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Rye sourdough starter – for home made sourdough bread


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(4 customer reviews)

This rye sourdough produces a slightly tart loaf, with a unique sourdough flavour. It can be used to make rye bread or give a bit of tang to regular wheat bread.

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What is sourdough bread?

Sourdough bread is made by the fermentation of dough using naturally occurring lactobacilli, acetobacter and yeast. The lactic acid produced by the lactobacilli gives it a more sour taste and improved keeping qualities. To make ssourdough bread you need a sourdough starter. However, several sourdough starters have very specific characteristics that are impossible to create yourself. That’s where our sourdough starters come in.

About our rye sourdough starter

Our sourdough comes sourced from starter cultures that have been in use for over a century. A mature, well-aged sourdough starter has a much stronger and distinctive sourdough flavour than one recently started from scratch. The heritage of this sourdough has been traced back to over 40 years, and it comes from a Gloucestershire Rye Sourdough.  It produces a slightly tart loaf, with a unique sourdough flavour. It can be used to make sourdough bread or give a bit of tang to regular wheat bread.

Micro organisms

This sourdough starter contains many bacteria and yeast, among others: the yeasts Kazachstania exigua (Saccharomyces exiguous), Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Candida milleri, and Candida humilis. and the bacteria L. fermentumL. brevisL. kefiri, and L. sanfranciscensis .


  • 5 grams of freeze dried rye sourdough starter
  • Produced in the UK

Why a dried rye sourdough starter?

  • A dried starter has a long shelf life
  • Easy to ship / take with you, also abroad
  • Does not deteriorate due to transportation
  • Light in weight (shipping costs)
  • You can buy it even if you are not planning to make sourdough bread immediately
  • You can save a part in case your sourdough dies
  • After activation, the result using of freeze dried sourdough is identical to fresh sourdough

How to activate your rye sourdough starter

The freeze dried sourdough starter is in a resting state, so you can easily store it until you want to activate it. It only takes about 1 week before it is fully active!

General tips

Read this through before you begin so you have an idea of ​​what supplies and ingredients you will need every day.

A note about metal: it is best to avoid metals when working with sourdough, especially aluminum and copper, which can react with the microorganisms. Stainless steel is great for mixing or making bread, but opt ​​for glass, porcelain or a food-grade plastic for storage.

Sourdough is a living organism and working with it has a learning curve. Just like a pet or plant, it will behave differently with different temperatures, climates, flour, etc. You will quickly learn the subtle rhythms and preferences, simply through simple day-to-day observations. You can even name your sourdough starter as many others do!

No matter how detailed this may seem, you don’t have to feel intimidated or worried, as long as you care, it will live!

You can bake with this starter as soon as it is activated, in about 5-10 days!


  • a clean, clear (easier to view) glass, plastic or ceramic pot or bowl or large cup (that can contain at least 2 cups, this small starter needs room to grow!)
  • a wooden or plastic spoon to stir
  • measuring spoons and / or scales
  • a room with a fairly stable (room) temperature.


  • The starter (save a bit just to be certain)
  • Wholegrain flour (wheat or rye). Keep at least a kilo close at hand. Whole grain, or rye are a better option than white to start with because the nutrients help the yeast and bacteria to get a better ‘jump start’. You can later switch to flour, if desired, when the starter is active and strong.
  • Tap water

The steps for activating your rye sourdough starter


1. Take 1 tablespoon of lukewarm water and put it in a pot or bowl.

2. Add 1/2 teaspoon of the starter from the bag to the water and stir. Allow the starter to hydrate for about 5-15 minutes.

3. Add 1 tablespoon of flour

4. Mix until evenly distributed.

5. Check whether the consistency of the batter is correct. The consistency should not be too smooth or too stiff to stir. Just nice and thick.

6. Cover your pot / dish with something clean and breathable (cloth, paper towel, loose lid, loose plastic wrap, paper, etc.). Store somewhere out of direct sunlight, at room temperature.


After about 24 hours, it may or may not show signs of bubbling. Most likely there is a layer of water on your flower. If it looks really dry, cover it with a thicker cloth or a separate lid for step 2 today. If you see small air bubbles above or in the whole lot, it means that it is activated and ‘eats’.

1. Either way (bubbles or not), feed another 1 tablespoon of flour (about 8 g) and 1 tablespoon of water. Stir the mixture well.

2. Put the cloth over it again and let it ferment for another 24 hours.


After 24 hours, he may already show signs of bubbling, and the consistency of the dough will be more pancake batter-like.

1. Now add 3 tablespoons of flour (or about 24 g) and a little less than 3 tablespoons of water

2. Let sit again for 24 hours or until it has doubled


Repeat. Now your starter is likely to double in about 3-8 hours (depending on the temperature)

DAY 5 – 7

Your starter is ready for use. Let’s bake!

Buying Rye sourdough starter?

Order your Rye sourdough starter at startercultures.eu, the European webshop for all your fermentation needs. By Meneer Wateetons, renowned Dutch fermentation expert and author. Order on weekdays before  3 pm and we’ll ship the same day.  Questions on the usage of Rye sourdough starter? Ask them in our chat, we’re here to help!

Online on demand workshop ‘how to make vegan cheese at home’ (subtitled)

During this English subtitled workshop you will learn the theory and practice of making vegan cheesevegan blue cheese starter kits at home, with a focus on vegan camembert and vegan blue cheese. Foodwriter ‘Meneer Wateetons’, author of several books on fermentation and alternative food preparation techniques,  will teach you all about fermentation, curing salts, food safety, pH, starter cultures, molds and drying conditions. Click here for more info.

4 reviews for Rye sourdough starter – for home made sourdough bread