Finding the best temperature for your sourdough starter is vital for it to thrive. If the temperature is too low, the starter will not grow as quickly. If the temperature is too high, the starter may become too sour or overactive.
The optimum range for sourdough starter is 75-82ºF. Within this temperature range, the yeast and bacteria in the starter will grow and ferment flour and water. For comparison, room temperature is 68-70ºF.
Managing the temperature
Here are some handy tips for maintaining your sourdough starter at the optimum temperature:
- Use a thermometer to check the temperature of your starter.
- If the temperature is too low, place your starter in a warm place, such as on top of the stove or in an oven that is turned off but still warm.
- If the temperature is too high, place your starter in a cool place, such as in the refrigerator or in a cold room.
- Feed your starter regularly to keep it active.
- If you are not going to use your starter for a few days, store it in the refrigerator.
- Use a Sourhouse Goldie to automate the temperature of your sourdough starter.
Storing your starter in a fridge
Refrigerating your sourdough starter is a good way to keep it active and prevent it from spoiling. When you refrigerate your starter, the fermentation process will slow down, but the yeast and bacteria will still be alive. When you take your starter out of the refrigerator, you can feed it and it will start to liven and ferment again.
Here are some tips for refrigerating your sourdough starter:
- Use a clean jar to store your starter.
- Make sure the jar is airtight.
- Put the jar in the refrigerator.
- Feed your starter once a week.
- When you take your starter out of the refrigerator, feed it and it will start to ferment again.
Refrigerating your sourdough starter can help to keep it active for up to two weeks. However, it is important to feed it regularly to keep it healthy. If you do not feed your starter for more than two weeks, it may start to spoil.
The refrigeration temperature for a sourdough starter is 37°F (3°C) and 40°F (5°C).