When it comes to simple, nourishing home cooking, pizza and bread are both excellent choices. Sourdough specifically, as anyone on Instagram might have noticed, seems more popular than ever, as folks sheltering at home take up bread baking. Traffic on King Arthur Flour’s website has broken records, with sourdough starter as the most-visited recipe, and the number of people Googling “bread” hit an all-time high last month.
So if you’re looking for a new cooking project, sourdough pizza dough is a really, really good one. Pizza master Anthony Falco, formerly of Roberta’s in Brooklyn and now a roving pizza consultant, walked us through his go-to tips and tricks for sourdough pizza at home as part of the Eater @ Home virtual event series. Check out Falco’s recipe for naturally leavened, Neapolitan-ish pizza dough below.
Makes 7 250-gram dough balls
1000 grams flour (blend of soft winter wheat with either hard spring wheat or hard red winter wheat)
630 grams water, at 68 to 72 Fahrenheit)
150 grams starter, room temperature 3 to 5 hours after feeding
20 grams extra virgin olive oil
30 grams sea salt
2% extra virgin olive oil
3% sea salt
Step 1: Weigh out all ingredients in separate containers; remove 10 grams of water and reserve.
Step 2: In a large mixing bowl, add flours. In a second large mixing bowl, add water and starter, and break up starter into the water. (See here for intel on making or obtaining your own starter.) Create a crater in the flour and pour starter and water mixture in the center.
Step 3: Begin mixing with just one hand in the center of the bowl in a clockwise fashion, until the dough all comes together into one ball of dough. Pour in the olive oil and continue to mix, squishing the oil into the dough. When the ball has just come together and the bowl is clean, stop mixing, cover the bowl with plastic wrap, and let rest for 30 minutes.
Step 4: Uncover the dough ball and begin mixing by hand. Add the 10 grams of water that had been set aside, and slowly add the 30 grams of sea salt as you mix. In a large, lightly oiled container, add the entire dough ball, cover and rest for five hours at room temperature. Give one stretch and fold half-way through.
Step 5: Remove entire dough ball and place on a lightly floured surface. Very lightly with your hands and using a dough cutter and scale, begin portioning the dough into 250 gram-dough balls. Form a dough ball by folding it in on itself; be careful to handle the ball quickly and gently so as to not transfer too much heat.
Step 6: Place the dough balls on a lightly floured half sheet, in a 3x2 arrangement. Lightly flour the surface and cover with plastic wrap and half sheet cover. Proof for 12 to 18 hours at a cool room temperature or until the dough balls have doubled in size (if the room is warmer, proof for less time). Use immediately to make pizza. Doughs will keep for up to 48 hours in the refrigerator.
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Anthony Falco (@millennium_falco), a former @robertaspizza's pizza master, answers all your questions about sourdough, from what it is, to why he prefers it, and how to feed your starter. Listen to his tips and tricks for making a perfect sourdough pizza at home. Read a full recipe for his dough here: https://www.eater.com/2020/4/14/21219174/sourdough-pizza-dough-how-to-at-home