Sourdough: My #1 Tip for Cleaning Up Sourdough Mess

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Other Posts in the Sourdough Series:

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If you bake with sourdough, whether once a week or daily, then you know what I’m talking about when I say sourdough starter can be a pain to clean up after. The thin batter-like consistency easily and quickly dries to the sides of jars and bowls and all wooden spoons, creating a daily sourdough pancake-makers worst nightmare.

Years ago, when I was reading an obscure book on sourdough, the name of which I can’t even recall, they shared a sourdough clean up tip that changed my life. Okay, that’s a bit dramatic, but it certainly eliminated a lot of tension that built up between me and my daily sourdough habit.

And I thought it might help you too.

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Okay, I’ve built this up to the point that it’s a bit anti-climactic, but my tip is…

Immediately use cold water to soak or rinse your jars, bowls, and spoons.

At first this seemed anti-intuitive to me – hot water always works better on built up gunky dishes. Then I thought through it a bit.

The proteins in the sourdough starter, namely gluten, respond to hot water by binding up and becoming even more doughy. This creates an even stickier, harder to clean situation.

Furthermore, in our daily sourdough pancakes, the gluten combines with the eggs in the batter to really create a mess when rinsed in hot water.

Cold water, on the other hand, helps to dissolve the flour, creating a very fluid mixture you can simply pour out for your chickens or compost pile. Then continue on washing with the rest of your dishes, as you normally would.

I hope this helps you as much as it has helped me.

Do you have any tips for cleaning up after sourdough?

Shannon

Shannon is a mama to four small children, homesteader, freelance writer, and picture-taker. She lives with her husband on their off-grid homestead where they make and eat kefir, kombucha, sourdough, and fermented vegetables.

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Comments

  1. rebecca says

    Cold water also works better when rinsing/washing dishes used to cook most other starches as well as cheese. I was so glad when my elderly MIL shared that tip with me…

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