I’ve invested a lot of time in this sourdough starter and my bulldog nature refuses to scrap it even if my starter-only bread attempts have been a failure. So I have incorporated some of the starter into my basic bread/pizza recipe. The result … a great pizza dough with the rise of dry active yeast and the flavour of sourdough starter. I’m calling the resulting recipe, “Frankenstein” Pizza Dough.
I have some whole wheat flour in my fridge and decided to see if I could include SOME of it into this recipe. I started by turning my all purpose flour sourdough starter into a whole wheat one by feeding it with whole wheat. And then I added some more whole wheat flour to the pizza dough. The result is a very tasty and marginally healthier pizza, if pizza can ever be considered healthy with all that cheese.
Speaking of cheese … I made a stuffed crust pizza.
A shot of the stuffed crusts
Frankenstein Pizza Dough – makes 2 1/4-2 1/2 pounds of dough, enough for 3 pizzas
1 1/4 cup warm water
1 1/2 tsp sugar
2 tsp dry active yeast
4 1/4 cups all purpose flour**, divided
1 cup sourdough starter
1 1/2 tsp salt
** For the whole wheat version: Replace 1 cup of all purpose flour with whole wheat flour.
In a medium sized bowl, add the warm water and stir in the sugar. Sprinkle the yeast over the water. You can stir it in at this point, as well, if you like. Let it sit for 5-10 minutes until the mixture becomes foamy.
In a large bowl, add 2 cups of flour (1 cup all purpose and 1 cup whole wheat in the variation) and the salt. Stir to mix in the salt evenly.
Pour the proofed yeast mixture and the sourdough starter into the bowl with the flour and stir well with a large wooden spoon until you have a nice smooth batter. Beat for a few minutes.
Stir in the flour, 1/4 cup at a time, until you can no longer stir the mixture and it has pulled away from the sides of the bowl into a ball. On a clean work surface, large enough for kneading comfortably, spread 1/4 cup of your remaining flour.
Dump the loose batter on top of the flour and gradually knead in the flour on your work surface.
Knead in the remaining flour in your bowl. This will take anywhere from 5-10 minutes and you’ll end up with a soft dough that’s still a bit tacky but won’t stick to your hands when you touch it.
Divide the dough into 3 equal portions. Shape each portion into a ball, rub the surface lightly with vegetable oil and place inside a clean medium freezer bag. Seal the bag and freeze the dough until needed.
When Ready to Make Pizza:
Remove the frozen dough from the freezer the night before you wish to use it (after supper is perfect) and put it in the fridge to thaw. The next day, or even the day after that, remove the dough from the freezer bag and gently stretch into a circle on a lightly floured surface.
Sprinkle your baking sheet with cornmeal and transfer the stretched dough circle to the middle of the pan. Stretch further if needed to fill the pan. Cover and let come to room temperature … about an hour.
Preheat the oven to 425 deg Fahrenheit.
Brush some extra virgin olive oil around the edge of the dough, about an inch in width. Top as desired and bake in the preheated oven for 20-23 minutes.
For the stuffed crust – roll out the dough about 1-2 inches larger in diameter than the pizza pan. Cut cheese into 1/2 inch thick and 1/2 inch wide sticks and arrange around the edge of the pan. Fold over the excess dough and seal well so that the melted cheese won’t leak out. For this pizza, I alternated cheddar and mozzarella cheese.