Author Topic: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust  (Read 20758 times)

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Online Pete-zza

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #25 on: April 03, 2006, 10:17:30 AM »
pft,

I think you will find that your wine cooler will cycle between a range of temperatures trying to establish the temperature at which you have set the unit. My wine cooler is about the size of a refrigerator with a capacity of over 300 bottles so it has to deal with a larger volume. With your RayTek unit you should be able to get a pretty good idea of where your temperature stabilizes. Depending on where it is relative to the 18-20 degrees C (64.4-68 degrees F) range that Marco says is the preferred range, you should be able to tweak one or more of the factors that control the rate and degree of fermentation, including hydration, amount of preferment, water temperature and salt. I think that doing this sort of thing should eventually compensate for your unit's unique temperature behavior and obviate the need to place it in the sun or otherwise move it around (which isn't even an option in my case). To give you an idea, I tried out a test dough in my wine cooler last night and found that the dough after about 12 hours was just below the lower end of the ideal range mentioned above. Since that was during a cooling cycle, it most likely had an average temperature higher than that, which should have put the dough within the range. I will have to await what happens next to know whether any tweaking of the ingredients and/or temperature will be needed the next time.

Ultimately, what you should be looking for is essentially no rise in the dough for say, the first 12 hours or so, and only a modest rise during a period of several hours later, but not a doubling or tripling. I have found that the amount of preferment can be a powerful factor along those lines. Recently, when my preferment looked sluggish, I refreshed it and really got it percolating (I left it at room temperature for about 5 hours). To be on the safe side, I doubled the amount I usually use, to around 10% (by weight of flour). That turned out to be far too much and the dough just about tripled in volume during the final 3-4 hours. The key is to have the preferment at its peak and not to go overboard with its quantity. Over time and with experience, you should be able to get the numbers about right for all the ingredients and just adjust them for seasonal variations and personal scheduling. Having a fairly stable fermentation temperature is a big help since it eliminates a big variable.

Peter


Offline Bill/SFNM

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #26 on: April 03, 2006, 12:07:10 PM »
Pete-zza,

What would be the harmful effects of the dough doubling or tripling? As long as there is enough fuel in the culture for an nice oven bounce, I haven't  observed any problems. The organisms that produce the desireable flavors seem unaffected. The latest batch that is fermenting now didn't rise at all for the first 6 hours, then over the next two, the dough doubled. It's now in the fridge, has stopped rising, and smells heavenly.

As mentioned above, I will soon start backing down the amount  of starter to see what will happen. Not sure whether to fix the fermenting time or the volume. Your input, as always, is greatly appreciated.

Bill/SFNM

Offline scott r

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #27 on: April 03, 2006, 01:57:26 PM »
Bill, It sounds to me like your starter is definitely behaving differently than mine. I think you are using camadoli most of the time and I am using Ishica.  I let mine go just until I see it starting to rise (can be anywhere between 6-14 hours depending on the room temp), then I ball the dough and use it when it has not quite doubled.   When I have let mine fully double and keep going anywhere near a triple my pizza gets too sour.   I can't wait to get home to start my Camadoli and begin experimenting with it. 

PFT, When I am balling my doughs I usually put a few in the fridge to be used later in the week.  These are obviously not fully fridge rise doughs, as they have had their first stage of fermentation at room temp.  I could be crazy, but I usually seem to get a slightly fluffier and crispier product with the room temp rise doughs compared to the ones that have been in the fridge for a few days.  The fridge rise ones seem to be a little more dense, and sometimes even chewier.  Has anybody else noticed this to be the case?

Bill, Looking forward to Petezza's answer, but my guess is that as long as you are getting good oven spring and your pies are not to sour you are in good shape.  I would think that using your fully fermented dough would let you eat even more pizza without getting full!

Online Pete-zza

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #28 on: April 03, 2006, 02:31:58 PM »
Bill,

Under normal circumstances, I don't think that there is a problem. As you indicated, so long as there is enough yeast left in the dough at the time of baking to give a good oven spring and the dough has not overfermented, your results should be fine. Once the dough temperature gets above about 140 degrees F in the oven, it will be killed in any event.

Marco may best answer your question in the context of a Neapolitan style dough, but, as you may recall from a post he rendered in response to one of yours, he encouraged you to use tiny amounts of yeast (he recommends less than 5% preferment by weight of water--which can be even less when measured with respect to flour) and long, slow fermentations. Under those circumstances, you are unlikely to get significant dough expansion, even after 12-15 hours at the ideal room temperature. I suspect that the enzyme performance may be better with the longer fermentation times even though the incremental flavor-enhancing byproducts of fermentation may not be all that noticeable--at least not to my aging tastebuds. What you want to avoid as much as possible is going out too far on the fermentation time scale. Otherwise, the protease enzymes may overly degrade the gluten structure and water locked up in the dough can be released that you end up with a wet and gummy dough that will not perform well in the oven. Also, as scott has noted, if you go out too far on the time scale you can end up with a crust that is more sour (but to a lesser degree with the Camaldoli) because of the predominance of acetic rather than lactic acids and their related compounds. This is where experience and practice and knowing how to manage the preferment and how best to adjust ingredient quantities and temperatures to adapt to the circumstances come into play.

My recollection is that you have been using about 10% preferment with a period of cold fermentation sandwiched between the two room-temperature rises. As you know, Marco advocates room temperature fermentation only. Under a room temperature regimen, and given the effects of altitude where you live, I suspect you could cut the amount of prefement in half and get good results, all else being equal. You might get good results even with your current use of cold fermentation.

When I baked up the pizza using the dough that tripled in volume, it was very good. The crust was a bit fluffier than usual but I had used a much thicker dough to begin with to compensate for that fact that my home oven doesn't do as well with very thin Neapolitan style doughs.

Peter

Offline Bill/SFNM

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #29 on: April 03, 2006, 06:38:24 PM »
Scott: I think we have been through this before, but I don't use Ischia in pizzas exactly because it can be too sour. So that might be the reason why Marco treats it the way he does to keep it from being sour. It does have a very nice, distinctive tang and I have used it successfully for all kinds of breads where I want that tang - the longer the ferment the stronger the tang. Maybe I'll give it a few washings and see what happens, although I really like it the way it is. (BTW, for no sourness and a great flavor, sourdo.com's French starter is excellent. In fact, I intend to try it for pizzas one of these days.)

Pete-zza: Yes I'm using about 10% active starter. I did lower it to 5% a few weeks ago and did not get enough oven spring, but I may have been playing around with other factors. I did issue a rather rambling post here after that about the dilemma of time vs. starter amount.

I'll just keep tweaking away. Thank you Scott and Pete-zza for the help.

Bill/SFNM

Offline scott r

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #30 on: April 03, 2006, 07:46:41 PM »
Bill, thanks for the tip about the french starter.  I have been thinking a lot about trying some of ed's other cultures, but I wasn't sure which one to go with.  Now you have made my decision easy.

Offline pizzanapoletana

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #31 on: April 04, 2006, 04:25:21 AM »
I was looking forward to your discussion on the the doubling or trebling in volume... (which is valid not only for Napoletana but it is a fundamental process for pizzamaking).

Once again you are off track... The problems are not the nutrients left in the dough or the yeast....

The focus is on the differences between bread and pizza, if you were still thinking that these were the same.
« Last Edit: April 04, 2006, 08:35:35 AM by pizzanapoletana »

Offline Elior

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #32 on: April 04, 2006, 05:45:37 AM »
no offence pftaylor but why not using a better cheese?

Online Pete-zza

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #33 on: April 04, 2006, 10:55:32 AM »
Marco,

I don’t know if you were directing your last post to me but I am aware of the distinction between bread and pizza, even in a Neapolitan sense, because of what you said at Reply 10 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,861.msg8679/topicseen.html#msg8679 (where you distinguish between use of a starter as a fermenting agent rather than as a preferment and the use of 1-5% Crescito solely as a fermenting agent), and Reply 8 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,2927.msg25127.html#msg25127 (where you discuss the distinction in the context of the dough made at the time at UPN in NYC). I also clearly recall a post (that you have since deleted) in which you tried to explain to pftaylor in response to his post at Reply 60 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,986.msg9552/topicseen.html#msg9552 why so little Crescito (1-5%) was used—namely, because you were making pizza dough, not bread dough. As you can see, Marco, I do read and remember most of what you say  ;D.

All of the above aside, I do believe that it is factually correct that nutrient and yeast levels are still relevant to the final results achieved. It may well be that the results will be less than optimal because of our failure or inability or inexperience in mastering the use of the Crescito, but the results are what they are and we just keep trying until we do better.

Peter


Offline pizzanapoletana

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #34 on: April 04, 2006, 11:03:41 AM »
Peter,

I was not referring to you in particular, anyway thanks again to read my post, but you also should know that I have never fully cover a subject purposly.

Once again the issue with pizzamaking being different from bread is not only in the leavening medium used, but more on the technology of it whatever medium you apply.....

Experience and scientific reading would tell you about doubling, trebling or not and why yes or not and when.....

Ciao

Offline Bill/SFNM

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #35 on: April 04, 2006, 11:45:47 AM »
I'm sure the doubling and tripling comment is aimed at me. I know I have a long way to go, but I may, by necessity, be on a different path from most of you since I live (and also my yeast and bacteria) at 7000' feet above sea level. The lack of oxygen and atmospheric pressure definitely has an impact on the biochemistry and physics of baking.  As just a simple non-baking example, it takes about three times as long to whip eggs into meringue or cream into whipped cream than at sea level. Boiling point is about 197F (91C). Wood burns cooler.

A given amount of gas produced by a yeast cell is going to create a much bigger bubble, thus my dough is going to rise higher than the exact same dough at sea level. I'm not trying to produce this amount of rise. I'm just trying to live with constraints of altitude to get a crust to my liking.

Macro, I appreciate your comments and am so grateful for all I have learned from your posts. I recognize I still have much to learn.

Bill/SFNM


Offline pizzanapoletana

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #36 on: April 04, 2006, 12:40:37 PM »
Bill,

The message was addressed to Peter, You and all the people that get confused when talking of that aspect of pizzamaking.

the time before and after cutting the dough as well as total rising at ball stage are directly related to the final product, at structure level, but for other reasons that the ones covered.

I also undertsand that you location may affect the rising, but oven spring is independent. The structure formation of the dough DURING FERMENTATION will be a huge effect on the final product, which a proper oven will only enhance. The yeast won't produce more gas during 60 second in the oven, when the internal temperature of the dough reach 70 + degree celsius in few seconds.....

Ciao

Offline pftaylor

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #37 on: April 04, 2006, 01:05:51 PM »
Smart,
I am very comfortable with my selection of Alleva Fresh Mozzarella cheese. Have you tried it? It is perfect for pizza at high temperatures and less watery than bufala in my opinion.

Is your question really why I don't write about using fresh bufala cheese? If so, it is only because it is not practical for my application. Bufala must be used in a handful of days from when it was produced. If not, it quickly goes down hill from there. For me, Alleva Fresh is a superior alternative.

pizzanapoltana,
I learn something new every time you make a post. Please don't lose patience with us. The depth of your understanding of Neapolitan pizza is astounding. I can now see why you know so much about other types of pizza as well. They are a derivative of the real thing.  Do you have a revised date for publication of your upcoming book? I have eaten all the appetizers I care too. I now want the main course. One can be expected to only hold on for so long...
Pizza Raquel is Simply Everything You’d Want.
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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #38 on: April 04, 2006, 02:17:07 PM »
PF Taylor,

I am not publishing the book in the near future for some other commitment that I have at the moment.

Regarding the cheese you are talking about, in my opinion is actually to low in moisture. The Margherita in "My pizza in America" shows just that. It has a superior taste then other commercial available American product thought.

Ciao

Offline Bill/SFNM

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #39 on: April 04, 2006, 05:00:58 PM »
Today I stumbled onto the best pizza I have ever made or eaten. The texture was exactly what I had been seeking, but the taste - the taste - exceeded all expectations. I've simply never, anywhere, tasted crust with such a satisfying flavor. The difference between this batch and the previous one was just one thing - the dough retarded in the fridge an extra day for a total of 28 hours. Otherwise, it was a San Felice 64% hydration, 2.5% salt, 10% Camaldoli starter.

I'm not going to throw out the Caputo just yet, but this San Felice flour seems to be better matched to my environment, ingredients, preparation, baking conditions, and tastes. It produces a dough that is easier to work with and also seems more forgiving about baking temps. I made four pies today at temps ranging from 875-975 and all seemed perfect.

Below is a photo of the top. I ended up using Alleva Caciocavallo since I had run out of anything fresh. But it was wonderful in every way. I probably shouldn't tweak this recipe, but I will. I will try to see what will happen if I lower the starter percentage. And I'll also see what the optimum fermenting time is.

Bill/SFNM

Online Pete-zza

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #40 on: April 04, 2006, 06:14:18 PM »
To draw as contrast between a San Felice pie baked in a home oven versus a high-temperature oven, I made a 13” SF pie today in my home oven. The dough was fermented in my wine cooler at around 65 degrees F (estimated average) for about 26 hours, followed by about 4 hours of refrigeration, and another 2 hours at room temperature in preparation for dressing and baking. My intent originally was to ferment the dough for about 12 hours in the wine cooler and, after reshaping, to let the dough rise for about another 3-5 hours. When the dough did not rise during the 12-hour period, I reshaped and returned it to the wine cooler for an overnight stay. By morning, it had increased in size by about 50%. Since I wasn’t ready to use the dough at that time, I put it into the refrigerator for about 4 hours, when I was ready.

The baker’s percents I used were 100% SF flour (7.89 oz.), 60% water (4.73 oz.), 2.5% sea salt (1 t.), 1% oil (1/2 t.), and 5% preferment (0.39 oz.). The total dough weight was 13.27 oz., with a thickness factor of 0.10—about the same as a NY thin style. The preferment was intentionally prepared to be on the stiff side, along the lines recommended in one of Marco’s posts. At 60% hydration, the dough was very soft and a bit damp but I managed to shape it into a 13” round without using a lot of bench flour and to load it into the oven.

The pizza was baked on a preheated pizza stone (at 500-550 degrees F for about an hour) on the lowest oven rack position for about 5 minutes, and was then transferred to a set of tiles arranged on the uppermost oven rack position directly under the broiler. There, the pizza was exposed to direct heat from the broiler, which had been turned on about 3 minutes into the bake cycle. The pizza was under the broiler heat for about 1-2 minutes. Even before exposing the pizza to the broiler, the top of the crust had modest browning.

The photos below show the finished pizza—a cheese pizza. It was very tasty with a fluffy and chewy crust with very good oven spring. For the next iteration of the pizza, I plan to use a more liquid preferment and a thinner crust. I will also most likely reduce the amount of preferment to get it into the 5% range as measured with respect to the weight of water rather than the flour. I also plan to slightly increase the hydration and to omit the oil.

Peter

Offline pftaylor

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #41 on: April 05, 2006, 07:24:01 PM »
Wow. Talk about a doubleheader.

First Bill/SFNM then Pete-zza. Two of the most respected members post pictures of their bombshell efforts all within hours of one another. Can it get any better than this?

I can't wait to see the first Lolita come out of the wood burning Goliath. It could set a new standard for excellence - in anyone's judgment. They say repetition is the mother of learning but it appears that Bill/SFNM is the exception to that rule. He knocked the cover off the ball so early in the process I wonder how much he has left to improve. The best flavor and texture he has ever eaten? Since Bill/SFNM is not one given to speaking in absolutes, I am inclined to take him at his word and frankly couldn't be happier for him. If true, Bill/SFNM can now die in peace - much like the Red Sox fans who were finally able to celebrate absolute victory a couple of years ago after decades of misery.

Pete-zza's effort seems to have so much fluff in the rim it looks like it contains helium.  You are a pizzamaker of the highest rank - even without the woodburning oven. The pie looks spectacular. I look forward to your continued efforts.

Guys, I have a favor to ask. Please don't stop making pies anytime soon and take plenty of pictures...
Pizza Raquel is Simply Everything You’d Want.
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Offline scott r

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #42 on: April 06, 2006, 05:02:38 AM »
You guys are killing me.  Stuck in LA with no time oven or ingredients to make pies.

KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK!

Can't wait to get back home in a few weeks to try this new flour.

Online Pete-zza

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #43 on: April 09, 2006, 05:06:30 PM »
My latest experiment with the San Felice flour is more about technique and procedure than anything else. If the dough isn’t right before going into an oven, it may not matter that you have the best possible oven available to you. So, with this thought in mind, for the most recent iteration of the San Felice pizza I tried to improve upon the dough preparation and management. For the latest experiment, I used the following formulation:

100%, San Felice pizza flour, 7.08 oz. (200.72 g.), 1 1/2 c. + 2 T. + 1t. (spoon and level technique)
63%, Water (warm, about 90 degrees F), 4.46 oz. (126.36 g.), a bit over 1/2 c.
2.7%, Sea salt, 0.19 oz. (5.52 g.), 1 t.
3.1%, Preferment (Ischia), 0.22 oz. (6.22 g.), about 1 t.
Total dough weight = 11.95 oz. (338.67 g.)
Thickness Factor (TF) = 0.09
Pizza size = about 13 inches
Note: All measurements U.S./metric standard

I should mention a few things about the above formulation. First, the hydration, at 63%, was selected to be as high as possible and consistent with the apparent capability of the San Felice flour to handle that level of hydration. Second, the preferment was in solid form, as often recommended by Marco (pizzanapoletana), and based on the Ischia starter. It was about 5% by weight of water, the upper end of the 1-5% range that Marco has often mentioned. The preferment had been refreshed and allowed to sit for a few hours at room temperature before using. Third, the thickness factor selected, 0.09, was quite a bit higher than normally used for authentic Neapolitan pizzas. I chose the higher level because I was using a home oven and did not want to end up with a cracker-like crust. Fourth, the formulation does not call for any oil. I elected to omit it on the theory that the thicker dough would render it unnecessary. I had done this recently with a Caputo-based pie and found that it worked nicely.

The procedure I followed to make the dough was similar to what I recently used to make a Caputo based dough (see Reply 94 at page 5 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,986.msg25807.html#msg25807), and is as follows. I started by placing the warm water in the bowl of my standard KitchenAid stand mixer. I then added the salt and stirred it into the water until completely dissolved, about 30 seconds. I added the preferment and, using my fingers, I dissolved the preferment into the “brine”. I then added about 2/3 to 3/4 of the flour to the bowl, by about a tablespoon at a time, and mixed everything together. I used only the “stir” speed of the mixer and, as the ingredients were mixing, I used a long thin-bladed plastic spatula to scrape down the sides of the bowl and move the ingredients into the path of the dough hook. Once the flour was absorbed, but without creating a glutinous structure (which I did not want at this stage), I continued to add the remaining flour, continuously but gradually, until it was absorbed into the dough mass. Again, using only the “stir” speed of my mixer, I kneaded just until the dough cleared the sides of the bowl with a bit of the dough sticking to the round convex protrusion at the center of the mixing bowl. To get the dough to this exact stage, I made slight adjustments to the amounts of flour and water. I have found this to be a reliable way of getting the dough consistency I am after, in this case, a slightly wet and tacky dough that just wants to stick to your fingers and not pull away.   

Once the dough was finished, I subjected it to a 15-minute riposo (rest) within the bowl itself (covered to prevent a crust from forming). At the end of the riposo, I put the dough on a lightly-floured work surface and used the standard punch and fold technique (recommended by pieguy and others on other threads) in order to get better dough strength to retain the gases of yeast fermentation. Because the dough was still sticky and wanting to stick to the work surface, I used a bench knife to manipulate the dough, as is often done with high-hydration bread doughs (ciabatta dough being a good example). After about a couple of minutes of doing this, I put the dough in a container that was minimally oiled just at the bottom and sides to keep the dough from sticking and to facilitate its later removal from the container. Normally, I would have put the container directly into the temperature-controlled wine unit I have been using to create a good fermentation environment for dough. But from recent experiments using the wine unit, I have tentatively come to the conclusion that it may be a bit on the cool side. So, for the most recent San Felice pie, I left the dough at room temperature for about 2 hours to warm up and thereby ferment a bit faster before placing it into the wine unit. In addition, to further speed up the fermentation, I put the container into a second container (also covered), so as to create a greater thermal mass to the wine unit environment. That way, I wouldn’t have to change the operating temperature of the wine unit (about 55-65 degrees F, or roughly within the ideal 64.4-68 degrees F range, or 18-20 degrees C, recommended by Marco).

While the dough was in the wine unit, I periodically watched its development. I was especially mindful of the rise of the dough. Marco had on several occasions mentioned that during the first stage of fermentation the dough should not rise noticeably, and that after reshaping and dividing the dough it should rise but not double or triple in volume during the second stage of fermentation. For the recent experiment, it took around 16 hours for the dough to start to rise. I then reshaped the dough and let it ferment/ripen for about another 6 hours. During that 6 hours, the dough rose by about 25%. A telltale sign that the dough was most likely ready to be used was the presence of large numbers of gas bubbles that had formed at the bottom and sides of the container (I was using a translucent Rubbermaid container). I experienced the same phenomenon recently when I made the Caputo-based dough referenced above, so I believe it to be a reliable indicator that one can safely rely on. 

The dough was shaped into a roughly 13” round on a very lightly floured work surface. The dough was wet and sticky to the touch and I preferred to keep it that way as much as possible and not to add too much bench flour, since that would defeat the purpose of using high hydration in the first place and it could contribute to bitterness in the finished crust. I was able to lift the dough and stretch it to the 13-inch size even though it was highly extensible, and to get it onto a lightly dusted peel. After dressing the skin, I deposited it onto a pizza stone (on the lowest oven rack position) that I had preheated for about an hour at around 500-550 degrees F. After about 5-6 minutes on the stone, I then transferred it to the top oven rack position and exposed the pizza to about 1 to 2 minutes of direct heat from the broiler element, which I had turned on during the final minute or two on the stone.

The photos below show the finished product. The pizza (a cheese pizza) was first rate, with a soft and chewy crust with superior crust flavor. The oven spring was less than what I am usually accustomed to, even with a Neapolitan-style crust, but the crust was not cracker-y in any respect and the part of the crust away from the rim was actually quite soft with good oven spring. It did not have the bread-like texture that Marco finds uncharacteristic of authentic Neapolitan crusts.

It might also be noted from the photos that the sauce is bright red. The sauce was put on the pie uncooked, but since cooking in a home oven for 7-8 minutes--as opposed to a minute or so in an authentic Neapolitan oven--takes away some of the freshness and brightness of the sauce, I added a bit of fresh sauce to the pizza as soon as it came out of the oven. The “new” sauce warms from the heat of the pie itself but remains remarkably fresh tasting and with a bright red color. I found doing this, along with having a very tasty crust, to provide an overall exceptional pizza, especially for a home oven environment. I am sure that the high quality of the San Felice flour also had something to do with it.

Peter
« Last Edit: February 23, 2008, 12:26:03 PM by Pete-zza »

Offline Bill/SFNM

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #44 on: April 20, 2006, 08:39:30 AM »
Side-by-side comparisons: Caputo vs. San Felice
[/size]

Two contradictory statements have been stuck in my mind:

1. The San Felice/Camaldoli pies I have been baking are superior in taste to the Caputo ones I have made

2. Marco says that Caputo flour will have better tasting crusts

So I can only conclude that either:

A. The method I use for preparing and baking needs to be optimized for the characteristics of Caputo

and/or

B. Marco and I simply have different opinions of what tastes better.

I have jumped to the conclusion that San Felice is a superior flour for my tastes, but I really want to put this to the test. Perhaps what I really need to do is to change my methods and I'll come around to Marco's point of view.  I see it this way: each combination of flour/culture/methods has one (or more) sweet spots, a place where all of the many factors come together to produce the perfect pie. I have a pretty good feeling that I am in or close to the sweet spot for San Felice. That I stumbled into this combination may be due to the fact that San Felice has a large sweet spot. That is, it is less demanding and can produce good results over a larger range of factors.

Others have commented in this forum that Caputo is less forgiving, that conditions must be just be right, so perhaps it has a relatively smaller sweet spot than San Felice. If Marco is right about Caputo being superior in taste, then it is very possible that I have never encountered its sweet spot.

So I'm going to run a series of side-by-side tests that I hope will help me better understand this issue which is really just an extension of what I have been doing all along these past few years: trying to find out what factors are optimized to produce the best crust. The difference now is that I have two flours that are worthy of the hassle of side-by-side tests rather than serial tests several days apart.

So, the first test I began yesterday. Using the method that produced such delicious San Felice pies, I have created two batches of dough - identical in every way except that one contains Caputo and the other San Felice. This test will not necessarily tell me how to make a better Caputo pie, but for the first time I will taste at the same time the best San Felice and the best Caputo pies I can make. Perhaps I'll be able to identify in which direction I will need to take the Caputo method.

One observation already from preparing both doughs in an identical method in identical conditions: the kneaded SF dough was less sticky, took less time to come together, and was more supple and elastic. Also, after 10 hours of room temp fermentation, both doughs seem have risen exactly the same amount.

Tomorrow I bake the pies for lunch. Can't wait to see the results.

At Marco's suggestion, I hope to run a test next week of dough using commercial yeast only to remove the interaction between the cultures and the flour - to get a true measure of the flavor contributed just from the flour.


Bill/SFNM





 

« Last Edit: April 20, 2006, 08:43:19 AM by Bill/SFNM »

Offline Bill/SFNM

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #45 on: April 21, 2006, 01:59:41 PM »
OK, just baked up a bunch of pies using Caputo and San Felice doughs. Results:

1. The San Felice dough continued to be the easiest to handle, softer and less sticky. It needed much less bench flour than the Caputo doughs.
2. All four of us agreed that the San Felice crusts were softer and three of us felt the San Felice was the more flavorful. The tests were blind in that the tester was given two pieces of crust and didn't know which was which.
3. However, the flavor of the Caputo dough, although not as good as the San Felice in the majority opinion, was better than it has ever been for me. I'd say the San Felice was a 10, the Caputo was a 9, whereas it had previously been an 8.

The tests were done with pizzas topped only with olive oil. In this photo, the San Felice is the one at the bottom:

Next test: commercial yeast only.

Bill/SFNM

Offline pizzanapoletana

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #46 on: April 21, 2006, 03:16:10 PM »
San felice is a stronger flour and therefore absorbe more water, which in turn will mean  less sticky. Also with  stronger flour is easier to make something that look softer buy in reality is gummy like....

The other things a stronger flour is more forgiving then the Caputo Pizzeria. Even the red Caputo one is better forgiving,  which means that someone less experience can make a good product whilst he would not make it with a Caputo Pizzeria

Another aspects is the post eating: without offence to anyone, but you guys in America are more used to eat heavy stuff (I mean heavy on the stomach, as to digest). San felice or other stronger flour will remain on your stomac for ages. In Naples there is a pizzeria called Pellone. Well that pizza seam so soft, but will take you 8 hours before you feel light again....

Finally, try to add about 100g more flour (per liter) then you normally would to the caputo, and check how smooth and less sticky it become, more like the San Felice....

Ciao

PS keep us updated with your finding.

Offline Bill/SFNM

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #47 on: April 21, 2006, 05:03:37 PM »
marco,

I think I know what you mean about gummy and I would say these pies were not at all gummy. And I definitely know what you mean about indigestible pies  :(. I think I ate about a single pie (O.K., plus another 1/2 pie while cleaning up). So far these don't seem to be sticking inside my stomach.  ;D

I will try adding more flour to the Caputo. By my calculation that would lower hydration from 64.0% to 60.6%.  That will be an interesting test.

Thanks for the help.

Bill/SFNM

Offline Peteg

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #48 on: April 26, 2006, 11:40:46 AM »
Hey everyone, I thought this topic was probably the best place to post my pics of last nights pie.  It was made with Grande fresh mozz, Santa Sweet grape tomatoes and 100% Caputo.  I baked it around 900 for 2.5 minutes.  Like Scott R recommended, lately I have been letting the dough sit in dry flour for about two minutes before shaping it.  That’s been working well for me as this crust was crispy on the outside with a nice chewy interior.  One other note, I switched from IDY to fresh cake yeast a couple of weeks ago and that’s added a lot of flavor to the dough.  After the pie came out of the oven, I topped it with EVOO and a little salt.  All in all, it had lots of flavor and I think it turned out well.  Hope this helps.  Pete

Offline scott r

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Re: New Collaborative Standard - Tampa Fe Crust
« Reply #49 on: April 26, 2006, 01:54:44 PM »
Peteg, thats a great looking pie.  I also love the grande fresh mozzarella.   I think their fresh cheese is probably the best commercially available cows milk mozzarella cheese that I have found.  I am still not sure if I feel the same way about the processed mozzarella they make for normal pizza.  Keep up the good work, and keep posting.

I was wondering how you obtain your high temperatures.

Also, have you tried buffalo mozzarella yet?


 

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