Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Sourdough pizza!

It doesn't quite look it from the picture, but the sourdough pizza was a huge hit! It barely made it to lunch the next day, actually! Lets just say we attempted a Margarita pizza and learned a lesson! But that's later. First, the recipe!

Like I explained in my previous sourdough post, you will need a basic sourdough starter to make this recipe. Aside from that, it was not all that different from any other pizza dough. It required a little more rising than normal, but since we were making it on a Saturday we had all day to worry about that.

Here is the before picture...

For our next attempt at a Margarita pizza, I think we need to cook the dough and sauce for about 10-15 minutes alone, then add the cheese for the last 5-10. Well, we learned for next time!

2 cups cold liquid culture
4 3/4 cups white flour (unbleached works best)
1 cup water
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 tablespoons vegetable oil

Mix the liquid culture with 1 cup of the flour and 1/4 cup water in a large mixing bowl. This is the working culture. Proof 12 hours at room temperature or 6 hours in a proofing box (for us, this is the oven with the light on, but we usually leave it out on the counter overnight, covered in a light dishtowel.)

Add 1 cup of the flour and 1/4 cup of the water. Mix and knead until smooth. Proof 8 hours at room temperature or 4 hours in the proofing box.

Punch down. Mix together the remaining 1/2 cup water, the salt and the oil. Add to the dough and mix well. Reserve 1 cup of the flour for flouring the board. Mix and spoon knead the remaining 1 3/4 cups flour into the dough 1 cup at a time. (Note, that the dough will be really sticky, so more flour as you knead may be necessary)
When too stiff to mix by hand, transfer to floured board and knead in any remaining flour.

Divide the dough into 4 equal parts and form each into a ball. Roll out each ball into a 12-13 inch round about 1/8 inch thick.
(The recipe suggests several different ways of cooking the pizza, but we prefer to make the round dough on the pizza stone, because it cooks best that way)
Proof 1 1/2 hours at room temperature or 45 minutes in proofing box.

Preheat oven to 475 degrees. Add toppings to dough rounds. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the edges of the crusts are brown.

Note that this recipe creates 4 pizzas, about 3 more than we needed! So instead, we have 1 pizza and 3 balls of dough in the freezer, ready to go for next week's pizza night!

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