Long Travel Home

Hello,

I live in Thailand and am moving home to the US (Arizona, no less; tropics to desert). I will be in transit for about 4 weeks. That means hotel rooms. How can I travel with my starter and keep it going?

I would love any advice. I am new to sourdough so please be as obvious as you can be. Yes there will probably be refrigerators but these days when you take the card from the wall that runs the electricity the fridge goes out, too. How often should I feed it? Can I feed it just a little? I nornally do a 1:1:1 unless I am going to make a batch of bread and depending on how much starter I have to begin with. But, I have been keeping it 100% hydration (i think that is correct). 

Anyway, I so hope to keep this going. I love love love the bread and the making process.

 

Thanks so much!! 

HM

2 comments

Hello Your Majesty,

I would dry out some of your starter by spreading it out thinly on baking paper and package the dried material up in a KlipLock bag.  That should be able to be revived by adding water and feeding when you get to AZ.

For a wet starter, you can probably go several days between feeds though I have never tested the limits.  The yeasts and bacteria don't die of starvation, they just go into a state of dormancy for some time until a new supply of food comes along.  Perhaps you could do a trial of leaving a duplicate batch for progressively longer times without feeding to see how long it can go.  At lower temperatures, the period will probably longer than you would be able to in Thailand.

Hope this helps and good luck with your projects.

Farinam

Hi HM.

I took my (nine-year-old) starter from Alice Springs to San Francisco for 6 months, while I trained at the SFBI.

You can't travel on international flights with gels > 100 mL in volume, so I reduced the weight down to 50 grams.

I kept the 50 g sample and made it to 50% hydration or slightly less. It barely held together and was crumbly. The low hydration slows down activity.

In transit, I kept it at room temperature in a zip-lock bag in my hand luggage. My hand luggage went through the x-Ray scanner and no one asked me about it (either at SF, LA, Melbourne or Adelaide airports), so I didn't mention it either.

I fed my starter, in its dry state, once a day and kept the hydration low until I got to SF, then maintained it at 100% hydration during my stay there. It re-gained its vigour within 2 feeds (I usually aim for 12-hourly feeds).

Before returning to Australia, I reduced it to 50 g at 50% hydration for the flights home.

The formula I used is:

100% flour - 29 grams to make up a 50 g batch

50% water - 15 grams

20% starter - 6 grams

Take a bag of bread flour with you.

 

I hope this helps.

My regards and good luck on your journey and for your starter!