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DO YOU KNOW HOW TO STORE SOURDOUGH AT HOME?

HOW TO STORE SOURDOUGH?

Once used for your recipes, Sourdough can be stored in 3 ways, depending on how long you wish to keep it.

First of all, you must evaluate if you want to have It available every day or if you prefer to use it from time to time. In the first case, you will need to refresh the Sourdough DAILY and store it at room temperature (about 19°C (66°F) – 20°C (68°F)) for 24 hours. 

In the second case, you can store it for several days in the refrigerator or freezer. However, I suggest scheduling the cycle of 3 refreshments at least once every 15-20 days to avoid diluting the yeasts and lose their strength.

STORAGE AT ROOM TEMPERATURE (FOR 24 HOURS)

Keep the Sourdough at room temperature and refresh it daily if you need to use it quite often (but this is unlikely to happen at home). Otherwise, please keep it in the refrigerator and refresh it every week to reinforce the Sourdough after several days of storage.

Let’s see how to refresh the Sourdough daily:

Assuming you refreshed the starter the previous day, remove the crust from the Sourdough’s surface and take the inner part. You will soak it in lightly sweetened water (2g of sugar/liter of water) at 38°C (100°F) and leave it for about 20 minutes.

Once the “bath” is complete, squeeze out the Sourdough and knead it with the following proportions:

  • 1kg of well-squeezed Sourdough
  • 1kg of Bread Flour
  • 300gr of water 30°C (86°F)

As soon as you get a homogenous dough, roll it out with a rolling pin to a thickness of 1-2cm, roll it up and dip it in cold tap water (about 19°C (66°F)). Let the sourdough ferment at room temperature for 24 hours. If the room temperature rises above 28°C (82°F)(e.g., in summer), reduce the storage period to 12 hours.

STORAGE INTO THE FRIDGE (FOR 7-10 DAYS)

This type of storage is definitely the one I recommend for home use because it allows you to keep the Sourdough for about 1 week without causing an excessive loss of strength.

After the bath (as explained above), squeeze and knead:

  • 1kg starter
  • 2kg of Bread Flour
  • 800gr water at 30°C (86°F)

Knead it, roll it to 1-2 cm of thickness, roll it up and soak it into cold tap water (about 19°C (66°F))

Leave the Sourdough at room temperature until it comes to the surface. Then, place it in the fridge at +4°C (39°F) for 7-10 days.

Sourdough does not absorb odors that may be in the refrigerator, so you can leave it uncovered.

It is crucial to evaluate the fridge’s temperature because if it is too far from +4°C, it will shorten the yeast’s shelf life to 4-5 days. 

To reactivate the Sourdough starter, leave it 24 hours at room temperature and proceed with the regular daily refreshments for at least 4-5 days before using it in the recipe.

STORAGE IN FREEZER (FOR MORE THAN 1 MONTH)

To further extend the period of preservation – more than 1 month – I suggest proceeding with Freezing Storage, moving as follows:

After soaking the Sourdough as explained above, squeeze it and knead if following these proportions:

  • 1 kg starter
  • 2 kg of Bread Flour
  • 800 g water at 30°C (86°F)

Knead all the ingredients, roll the dough to 1-2 cm of thickness, roll it up and soak it into cold tap water at 19°C/20°C (66°F – 68°F). Leave at room temperature until the Sourdough rises to the surface and then place in the refrigerator, uncovered, at +4°C (39°F) for 24 hours. The next day, put in the freezer and wait for the entire mass to completely freeze before covering the Sourdough with a plastic wrap sheet.

To reactivate the Sourdough, avoid temperature chocks is crucial. For this, please place it in the refrigerator for 24 hours. Then put it at room temperature for 24 hours or the time necessary for the Sourdough to rise to the surface again. Finally, you can proceed with standard refreshments.

NOW THAT YOU HAVE LEARNED HOW TO STORE SOURDOUGH, YOU REALLY KNOW EVERYTHING ABOUT THIS EXTRAORDINARY INGREDIENT.

FOR ANY FURTHER INFO, DO NOT HESITATE TO CONTACT ME VIA THE CONTACT FORM!

I REPLY TO YOUR QUESTIONS ABOUT SOURDOUGH

I don't use Sourdough very often. How can I store it without wasting too much flour?

Suppose you do not use Sourdough very often. In that case, the most rational solution is to store it in the refrigerator and refresh it every 5/7 days. For periods longer than 1 month, you can keep the yeast in the freezer. In both cases, it will be necessary to refresh the yeast with specific refreshers. 

How can I recycle the rest of the Sourdough discarded during refreshments?

One way to recycle it is to let them dry it first, then bake them in an oven at 100°C (212°F) for about 40/60 minutes and then pulverize them in a mixer. The resulting powder can be added to bread and pizza dough (about 10g/kg of flour) to enhance the acidic note.

What kind of flour do I use to refresh my Sourdough?

You can use a good quality Bread flour with around 14% of proteins. All-purpose flour is not the right choice as it is not rich enough in proteins and gluten.

Do I need to refresh the Sourdough Starter every day?

If you store the Sourdough at room temperature, it must be refreshed every day. Otherwise, you can refresh it every 5/7 days and store it in the refrigerator.

How many days can I store the Sourdough in the fridge?

If properly stored at a (stable) temperature around +4°C (39°F), you can keep the Sourdough in the refrigerator for up to 7 days. Obviously, you will refresh the Sourdough before placing it in the fridge.

How many days should I refresh the Sourdough?

If Sourdough is left at room temperature, it should be refreshed every day. If you decide to keep it in the refrigerator, you can refresh it every 5-7 days.

How much water should I soak the yeast in?

The ideal proportion is for the water to be about 3 times the amount of starter: 1kg of yeast should be soaked in 3 liters of water.

Sourdough leaks into the water during the bath. How can I fix this?

Suppose you happen to lose a lot of Sourdough during the bath. The best solution is to collect as much as possible and make 2 to 3 refreshments in a row to regain the right mass. How to Feed the Sourdough Starter

I have very little Sourdough. How can I get more?

Suppose you happen to lose a lot of Sourdough during the bath. The best solution is to collect as much as possible and make 2 to 3 refreshments in a row to regain the right mass. How to refresh Sourdough

I keep the Sourdough in the fridge. How long after can I use it?

Sourdough cannot be used directly from the fridge. Once it has been taken out, it must be left at room temperature for 24 hours and then fed daily for 4 to 5 days before using it in your recipe.

What is the ideal temperature to store the Sourdough at room temperature?

The ideal temperature for storing yeast is 19°C (66°F)with a margin of +/- 2°C.

Should I use water at 30°C even in the summer to refresh the Sourdough?

It depends; the final temperature of the dough should be around 26°C (78°F). You can use this simple formula (which works only with °C) and found out the right water temperature to use:
55 - Flour temp (°C) - Room temp (°C)

How many Sourdough should I store?

I recommend storing at least 700g of yeast to not lose too much during the bath. However, to limit the use of flour, you can keep the Sourdough in the refrigerator and refresh it every 5-7 days.

The Sourdough immediately comes to the surface during the bath. What should I do?

If the Sourdough rises to the surface too early during the bath, it is a clear sign that It is too weak.

To rebalance the acidities, simply refresh it with a sourdough: flour ratio of 1:0.8 (1kg sourdough and 800g bread flour).

The Sourdough does not come to the surface during the bath. What should I do?

Most likely, It is too acid and should be rebalanced by refreshing with a yeast: flour ratio of 1:1.2 (1kg yeast to 1.2kg bread flour).

The Sourdough smells too sour. What should I do?

In case your Sourdough smells too acid, it means it has developed an excessive acidity. To rebalance it, first, you have to identify if the cause of the excess acidity is lactic or acetic. Then you can refresh it according to the specific case, as explained in this article about the most common problems of Sourdough.

Il Lievito ha un odore troppo acido. Cosa devo fare?

Se il lievito ha un odoro troppo acido, significa che ha sviluppato un'eccessiva acidità. Per riequilibrarlo va prima capito se si tratta di acidità lattica o acetica e poi rinfrescato secondo il caso specifico come spiegato in questo articolo sui problemi più comuni del Lievito Madre

STILL CURIOUS ABOUT SOURDOUGH?

hERE'S SOME RECIPE FOR USING YOUR SOURDOUGH

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