Sourdough Pizza


I get the sense that sourdough starters are starting to come back into fashion – for the most part, it’s the bakers and chefs who nurture their bubbling little jars, texting each other about feeding schedules and storage advice. I started some new starter earlier this summer – the batch I had, with a backup tucked away in the back of the freezer, finally gave up due to neglect.


I got them going, and then left town – and on the way back from Tofino, we detoured through Edmonton, popping in to Prairie Gardens farm in Bon Accord, where chef Blair Lebsack and Caitlin Fulton of Rge Rd cook farm dinners, they teach classes using the wood-fired cobb oven – pizza, charred salads with tomatoes, arugula and beans and beans from the garden, things like charred greens, braised leeks and Brussels sprouts, roasted herbs, quick pickles, bannock, cooked on a stick over the fire, pastry for spiced apple empanadas and galettes. Christine Sandford is one of the chefs who cooks out at the farm, and she came to make us pizzas with sourdough crust topped with paper-thin yellow zucchini and edible flowers, cooked in just a few minutes in their handmade oven alongside baby corn that we unwrapped and dragged through marigold aioli.

The farm has a CSA program and you can go pick your own veggies and fruit – and their pumpkin festival is legendary – every weekend in October you can visit their enormous pumpkin patch and pick your own. I promised W we’d go back this fall – he was particularly enamoured with the idea of the pumpkin cannon, which is exactly what it sounds like – they load up and shoot pumpkins out of a full-sized cannon. I wish I could get away with doing this in our neighbourhood.


But – the sourdough crust. I tried it myself, taking some direction from King Arthur Flour, because they know what they’re talking about. If you don’t happen to have a wood-fired oven in my back yard – with a 110 year old wood house on a 25 foot lot, I don’t – you can bake them on a heavy, rimmed baking sheet sprinkled with flour or cornmeal or drizzled with oil or lined with parchment, at 450F for 15 minutes or so, or however you normally bake your pizzas.

Sourdough Pizza Dough


October 20, 2016


1 cup sourdough starter

2 1/2-3/4 cups all-purpose flour

2 Tbsp olive oil, plus extra for the pan

1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp active dry or instant yeast


1Stir and measure your starter into a large bowl. Add the remaining ingredients along with 1/2 cup warm water, holding some of the flour back just in case, and knead by hand or with the dough hook attachment of your stand mixer for about 8 minutes, or until smooth and elastic. Place it back in the bowl (if it's not there already), cover with a tea towel and let rise for a couple hours, or until doubled in bulk. (This will take slightly longer than traditional dough, but the added yeast will help give it a boost.)

2Divide the dough in half and shape into two pizza crusts on oiled baking sheets. Let it rest for another hour or so, and at some point preheat the oven to 450°F (or fire up your pizza oven, if you're lucky enough to have one), and prep your toppings.

3Spread your dough with pizza sauce, pesto, or whatever you like, top with your desired toppings, scatter with grated mozzarella, and bake for 10-15 minutes, or until bubbly and golden. Makes two large pizzas, or 6-8 small ones.


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7 comments on “Sourdough Pizza

  1. Shannon
    October 21, 2016 at 6:05 am

    I have to try this recipe! I tried one this summer and the dough called for baking powder rather than additional yeast and all I got was really poofy, and difficult to work with sourdough. Your pizza looks fantastic!

  2. margaret
    October 21, 2016 at 7:41 am

    Where does one buy real sourdough starter in Edmonton?

  3. Kathleen
    October 21, 2016 at 11:19 am

    Is the sourdough starter fresh out of the fridge or have you fed it before you used it in the recipe?

  4. Nicolle in Calgary
    October 21, 2016 at 5:40 pm

    Hi Julie,

    I have been following your blog for years, but this is my first time posting. I have made so many of your recipes over the years, but I just wanted to tell you that I made your “No-Knead Pizza Dough” recipe tonight for dinner. It was THE BEST pizza crust I have EVER made! Thank-you so much for the recipe. Now I cannot wait to try the sourdough (it may become my new favourite!!)

  5. Kelsey Fast
    October 27, 2016 at 5:54 pm

    I have been looking for this exact type of thing! Thanks so much!

  6. Susan
    November 24, 2016 at 1:03 pm

    I’m just making this but the dough won’t come together, it’s dry and crumbly. I’m looking at another recipe which includes water. Should I add some?

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