What with installing new kitchens and dining rooms, feeding my sourdough starter once a week has kind of gone to pot. In fact I think it had been about 5 weeks since I last fed it. I normally feed it on a Friday night making sure we're in good shape for bread making at the weekend. But - after 2 or 3 weeks of not feeding it I kind of thought I'd killed it off and forgot about it while I was working on the kitchen. This Friday night I took it out of the fridge - there was a thick layer of black water sat on the top. I poured that away, topped it up with fresh flour, gave it a splash of water and a stir and left it on the worktop to see if there was any life left in it. The following morning I could see there had been some serious gas action going on over night so I set about making some bread. I'm not sure if I'm just imagining it but it seems a little bit of rough treatment has added a bit more of a twangy depth to the bread this stuff produces... I'm no expert in the field of sourdough chemistry so I have no explanation as to what happened when I left the starter for over a month with no feeding but I'm sure it's helped. Just goes to show - maintaining a sourdough starter isn't a precise, finely controlled experiment that can easily go wrong - even with me in charge of it, it still seems to thrive.