Diastatic malt

I was wondering whether someone would be so kind as to provide a link or name of a store where I can purchase pure Diastatic malt.

I have been inspired by 'Peter Reinhart's' Whole Grain Breads book and would like to make his seed culture using 1/2 teaspoon of pure diastatic malt powder, but the only one I can seem to find is a blended product - quote from the company " A little tricky for the average Home Baker to apply. We therefor have a Malt Blend available, Diastatic Malt 10, which is 1 part Diastatic Malt and 9 parts Bread Flour. It is applied at 10g/1kg flour (approx 3 tsp; over-use it at your own peril, it's powerfull stuff!)"

Thanks, Julie

207 users have voted.


rbd 2008 February 16
Hey Julie,

Use diastatic malt less rather then more!  A very experienced baker friend of mine, as well as Hamelman in his book "bread" (just looked it up... pg364) recommend 0.1 to 0.2% usage of diastatic malt on flour weight. That is 1-2g per kg! (depending on what flour you're actually using!)

Hence the remark "a little tricky for the average home baker!"

I'm happy to expand on the reasoning for using diastatic malt with (australian) flour, (if Graham is happy for me to do so)

but in the meantime (for those that are unaware of the link) you can check out some details here:

Happy baking!

Roland Bok
Basic Ingredients Homebread


jule 2008 February 16
Thanks Roland. Just to clarify, I am making a seed culture which will be subsequently elaborated into a permanent mother starter...so it is not 1/2 teaspoon per loaf...and not added directly with the flour for the loaf..... just for the initial seed culture. I would like to try Peter Reinhart's techniques as he outlines in his book...hence requiring the pure diastatic malt rather than the Blended Diastatic malt.

..always happy baking!!!
rbd 2008 February 16
Hey Julie,

Looks like I kinda misread your post.
I haven't read the Reinhart's book you're referring to, so am not familiar with that suggested method

I would have thought, that when seeding a new culture you just blend some (good) flour with water, and take it from there.
(in my opinion) no need for grapes, potatoes or anything else, since the yeast derived from these will (should) not survive eventually in your culture.

The usage of DM at the suggested quantity is an interesting suggestion!

Please be aware that seeding a culture from scratch requires some weeks (at least) of continuous feeding to make it stable.

Happy baking


PS our Diastatic Malt blend IS just that, It is just diluted somewhat for convenience!

Graham's picture
Graham 2008 February 16
Hi Julie,

Perhaps you could make your own. Just sprout some grain (rye/wheat/barley) in the dark or semi-dark, to 3/4 to full length of grain. Dry it in the sun for a day or two, then roast it in your oven at approx 40C for a couple of hours. Keep your oven low (below 50C ?) to retain the enzyme activity that is a feature of diastatic malt. Grind the dried, sprouted grains into a powder and you have an enzyme active malt powder.

One of our users, Skua, has an example of her sprouted/kilned/cured grains in the gallery:


and there is further information (including sprouting technique) here:



Graham's picture
Graham 2008 February 16
Also, there is a lot of information in this thread:


Though more applicable to diastatic malt in bread making (rather than starter making), it still makes a great read.

Unfortunately not all photo links in this thread are active (probably due to forum upgrade), but we will try to correct this.

jule 2008 February 17
Thanks Graham...to confess... i was trying to take the easy way out and just use half a teaspoon in the seed culture. :-) Thanks for the info though. I will have a look.

jule 2008 February 17
Just to elaborate on the reason for using Diastatic malt in the seed culture. Peter Reinhart suggests that it is not imperative...but it "serves as a kind of vitamin pill and speeds along the process"...ie...as a catalyst to release the sugars from the flour.

He uses it in the "Pineapple Juice Solution" for making a seed culture. He uses pineapple juice because the acidity thwarts development of leucomostoc bacteria. His book "whole Grain Breads, New Techniques, Extraordinary Flavour" is an exceptional reference. Peter Reinhart explains the history and reasoning behind his techniques, and all recipes and methods are clearly described and illustrated.

I am enjoying immensely learning about slightly different approaches to making dough...with the advantage that some of his methods allow for more flexibility in preparation regimes.

I wholeheartedly recommend this book.

chembake 2008 February 18

" He uses pineapple juice because the acidity thwarts development of leucomostoc bacteria,,"


Eliminating Leuconostoc?

Peter ,may not know  the fact that this particular specie is one of the least known critters of the sourdough culture;  one example is as leuconostoc mesenteroides…which is abundant in many bacterial cultures used in sourdough based food products  wordwide.

Take note, you may follow his recipe but please, don't take his technical explanation wholeheartedly ....

Danubian's picture
Danubian 2008 February 19

although Leuconostoc mesenteroides is common and widespread, however, it's usually associated with pickling where low temperatures and high salinity prevail. Typically, not usually a dominator of sourdoughs. 

I probably agree with you Chem.

bianchifan's picture
bianchifan 2008 February 24
[quote=jule]...ie...as a catalyst to release the sugars from the flour[/quote] not even a catalyst, it does an active job and will be dissapated Give yourself a chanca and try to make some of your own, it's not very difficult but it's worth.
pollyanne 2011 January 21

 After a lot of bread-making, finally brave enough to try wild-yeast/sourdough.  Working from Peter Reinhart's Whole Grain book, pineapple juice recipe for the seed culture - but realize that I am not sure at all what it is supposed to look like or smell like, and I need to know in order to be "directed by the dough".  My diastatic malt did not arrive in time...and since Peter said it was optional, I decided to go ahead and try it before the pineapple went bad.  So..just very minor bubbling toward the end of Phase 1, but proceeded anyway per instructions.  Phase 2 after 24 hours was pretty bubbly, so proceeded to Phase 3 - was maybe 60% frothy in just a couple of hours, but I left it, thinking that it couldn't possibly be really ready that fast - and now, nearing 48 hours, is just barely bubbly.  


Photos would really help - as I really don't know what it is supposed to look like when it's ready, and I don't know what it would look like or smell like if it went past ready.  I may throw this batch out anyway and start over, when the diastatic malt arrives, but can see that it would be helpful to have some visual aids.


Advice from Those With Experience would be very helpful.  Thanks in advance.

mshafran's picture
mshafran 2013 January 4

Hi Pollyanne & Co,

I'm not sure if you're looking for larger quantities, but I've spoken to Powells Malt and they have diastatic malt from time to time, although they said they'd stock it more if there was greater demand. But you're talking 15kg bags, so if you're just looking for a small amount to develop your starter, it might be overkill.


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