Pot Luck

Sourdough Pizza in a Bread Machine

Here's another way to use up that sourdough you have to get rid of every day if you have a culture going. Thanks to reader LW, who suggested Betty Sue as the name of my new sourdough. Betty Sue is looking real good lately. Especially in this bread machine pizza recipe.

Making the dough is really easy -- shaping it is the trick. My dough came out very loose and sticky, and I needed to work a lot of flour into it. Getting the dough into a pan or onto a pizza stone makes you admire those guys who throw pizza dough in the air. I have some work to do before I get to that level. So far, I can't even keep the thing round.

Granted, the dough was misshapen, and I left the pizza in the oven a little too long so the cheese got brown. I also forgot to brush the shell with olive oil before I put tomato sauce and mozzarella on it, so it looked dry. But nobody cared -- the pizza tasted sensational. The crust was crispy with a nice bread flavor. And the effort was minimal, thanks to the bread machine. Next time--pepperoni.

Here's the recipe:

Sourdough Pizza

Adjust the amount of water to your sourdough. If your sourdough is very liquid, you will need half a cup; if it's dry, you will need more. You don't need any yeast -- the sourdough starter provides enough leavening to make a beautiful crispy pizza shell.

3 cups bread flour plus half a cup extra for work surface 1 teaspoon salt Half cup warm water 2 tablespoons olive oil 2 cups sourdough starter

Put the ingredients in a bread machine in the order specified in the manufacturer's instructions. Set the machine on dough only cycle.

When the dough is done, preheat an oven to 450° (or higher if your oven is clean). Use the extra flour to prepare a work surface. Turn the dough out onto the floured work surface and knead until it is no longer sticky. Divide into two balls. Roll or shape both balls into pizza rounds. Place on cornmeal on a cookie sheet and allow to rise for half an hour. Put the cookie sheet in the oven, or use a peel to transfer the pizza round to a pizza stone. Bake for four or five minutes until the pizza shells are baked through. Top the pizza and continue baking until the cheese melts, or store the baked shells in the freezer.

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Robb Walsh
Contact: Robb Walsh