Starter Day 5, Made beer! what to do now…?
As the title says, I’ve successfully made hooch… and really need some seasoned advice on what to do next. (the photo is of after I mixed the hooch back into the starter)
I must admit, I’m entirely new at sourdough. Infact, I don’t even like sourdough, but my husband does, and I wanted to make a starter so i can bake some SD loaves for him.
I followed the SD instructions with 2tbsp flour and 2tbsp grapefruit juice everday until day 4, where I discarded all but 1/4cups of the mixture.
My starter is in the water heating room which run at about 85F. Any temperature fluctuations in the houseis negligible as I live in a very well insulated and heated basement apartment.
So, I started off with rye flour. For the first three days, my mixture smelled like rye, very pleasant.
On the third day, it started smelling a bit yeasty and had small bubbles. I had been feeding the starter frozen rye flour up to this point, and my forum readings pointed out to me that I should not be using frozen flour for a SD starter. I switched to 2tbsp grapefruit juice and 2tbsp WW flour.
On the fourth day, I believe I added too much juice on the previous day and the mixture was somewhat runny. It was frothy and smelled “yeasty” with a hint of alcohol.
I measure out 1/4 cups of the mixture and added 1/4 cups of cold boiled water and 1/4 cups of whole wheat flour, the mixture was still relatively runny.
today was day 5 and I came home to a layer of “hooch” separating the starter. It had a strong smell of alcohol, not a terrible smell, more like the smell of fermenting rice from when my grandpa made rice wine… I do not drink, so my perception of what a alcoholic smell is may be quite off!
I did some reading and chose to mixed it down while adding an extra 2 tbsps of flour to my starter. As I had forgotten to purchase filtered water today, I did not discard any starter.
Now here is my confusion…
The threads I read seem to have conflicting information on what to do with starters that smell like alcohol:
Some threads i read said to not feed the starter for a few days and to let it balance out.
Others mention that the alcohol is a sign of a starved starter and that it should be fed.
And some advised to throw it out and start over…
what should I do next????