Troubleshooting Your Sourdough

If your sourdough isn't producing the flavors and characteristics you desire, there is no need to panic. A few simple adjustments to the feeding may be all you need. A stiffer starter, at around 50% hydration will produce more acetic acid, resulting in more sour bread. A liquid sour, at 100% hydration, will favor lactic acid, and produce a mild and less complex flavor.

Temperature as well will have a direct impact. Cooler temperatures favor stronger acidity than warmer temperatures. If your sourdough bread exhibits good yeast activity and lacks sour flavor of any kind, the balance of wild yeasts and bacteria may be off. To correct this, try feeding your starter 5% whole wheat or rye flour for 2-3 feedings until the microorganism activity is back on track.

San Francisco Baking Institute