Author Topic: How much starter do I use in my pizza dough?  (Read 4002 times)

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Offline pnj

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How much starter do I use in my pizza dough?
« on: May 07, 2007, 05:57:27 PM »
I don't have a scale and won't have one anytime soon.

If I'm using about 2 cups of flour, what is a reasonable amount of starter to add to the dough?

one cup, half cup, a tablespoon, etc?

Thanks.


Offline grovemonkey

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Re: How much starter do I use in my pizza dough?
« Reply #1 on: May 07, 2007, 06:59:20 PM »
Hi PnJ,


check out this thread.  http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,4966.0.html Pete posts a few things that are helpful.  You can always try to just add 2 tablespoon and see what happens.. if nothing, try another on your next pizza.  I think two tablespoons would be a good place to start, though I'm not sure how others without a scale work it.  I've been making pancakes with my sourdough recently and adding around 3-4 tablespoons to one cup makes for a batter with a strong flavor. 

post some photos of your end results if you can.

grove.
« Last Edit: May 07, 2007, 07:03:06 PM by grovemonkey »

Offline David

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Re: How much starter do I use in my pizza dough?
« Reply #2 on: May 07, 2007, 07:08:43 PM »
As a guide I use about 1/4 cup of starter to over 3lbs of flour for a long slow rise.
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Online Pete-zza

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Re: How much starter do I use in my pizza dough?
« Reply #3 on: May 07, 2007, 07:53:08 PM »
pnj,

I also presented some guidelines on the amount of starter (preferment) to use at  http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,4996.msg42281.html#msg42281 (Reply 2). Also, in Ed Wood’s book Classic Sourdoughs, he says that a cup of either his liquid or sponge culture weighs around 9 ounces. That is for a fully activated culture. The amount you should use will depend to a large degree on how long you want to ferment the dough and at what temperature. With two cups of flour, I would use about a 1/3 of a cup of the starter on the short end of the fermentation window and about a fifth of a cup on the long end of the fermentation window, both at room temperature. These are just educated guesses since I have no idea as to the quality and capabilities of your particular starter.

Peter

Offline pnj

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Re: How much starter do I use in my pizza dough?
« Reply #4 on: May 07, 2007, 08:11:51 PM »
Ok, I made my dough using 1 1/4 cups of King Arthur bread flour (unbleached) and two tablespoons of my starter. if it doesn't turn out, no biggie. this stuff is cheap...:)

I made the starter myself about 4 days ago. We'll see what happens....

I plan on putting this dough in the fridge for a day or so..

Offline mzshan

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Re: How much starter do I use in my pizza dough?
« Reply #5 on: May 07, 2007, 09:28:33 PM »
While we are on the subject of starters..

For commercial purpose for example doing a batch of dough on a daily base... Is it possible to make a 1st ever batch of dough using a starting then the next day just add the left over dough from the day before as commercial bakers do, also I read in ed's book how the bakers in egypt did.. and if so how much percentage of left over dough is used with a new dough?

shan

Online Pete-zza

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Re: How much starter do I use in my pizza dough?
« Reply #6 on: May 07, 2007, 09:55:53 PM »
shan,

I believe your question is along the lines of the questions posed at this thread, http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,4764.msg40470.html#msg40470, and which I attempted to answer. You should also read Marco's post on this subject for which I provided a link in my response.

Peter

Offline pizzanapoletana

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Re: How much starter do I use in my pizza dough?
« Reply #7 on: May 08, 2007, 07:37:16 AM »
Two quick points if you allow me:

1-It is impossible to provide absolute guidelines on starter quanties and time as it depends from each starter microflora and activity status. I did an experiment recently with a client where I have used  my three starters, in three different dough with the same quantities.

All three fermented and developed in very different ways even thought I had used the same amount of starter and being fermented at the same temperature, to the extent that one dough did not almost ferment over the period of time, one did just under fermented and one over fermented to almost an unusable level.....

2- It is good to use the old dough methodology for wild yeast fermentation as far as "preserving" the original microflora is not a factor (e.g. using a self made local microflora) and good consistency also doesn't come into play....

It is nice to come up with tables, conversion factors etc... but if you take into consideration my point 1, it all makes little sense..

Offline grovemonkey

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Re: How much starter do I use in my pizza dough?
« Reply #8 on: May 08, 2007, 07:47:16 AM »
How do commercial operations deal with this problem then?  If it is so variable is it completely a "get to know your starter" type of situation?

Offline pizzanapoletana

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Re: How much starter do I use in my pizza dough?
« Reply #9 on: May 08, 2007, 10:05:35 AM »
How do commercial operations deal with this problem then?  If it is so variable is it completely a "get to know your starter" type of situation?

Yes, and that is why starters are rarely used in todays commercial operations...

It requires high level of knowledge and skills and it is becoming a bit of a lost art....

Think about the report of inconsistencies we have of some places using it...

Ciao


Offline pcampbell

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Re: How much starter do I use in my pizza dough?
« Reply #10 on: May 09, 2007, 04:16:47 PM »
I read on varasano's page
Quote
The amount of Sourdough starter can range from 3% to 20% and not affect the end product all that much.
Patrick

Offline pizzanapoletana

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Re: How much starter do I use in my pizza dough?
« Reply #11 on: May 10, 2007, 06:30:39 AM »
I read on varasano's page  

I like Jeff, but the above statement goes against all the scientific research and for what it may be worth, my personal experimentation. The amount of starter will have an impact on the production of acids, flavour compounds as well as affecting the "development" of the dough....

Offline Kinsman

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Re: How much starter do I use in my pizza dough?
« Reply #12 on: May 10, 2007, 05:03:37 PM »
Well,
I use about a cup and a half or two cups to rise two pounds (10 cups) of flour in six hours or so.  My starters are generally kept pretty thin, and get used twice a week (or at least fed if not used to bake with).  Brewers, who use a different strain of S. cerevisiae, claim that 1 million cells per liter of fermentable wort is the optimum for healthy yeast growth.

Not that that really matters to your pizza dough.  My (admittedly empirical) tests indicate that I can use a little or a lot of starter, and that as long as there is plenty of fermentables (food, i.e. flour), the dough will be living when I need it, and I can't really tell much difference in taste or texture, if any at all.

But, since we all know that rigorous testing is fun and delicious, I think I'll head to the lab this weekend. 
Chris Rausch

Long Riders BBQ
Florence, Montana


 

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