Editor's Note: Whether you're a bread baker or a pizzamaker (or you want to be), we thought you'd enjoy following Donna Currie as she grows a new sourdough starter. She'll show us every step along the way, but it'll be even more fun if you roll up your sleeves and join her! Today is Day 3.

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[Photograph: Donna Currie]

Since things were bubbling nicely today, it's time to start changing the water/flour ratio. I fed the starter with one ounce each of water and flour. I stirred the mixture a few times during the day when I thought about it, and left it on the counter as before. Bubble activity is increasing!

So, what's going on in there? You don't need to know the science to nurture a sourdough, but it is interesting. While most people think of a sourdough starter as a natural yeast, it's more than that. It's actually bacteria and yeast working together. If you were counting, the bacteria in a starter would outnumber the yeast by 100 to 1. Don't worry about the bacteria though—they're the nice kind.

How are your starters doing? We want to see them!

To Start from the Beginning...

Day Zero: What You'll Need »
Day 1: A Half-Ounce Flour and an Ounce of Water »
Day 2: No Feeding, Just Stirring »

...Or Skip Ahead

Day 4: 100% Hydration »
Day 5: Keep Feeding and Stirring! »
Day 6: Keep Stirring and Feeding! »
Day 7: Feed and Wait »
Day 8: Getting Close! »
Day 9: First Harvest »
Day 10: Second Harvest »
Day 11: Time for Storage »
What Happens If You Neglect Your Sourdough Starter »

About the author: Donna Currie has been cooking for fun and writing for pay since the days when typewritten articles traveled by snail mail. When she combined those talents in a food column for a newspaper in her area, she realized that writing about food is almost as much fun as eating. She launched the blog Cookistry and has now joined the Serious Eats team with a weekly column about baking.


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