What's the "tweak" for pizza dough

jas's picture
I'm going to have a try at pizza tomorrow, and was hoping to identify how a pizza dough differs from a bread dough, so that I could tweak my white sourdough bread recipe that is working well.

From what I can gather after studying recipes like:


it seems like a common difference is the  addition of extra salt, and olive oil.  I also suspect that the proving/shaping timings are different; perhaps punch down the dough more aggressively, and don't let it rise so much after shaping?

Does this sound about right?

Thanks for any tips, Jason.
143 users have voted.


jas's picture
jas 2009 June 14
Oh, also, my bread dough is 68% hydration.  Not sure whether pizza dough should be wet or dry.
sam 2009 June 15
Hiya Jas,

I rekon there's 3 important tweaks to a good pizza (dough) :

1) Using a pre-ferment/poolish method/recipe. It gives a huge boost to texture and flavour, that is far superior to anything done in one mix on the day.

2) Use the highest hydration recipe that you are comfortable with. Its gonna be harder to handle, but will leave you with a blistery, holey/open crumby and crsipy base.

3) Heaps of bottom heat - use a [url=www.everten.com.au/product/mario-batali-pizza-pan-persimmon.html]pizza pan[/url]. You'll never get the bottom heat required for a good base with a baking stone as your oven wont get hot enough. Using these pans - on the burner then with your grill (or hot oven) - is the best method i've come across. You can get these suckers to about 400-450 in about 5mins on a gas burner - chuck on your base and top your pizza while the base cooks...and into the over or under the hot grill to finish.

Here's my fav high hydration/2stage pizza recipe anyhows...

Pizza dough

biga (day1)

535 g lukewarm water
385 g high protein flour
30g (100% hyd) ripe starter

dough (day2)

600 g high protein flour
125 g water
1 1/2 tsp fine sea salt

jas's picture
jas 2009 June 15
Thanks Sam,

This is pretty much what I did this morn, although my bread dough is already 68% so I bumped it up to 72% to see what happens.  Also threw in a little diastatic malt for a boost, and put in some olive oil because it seems to be a common addition.

jas's picture
jas 2009 June 16
Topping was tomato paste, shrimp with garlic & parsley, mozarrella, olive oil.

Cooked a little too long, but otherwise... yum.  I think I will be doing home-made pizza sourdough quite a bit now.

Mitchamus 2009 October 16

65% hydration is spot on for authentic pizza dough,

I'm a purist, and never add anything except salt. no milk, oil or anything like that - seriously you don't need it.

You'll also get a much better result if you shape the dough by hand - never (ever!) use a rolling pin.


If you have a baking stone - great, turn your oven up as high as it will go and let the stone heat for a generous 20 mins ont he bottom shelf.


it should cook in about 6 mins.


In my wood fired oven,  pizza takes somewhere between 90 seconds and 120 seconds to cook, depending on temp.



Post Reply

Already a member? Login