Author Topic: Problem with dough texture  (Read 4266 times)

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Offline BBQhunter

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Problem with dough texture
« on: September 15, 2008, 02:59:10 PM »
I've been hanging around the forum, reading and learning and finally decided to register. After a request by my wife a couple of weeks ago to try to duplicate our favorite pizza dough, I tried the Lehman formula dough. The first time, I tried a recipe from one of the threads that seems to be a work in progress, and the results were pretty darn good. I then tried the recipe using the Lehman calculator tool. This time, the dough had a very stiff texture, and even after sitting in the fridge for 2 days, the dough was very "nervous" and difficult to shape. No matter how much we tried to pull it thin, it would retract right back . We ended up with thick crust that was too doughy in my opinion. I had kneaded the dough to a temperature of 85 degrees. I was using Pillsbury bread flour, but had also added 2 tbsp of vital gluten. I'm thinking that this was the problem. I made up a new batch last night using the Lehman calculator and followed it exactly, again using Pillsbury bread flour, but this time no extra gluten. The problem is that there doesn't seem to be much rise to this batch, where the other batches rose in the fridge within 3-4 hours . Time will tell since tonight we will be using it for Stombolis for dinner.  Below is the recipe that I used from the calculator. The yeast is the same that I used the other 2 times, a bulk IDY from a local Whole Foods store.  The yeast amount in the formula seems very low to me. I will admit to the fact that the 2 other times I made this dough, I did use my normal 1 tbsp of yeast, but this time wanted to try the formula exactly. This time, again, I kneaded until 85 degrees was reached with my Kitchen Aid Professional 600. I knead on speed 2 since the new style dough hook is very aggressive.

Flour (100%):    401.65 g  |  14.17 oz | 0.89 lbs
Water (64%):    257.06 g  |  9.07 oz | 0.57 lbs
IDY (.4%):    1.61 g | 0.06 oz | 0 lbs | 0.53 tsp | 0.18 tbsp
Salt (1%):    4.02 g | 0.14 oz | 0.01 lbs | 0.84 tsp | 0.28 tbsp
Oil (2%):    8.03 g | 0.28 oz | 0.02 lbs | 1.79 tsp | 0.6 tbsp
Sugar (2%):    8.03 g | 0.28 oz | 0.02 lbs | 2.01 tsp | 0.67 tbsp
Total (169.4%):   680.4 g | 24 oz | 1.5 lbs | TF = N/A
Single Ball:   340.2 g | 12 oz | 0.75 lbs

I'm looking for suggestions or comments about the low yeast level that is calculated. How can this really work ??   I realize that it must work, and should be a readily duplicable dough or else there would be no consistency in a stores product.   Suggestions or advice ????   Thanks.


Offline November

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Re: Problem with dough texture
« Reply #1 on: September 15, 2008, 03:35:52 PM »
the dough was very "nervous" and difficult to shape.


Now that's an inventive description, although if I were to anthropomorphize the dough, I think "tense" would be a better description.  This problem is discussed all the time on the forum.  Here's a place to start: http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5083.msg43133.html#msg43133

Offline November

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Re: Problem with dough texture
« Reply #2 on: September 15, 2008, 03:40:08 PM »
I'm looking for suggestions or comments about the low yeast level that is calculated. How can this really work ??   I realize that it must work, and should be a readily duplicable dough or else there would be no consistency in a stores product.   Suggestions or advice ????   Thanks.

That's hardly a low level of yeast.  But as to how it works, have you ever gone with out curbside garbage pickup for several months?  It piles up after a while.  As long as the occupants (yeast) don't die, they keep producing waste products.

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Problem with dough texture
« Reply #3 on: September 15, 2008, 03:56:39 PM »
BBQHunter,

A poster at the PMQ Think Tank forum recently raised some questions about the Lehmann NY style dough recipe you used, at http://thinktank.pmq.com/viewtopic.php?t=6069. One of the questions was relative to the amount of yeast. The poster apparently was using 0.20% IDY (originally incorrectly stated as 0.02%). As you will see from Tom Lehmann's reply at http://thinktank.pmq.com/viewtopic.php?p=37872#37872, he recommended use of IDY at a rate of 0.375%. So, the amount of yeast you used (0.40%) is not too little. I have been making Lehmann NY style doughs for years at the rate of about 0.25-0.40% IDY (the actual amount depends mainly on the time of year) without any problems. If you are a newbie, you might find this thread of use: http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,2223.msg19503.html#msg19503. (This thread is also referenced in November's post.) The dough preparation discussion is covered mainly in Reply 8 of that thread. As you will note from that reply, the amount of yeast was 0.40% IDY. Whatever you do, you still want to get a finished dough temperature of about 75-80 degrees F. That is five degrees less than the usual 80-85 degree F range that is mentioned for the Lehmann NY style dough, but the higher range reflects the use of a commercial cooler, which usually runs several degrees cooler than a home refrigerator. To achieve the desired finished dough temperature, the preferred way to do it is to use a water temperature that will help achieve that result. I sometimes suggest that one start with a water temperature of around 65 degrees F and use the results (finished dough temperature) to make any required adjustments for later dough batches.

I do not think that the vital wheat gluten was responsible for your results. However, I noted twice in your post that you said that you kneaded the dough until the finished dough temperature was 85 degrees F. If you literally meant that, then it is quite possible that you overkneaded the dough, which would make it tough and dense and have the characteristics you described. What you want to do is knead the dough to a desired condition, not a particular temperature. That desired dough condition is described on the forum in many places, including in Reply 7 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,3560.msg30582.html#msg30582. The dough stretching test described in that post is for a commercial mixer application, but the advice to slightly underknead the dough still applies to a home application.

Your dough might also have been too elastic if you re-shaped, re-balled or re-kneaded it at the time you decided to use it. That is a common newbie mistake and leads to the gluten network being reoriented such that the dough becomes elastic and exhibits excessive springback. If you handled the dough in the manner discussed above, stopping that practice should alone improve your results. However, you should still be careful not to overknead the dough.

Peter
« Last Edit: September 15, 2008, 04:04:34 PM by Pete-zza »

Offline BBQhunter

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Re: Problem with dough texture
« Reply #4 on: September 15, 2008, 06:07:45 PM »

 Whatever you do, you still want to get a finished dough temperature of about 75-80 degrees F. That is five degrees less than the usual 80-85 degree F range that is mentioned for the Lehmann NY style dough, but the higher range reflects the use of a commercial cooler, which usually runs several degrees cooler than a home refrigerator. To achieve the desired finished dough temperature, the preferred way to do it is to use a water temperature that will help achieve that result. I sometimes suggest that one start with a water temperature of around 65 degrees F and use the results (finished dough temperature) to make any required adjustments for later dough batches.

I do not think that the vital wheat gluten was responsible for your results. However, I noted twice in your post that you said that you kneaded the dough until the finished dough temperature was 85 degrees F. If you literally meant that, then it is quite possible that you overkneaded the dough, which would make it tough and dense and have the characteristics you described. What you want to do is knead the dough to a desired condition, not a particular temperature.
Peter

This seems a bit contradictory to me, perhaps I misunderstood the Lehman process.   I thought that the Kneading is what raised the temperature of the dough, particularly since we were starting with sixty something degree water. Even yourself in the above post mentions a finished dough temperature. If it isn't the kneading that raises the temperature, then what is it ???   Different people would have different opinions about dough consistencies, but if you kneaded to a specific temp every time, things would always be the same, correct ???   My thought is that the Lehman dough is for restaurant/pizza professional where they want the product to be the same every time. That's what I understood the finished dough temp thing to be about, that the actual work by the dough hook was what raised the dough temp.   At any rate, I'll go back and reread everything.  

Just a note: I'm not new to baking or pizza making, just new to this style of dough.

Offline BBQhunter

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Re: Problem with dough texture
« Reply #5 on: September 15, 2008, 06:39:56 PM »
Ok, I went back and read those threads. I guess in my haste to get the "perfect" NY style dough for my wife, I missed a few steps in the dough prep.   Actually, Pete-zza, the good attempt that I had was with one of your dough versions from your NY Style thread. Must just have lucked out on the texture of that one since it was a wonderful, smooth, pliable dough that would stretch just by holding the edges with both hands, I just checked my new batch for tonight and it doesn't seem too bad.I can alter my technique for the next time, since that's how I've always made dough anyways, usually by adding flour or water until the perfect consistency was reached.

I still would like to know what raises the dough temp , if not the kneading???


Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Problem with dough texture
« Reply #6 on: September 15, 2008, 06:48:49 PM »
BBQ Hunter,

You are correct that the stand mixer is a factor in adding heat to the dough. However, the finished dough temperature is influenced by several factors. These include the room temperature, the flour temperature, the water temperature, the dough batch size, the hydration of the dough, the type and model of mixer, the bowl size and shape, the type(s) of attachments used (e.g., whisk, flat beater, C-hook/spiral hook), whether autolyse or other rest periods are used (and how many), whether a preferment is used, and the mixer speeds and times. If my room temperature when I start to make the dough is 80 degrees F, and the flour is at the same temperature, then the mixer is likely to increase the dough temperature fairly quickly and promptly exceed 85 degrees F. By contrast, if the room temperature is 60 degrees F when I start to make the dough, the mixer will still add heat to the dough but it will take some fairly aggressive kneading and more time for the dough to reach 85 degrees F. Consequently, the two doughs in these examples will be subjected to different amounts of kneading.

Since it is impractical to increase or decrease the room temperature or flour temperature to compensate for what the mixer does, the more logical approach is to control the water temperature. Some professionals use charts that are correlated with the friction factors of their mixers to determine the temperature of the water needed to achieve a particular finished dough temperature (e.g., 80 degrees F) based on flour and room temperatures. Those who do not have or use such charts usually start with a particular water temperature and, based on the finished dough temperature, make adjustments for later dough batches. They also learn how to make adjustments for changes in the seasons. Since dough types and batch sizes tend to remain fairly constant, operators learn fairly quickly how to make dough batches with the desired finished dough temperature.

From time to time, Tom Lehman writes about this subject. An example is the article at http://www.pmq.com/mag/2003spring/tom_lehmann.shtml. You will note that Tom discusses how to determine the water temperature required to achieve a particular finished dough temperature. I can't speak for the technical sufficiency of the method described but there are several pizza operators who use that method.

Peter

EDIT (5/15/14): Since the link to the above Lehmann article is no longer operative, see the Wayback Machine link to the same article at http://web.archive.org/web/20070502014430/http://www.pmq.com/mag/2003spring/tom_lehmann.shtml

Offline November

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Re: Problem with dough texture
« Reply #7 on: September 15, 2008, 07:14:30 PM »
That's what I understood the finished dough temp thing to be about, that the actual work by the dough hook was what raised the dough temp.

Peter addressed what needed to be addressed to understand the reason dough temperature is not the benchmark for determining when dough consistency is where it should be.  However, I couldn't help but notice that you used the term "work" instead of "action."  It may seem intuitive that heat indicates work is being done, but in fact the opposite is true.  Heat is actually the product of lost work.  In other words, heat is the energy that was not used to actually perform work.  That's why hand kneading produces the least amount of heat: it is the most efficient form of kneading.

- red.november