The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

% sourdough starter for pizza dough

jr07's picture
jr07

% sourdough starter for pizza dough

wanted to get peoples opinion on what % of the dough the starter should be? For making pizza. Im currently using 20% by weight startet (100% hydration), but not sure if I should / could use more to get more rise in my pizzas? Im concerned the dough is not growing enough when resting in bulk and I also want a bit more thick corniccione. I’m already at 65% hydration and not sure I could / should go higher for a 1000 degree oven. 

My starter is fed with 100g water / 100gr AP flour, then after rising I mix with 1kg of 00 flour and 650gr of water and 2 Tbsp of salt. I leave to rest for 8 hours but recently have noticed the dough does not double in size.... only grows by about 50%. I then shape the dough balls and leave these to rest in fridge for 12 hours. They actually flatten instead of growing more.

I want to believe my starter is ok... and wonder if Im using too much or too little of it in the dough mix

 

j

 

 

barryvabeach's picture
barryvabeach

J, there is a wealth of info on starter percentages here   https://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?board=37.0

 

In general, most posters think they get better flavor from a longer bulk fermentation, often 24 to 36 hours, some go with refrigeration, others with ice in the bottom of a cooler  ( shooting for temps in the high 50s to low 60's ) and others go with low starter percentages - in the range of 2 to 5 % .. 

 

1000 degree oven sounds extremely high - unless you are using 00 flour, you will probably get burning.  I usually bake around 800 F,  but I am using 100% whole wheat, and it requires the higher heat to get a good flavor. 

MichaelLily's picture
MichaelLily

I bake at 700-750 floor temp, as I like to give the pizza 3-4 minutes in the oven to dry a little bit and stay firmish, and not be so soft as with a hotter oven.

I use 20% starter and .5% instant yeast with 70% hydration. Bulk 2 hours and final proof in the fridge about 18-24 hours. Extremely good results. The formula is coincidentally nearly identical to the master recipe in Modernist Bread. I haven’t read the process yet so I can’t comment that far.

jr07's picture
jr07

Hi. After 2 hours bulk your dough doubles in size? At what temperature?

MichaelLily's picture
MichaelLily

Room temperature. I have never let dough double in size. Not my thing.

jr07's picture
jr07

this is very insightful since I have always been let to believe the dough had to double in size for it to work. why do you leave in the fridge for 18 - 24 hours?

 

MichaelLily's picture
MichaelLily

I am not certain what you are asking so I will give you the short answers. Retarding fermentation in the fridge develops more complex flavors in the dough, it gives more flexibility in schedule, and cold, slack dough is easier to handle than warm slack dough.  I make my dough the day before I bake the pizza, and it usually works out that the dough is in there for 18-24 hours. Sometimes as many as 30.

I don’t know quite why the common preaching on proofing is to double in size. Wetter doughs and sourdoughs especially are not recommended to let double, because they don’t need to to work. The leavening power of sourdough is less than commercial yeast and if it doubles it is usually over proofed.

 

jr07's picture
jr07

thank you!! something I had been expecting to hear but hadn't thus far. 

what are your thoughts on baking pizza with dough straight out of the fridge? I love how better to handle the dough is, but pizza gurus say cold dough is a no - no. SD pizza dough at room temperature for me are too weak

MichaelLily's picture
MichaelLily

If you can stretch it cold better than you can warm, then do it! Sometimes if the dough is cold I have a hard time stretching it, in such a case I let it warm up; if I can shape it cold, then I shape it cold! 

jr07's picture
jr07

just tried my first pie with 5% starter in the dough, straight out of the fridge the dough opened up beautifully but end product was horrible. Flat pizza, no spring, no corniccione.