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Chewy Sourdough Pizza Crust – Learn How To Make It

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Learn How To make Sourdough Pizza Crust

This Chewy Sourdough Pizza Crust is definitely on our family’s monthly rotation!

Some of you may know this about me, and some of you may not.

I started my cooking career fresh out of high school in a chain pizza shop. I used to really load up the toppings for the customers there (I’ve always been a rule breaker). Some loyal customers knew me by name and would actually request that I make their pizzas.

I went on to manage a pizzeria and sub shop on the UCSC campus before completing my culinary education at Cabrillo College.

After working in a few classy restaurants in San Francisco, I went back to my roots and I got a job as a pizza chef. But this time I would be throwing SOURDOUGH! I was hired by another lady chef who was starting a concept restaurant that featured a gourmet food court. One of the food court options was pizza. I was able to collaborate with her on a lot of the offerings there and I developed my own sourdough pizza crust recipe (the one you will see below) from the sourdough starter I still use today.

My time working as a pizza chef was very valuable to me. I taught myself how to throw pizza dough and I became a very skilled pizza chef. I’ll always look back on that time fondly.

Basically pizza is in my roots!

Almost every month I make pizza at home and I always use my sourdough pizza recipe. It’s changed a little bit since my days in San Francisco but the essence remains the same. I like to use lots of fresh awesome toppings and a nice garlicky sauce.

I’ll give you some suggestions for toppings along with a quick and easy pizza sauce recipe to get you started on your sourdough pizza path.

 

Make Your Own Sourdough Pizza At Home


 

The Night Before

Combine the dough ingredients and kneed them into a smooth dough. It should be wet to the touch but not sticky. Adjust flour or water if needed. Cover the dough and let the dough proof overnight on the counter.

The Next Morning

Your dough should be at least doubled in size. Punch it down and shape it into two even balls. Flour them well on the bottom and put them on a plate or tray, covered in the refrigerator. You will remove them one hour before making the pizza.

Pizza Time

Remove your dough from the refrigerator and let it rest and rise at room temperature for one hour. In the meantime prepare the sauce and toppings.

In a small saucepan combine the tomatoes, garlic, oregano, salt and water. Simmer over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally until the sauce is thick and a deep red color. Cool the sauce to room temperature before using.

Grate your cheese. I used a combination of Mozzarella and Provolone. You will need about a pound of cheese for two large pizzas.

Preheat your oven to 400°.

Arrange your toppings on a large platter, cutting board or tray for easy access. For these pizzas I picked Salami, Green Olives, Peppadew Peppers, and Roasted Garlic for one pie and Ham, Spinach and Black Olives for the other. This is the fun part! Get creative with those toppings!

Generously flour your work surface and working one dough ball at a time start flattening the ball with your fingers from the center out.

Leave a nice thick rim around the outside if you like a chewy crust. Pick the dough up and drape it over the backs of your hands. Gently pull the dough with the backs of your hands from the center out. At this point you can toss it or just continue pulling it gently until it’s stretched to at least 12 inches in diameter. You can also gently grip the crust and let the dough hang and stretch from it’s own weight. Make sure to rotate the dough quickly while doing this so it stretches evenly.

When making large pizzas I like to use a pizza pan for supporting the pizza but for smaller thinner pizzas I like to use a preheated pizza stone.

When the dough is sufficiently stretched place it on the pizza pan and use a fork to perforate the dough from the center to crust. This will help keep your pizza from getting big air bubbles while baking.

 

Using a wide spoon add sauce to both pizzas. Then top the sauce with cheese and your favorite toppings.

Pro Tip: If you are using spinach or another leafy green add it to your pizza between the sauce and cheese layer. This will keep the spinach from burning and drying out!

 

Bake your pizzas staggered on separate racks in the middle of the oven for 25 minutes or until the crust is golden brown and the cheese is bubbly.

 

Make Your Own Sourdough Pizza At Home

 

Make Your Own Sourdough Pizza At Home

Chewy Homemade Sourdough Pizza Crust

Yield: 8-12 servings
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Proofing Time: 12 hours
Total Time: 13 hours 30 minutes

The perfect soft and chewy all-purpose sourdough pizza crust for weeknights or pizza parties. 

Ingredients

For the dough

For the sauce

  • 16 Ounces Organic Crushed Tomatoes, preferably from a glass jar or home canned is great
  • 1 Bulb Fresh Minced Garlic
  • 2 Tablespoons Dried Oregano, fresh is ok too!
  • 1 Teaspoon Salt
  • 1/2 Cup Water

Instructions

The Night Before

  1. Combine the dough ingredients and kneed them into a smooth dough. It should be wet to the touch but not sticky. Adjust flour or water if needed. Cover the dough and let the dough proof overnight on the counter.

The Next Morning

  1. Your dough should be at least doubled in size. Punch it down and shape it into two even balls. Flour them well on the bottom and put them on a plate or tray, covered in the refrigerator. You will remove them one hour before making the pizza.

Pizza Time

  1. Remove your dough from the refrigerator and let it rest and rise at room temperature for one hour. In the meantime prepare the sauce and toppings.
  2. In a small saucepan combine the tomatoes, garlic, oregano, salt and water. Simmer over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally until the sauce is thick and a deep red color. Cool the sauce to room temperature before using.
  3. Grate your cheese. I used a combination of Mozzarella and Provolone. You will need about a pound of cheese for two large pizzas.
  4. Preheat your oven to 400°.
  5. Arrange your toppings on a large platter, cutting board or tray for easy access. For these pizzas I picked Salami, Green Olives, Peppadew Peppers, and Roasted Garlic for one pie and Ham, Spinach and Black Olives for the other. This is the fun part! Get creative with those toppings!
  6. Generously flour your work surface and working one dough ball at a time start flattening the ball with your fingers from the center out.  Leave a nice thick rim around the outside if you like a chewy crust. Pick the dough up and drape it over the backs of your hands. Gently pull the dough with the backs of your hands from the center out. At this point you can toss it or just continue pulling it gently until it's stretched to at least 12 inches in diameter. You can also gently grip the crust and let the dough hang and stretch from it's own weight. Make sure to rotate the dough quickly while doing this so it stretches evenly.  When making large pizzas I like to use a pizza pan for supporting the pizza but smaller pizzas I like to cook on a pizza stone. When the dough is sufficiently stretched place it on the pizza pan and use a fork to perforate the dough from the center to crust. This will help keep your pizza from getting big air bubbles while baking.
  7. Using a wide spoon add sauce to both pizzas. Then top the sauce with cheese and your favorite toppings. Pro Tip: If you are using spinach or another leafy green add it to your pizza between the sauce and cheese layer. This will keep the spinach from burning and drying out!
  8. Bake your pizzas staggered on separate racks in the middle of the oven for 25 minutes or until the crust is golden brown and the cheese is bubbly.

Notes

You may need to use up to 1/4 cup (65 g) more water depending on dough consistency. 

 



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Shauna P

Tuesday 28th of July 2020

Thanks for the recipe, it was delicious!

Butter For All

Tuesday 28th of July 2020

I'm so happy to hear it, Shauna! :)

Lynn T

Friday 17th of July 2020

Courtney, please tell us how to freeze the pizza dough. Thank you! I’ve made the pizza per instructions and it is Delicious and fun to work with; however I’d like to have a ball or two in the freezer to keep on hand. Lynn T - grants pass OR

Butter For All

Friday 17th of July 2020

Hi Lynn,

The success with freezing raw sourdough varies from starter to starter. But to do it you would just do the first proof and then shape it. At that point you would oil the dough ball slightly and wrap it or put it in a ziplock. Freeze the dough ball like that. When you want to make pizza, bring it out and let it proof again at room temperature, before shaping into a pizza. If it doesn't rise out of the freezer then you know your yeast strain is not accustomed to such cold temps. You can try to train a portion of your starter, by keeping two, one of which you stick into the freezer for longer and longer durations after feeding. I'll put a note in my book to write out those directions in a more detailed article.

Good luck and let me know if it works for you!

Courtney

Jway

Monday 25th of May 2020

Hi Courtney, Definitely going to try this recipe. Just wondering...most pizza dough recipes call for oven temps of 500+. Why 400 with your recipe? Is it ok to cook it at higher temps? Thanks

Butter For All

Wednesday 27th of May 2020

Hi Jway!

You can bake hotter if you get the dough really thin. This crust is on the thick side, if you make 2 pizzas, but if you make 3 or more you will want to go hotter! Basically I'm just assuring the dough cooks completely without frying the toppings!

Hope this helps!

Courtney

Dan

Tuesday 19th of May 2020

Any issues with using bread or higher protein flour instead of AP?

Glynis

Tuesday 12th of May 2020

Thanks! Will do. ?

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