If your sourdough is too sour....


...simply add a half teaspoon of baking soda to the mix. My buttermilk sourdough has been around for over 4 years now, and I think I left it too long after refreshing it because it tasted awfully sour when baked. I looked up one of my books and found the baking soda secret and the next batch was wonderful. We eat the sourdough bread for health reasons, not for the sour taste.

badge posted by: PaddyL on August 01, 2012 at 11:58 am in Baking, sourdough
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reply by: Dough_On_The_Fence on August 06, 2012 at 7:26 pm

Thanks for that tip! I am afraid to cut into my first loaf to taste it. I think it might be too sour because my starter looked overly acidic, meaning my tiny bubbles were extreme. The big bubbles seem more dominant after a couple feedings now, but this first loaf, I dunno.

Question: How much starter does 1/2 teaspoon baking powder go into?

I have been using the 4 ounces each flour/water method. I fed it, waited about two hours (it was about 1/2 way risen), then put it back into the fridge. So I think that means I have the following in my jar:

4 ounces starter
4 ounces water
4 ounces flour
12 ounces total?

So would that 1/2 teaspoon go into the 12 ounces, or just the 4 ounces of starter before feeding?

Thanks for your post.

reply by: PaddyL on August 07, 2012 at 12:01 am

I put a full teaspoon into the bread dough after refreshing the starter the night before - I was making a double batch of bread and figured I should double the amount of soda. And I just mixed it in with the flour before adding it to the liquid ingredients. I don't want to mess with my original starter because I've kept it going strong now for 4 years.

reply by: Dough_On_The_Fence on August 07, 2012 at 12:56 am

AHA! Thank you! That makes a lot of sense not to mess with the starter. You said "soda" though, I think you meant powder, right? I think I figured it out, that the preferment is pretty much a giant starter. What you say makes tons of sense. Thanks again! :)

reply by: PaddyL on August 07, 2012 at 9:48 am

No, I mean baking soda.

reply by: allthingswheat on August 17, 2012 at 11:12 am

Baking soda neutralizes the acids in the sourdough that make it sour. Baking powder is a mixture of soda and acid that cause CO2 when mixed with ingredients.

You can also change the hydration of your sourdough to adjust how sour it is. The higher the hydration the less sour. Lower hydration starter encourages the production of acetic acid which has a stronger sour taste.

Higher hydration, 100% and up, encourages Lactic acid which has a less sour flavor. I'll probably write about this a little bit on my blog if you want to check it out...