Sourdough Tips: Dehydration & Storage

Friday, March 6, 2015

Every now and then there might be a situation in your life when you can't use your sourdough starter as regularly as you want. And there might be times when you just physically can't take care of it! For these situations, it is good to know how to prepare your starter for long term storage.

It is also nice to have some starter stored in case, heaven forbid, something were to happen to your starter! Then you don't have to start from scratch.

How to Dry Your Starter:
Start with a freshly fed starter, and wait until the starter has doubled in size.
Place a sheet of parchment paper on a rimmed baking sheet (like a jelly roll pan).
Place about 1/2 cup of your starer on the parchment paper and spread it as evenly and thinly as you can over the parchment paper.
Place the parchment paper on the middle rack of your oven.
Turn the oven light on and leave it overnight.
In the morning, remove the parchment paper from the oven. The starter should be nice and dry now (if it isn't, leave it in the oven with the light on until it is completely dry. This could take anywhere between 24 hours and 5 whole days. You can tell in the picture that mine was not completely dry. I powdered the portion that was dry and tossed the rest).
Lift or scrape the dried starter off the parchment paper and into a bowl.
Grind the dried starter into a powder. You can do this with a mortal and pestle, a food processor, a rolling pin, however you like.
Place the powder in a glass container with a lid and store in a cool, dry place.

*If kept in a cool, dry place, your starter can last years. You can also place the powder in the freezer for extra insurance, if you want.

To Revive Dried Starter:
Place the powder to a clean bowl with 1/4 cup room temperature water.
Mix and let soak for 10 minutes.
Add 1/4 cup flour, mix well, cover, and leave in a warm place.
The next day, feed it 1/2 cup flour and 1/2 cup water, mix and cover.
Keep feeding it every 12 hours until you bring it up to full activity level and the amount that you like to keep on hand.
Store and feed as you regularly would.

** From now on this information will be posted in our Sourdough Tips page! 


Anonymous said...

As Jenni, knows, I had a "situation" recently, and I very happily revived some starter that I had dried and stored in 2 ziploc bags in the freezer in September 2012 :) Strongly recommend doing this!

Lynn Huntley said...

What I great tip!! I have often wondered how to do this....get instructions too:) Lynn

Alex Neil said...

Symptoms and signs of dehydration can be minor, such as increased thirst, or severe and life-threatening, depending on the extent of the dehydration. Along with thirst, initial symptoms of dehydration include reduced urine output and darkening of the urine as it becomes more concentrated. If the condition progresses, other symptoms develop, including dry mouth, decreased perspiration, lightheadedness, muscle cramps, weakness, palpitations, and absent tear production by the eyes. The skin may feel cool and clammy. Confusion, organ failure, and coma leading to death eventually occur if dehydration is not corrected.

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