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Sourdough Pizzas | Pepperoni Pizza | Ham Mushroom and Mascarpone Pizza

Introduction & method

Hands up who doesn't like pizza! Pizzas are everywhere these days, but have you ever thought of making your own? It's quite easy to do and this recipe uses sourdough starter for a really tasty crust.

Sourdough Pizzas | Pepperoni Pizza | Ham Mushroom and Mascarpone Pizza Recipe

Make the Dough

In a large mixing bowl, or the bowl of a stand mixer if you have one, combine the flour, salt and yeast. I know you're raising an eyebrow at the yeast because strictly speaking we don't need it when we have the yeast from the sourdough. But this will reduce the proving time significantly and I want my pizza today, not tomorrow. Using the paddle attachment on the stand mixer, combine the sourdough starter and then gradually add enough water for the dough to come together into a ball. Be careful not to add too much water. Change the paddle for the dough hook and knead the dough for 5 minutes. Cover the bowl and leave it in a warm place for the dough to double in volume - this will probably take between 2 and 4 hours.

Make the Pizza Sauce

Most pizzas have a layer of pizza sauce on the dough. You can buy ready-made (which I generally find is too sweet) or you can make your own. Peel and crush/mince the garlic. In a small saucepan, gently sizzle the garlic in olive oil for about a minute, then add the tomatoes and tomato puree. Add the herbs, cook for a few minutes then taste it. You may need to add some salt. If the tomatoes are bitter, half a teaspoon of sugar can counteract that. Don't add too much or your sauce will be too sweet. Mash the tomatoes or whizz with a stick blender. If you want a super-smooth sauce pass it through a fine sieve.

Prep the Mushrooms

Brush any dirt off your mushrooms. Cut into slices about 5mm (quarter of an inch) thick. Gently sauté them in oil for a couple of minutes each side. You want a bit of browning and for the shrooms to release some moisture. Drain them on some kitchen paper and set aside until needed.

Make the Pizza Bases

You'll need two pizza pans about 30cm (12 inch) diameter. Line each one with greaseproof paper and sprinkle with flour. Flour your worktop and rolling pin, take half of the dough and roll it into a large disc. Place it on one of the tins and stretch it until the dough reaches the edge. Paint a thin layer of olive oil all over the dough - don't let any puddles of oil collect. Do the same with the remaining dough and leave both bases to rise a little for about 15 minutes - assuming you're a thin and crispy person. If you prefer thick and fluffy, leave it longer. 

Make the Pepperoni Pizza

Spread the tomato sauce all over one of the pizza bases. Make sure it goes right to the edge of the dough. Arrange slices of pepperoni all over, and then sprinkle with grated mozzarella. Set aside or bake immediately.

Make the Ham, Mushroom and Mascarpone Pizza

Spread the mascarpone over the centre of the pizza base. Cut the ham into squares and arrange them round the edge of the pizza. Place a slice of mushroom in between the squares of ham. Don't put any mozzarella on just yet.

Bake the Pizzas

You can bake both pizzas at the same time, in which case you'll want to swap shelves about halfway through. Preheat your oven to 200°C (392°F) fan, 220°C (428°F) conventional, gas 7. Put the pizzas in and bake for 5 minutes. After this time, take out the mascarpone one and swap the shelf of the pepperoni one. Sprinkle mozzarella around the edge of the pizza, and maybe a bit in the middle if you like. Pop it back in for another 5-7 minutes. Remove the pizzas from the oven and let them cool down before attempting to eat them.



Ingredients & Info

 300 grams strong white bread flour
 227 grams sourdough starter
 150 ml warm water
 1 tsp salt
 half a tsp active dried yeast
 200 grams tomato (canned or fresh)
 1-2 tbsp tomato puree
 2 cloves garlic
 5-6 fresh basil leaves
 1 tsp dried oregano
 1 tsp ground black pepper
  salt, to taste
  sugar, to taste
 75 grams sliced pepperoni
 2-3 tbsp pizza sauce
 125 grams mozzarella cheese, grated
 125 grams mascarpone
 125 grams smoked ham
 1 or 2 portobello mushroom
 125 grams mozzarella cheese, grated


Extra virgin olive oil for coating pizza bases and sautéeing.

US Customary/Imperial

Makes 2 x 30cm
Prep time: 15 minutes.
Proving time: 4 hours.
Cooking time: 12 minutes.
Total time: 4 hours 27 minutes.