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Grape Sourdough Starter

  • 5reviews
  • 8saves
  • 9days

This really neat bread starter goes from grapes and wholemeal flour to a sourdough yeast starter in just 9 days. Uses fresh unwashed red or purple grapes.


Serves: 1 

  • 500g grapes, unwashed
  • 1 cup (120g) wholemeal flour

Preparation:9days  ›  Ready in:9days 

  1. Place grapes into a medium mixing bowl. Crush with hands. Cover with cheesecloth or muslin then set aside for three days at room temperature.
  2. After three days there should be bubbles in the grape juice, indicating fermentation has begun. Strain liquid then discard skins.
  3. Return to the bowl then stir in wholemeal flour. Set aside for 24 hours at room temperature.
  4. Measure 1 cup starter, discard any extra. Transfer to a 1 litre glass or ceramic container with a lid. Stir in 2 1/4 cups bread flour and 1 cup water. The mixture should resemble a thick batter; add more water or flour if necessary to achieve this consistency. Cover loosely with lid. Let stand at room temperature for 24 hours. Repeat the following day. Some activity should be noticeable: the mixture should be starting to bubble. Repeat twice more. You will need to discard some of the mixture each day.
  5. Starter should be quite active. Begin feeding regularly, every 4 to 6 hours, doubling the starter each time. For instance, if you have 1 cup starter, add 1 3/4 cups bread flour and 1 cup water. Alternatively, store in the refrigerator and feed weekly.


Use unwashed, organically grown red or purple grapes for this recipe. The white powder found on the skins of the grapes is used as homemade starter yeast for bread. If you wish, you can switch to plain flour on the fifth day.

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Reviews (5)


I used shop-bought red grapes with good luck. The flavour is truly sourdough. - 14 Jul 2008


I was glad to find this recipe, as I had only read references to this starter. It resulted in a nice tangy starter and was interesting to make - 14 Jul 2008


This recipe produced a vital and active sourdough starter without any added commercial yeast. I use it at least once a week to keep it fresh and ready to go. It will raise a beautiful loaf all by itself. (Be sure to give it extra time.) I always replenish it with wholemeal flour and water and let it sit out of the refrigerator until it is good and bubbly. Then I refrigerate it until I'm ready to use it again. It makes absolutely heavenly waffles and biscuits. The waffles alone are worth making this starter. The instructions say to discard the dough during the initial fermentation process. I didn't, but used it in breads and quick breads with good results. The fermentation process was faster than I expected. Maybe the temperature was warm here. Also I started with grapes a bit on the old side. I think they had already started to ferment. - 14 Jul 2008

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