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do starters expire?

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do bread starters expire? i've neglected mine and though i know of very old starters, i am not sure mine are still good since i haven't fed them in quite a while. thanks.

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  1. I used to do the "Herman" thing and if you don't feed them they die! Start over. Sorry for your loss. LOL.

    1. Hmm, we've got starter that we were give by my in-laws,.who got the original over 30 years ago. We keep it in the fridge and went a LONG time without feeding it (like a year or something). This starter is very forgiving, though. We recently fed it in order to use in an Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day recipe and are having no problems with it at all--it's really robust and active. We successfully used starter only (no commercial yeast) and our loaves were good even after a week (though shorter than they were at the beginning). I'd say feed it and give it a try. You have little to lose by giving it a go.

      1. If you have a very neglected starter, you need to rebuild it. Mix 1 cup of your starter with 16 oz. bread or high-gluten flour and 16. oz. of water. Then let it sit out for about 6 hours. It should be fine.

        -Becca
        www.porterhouse.typepad.com