Evelyne and I went down the path you are now heading, where many of the questions you are asking about the NY dough recipe in her book were addressed. I even created a special folder for all of my analysis of the NY style dough recipe recited in Evelyneís book and several possible dough formulations and scenarios using the Lehmann dough calculating tool. As background on this subject, you may want to read the following posts:http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,1258.msg37081.html#msg37081
(Reply 298), followed by Replies 299, 304, 306, 308, 310, and 312.http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,3944.msg28814.html#msg28814
(Reply 47), followed by Reply 48.
As you will see from the above posts, at the time the Pizza Book
was written in the 80s, the old pizza makers did not use bakerís percents or scales and the like. They used their hands and went by feel. Also, the flours used at the time were not the same as are used today. Even the Heckerís flour of today is likely different from the Heckerís flours of the 80s because of agricultural technological advances over the last 20 years.
Somewhere along the way, Evelyne mentioned (and I noted in my copy of the Pizza Book
) that a typical dough ball weight for a Totonnoís 15Ē pizza was about 15-16 ounces, and that the same amount of dough would have made a 16Ē Lombardiís pizza (the original Lombardiís) and an 18Ē Johnís pizza. You will note that those were the sizes mentioned in Evelyneís book just under the recipe title. When I used forum member Novemberís Mass-Volume calculator at http://foodsim.toastguard.com/,
which is predicated on measuring out the flour and water in specific ways, I came up with a total dough weight for the NY dough recipe in Evelyneís book of over 20 ounces, even when using the 3-cup flour measurement. For purposes of the conversions, I used the King Arthur bread flour (12.7% protein) as a proxy for the Heckerís flour, which is not listed in the tool. I also did similar conversions based on all-purpose flour (King Arthur) and the King Arthur Sir Lancelot flour, even though at the time the Pizza Book
was written high-gluten flour as we now know it was not as common for pizza dough as the other flours.
ln all cases, I concluded that 3 cups of flour was more likely the better quantity to use, rather than 3 Ĺ cups, because otherwise the hydration based on one cup of water for 3 Ĺ cups of flour (based on Novemberís tool) would be around 52-53%, which runs counter to what Evelyne said about the high hydration levels used by the old masters. When I used 3 cups of flour (for all three types of flour), I got closer to 61-63%, which seemed more credible. I think it is also a good range for the three different flours you mentioned, that is, the Hecker's, All Trumps and KASL, although my recollection is that Evelyne promotes an even higher hydration of around 65%, on a somewhat generalized basis.
As big a fan as I am of bakerís percents and converting dough recipes recited in volumes to weights and bakerís percents and the like, I think the better course of action for you to take is to experiment with the NY dough recipe in Evelyneís book using volume measurements. If you feel compelled to devise the set of bakerís percents that produces the best results in your tests, I would weigh and measure everything and do the conversions once you hit upon the right formula. I would start with 3 cups of flour and, once the dough is made, use 15-16 ounces as a starting point for making your pizzas. I assume that you are trying to replicate the recipe in the Pizza Book
as it was used in the 80s. However, as noted in one of the above posts, Evelyne indicated that she would make several changes to the recipe were it to be used today, including the hydration (higher) and amount and type of yeast (a small amount of IDY). She would also lean toward cold fermentation, which was an option originally mentioned in her book.
If it will help, I calculated the following thickness factors based on the 15-16 ounce dough ball weights for the 15Ē (Totonnoís), 16Ē (original Lombardiís) and 18Ē (Johnís) pizzas:15Ē:
With these numbers, in due course you may be able to use them with your own bakerís percents calculations from your own tests to devise various scenarios using the Lehmann calculating tool. You might even use different thickness factors than noted above, given the wide variability that can accrue when using volume measurements and different flours with different absorption (hydration) rates, moisture content, humidity, etc.
Evelyne should, of course, note any corrections or errors in my assumptions or analysis inasmuch as everything I did was from the sidelines working with numbers from the book and posts on the forum rather than in the field where the masters made their pizzas.