Adapted from the Basic Country Bread recipe in Chad Robertson’s book Tartine Bread, this mild sourdough makes an excellent pizza. Pre-mixing the liquids and flours and setting it aside without salt for about 40 minutes—a technique called “autolyse”—allows the flour to hydrate fully and the gluten to develop gently, improving the texture of the finished crust. Knead this dough only very slightly, instead relying on a long fermentation time and periodic folding to develop the dough’s structure.
This recipe calls for a sourdough starter. Revive your starter with a feeding 8–12 hours prior to when you want to mix the dough. If you don’t have your own starter, ask your local artisan bakery to share some with you, or order this packaged fresh starter from King Arthur Flour. If you’re feeling patient, you can also try making your own.
What You Will Need
- 100 grams sourdough starter (about ⅓ cup)
- 450 grams all-purpose flour (3⅓ cup), plus more for dusting
- 50 grams whole wheat flour (⅓ cup)
- 10 grams kosher salt (1 Tbsp.)
- In a large bowl, use a wooden spoon to combine 375 grams (1⅔ cup) room temperature water with the sourdough starter. Add the all-purpose and whole wheat flours and continue stirring until the flour is totally hydrated and no dry spots remain. Set aside at room temperature for 40 minutes.
- After resting the dough, sprinkle the salt over the surface and incorporate by gently kneading a few times right in the bowl. (The dough will be quite soft and loose to start; don’t worry about kneading it smooth at this stage.) Cover the bowl loosely with a lid or plastic wrap and set aside.
- After 30 minutes, use wet hands to scoop the dough up from one side of the bowl. Lift one side of the dough, stretching it up and folding it over the dough that remains in the bowl. Grab the opposite side of the dough and stretch it over the dough again in the opposite direction. Finally, scoop the dough up from the center, lifting it entirely out of the bowl, and flip it over, so that the bottom of the dough is now on the top. This is one “fold”. Cover the bowl again and set aside. Continue resting the dough, folding it in this manner every 30 minutes for a total resting time of 3 hours. The dough should be gassy, glossy, and very smooth. At this stage, the dough can be refrigerated overnight or divided in half and gently stretched into thin rounds for pizza. (Lightly flour the dough and your work surface with all-purpose flour as needed when shaping.)