Hooch - stir in or throw away?



I normally discard it, but is there any scientific basis for either practice?

321 users have voted.


farinam's picture
farinam 2011 October 6

Hello gongoozler,

It is a waste product of metabolism and so probably will not be of any value.  So best to get rid of it.

On the other hand....


chazzone 2011 October 8

 If we were talking about simple yeast, then I would agree.  However, sourdough is more than yeast.  It is also acetobacter, and or lactobacillus.  These bacteria feed on the "waste" of the yeast, and that would be hooch.

Just sayin'...



Merrid 2011 October 10

Surely if you discard the hooch you're changing the hydration of your culture?


That might not matter if you're just going to build it up again, but even so!

Madame de Fleur 2011 October 10

Not sure about the theory or chemistry, but I've thrown hooch away and stirred it in and if the starter is still alive it comes good with some regular feeds either way.

Good point Merrid. You are changing the hydration of the starter by discarding hooch, but as you imply with your last comment, when you subsequently build it up it makes no difference after a couple of feeds. It's like deliberately changing your starter hydration. You can do that in as little as two feeds, or even one, and as long as the culture is healthy no problem.

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