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Author Topic: How will results differ when making SD Pizza with these different methods?  (Read 796 times)

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Offline Heikjo

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Since Hans is an accomlished pizza maker with SD CF, I will give his method a try. It seemed like a reasonable way to do it. I have read a few thoughts on SD CF for pizza, but I need to give it a try myself. If nothing else, just to have it as an option that provide flexibility, and provide tips in topics like this.

@Hans: Have you tried CF with lower amounts of SD? I assume it would mean a longer bulk in RT to get things going, maybe post CF too. If you have, do you have any observations?

I've only ever tried making pizza dough with a sourdough starter, and that was a long time ago when I was a lot less experienced. I wasn't at all pleased with the results I got then, but I'm still a little intrigued with the idea of trying it again- especially when I read posts such as yours that make it sound like a great method. What exactly would you say is different about SD pizza dough than regular yeasted dough that makes it different?
Working with sourdough is a challenge where experience is the key. The more you use it, the better you become at it. Not necessarily to perfect a single recipe, but to understand and learn how your starter works and how to deal with it when it behaves differently and adapt. The starter is alive and doing its own thing. With yeast, a package you buy at the store is pretty much the same every time and can be very predictable. Sourdough adds a variable that will change over time, but if it's managed well it won't drastically change from day to day.

The most important difference to me is taste. Sourdough was a gamechanger in both bread baking and pizza. I can make good pizza with yeast to, but my thought when eating them is always that they feel hollow and that sourdough does so much to enhance the flavor. I make all the bread at home myself with sourdough and whenever I eat bread with yeast I an reminded of how great sourdough is. Not everyone like sourdough and you can of course make a dough with different levels of sourness. The texture is also affected in pizza, though I'm not sure how to word it. More meaty perhaps, more substance to it. My SD pies usually puff less than yeast pies, but I don't mind that. I use sourdough in most things i bake now. Bread, pizza, cinnamon rolls, ciabatta, pancakes, waffles etc.

One thing to keep in mind when you seek a big puff is the dough and dough handling. What you do there can affect the result a lot and no matter how you store the dough, it won't salvage a dough that isn't good enough or handled poorly.
Heine
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Offline Elchimi

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One method is to use SD or LM at 20%, mix everything and let the dough sit for 2-3hrs at RT with a few slap and folds (almost like bread or baguette dough) then ball and CF for 1-2 days, take out of the fridge a few hours before you wanna bake.

Offline texmex

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I have been trying various methods of sd % with cold and RT ferments.  I can get a same day dough ready to bake in 4 to 5 hours by using 45% sd (salt added with the water first and then a wait before adding flour).  It is a very sticky wet hand S&F session, but eventually, the dough smooths out.  Even if it doesn't completely smooth out (because I am lazy), the dough strengthens just like the strong gluten strands I find in my sd jar, and pizza is tangy and puffy. 

I made another dough at the same time as the aforementioned at noon on Monday (%20 sd / 62 hydration) which I balled up after 1 hour of S&F and 4 hours RT in bulk, then I balled those doughs and stuck them in the fridge (but had I balled them up after the S&F, this dough appeared ready to go straight to the bake). They have been in there since Monday night.  I will take a pic and post what their fermentation looks like right now.  I only hope I can bake them today.  Rain has stopped my experiments these past 2 weeks, so I have to try, try again.

In my experience, the super high sd dough will have a texture like canned biscuit dough when cold fermented, and sometimes needs more gentle stretching, while other times it is very strong and can be slapped and lifted to stretch thin, but still puffs up nicely if I leave a rim.  I have not dialed in what the difference is in how the dough handles, but suspect it has to do with the peaking of my sd which stays in the fridge.  It has a few days of optimal peak, and I may not always use it just at the correct moment that it is robust.

Recently I have been changing up the workflow a bit, and melting all the sd into the water and stirring vigorously then letting rest at least 20 minute before incorporating other ingredients.  It really gets the yeast going. I have begun to do the same when feeding my jars, and it gets my sd ready so much faster, as seen here: https://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=68566.msg675774#msg675774

This has been a goal of mine for years (using maximum amounts of sd), and I will continue to work on it. I am also interested in the CF/bulk or balled aspect, and whether or not to reball.  Will try some comparisons based on this query by NendyPants, since I usually prefer to do a CF. 
« Last Edit: July 07, 2021, 08:49:11 AM by texmex »
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Offline Elchimi

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One of the major issues I have with SD  Pizza making is no stable RT at home  (65 in winter, 80 in summer) so I dont think I’ll succeed with reproducible RT Fermentation because temp changes significantly increase/decrease during the day.

Offline texmex

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One of the major issues I have with SD  Pizza making is no stable RT at home  (65 in winter, 80 in summer) so I dont think I’ll succeed with reproducible RT Fermentation because temp changes significantly increase/decrease during the day.
Designate a small ice chest and change your room temp to one more suitable to your environment.  In summer, use a few small frozen water bottles in the chest, and the temp stays consistent within a few degrees for about 12 hours before I need to change the bottles out. Works great! In winter, I use the heat from my oven light to keep the balls at another temp than ambient.
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Offline killerasp

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Hi All.  I'm wondering if someone can tell me how the finished pizza will change based on the below methods (ball dough before bulk is over, ball dough after bulk is over, ball dough after bulk and after 24 hours in the fridge).  Thank you for your insight!

Method 1: Divide and ball dough after a couple hours of bulk fermentation.  Allow dough balls to finish bulk ferment until they have about doubled in size, then place in fridge for 24 hours.

Method 2: Divide and ball dough after bulk fermentation has finished (2.0 - 2.5x increase).  Place in fridge for 24 hours.

Method 3: After dough finishes bulk fermentation, place entire bulking container in fridge for 24 hours.  Remove dough next day, divide and ball while still cold, let come up to room temp before baking.

Added:  I'm on the quest for the puffiest sourdough crust possible.  I have been using Method 3 just because it's works with my schedule the best, and have been mildly happy with the results.  Method 1 seems like it might lead to the dough balls having the most air in them prior to shaping, and therefore a puffier crust?

Bread makers would do BF (increase in size by at most 30-50%, not 100%), split into specific weights and roll to tighten the skin, and bench rest for up to 1 hour, then fold into proper balls/shapes to build tenision and then into proofing baskets and into the fridge for long ferment, usually 18-24 hours. Then right before baking, they take the dough out, score it and put it into the oven for baking.

I think long ferment and good gluten development will help with good airy crumb, regardless of the different methods. Ive done method 3 (out of fridge after 48 hours, and then room temp proof for 4-5 hours then press out into pizza shape) and gotten SUPER airy and big crumbs, but the for me, the real difference maker was using a steel with a hot surface of 600F. The same dough on a 450F stone vs 600F steel, its was like night and day difference with my crumb.

Offline Heikjo

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One of the major issues I have with SD  Pizza making is no stable RT at home  (65 in winter, 80 in summer) so I dont think I’ll succeed with reproducible RT Fermentation because temp changes significantly increase/decrease during the day.
My wine cooler is brilliant for this. The alternative would have been a cooler box or using the cellar, which is far more consistently tempered. If I used SD for pizza without any temperature stable environment I would maybe have made same-day doughs. Once the night is brought into play it becomes more challenging, but not impossible. I would mean more reactive baking and adjusting through the year. I make bread all year around and adapt to that, but it’s not as time dependent as pizza and all RT fermentation happens during daytime over 4-6 hours.
Heine
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Offline DannyG

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Because of my schedule I always make my dough on Wednesday for Friday pizza night. I make enough dough for two 340 gram balls. I use 13% sourdough. I bulk ferment at room temperature for about 2 hours (time varies depending on room temperature). I then ball and place in individual containers and let them develop to what I think is about 80% complete. This is in the 8 - 12 hour range. They go into the refrigerator until about 3 hours before the bake.

I have even balled after the two hour bulk and gone directly into the refrigerator, pulled out on Thursday morning and let them rise to the 80%, and then put them back into the refrigerator until Friday. It all depends on how much time I have. My goal is to not let them over ferment. It really becomes a feel and experience thing so the stated times are just a guideline.

The refrigeration really stops most fermentation with sourdough. The bottom of the refrigerator stops it completely and the top shelf gives me just a little.
So I am really using room temperature to ferment but using the refrigerator to control overall time.

Offline texmex

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DannyG, you described very well, much of my own past SD management.   Now that I try to push fermentation for same day SD, I am trying to micromanage the dough over a shorter period of time. It is not that much fun, except it actually is. LOL.


When I use less SD and try to keep my temp consistent over longer fermentation with ice chest and frozen bottles of water, their is much less micromanagement involved than with fridge or RT, except when I get a few hours close to the bake, and need to examine the dough thoroughly before proceeding. SD is kinda crazy sometimes, but so worth it.
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Offline Elchimi

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My wine cooler is brilliant for this. The alternative would have been a cooler box or using the cellar, which is far more consistently tempered. If I used SD for pizza without any temperature stable environment I would maybe have made same-day doughs. Once the night is brought into play it becomes more challenging, but not impossible. I would mean more reactive baking and adjusting through the year. I make bread all year around and adapt to that, but it’s not as time dependent as pizza and all RT fermentation happens during daytime over 4-6 hours.
I’ve tried same day 2yrs ago, used about 10% starter at RT. After 10h it was overfermented when I got back from work.
Last week I tried 4%, dough was not ready after 10-12hrs, that was not enough time…
Today I’m doing 15% LM + a bit old dough, balled after 3-4h at RT, now CF for 30h….
Should Blow up in the fridge

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Offline Heikjo

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As long as you get it in the fridge early enough, it’ll stop rising once it has cooled down. One tip when putting a dough into the fridge to prevent it from overfermenting is to leave it without a lid for some time, or wrap a plastic film over. If you put a dough in a box, put a lid on and into the fridge, you also bring along room tempered air that has to be cooled down.
Heine
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Offline jsobolew

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Last week I tried leaving out a portion of the dough to do a bulk 24hrs in the fridge, then ball, then place back in the fridge until the next day. That dough kept it's shape and didn't pool out like all my other dough that gets balled soon after mixing. It was also super tough and way more strong, more than I'd like. I really had to work it to stretch it out. I'm thinking about doing this test again but increasing hydration to get it a little softer.

Offline TXCraig1

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Is there really anyone here (not me) that can claim they are able to get perfect, reproducible results with sourdough cultures?

Perfect? I wish. Bloody close however, yes. Nowadays, I tend to introduce more variability with the firing of the oven than the dough.
"We make great pizza, with sourdough when we can, baker's yeast when we must, but always great pizza."  
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Offline Heikjo

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Last week I tried leaving out a portion of the dough to do a bulk 24hrs in the fridge, then ball, then place back in the fridge until the next day. That dough kept it's shape and didn't pool out like all my other dough that gets balled soon after mixing. It was also super tough and way more strong, more than I'd like. I really had to work it to stretch it out. I'm thinking about doing this test again but increasing hydration to get it a little softer.
If the SD dough spent most of its life in the fridge, did it even ferment or did you not mention it spending time in RT?
Heine
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Offline jsobolew

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If the SD dough spent most of its life in the fridge, did it even ferment or did you not mention it spending time in RT?

It stays out for 4-6 hours after mixing and before going in the fridge. I find that over the course of days, it does rise in the fridge, sometimes too much. Then it comes out of the fridge for a few hours before baking. I've found it useful as a way to slow down and control the ferment to be able to use days later.

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Offline Benbuck

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I too have not been successful with RT SD experiments. I was happy though with my results using the format that jsobolew has posted. The only time it didn't work was when using a really sleepy ignored starter that just needed more than one feeding. Thanks again!

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