05-04T11:14:15-04:00

Can I use other yeast sources? (e.g. grape skin/juice, yogurt, etc.)

For this project, we are focused on characterizing starters grown from only flour and water, so we can determine which “behaviors” (i.e., rise or aroma) might vary according to flour type or inside/outside conditions. Adding other yeast sources will “muddy the waters”. You’re welcome to experiment with other yeast sources on your own […]

Can I use other yeast sources? (e.g. grape skin/juice, yogurt, etc.)2020-05-04T11:14:21-04:00

My starter isnt bubbling up (or was bubbling up for the first few days, but now is not). Did I kill it??

Don’t despair!  You shouldn’t expect a stable starter for at *least* ten-fourteen days. In that time, a lot is changing within your starter. As acids (produced by the Lactobacillus bacteria) build up, they start to kill other microbes. Sometimes these microbes are dominant in the starter for the first few days and can make a […]

My starter isnt bubbling up (or was bubbling up for the first few days, but now is not). Did I kill it??2020-05-04T11:14:36-04:00

Should I stop feeding my store bought sourdough starter? Do you think it would interfere with what the wild population would be in my home? (Q from Kristen Deleault)

 Just give the two some distance. Don’t let the starter you have fade. 

One of the questions you will answer when you enter you data will ask about current sourdoughs in your home. This will help us tease apart any strange data anomalies.

Should I stop feeding my store bought sourdough starter? Do you think it would interfere with what the wild population would be in my home? (Q from Kristen Deleault)2020-05-04T11:14:47-04:00