This is the recipe I use for making pizza dough using a sourdough for baking in the wfo. It produces a really tasty base and needs few toppings. To me pizza is 95% about the quality of the dough and should be embellished with small amounts of toppings. Its not my original recipe as its based on Jeff Varazano's recipe and method as per his website:
To me pizza is 95% about the quality of the dough and should be embellished with small amounts of toppings.
Completely agree. My eyes were opened to this when I ate my first 'real' pizza at a hotel overlooking lake Luzern, 20 years ago. The flavour that stood out was the base, the topping was almost window-dressing. I'll never forget my 'first'.
The happiness of life is made up of minute fractions—the little soon-forgotten charities of a kiss, a smile, a kind look, a heartfelt compliment in the disguise of a playful raillery, and the countless other infinitessimals of pleasurable thought and genial feeling. – Samuel Taylor Coleridge
;D This sounds very nice for a no yeast recipe. I make my dough with just pizzeria flour, salt, water and yeast with no oil so it's similar to yours. The important thing is to keep the rise slow to allow the flavors to develop, then I use a 2 inch thick stone to bake at 250 centigrade.
I wish I had your patience with keeping a sourdough starter alive. Likewise in keeping the dough refrigerated for a few days. I always try to make a pizza dough the same day as I want to bake it....it always turns out OK....but just like all my school report..."could do better"......I must learn to have a bit more patience ....
Hi Jerry, the leavan is just sourdough starter fed at 100% ie take a large spoonful of the starter and add equal weights of flour and water and left until its bubbly. I sometimes do this in 2 stages depending on how much I need and how active the sourdough starter is. So in the original posted recipe, I would probably, take 25g of starter and add 100g of water and 100g of flour, mix and leave probably overnight. If I've not used the starter for a while I might do it in 2 stages, say 20g starter add 30g each of water and flour, leave until bubbly, then add 80g each of water and flour and leave until bubbly. I've found sourdough to be very robust to deal with so using slightly more starter doesn't make a lot of difference. Doing 2 stages tends to get a more lively levain in my experience.
I use a simple spreadsheet to work out the amounts od water etc to give me a target 63% hydration, 20% leaven and no of 250g dough balls. (Note all %s are bakers %)
many thanks. will give this ago over the winter and will ask then for more help as i don't know enough to be confident.
do you feel this sourdough gives that taste that some restaurants have.
i've tried to produce this taste via cold ferment and found that i can't be produced that way - it only appears in well over fermented dough which will not work on the peel or allow shaping - breaks up and sticks.
i can't decide if the effort is going to be worth it. the 3/5 day cold ferment and the 1/2 day fresh yeast produce very good results. overall when taking into account the toppings this extra taste is really pushing at the limits of taste. i can see it working in a pizza place where dough is used daily. for me at say fortnightly sits heavy on the effort to keep the sourdough going.
I keep a wheat flour sourdough and a rye starter (about 100g each) in the fridge and 'refresh them every 2 to 3 weeks. Occasionally I forget about them and it could be 6 weeks before refreshing by which time they are covered in mould! No problem, scrape the mould off and use some of what's left as a base for refreshing, I usually refresh twice within a day or so and the starter is back to normal.
I think it was Dan Lepard who published a method for freezing sourdough starter, see his forum here, first post:
That's pretty much how I made my starter except that the bubbles didn't appear until day 4 or 5, but this might be to do with the room temp being cooler. This meant that I threw the first attempt away as not being successful, the second time I kept feeding and stirring. I also find that if I feed 100% just before putting in the fridge the starter has a habit of separating solids/liquid, so I tend to do 80% hydration which just makes it a little stiffer.