Ever since I got my sourdough starter going again, I’ve wanted to try making sourdough pizza. We have pizza quite often at home. I use Jamie Oliver’s basic pizza recipe and do a double batch, parbake the crusts and freeze for easy weeknight dinners. What would be even better was a sourdough version. Inspired by this crust by Maurizio (he promises to share his recipe once he has perfected it!), I scoured Instagram for other sourdough pizza bakers in search of a basic recipe. Not many recipes out there, but lots of beautiful crusts like this one below.

sourdough #pizza trials continue. a little more whole wheat this time around

A photo posted by Maurizio Leo (@maurizio) on

I managed to find one from a fellow Singaporean home baker. Raymond has beautiful photos of all his bakes – pizza being one of them and so I quizzed him relentlessly on his recipe which he shared.

Still, I wasn’t too confident (needed more instructions!) and needed something solid to try, so I googled and came across a few different versions. A lot of them use instant dry yeast – which for me doesn’t really make sense if you are making sourdough. Why mix a commercially cultivated yeast into your wild yeast – this I think defeats the purpose of what traditional sourdough making is all about. 

The recipe I based my initial dough on (I made two separate batches of this one) is one from NYT Cooking. It too included wild yeast in the recipe, but I swapped it out for additional sourdough starter as suggested by one of the comments from the readers. I wanted to get the hang of making this dough before I tried Ray’s recipe where I ended up making a double portion so I could freeze. I will share both recipes below.

RECIPE ONE

Adapted from NYT Cooking Recipe

  • Ingredients
  • 500g OO flour
  • 15g salt
  • 15g extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
  • 1 cup sourdough starter
  • 300g room temperature water

Method

  1. Combine flour and salt in a large bowl. 
  2. In another bowl, mix 300g water with starter. Add EVOO and stir. 
  3. Add starter to bowl with flour and mix (squish) with fingers until well combined. 

According to Pedro Pan in the comments section of the NYT recipe – if replacing the yeast completely with starter, then leave the dough out covered all day. The next day do two sets of folds to work the structure of the dough. I left mine a few hours then did the two sets of folds during bulk fermentation. I wanted to get my dough in the fridge before dinner (6pm) to do the overnight ferment as I’m just a little wary of the intense humidity of my Singapore kitchen. Here’s another helpful blog by Korena in the Kitchen to help you work through the process. 

The next day around 3pm I took the dough out, dumped on floured bench and divided into 4 equal pieces (recipe said 3 but I found 4 was a good size for me). I let the dough rest for an hour or so before shaping. 

Shaping

When ready, shape your dough balls and flatten them out with your fingers gently pushing from the inside to the outer edge. Then use the knuckle/thumb method to shape your pizza. Check out how Peter Reinhart does it here. Here’s Korena’s blog again which shows how she shapes her dough – very helpful and I love the look of her pizza bases – so springy and airy. 

At this point you can top your pizzas and put them straight into the oven. I parbaked them first and let them cool before topping. If doing this, preheat your oven to it’s highest temperature (mine is 220C) with the pizza tray in there. When ready carefully slide your pizza base together with baking paper onto the preheated pizza tray. Stick it back in the oven for about 3 minutes until you see it puff up a little (it should be just under baked). Cool on a wire rack.

Add your pizza sauce (I love this home-made one from Goop), toppings and bake them in a preheated oven for about 15 minutes (depending on how hot your oven can go). I find the first pizza always bakes really well, the subsequent ones take longer – probably because my oven loses a lot of heat each time I open/close. Go easy on the toppings (less is more!) so that your base cooks through and doesn’t get too soggy. We were a little heavy-handed on this batch as we were clearing the fridge to use up any of the week’s leftovers on top.

Margherita – think the buffalo mozarella is hiding underneath the grated moz. 
Leftover salami and parsley
Cheesy margharita
Caramelised onion, anchovies and baby spinach

RECIPE TWO

Adapted from Raymond’s recipe given to me over Instagram comments. I doubled this batch!

Ingredients

300g flour (I used Tipo 00)

100g starter

200g water

8g sea salt

Method

Mix your flour and water by squelching with your fingers until it is a shaggy mess.

Let it sit covered to autolyse for 30 minutes.

Add salt – you can reserve some of the earlier water (about 20g) to mix into the salt before pouring over your flour mixture. Pinch the salt through the dough until it is as evenly combined as possible.

Do 3 sets of folds every 30 minutes, then let the dough rest covered for an additional hour.

Put it in the fridge covered with damp cloth or glad wrap for 2-3 days. I left mine for 48 hours.

When ready, pull out your dough onto your floured surface and divide into about 8 pieces. I somehow got 9 from this double batch. Do the same thing as above to shape your pizzas. Mine kept tearing again in the middle!

Preheat oven at it’s highest temp and parbake for 3 minutes. Cool on wire rack, then if freezing, wrap tightly with foil and stick it in freeze. 

Can you spot the tear? 
A pile of pizza bases

If using, top with sauce and toppings as per first recipe and bake for 15 minutes in hot oven.

We baked Raymond’s pizza dough a couple of weeks later. The additional time in fridge to ferment gave them a nice flavour.

Margherita and Potato Pizzas

 

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