As far as baking times go, 5:30 can still kick butt. After much experimentation, I know Chau ended up there. What did you think of the first one? Was it well received? I get the feeling that it probably ate pretty well.
As you move forward, start becoming more aware of your lighting. Fluorescent lighting is NOT your friend. It seems like, on the close-ups, I'm seeing more nice natural toasty brown hues, but the top shot is skewing quite a bit yellow/green. If at all possible, I think daylight gives you the best color representation.
Something's a little off with the dough. The crumb looks great, but the exterior feels a little off. When it overflowed the container, did it form a skin? The 1% sugar wasn't the culprit, btw. You were probably just dealing with slightly warmer ingredients because of the weather we've been having. Just scale back on the yeast next time. Next time, could you post photos of the pre-stretch dough, in the container- one shot of the top of the dough ball and one underneath?
What's the protein content of these flours?
On the first bake, did the fan stay on for all 4 minutes?
I've never seen a white pie in a pizzeria that didn't have ricotta. Ricotta is essential because it provides the water you would normally find in the tomato sauce. That water helps the cheese from cooking too fast. Without it, you get browning on the cheese. The olive oil, as we've discussed, helps, but you need some moisture in the equation. If you're dead set on not using ricotta, then you might want to consider just misting the cheese area on the skin with some water prior to applying the cheese. Unless, of course, you like your cheese to take on some color.
It looks like your plate is heating up unevenly. You're using only bake (with convection) for the pre-heat, right? Normally a convection fan is made to avoid uneven heating, but, it seems like your fan is anything but normal. I would take the steel plate to 520, then turn the oven off and give it 10 minutes for the heat in the plate to even out a bit. A ten minute cool down should give you an evenly heated 515 plate.
Also, you might want to start thinking about a mid bake turn (180 deg.). Maybe. First see where the cool down gets you.
Scott: Ah... the "interesting" word.
The first one was pretty well received (12 year old critic thought it could use a little more salt... probably right for just a little). Had a fair bit of crispness on the surface, with a pretty good crumb and chew inside. Not much droop to the slice.
I agree with scott123 that the sugar was not the cause of your dough doubling and tripling. I also have my doubts that 0.25% IDY was the culprit for a cold fermented dough. It would take a lot of heat or a long room temperature warmup for that amount of IDY to cause a doubling or tripling in volume. My best guess is a yeast measurement error.
Peter: I used the Lehmann Dough Calculator for the ingredients and rounded down to 0.5 tsp (from 0.54 tsp indicated) yeast, and I'm pretty sure that I measured it out correctly (I don't own a small volume digital scale, so it may have been off by a bit). I use SAF Red IDY (which some people claim is more active than other brands).
The finished temperature of the dough was exactly 80%, and I balled and put it into the fridge withing 5 minutes. It stayed in the fridge from there on, and I started to notice pretty rapid expansion from the 20 hour mark. The dough did form a skin, and felt OK to work with. I'm not sure what to make of the overflowing container (maybe get bigger containers
). I didn't get as much of a rise with the previous Glutenboy dough at 6-7 days. The differences from the Glutenboy dough: (1) The addition of 1% sugar; (2) The addition of 1% oil; (3) I used my new Bosch Compact mixer instead of my food processor; (4) No 2 hour room temperature bulk rise before balling. I'll post photos of the dough in the container next time.
I think that a lot of the unevenness of bottom browning may come from the unevenness of the bottom. I had a bit of trouble getting the dough out of the oiled pyrex containers (again, a change from Glad containers... they were on sale at the local outlet mall, and fir easier into the fridge), and probably manhandled it too much, which may have carried through to the skin.
BTW, please remind me again why EVOO is not advised?
I went with a 50/50 combo of KABF (12.7%) and Central Milling Type 85 (12.5%) flours. I used 1/3 Type 85 combined with 2/3 Central Milling ABC (11.5%) in the past. Could there be something in the KABF/Type 85 that gave the yeast more to munch on?
I am using only bake with the mischievous fan assist for pre-heat, and the fan did stay on for the full bake at 500 degrees. I'll try the cool down strategy next time.
As far as the browning of the cheese goes, I'll probably need to live with it because of the part-skim mozz (I think the oil helps, Scott, so thanks for that recommendation a while back, I'll try misting the skin with water down the road, once we can dial in the rest). I guess could also using the low setting for the broiler for half or all of the broil period.
I wasn't displeased with how these pies turned out (with the exception of losing control of the top browning on the second pie through a lapse in attention
), and I'm confident (OK, hoping) that the more tweaking I do with your help, the better they will get. Thanks.