January 24, 2021

Recipe: New dough

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By Paul McGowan From PS Audio

Paul McGowan

Without question, the best pizza dough is naturally leavened. Sourdough. But, sourdough requires a mother (starter) to be fed and maintained daily. Nice if you have the patience, but I do not.

However, there is an alternative which I have developed and will now share with you. My new recipe is based on a derivation of an old Italian pre-ferment technique known as a Biga (or sponge).  My version is closer to what the French call a poolish (a wetter version of the Biga). In any case, the Biga makes for a chewier pizza dough that is a lot closer to naturally leavened dough yet easier to make.


4 cups soft all purpose flour

1 teaspoon yeast

2 cups filtered water

2 teaspoons salt

2 tablespoon olive oilPlace 1 cup of warm water in a small mixing bowl. Add 1/4 teaspoon of the yeast. Stir it up. Add 1 cup of the AP flour and mix the mess up into a soupy-like mixture. Let it sit in the kitchen with a towel over it overnight. It should look bubbly. This is the Biga.The next day, about 3 hours before you’re ready to make your pizza, add 1 cup warm water, another 3/4 teaspoon yeast, salt, olive oil then stir it up.Add 3 cups AP flour and get it all mixed real nice. Let it sit and hydrate for 30 minutes covered with the towel. Then, kneed a little, pulling and stretching the dough until it gets stiff. Cover, and repeat the pull and stretch every 30 minutes or so.When you’re ready, just roll it out as normal. Enjoy.

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