Presuming the starter retains its mojo, here is the new pizza base production programme. This quantity of dough makes 2 large oblong (twenty-five by thirty centimetre) and 2 medium round bases (thirty centimetres).
|Leaven (prepared on day T-1 last week)||60g|
Prepare the starter by dissolving the leaven in the spring water in a 1 litre jug. Vigourously stir in the flours, cover with plastic wrap and leave at room temperature for 24 hours.
|Starter (prepared on day T-2)|
|White bread flour||750g|
Start the dough by dissolving 200g of the starter in 525g of the water. Stir in the oil and all of the white bread flour and mix to make a sticky dough. Cover bowl and leave for an hour.
Take 50g of the remaining starter and blend in a scrupulously clean jar with remaining 30g of water and all the rye flour. This concoction becomes the leaven for next week’s dough. Store the jar of leaven in your refrigerator.
Tip the dough onto a floured surface, stretch it, and fold its corners into the middle, and repeat two or three more times. Return the dough to the oiled bowl, cover and rest for another hour. Repeat the resting and folding two or three more times over, and after the last repetition cover and rest in the refrigerator for 24 hours. Be sparing with the amount of flour worked into the dough, as a wetter dough will result in larger air bubbles in the cooked crust.
Remove dough from fridge and perch it on a countertop so that it will reach room temperature. Preheat oven to 220°C. Divide dough into 4 portions, then stretch & massage dough to fit oiled trays. Kneading and rolling is allowable, but kneading will burst the air bubbles that have developed overnight. Brush with oil or spread with tinned, peeled, and chopped tomatoes mixed with a little tomato paste. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, then remove the bases from the oven and add toppings.
- The starter method has evolved from Dan Lepard’s instructions for starting sourdough.
- Gabriel Bonci’s impasto bianco di grano is the inspiration for the pizza bases.
- You can watch a video demonstrating dough handling techniques on Elizabeth Minchilli’s blog.