Step 4: Mix Levain

Picture of Mix Levain
Levain is French, describing a sourdough leavening agent. When I use levain here, I mean the leavening ingredient you add directly to the bread, as opposed to the starter, which is the sourdough culture.

To make a rye levain, combine:

1 cup of Rye Starter
1 cup of Rye Flour
1/2 cup of Water

Mix this all together in a container, cover it, and let it sit overnight (or 8-12 hours, depending on the temperature. A colder temperature means the microorganisms will metabolize the flower more slowly. Make sure your container is not too small, this mixture will slightly expand in size overnight.