Author Topic: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust  (Read 21053 times)

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Offline pftaylor

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New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« on: March 26, 2006, 08:09:53 AM »
Fellow member Bill/SFNM and I were ruminating about our favorite passion a few weeks ago and determined we share the exact same vision for the perfect pizza crust. I'm quite sure there may be other members out there who may share a very similar vision. The purpose of this thread is to produce a new standard of crust. Partially based on the best super soft crusts from Naples. Partially based upon the best crispy crunchy crusts of NYC. It is entirely based upon the notion that we can get to a higher standard through the process of collaboration.

Although I have never eaten a pie from the famous pizzerias in Naples I feel as though I have through the countless stories of visitors who have described their experiences. My sense is that the Neapolitan crusts define the standard for fluffy. I'm not sure they have an ultra-thin layer of delicate crunch though. I also don't think the concept of a slightly crispy crust is bad - as long as the crust isn't crackerish. It shouldn't be dried out. Most NYC crusts are somewhat dried out. Heavy not light. scott r described it well the other day when he wrote about a pizza "floating" off the plate it was so light. Ideally the perfect crust should have a wafer thin layer of crisp which gives way to a silly-soft interior which harmoniously melts in your mouth. Can we achieve both? That in a nutshell is the goal of this post.

If members would like to join in and collaborate on setting a new standard, our door is open and we welcome your input. Please be aware that there are a few requirements which may be a necessity for achieving our lofty goal:
1) It is going to require a source of extreme high heat. 550 degrees doesn't qualify. Sorry. We want oven spring and slight exterior crisp. Experience tells me that the crust we are after can only come when it cooks for about 2 minutes or less. In fact, 2 minutes might be too much but like Scotty said on the original Star Trek "I'm given it all I've got Captain." I can't personally get below two minutes right now with my TEC grill. I know some of you have modified your home ovens and can get to that range. Other members have wood burning ovens which are capable. This is doable.

2) We plan on focusing intently on a dough procedure which promotes fluff and crisp. Some of our more learned members have suggested they can take the hardest American flours and produce the fluffiest crusts or take the softest Italian flours and produce the hardest crusts.  We want the best of both. We do not want one or the other. That is too easily achieved. We welcome all insight into how to produce our target goal of a wafer thin crispy exterior which gives way to a pillow in the middle. I expect that a world-class mixing regimen may result from collaboration in this area which may require those willing participants to invest heavily in mixing equipment. DLX comes to mind. Santos fork mixers come to mind. One exalted member privately suggested the best way to achieve light crust is to mix the ingredients by hand. The fact is I don't know the answer yet, but I am willing to invest the time, energy, and effort to get there but I need the membership's help.

3) We plan on incorporating the use of a preferment. My firm opinion in this area is that the best tasting crusts I have ever eaten were enhanced by a preferment. Accordingly, we will incorporate their use here for aroma and flavor.

4) We plan on trialing various ingredients such as fresh yeast and new types of flours both Italian and domestic. Perhaps blends as well. We don't know what we don't know and in order to get to where no man has gone before (sorry for another trite Star Trek reference) we will have to get creative and think outside the veritable pizza box.

I await the membership's candid feedback.
« Last Edit: March 26, 2006, 10:45:31 AM by pftaylor »
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Offline scott r

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #1 on: March 26, 2006, 01:21:00 PM »
Ok, I have a procedure that can achieve something close to this.  I am going to be unable to make pizzas for the next month or so, so maybe I can help even without being able to experiment here with you guys.

First off, I have better luck getting really fluffy crusts with higher gluten flour.  I blend in a little KASL with my Caputo to achieve this.   All KASL has no flavor, so I try to use a little as possible.  I usually end up with something like 15-20%.  Experimenting with new brands of flour might even get you closer to your goal.  Caputo Red (chefs warehouse sells it mail order) will also get you more fluff.  This stuff does not taste as good as the blue, but it is better than the American flour I have tried.  Has anybody experimented with the Giusto bread flour?????  Might be one to try.

I have a trick that I want you to try PFT.  This will help to achieve what you are looking for regardless of the recipe/flour etc. I know you are looking for a certain recipe/mixing/management methodology to achieve your goal, but this is more of a cheat.   I am not sure it will work in a humid environment, but here in my kitchen during the dry winter months it works like a charm.   I leave a bowl of flour out without a lid on it for a day or so before making pies.  The key is to let the flour dry out as much as possible.   You could probably pre dry your flour for a minute or two in the oven if it is too damp there in Florida.  I drop my dough out of my proofing container and let it sit in the really dry flour covered for a few minutes.   The longer you let it sit the crispier that outer shell will be.  What happens is that the really dry flour (that has been sitting out on the counter) sucks the moisture out of the outer portion of the dough.   This produces an outer egg shell type of crispy crust while still maintaining your soft interior.  This is of course similar to the concept of the wooden proofing boxes, but I think it works much more efficiently.

Offline Bill/SFNM

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #2 on: March 26, 2006, 01:47:39 PM »
I am honored to join pftaylor in this quest which we have discussed at great length and take quite seriously because we both know the indescribable thrill of biting into this kind pizza. I have rarely achieved it - the perfect combination of fluffy and crispy with a great flavor - below is a recent photo which I think I have already posted of one such pie.

I hope to receive tomorrow a bag of San Felice pizzeria flour which I intend to plug into my standard Caputo/Camaldoli recipe to see if that flour holds any promise. Rather than clog this forum up with the details of our experiments, we'll be posting results and photos in a little Tampa Fe blog I've created: http://www.lanackerman.com/blog. We'll definitely post info on successes here. Please let me know if anyone is interested in blogging there. Anyone is free to post comments. There probably won't be any useful entries in there for a few days.

Bill/SFNM




« Last Edit: March 26, 2006, 01:50:34 PM by Bill/SFNM »

Offline Bill/SFNM

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #3 on: March 26, 2006, 01:58:34 PM »
Has anybody experimented with the Giusto bread flour?????  Might be one to try.

Scott,

I have been using Giusto's Artisan Bread flour (malted)  instead of KABF for my baguettes. Somewhat better texture and flavor. I have a bag of their standard unmalted bread flour that I'll be playing with also, but not for pizza, at least not yet.

I think I will attempt mixing flours as a last resort. I'm convinced that a longer, slow knead is critical to this quest.

I hope you will join our project!

Bill/SFNM

Offline pftaylor

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #4 on: March 26, 2006, 02:16:03 PM »
scott-r,
Thanks for the cheat cheat. I will try a modified version of it for tonight's skins. I could have used it for the first skin I prepped last night. It ended up sticking to the peel and made a mini mess of the first pizza I attempted with San Felice flour.

Bill/SFNM,
This will be a fun experience for me as I have no doubt we will hit the mark. I did try the San Felice flour you mentioned last night and had my share of first run jitters with it. I can also tell you that there was one ray of sunshine which peeked through the dark clouds and that ray was crunch. While not up to the standard of Luzzo's, it did have a crunch which was better than anything I have been able to achieve with Caputo based doughs. It unfortunately had zero fluff and limited flavor. Caputo is special in the flavor category. I look forward to blogging with you. The photos of last night's efforts are below.
« Last Edit: March 26, 2006, 02:29:56 PM by pftaylor »
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Offline Randy

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Offline David

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #6 on: March 26, 2006, 03:08:03 PM »
Sorry Guys but due to a dramatic change in my personal circumstances,i'm unable to participate in your search,but will try my best to follow.I haven't even had the chance to fire up my oven during the past five weeks!Good luck to you all,
                                                               David
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Offline pizzanapoletana

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #7 on: March 26, 2006, 05:27:21 PM »
Hi Guys,

It surprise me and make me smile every time I read a new thread on this forum where a member or a group get excited about a new thing... You have the excitement most professional lack.

The problem I see, is that sometimes you may be jumping to conclusions to soon and focus your effort on a brand of flour, salt, yeast etc...

I understand that the majority of you are home enthusiast and I appreciate that you may have more passion about pizzamaking then most professional, but there is no substitute for experience...

A floating pizza that is fluffy and crispier on the outside? it is easy... The margherita picture I posted on my pizza in America thread is just such a pizza.

You need to manipulate the ingredients and technique to obtain your desire product not letting these impose which product you will obtain. In particular the objective of this thread may be requiring a bit of understanding of the processes otherwise I don't see how you guys will achieve it.

Reading the introduction of this post, I have noticed one statement by Peter that seamed to be a ground rule, however in my opinion that rule will be the major setback in trying to achieve your goal...

I always repeat myself, but it is not hard to obtain most style of pizza (which I normally refer to in Italian as focaccias...), it is hard to obtain a true Authentic Napoletana as it was done 300 years ago....

I have already received harsh criticism and comments I don't particularly think reflects the unique contribution I have given to this forum, thus I have decided to limit my posts on avoiding confusion rather then explaining and revealing.

Good luck with your experiment and hope you will achieve your desire results.

Ciao
« Last Edit: March 26, 2006, 05:31:21 PM by pizzanapoletana »

Offline scott r

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #8 on: March 26, 2006, 05:54:45 PM »

I have already received harsh criticism and comments I don't particularly think reflects the unique contribution I have given to this forum, thus I have decided to limit my posts on avoiding confusion rather then explaining and revealing.

Ciao


Marco, Right now I am making the pizza of my dreams, and I owe it all to you.  If you had not come on this forum I would have not had the entire basis of what I am doing.  Your contribution is duly noted here.


Offline pftaylor

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #9 on: March 26, 2006, 07:08:23 PM »
pizzanapoletana,
I was hoping you would join this discussion. It sounds like from your post that true Neapolitan pizza has the crust texture Bill and I set as our goal. It really isn't surprising if that is the case since all modern pizza has emanated from Naples. Never having been to Naples (though I will get there one day) I can only imagine how wonderful it is. Having said that however, I have never noticed anyone anywhere describe Neapolitan crust in the manner with which I described my ideal crust. 

I agree that one brand of flour or yeast over another is not critical. For instance, I have never tasted a more flavorful crust than one based on Caputo Pizzeria flour. But it is probably pretty close overall to other well known Italian flours. I firmly believe that a well balanced dough management protocol combined with proper heat is the most appropriate starting point for this thread.

In that light, I will hopefully soon buy a true Neapolitan wood burning oven and a Santos mixer. My sense is that taking these steps will then allow me to practice this hobby once and for all with the right set of tools. Bill/SFNM has a wood burning oven and a Santos mixer which means he is miles ahead of where I'm at with my feeble KA mixer and TEC grill. Once I have the right set of tools I can then begin perfecting things like room temperature rises, prefermented doughs without the need of commercial yeasts, and 60 second bakes.

Regarding your comments about the harsh criticism you have received lately, it is unfortunate that is the case. You have helped me each and every time I have asked for it and you know I am truly grateful for your expert assistance.
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Offline pftaylor

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #10 on: March 26, 2006, 08:05:45 PM »
I re-doubled my efforts tonight and came up a winner. This pizza is the equal of a typical Raquel in every dimension. The crust even tastes better than a KASL based crust. However, it still is not as flavorful as a typical Sophia with a Caputo based crust.

The crust texture is very different from a Sophia and is closer to a Raquel. The texture was not perfect but was slightly chewy with a trace of crunch. Not enough to suit my desires but much better than last night's initial effort. Visually it even looks like an American pizza. I find that to be strange for an Italian flour whose protein level is similar to Caputo. It is a much stronger flour without increasing the protein levels.

I was finally able to achieve good fluff with good voids.
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Offline David

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #11 on: March 26, 2006, 08:21:52 PM »
Hi Guys,

It surprise me and make me smile every time I read a new thread on this forum where a member or a group get excited about a new thing... You have the excitement most professional lack.


Hi Marco,
Like many things in life,it's more often about the journey than the destination.Why do children bring so much pleasure to us- I think it's because of the innocence and naivety they project that can always brings a smile to our faces.I'm enjoying this particular one and am happy to have encountered you & others along the road to nirvana  ;)
                                                                                            David
« Last Edit: March 26, 2006, 08:24:07 PM by David »
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Offline pizzanapoletana

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #12 on: March 27, 2006, 07:58:50 AM »

pizzanapoletana,
..It sounds like from your post that true Neapolitan pizza has the crust texture Bill and I set as our goal. .


Peter,

I did not mean to say that. Actually, I was pointing out that the Margherita in the picture was not true "Napoletana" as it was cooked at a lower temperature affecting the final product, as well as the cheese on top.

Bread and focaccias have a crust (crunchy part) and a crumb (soft part). Pizza was "invented" in Naples by cooking through a special dough by leaving both the outside and the inside very soft.

What I mean is that the crunchiness can be obtained by modifying few thing (and by being able to manage those changes), and some time may be a results of a wrong process or a mistake.

I find that to be strange for an Italian flour whose protein level is similar to Caputo. It is a much stronger flour without increasing the protein levels.


Since my earlier post I have tried to explain that the proteins level is not a good indicator because the strenght depends on the percentage of gluten forming protein within the total level, which may vary considerably, as well as the quality of those gluten forming proteins.

The true indicator is the W factor, and the difference is quite big.

Ciao



Online Pete-zza

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #13 on: March 27, 2006, 09:44:30 AM »
Marco,

I have recently been researching and studying the specifications for the Caputo 00 Pizzeria flour and the San Felice pizza flour that pft has been testing. I have also been trying to get the corresponding specifications for the King Arthur Sir Lancelot flour, only because scott r has been combining that flour with the Caputo 00 Pizzeria flour.

As best I can determine, both the Caputo 00 Pizzeria flour and the San Felice (SF) flour meet the requirements of the 2004 Declaration of the VPN. The W value of the Caputo Pizzeria flour appear to be 240-260, and 200-300 for the SF flour. The absorption (assorbimento) number for the Caputo Pizzeria flour is 55-57%, whereas for the SF it is 55-62%. I could not find the ash (ceneri) content for the Caputo 00 Pizzeria flour but for the SF flour it is 0.55% SS. I assume that the ceneri for the Caputo 00 Pizzeria flour is around 0.50-0.55%. Do you know if that is a correct assumption? The protein contents of the two flours seem similar, but I don't have any number for the gluten (wet or dry) for the SF flour.

I know that numbers don't tell all of the story, but is there any way to assess the above differences between the two flours, as well as any other differences that you feel are important to keep in mind, in terms of what one might expect in using the two flours to make pizza doughs, including those that meet the requirements of the 2004 VPN Declaration? I have most of the numbers for W, Umidata, Assorbimento, Stabilita, F/N, Protein, Caduta (E10/E20), p/l, Sviluppo, Elasticita, and I Valorimeter. I don't know which of these are the most critical.

Also, do you know if Italy uses the "wet" or "dry" standard for the ash (ceneri) and protein content?

Thank you.

Peter

Offline pizzanapoletana

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #14 on: March 27, 2006, 10:50:25 AM »
Peter,

I don't know where you got the San Felice spec, but I have the official technical data sheet from the miller and the one you have are not precise.

Most of the spec mentioned by you are important when evaluating a flour, and by researching it you should found out what is most important.

In Italy they measure wet gluten (which is a percentage of the total protein contenent).

Offline Bill/SFNM

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #15 on: March 27, 2006, 11:21:29 AM »
I got this from the San Felice Mill:

6.6 FARINA 00 AZZURRO “verace pizza napoletana artigianale”

CARATTERISTICA   VALORE   TOLLERANZA
UMIDITA’   15.50%   MAX
CENERI   0,55% SS   MAX
W   200-300   
P/L   0,50/0,70   
FALLING NUMBER   250-400   
PROTEINE(N X 5.7)SS   11,00%-12,50 %   
ASSORBIMENTO (A)   55%   MIN
SVILUPPO    (B)   2’30’’   
STABILITA’ (CD)   4’-8’   
CADUTA (E10)   20 UF   +/-10
CADUTA (E 20)   70 UF   +/-10
      

Bill/SFNM

Offline pizzanapoletana

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #16 on: March 27, 2006, 12:26:06 PM »
A w factor with anything more then a 20 value tollerance cannot be accurate. a 200 w flour is a medium/ soft flour whilst a W300 flour is a strong four...

same thing for the falling number.....

Again, to me is not even worth to talk about it....


Ciao



Online Pete-zza

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #17 on: March 27, 2006, 12:26:13 PM »
FWIW, this is the additional flour information I have as of now (with side-by-side for the Caputo Pizzeria and San Felice flours):

For the Caputo Pizzeria flour                        For the San Felice flour
ceneri 0.50% SS (estimated)                        ceneri 0.55% SS Max.                       
W 240-260                                                    W 200-300                                                     
p/l 0.50-0.60                                                  p/l 0.50-0.70
proteine 11.5-12.5%                                     proteine (N X 5.7)SS 11.00-12.5%
falling number 340-360 sec.                          falling number 250-400 sec.
assorbimento 55-57% (absorption)              assorbimento (A) 55% Min.
sviluppo 1'50''- 2'10'' (development)             sviluppo (B) 2'30"
stabilità 8-10 min. (stability)                          stabilita (CD) 4-8 min.
caduta 40-60 (drop)                                       caduta (E10) 20 UF +/- 10
glutine umido 32-34% (wet gluten)               caduta (E 20) 70 UF +/- 10
elasticità 18-20                                              umidata 15.50% Max.
I. valorimetr. 54-56                                                                   

VPN 2004 Declaration
W 220-380
p/l 0.50-0.70
proteine 11-12.5%
falling number 300-400 sec.
assorbimento 55-62%
stabilita 4-8 min.
caduta E10 max. 60
dry gluten 9.5-11%

For the King Arthur KASL
protein 14.2 +/- 0.2%
ash 0.52 +/- 0.02
falling number 250 +/- 30 sec.
absorption 63 +/- 2.0%
peak 7 +/- 3 min.
stability 14 +/- 3 min.
MTI (mixing tolerance index) 30 +/- BU (Brabender Units)

For the Caputo Red-00R rinforzato rosso:
ceneri ??
proteine 12-13%
glutine umidio 34-36%
W 270-300
assorbimento 55-57%
stabilità 10-12 min.
caduta 30-60 min.
falling number 340-360 sec.
p/l 0.50-0.60
sviluppo 2-3 min.
elasticità 16-18
I. valorimetrico 56-60

Peter
« Last Edit: March 27, 2006, 01:22:01 PM by Pete-zza »

Offline pizzanapoletana

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #18 on: March 27, 2006, 12:29:32 PM »
FYI

The VPN specs refer to a a range of flours you can use to make their dough and specifically a mix in various percentage of w220 flour with a w380 flour (normally in Italy that value is given to a "Manitoba" flour).

Ciao

Offline pftaylor

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #19 on: March 27, 2006, 08:09:18 PM »
Tonight I made the final skin from the batch which was originally mixed on Friday evening. The pictures speak for themselves and the membership can draw their own conclusions but here are mine:
First, the crust texture and flavor progressively tasted better the longer the dough fermented.
Second, I don't have enough heat to extract a silly-soft interior. My bake is too long. Tonight's bake was 2:30 seconds and that is at least 45 seconds too much. The crust had an egg shell thick crispy exterior but a somewhat chewy interior. The TEC temperature was a paltry 746 degrees. A good 100 degrees to low.
Third, I know I can get there. I just can't get there from here.

Anybody got a shoulder I can cry on for a while...
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Offline Bill/SFNM

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #20 on: March 29, 2006, 03:03:58 PM »
I baked my first pie yesterday using the San Felice flour, plugging it into my Caputo/Camaldoli recipe. After kneading, the San Felice dough seemed a little sticker than the Caputo dough, but after a 10 hour room temp ferment, 7 hour retard in the fridge, and 4 hour proof, the dough was soft, supple, and perfectly easy to work with using only a small amount of bench flour.

The biggest problem with this batch was my oven temp. I had to run out for an errand and left a helper in charge of feeding wood into the oven. He feed a little too much wood and the deck temp was off the scale of my IR probe, so it was over 1050F. I've never baked at such high temps so I thought it would be fun to try at least once. Well, I pulled the pie after 60 seconds. The top was perfect, the bottom was very charred - too much for my taste. Subsequent pies were baked between 900F and 950F. I would say that this flour burns a little quicker than the Caputo since these pies also were a little too charred on the bottom. But the texture was just what I was seeking - a very slight crisp on the outside and a light interior. I have achieved this same texture with Caputo, but not often. Perhaps this was just beginner's luck.

The real surprise for me was the flavor. Without intending, I stumbled on to the most authentic Neapolitan taste I have ever achieved ("authentic" to the extent that my poor memory can recall after only a few visits to Naples, the last one being over 18 months ago).

And for the first time I had very nice voids in the dough below the toppings.

Bottom line is that no conclusions of any kind can be drawn after just one test. The good news is that I can't wait to try experiment more.  I like what Marco says above about the enthusiasm of us amateurs - boundless and often baseless? But I for one am having a great time and, although I will never have the experience of a pro who bakes hundreds of pies each day, I do know my pizzas are improving - 2 steps forwards, 1 step back.



Bill/SFNM


Offline Bill/SFNM

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #21 on: March 29, 2006, 07:15:07 PM »
Two things I forgot to mention regarding this San Felice batch. First, in the time it took for a Caputo batch to ferment to double the volume, this dough almost ripled in the same time. Perhaps I'll try to decrease the amount of starter (currently 10%).

Second: I rarely eat leftover pizza since there rarely seems to be any leftover. One slice of this batch remained and was wrapped up and put in the  fridge. Several hours later I was walking the fridg and heard the slice calling out to me. So I took bite of the cold pizza. It was really good, surpirsingly good - soft and very tasty. That has not been my experience in the few times I've tried cold leftover slices.

Bill/SFNM

Offline pftaylor

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #22 on: April 02, 2006, 12:47:46 PM »
It is very difficult for a guy who comes from NY to admit that his home city pizza is not as good as somewhere else. But I am always open in my thinking (I think) and it has occurred to me that the Italians might have a leg up on NYC pie. So, in the spirit of trying to produce the best pie I am capable of, I have decided to investigate Neapolitan pizza in a big way. Mind you, not Roman or Tuscan pie but I mean the real McCoy. Napoli.

The genesis of this thread is rooted in the assumption that Italians, specifically Neapolitans, know more about pizza than any other and they can prove it by producing glorious pies. It is a very logical starting point to see if one can improve upon tradition or if they actually have it right. In order to do that, I need to incorporate new dough preparation and management steps. Otherwise, it wouldn't be new now would it? I managed to easily surpass the elite coal-fired pies of NYC with Raquel. I am now ready for the big leagues. The show. My sense is I may never get there. But if I die trying, what a way to go.

I just want to have a slightly more crisp exterior crust than they do without losing the fluffy interior. I would consider it an improvement in my personal opinion, they might think I'm a novice. No matter. I remain undaunted in my belief that a slightly crispy crust is world's better than a pure fluffy one.

In discussing with Pete-zza the other day about how I would make the shift to producing authentic Neapolitan pie with my above mentioned twist, our conversation meandered to room temperature rises versus cold ones. He calmly pointed out that before one spends money on better mixers and ovens, one has to have the right formula in order to advance forward. Pete-zza rightly pointed out that Sophia was cold (even though in her day she was hotter than Vesuvian molten lava) and authentic Neapolitan was warm.

Living in Tampa I have to endure delicious weather about eight months a year and brutally hot weather for four. The challenge for me is how would a Tampanian, from a practical point of view, manage the Tampa heat which can be 30 degrees above the globally accepted perfect range of temperatures which are ideal for long slow fermentations.

What I love about Pete-zza is that he comes prepared to discuss topics with unshakable facts. He also presents challenges associated with your goal but then seamlessly pulls from his pocket an acceptable solution or two. He is a trusted adviser in my book. He has no financial interest in the tireless help he has given to us all. I for one, will never abuse this privilege. This forum wouldn't be where it is today without his contributions. My pizza wouldn't be where it is either.

In this case he went through his thinking about how to conquer the Tampa heat problem by suggesting a cooler of some sort with some ice in it which may solve my problem. The negative here is that one would have to have a near vigil for the better part of the day to make sure that the cooler didn't get too cold or warm. He then dropped the little pebble of wisdom on my head that turned out to be a boulder. Perhaps one could use a wine cooler modified to tame the beast.
 
A pizza cooler I thought to myself. Sounds expensive but interesting. The WAF (wife acceptance factor) was high since it started its life as a wine cooler. So I knew I could sell the idea. Next up was to determine if a Pizza Cooler cooler actually produces the perfect range of temperature to allow the enzymes in the dough to do their dirty work most effectively.

As fate would have it, Home Depot sent an email out last week with a 10% off code so I figured why not take a look. Long story short I found a Magic Chef Pizza Cooler that can get the job done. Don't worry about the wine bottles in the picture, they are there for increased WAF, pure decoration, and libation afterwards.

So for $90 delivered I have a Pizza Cooler that will reach the perfect range. Did I mention it barely reaches the zone of perfection?. There may be times when I have to place the unit in the sun to hit the range but I know I can get there. I will certainly have a new use for my trusty RayTek Laser Thermometer to make sure I am in compliance.

I now have Pete-zza to thank for having one less thing to worry about as I climb the pizza mountain of enlightenment.
« Last Edit: April 02, 2006, 01:49:54 PM by pftaylor »
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Offline Bill/SFNM

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #23 on: April 02, 2006, 02:47:13 PM »
pftaylor,

If you die trying, you will be greatly missed and remembered as one who threw his body over the barbed wire so that others could move forward in the battle.  :'(


I also find the whole time and temperature part of the fermenting/proofing equation very challenging. For no reason other than convenience, I do a  room temp bulk rise until the dough is doubled (8-10 hours), and then keep it in the refrigerator until 4 hours before baking. I know others advise against doubling pizza dough, but I think at my altitude, it is inevitable (the last batch about tripled!), I think the amount of starter is a critical part of this and soon I will do a series of batches to see what the effect of reducing the starter is. I'm currently way over what Marco recommends.

I have a Camaldoli/San Felice batch fermenting right now at room temp (68F today). The variable I'm going to play with this time is amount of time in fridge. The last batch was in overnight. This one will go for a day and a half. Baking set for Tuesday lunch.

Bill/SFNM


Offline gottabedapan

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #24 on: April 02, 2006, 08:38:12 PM »
Quote
As fate would have it, Home Depot sent an email out last week with a 10% off code so I figured why not take a look. Long story short I found a Magic Chef Pizza Cooler that can get the job done. Don't worry about the wine bottles in the picture, they are there for increased WAF, pure decoration, and libation afterwards.

So for $90 delivered I have a Pizza Cooler that will reach the perfect range. Did I mention it barely reaches the zone of perfection?. There may be times when I have to place the unit in the sun to hit the range but I know I can get there. I will certainly have a new use for my trusty RayTek Laser Thermometer to make sure I am in compliance.

pftaylor,

Just a thought: unless you're satisfied (or stuck with) with the Magic Chef unit, you might want to take a look at thermo-electric cooler/warmers like this unit from STC. (I'm pretty sure it's the same unit Wal-Mart's selling for $95 online.) I've seen a number of models from various companies in the $80-100 range that offer a much broader temperature range (typically, 40-140° F) than the Magic Chef cooler and are temperature-programmable, i.e., you punch in your desired target temperature and it'll kick in whenever necessary to keep it there, so you should be able to skip having to place the unit in the sun.  :)