Sour dough and poolish.

I was wondering if anyone cna shed some light on this topic for me. What exactly is sourdough and poolish? Are they the same thing? What effect do the have on pizza dough? And how does someone go about making it? On my end, every dough match I make is 50lbs of flour and the other ingredients accordingly. How would I or how could I incorporate the sourdough/poolish in this?
Any help would be greatly appreciated.

I can’t find a link I had to a web page that you would enjoy, but I’ll give you a few below, if I can get this software to cooperate.

You can do google searches around preferment, sourdough, yeast, biga, poolish, etc.

Thank you for the reply and the helpful links. I checked them out and I have somewhat of a better idea. I was just wondering if you or anyone can give me any info as to how much poolish to use in conjunction with a full pizza dough batch(around 45lbs). Do u subrtact the amount of poolish from the flour weight or the water? Is the yeast percentage altered accordingly? ANy help would be greatly appreciated. :smiley:


If your dough recipe is recited in baker’s percent format and you are handy with math, you should be able to convert the recipe to a poolish format by allocating portions of the formula flour, water and yeast to the poolish preferment. Once the poolish preferment is ready to be used, it would be combined in the final mix with the remaining formula flour, water and yeast and any other ingredients, such as salt, sugar, oil, etc. For amounts of poolish to use, you may want to take a look at this article: … pr2004.htm (you may have to copy and paste this URL into your browser address box). Once you decide on how much poolish to use, it might be prudent to experiment with a small dough batch before going to a commercial dough batch.

Thank you very much for your reply,it was very helpful. Lots of interesting things on that site. I guess the rest will be determined through trial and error and expirementation. :smiley:

You are looking at different thing there. A poolish/biga or sponge are all known as pre-ferments. They are used to develop flavor in the finished product. A sourdough on the other hand is a type of product (characterized by flavor) and it requires management of a sourdough starter which is a whole different animal, as is the flavor. A simple way to make a sponge dough pizza crust is to use 60% of the flour in the sponge portion, mix this with all of the yeast and half of the weight of the flour as water. Mix this together for about 5-minutes at low or medium speed. Be sure to adjust the water temperature to give you a mixed sponge temperature of 75 to 80F (this means that you will probably need to use 70F water). Transfer themixed sponge to a suitably sized container and allow it to ferment for 3 to 5-hours (be consistent with the time), then transfer it back to the mixer and add the remainder of the flour, the salt, sugar (if used), fat and water (ice cold). Mix the dough just until it comes smooth, the temperature should be between 80 and 85F. Then take it directly to the bench for scaling and balling, place into dough boxes, wipe with salad oil, cross stack in the cooler for 2.5-hours, then down stack for the night. On the following day, remove about a 3-hour quantity of dough from the cooler and allow it to te3mper AT room temperature for roughly 90-minutes, then begin using the dough. The dough will remain good to use for up to 3-hours after you begin opening it up into dough skins. Dough that has been left in the cooler will remain good for up to 3-days.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

Thank you very much for your reply Tom. I will crunch up all my numbers and percentages and try out my first batch. :smiley: