Originally Posted by FrankZ
I have a concern about my starter.
Last week I made two loaves in a row (something I had not done before) but I also only replenished it as if i had done one loaf.
Tonight I made a loaf and after replenishing it like normal it hasn't puffed back up. Does this mean I am going to loose this one? Can I feed it another teaspoon of sugar and save it?
frankz - a little extra reading for you:
Use an Active Culture
As you know, when you add flour and water to the culture, it will go through a typical cycle where the culture froths up then recedes. For good results, it is not necessary to catch the culture at the peak of frothing, so long as it is used within a few hours afterwards.
The high level of activity in a culture can be maintained with storage in a refrigerator for 1-2 weeks. As the time in refrigerated storage increases, the effort to regenerate also increases. After a couple of months in storage, it can take a couple of days to regenerate. With several months of storage, it can take much longer.. If it has been sitting dormant in the refrigerator for many weeks, a continuous process of re-generation may be needed.
Using all purpose flour, add equal volumes of flour and water to the culture repeated for several days. To begin, add the flour and water to increase total volume about 3 fold, and let it set at room temperature until there is some sign of activity. It may be a couple days if the culture is really dormant. Typically at this stage, the activity may only be evident by the formation of a few relatively large bubbles (about 2-3 mm). The culture will likely taste strongly acidic. Dump out about ⅔ of this, and again add flour and water to bring it up to the same volume. As the activity of the culture begins to pick up, this process will be repeated daily, and then finally twice daily. In a strongly active culture, there will be significant frothing within a few hours of adding new flour and water. However, it may take 2-3 weeks to achieve this from a strongly dormant culture (probably because the balance of yeast to bacteria is way off).
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