Author Topic: Papa Gino's Recipe  (Read 74155 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Pete-zza

  • Lifetime Member
  • Global Moderator
  • *
  • Posts: 21868
  • Location: Texas
  • Always learning
Re: Papa Gino's Recipe
« Reply #80 on: March 29, 2009, 12:08:28 PM »
And a couple more slice photos....

Peter


Offline JConk007

  • Vendor
  • *
  • Posts: 3649
  • Location: New Jersey
  • Lovin my Oven!
    • Flirting with Fire
Re: Papa Gino's Recipe
« Reply #81 on: March 29, 2009, 09:08:25 PM »
Very Nice Peter!!  I think yours looks closer than mine or Zalish in my opinion
The amount of cheese looks very similar to what I remember, perfect!  and the same goes for the rim size just about perfect for that size.
Do you really think they ferment the dough for 2 days or more? Do you have any recollections on the sauce you created as compared to the PG sauce?
I wish scott would put up a slice shot so you can see how close I think you really are.
John
I Love to Flirt with Fire! www.flirtingwithfirepizza.com

Offline Pete-zza

  • Lifetime Member
  • Global Moderator
  • *
  • Posts: 21868
  • Location: Texas
  • Always learning
Re: Papa Gino's Recipe
« Reply #82 on: March 29, 2009, 10:48:16 PM »
John,

When I researched the Papa John's situation, I found that they make twice a week deliveries to their stores. I estimated that the window of usability of their dough balls was around six or seven days max. I believe I read somewhere that the typical coverage area is around one hundred twenty something miles. To get national coverage of thousands of stores, PJ needs about a dozen strategically located Quality Control Centers (commissaries). By contrast, Papa Gino's has only 167 stores, most of which are in Massachusetts, with a few in CT, ME, NH and RI. I believe that PG has only one bakery, although it is possible that they contract out the dough production for remote locations. It does not strike me as logical from a business standpoint to make daily deliveries to the stores within their serving area. With the proper dough formulation design, they should be able to replicate PJ's distribution model and make deliveries to their stores every two or three days. Daily deliveries would be harder and much more expensive to do in my opinion. What I found interesting in the Papa John's case is how the dough formulation is designed around their distribution system. It's not a bunch of guys in the back of each shop making dough based on a secret dough recipe from Italy. Their marketing and promotional materials might like us to think that is what is happening but it is just pure business considerations and profit motive that drives the process.

As for the pizza sauce, I basically selected percents for the black pepper, oregano and garlic powder to keep them in the right place in the pecking order. There are literally thousands of possible combinations, so I just went mostly by taste and building around the oregano because I think that it has the most pronounced flavor effect. I will have to wait until I can sample a real PG sauce to do a meaningful comparison. 

Peter

Offline scott r

  • Supporting Member
  • *
  • Posts: 3061
  • Age: 43
  • Location: boston
  • I Love Pizzafreaks!
Re: Papa Gino's Recipe
« Reply #83 on: March 30, 2009, 01:02:32 AM »
Peter, you are the man. Pizzas look perfect!

I just wanted to point out that it was fairly recently that they stopped making dough in the stores.

Not that I necessarily condone this, but if you want to get even more authentic you can make your pies with cold dough.  Not sure its the best way to do it, but the Papa usually has a crust with a strong uncooked gum layer and a decent amount of bubbles which would both indicate a dough being used thats under about 65 degrees. 
« Last Edit: March 30, 2009, 01:06:49 AM by scott r »

Offline zalicious

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 157
Re: Papa Gino's Recipe
« Reply #84 on: March 30, 2009, 01:32:40 AM »
The pizza looks good, Peter. It's funny that you added the 15% semolina to yours, because I wanted to put it in mine, but didn't 'cause it wasn't in the 'recipe' ;D.
Did your sauce taste real sweet with 2t of sugar? I've never used that much.

Offline scott r

  • Supporting Member
  • *
  • Posts: 3061
  • Age: 43
  • Location: boston
  • I Love Pizzafreaks!
Re: Papa Gino's Recipe
« Reply #85 on: March 30, 2009, 01:53:28 AM »
I have always been amazed at how sweet some tomato products are compared to others. 
« Last Edit: March 30, 2009, 11:14:59 AM by scott r »

Offline Pete-zza

  • Lifetime Member
  • Global Moderator
  • *
  • Posts: 21868
  • Location: Texas
  • Always learning
Re: Papa Gino's Recipe
« Reply #86 on: March 30, 2009, 11:11:21 AM »
Peter, you are the man. Pizzas look perfect!

I just wanted to point out that it was fairly recently that they stopped making dough in the stores.

Not that I necessarily condone this, but if you want to get even more authentic you can make your pies with cold dough.  Not sure its the best way to do it, but the Papa usually has a crust with a strong uncooked gum layer and a decent amount of bubbles which would both indicate a dough being used thats under about 65 degrees. 

scott r,

Thanks for the confirmation.

Like you, I am cautious about suggesting that people work with cold doughs, out of concern that they will get tears in the dough during shaping or else they get unwanted bubbles in the finished crust. I have found that it is safer to dispense traditional advice and leave it to others to ignore it if they so choose. Otherwise, too much time can be spent trying to rationalize and explain two sets of rules and when to use them and when not to use them.

Peter

Offline Pete-zza

  • Lifetime Member
  • Global Moderator
  • *
  • Posts: 21868
  • Location: Texas
  • Always learning
Re: Papa Gino's Recipe
« Reply #87 on: March 30, 2009, 11:34:08 AM »
It's funny that you added the 15% semolina to yours, because I wanted to put it in mine, but didn't 'cause it wasn't in the 'recipe' ;D.
Did your sauce taste real sweet with 2t of sugar? I've never used that much.

zalicious,

I had already printed out a copy of the original dough formulation I planned to use when I stumbled across the post of the former Papa Gino's employee who mentioned the semolina flour. So, at the last minute, I decided to go with the semolina just to see what I would end up with. The 15% figure was somewhat arbitrary but seemed to be reasonable since it was at about the middle of the 0-25% range that Tom Lehmann had mentioned in his writings on the subject. Using 50% semolina as suggested by the former employee seemed too high, although I did meet a pizza operator in Massachusetts several years ago who said he used that amount (he measured it out in scoops rather than by weight). If PG does in fact use semolina flour in their pizza blend, it would seem logical that they use the same blend on the bench, much as the former PG employee mentioned. That way, the blend could be delivered to the stores along with the dough balls. That is just conjecture on my part and it is quite possible that they are using cornmeal, especially if it is cheaper than the semolina blend. On the other hand, the semolina blend might not burn as badly in the ovens as cornmeal.

I found it frustrating trying to find information on PG's practices. Papa Gino's is a privately held company and does not have to disclose information as it would if it were a publicly-held company. I learned an enormous amount of information about Papa John's and its practices when I researched that company through all of the documents it had to file with the SEC and other agencies as a public company.

Peter

Offline widespreadpizza

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1216
  • Location: NH
    • my beer store opening in june 2011
Re: Papa Gino's Recipe
« Reply #88 on: March 30, 2009, 12:04:50 PM »
Peter, I find it unlikely that they use semolina in the dough,  but maybe they do.  I have used semolina in several doughs over the years and to me the texture of thier crust doesn't suggest it to me.  In thier ingredient list for thier pockets the wheat flour and semolina are clearly mentioned seperately,  but who knows.  On the other hand I would say semolina is definately used in their peel dusting formula.  Just trying to help it along although It is clear you are very close.  If you want,  I suppose I could buy one and get you some more specs and maybe make a clone at the same time.  -marc

Pocket

Wheat flour, dry yeast, salt, water
Allergen:  Wheat
Pocket Dusting Flour

Semolina, wondra flour
Allergen:  Wheat

Offline Pete-zza

  • Lifetime Member
  • Global Moderator
  • *
  • Posts: 21868
  • Location: Texas
  • Always learning
Re: Papa Gino's Recipe
« Reply #89 on: March 30, 2009, 12:37:39 PM »
Did your sauce taste real sweet with 2t of sugar? I've never used that much.


zalicious,

Ordinarily I don't add sugar to my pizza sauces. However, when I did all of my experimenting with the Papa John's pizza sauce, which is a sweet sauce, I found it necessary to add sugar to get the right sweetness even though I was using the 6-in-1s (Escalon) and Tomato Magic (Stanislaus) products that are already naturally sweet. So, my tastebuds were no doubt sensitized by that experience.

With respect to PG and its pizza sauce, PG says at its website, at http://www.papaginos.com/standard_menu.html, that it uses "vine-ripe California plum tomatoes" in the sauce. In an earlier version of its ingredients list for its pizza sauce, it said that the sauce was made of "Italian Plum Tomatoes, salt, black pepper, oregano, garlic powder, citric acid" (http://www.allbaking.net/mf/8/19074). The difference in wording suggests a switch from Italian plum tomatoes to vine-ripe California plum tomatoes. When I looked at the Escalon website, the only product that I could find referring to "plum" tomatoes is the Christoforo Columbo product. Many of the other Escalon labels show what look to be plum tomatoes but the word "plum" is not used. At the Stanislaus website, the only reference I found to a "plum" tomato is with respect to the Alta Cucina Naturale product. I don't know offhand whether "pear" tomatoes are the same as "plum" tomatoes, but there are a couple Stanislaus products that use the "pear" term but not the "plum" term. Interestingly, PG never says that it uses "fresh pack" tomatoes. Just about every major pizza chain that uses the "fresh pack" tomatoes makes mention of that fact. This leads me to believe that PG does not use the Stanislaus products. It would not be using the Escalon products either because they do not contain citric acid.

In my case, I went with the Redpack tomatoes mainly because I did not have any of the "plum" tomato products referenced above. It also has citric acid, which the 6-in-1s I have on hand do not, and the Redpack brand is widely distributed in the Northeast part of the country. I thought it made a nice sauce but I don't have any idea as to how it matches up against the real PG sauce.

Peter


Offline Pete-zza

  • Lifetime Member
  • Global Moderator
  • *
  • Posts: 21868
  • Location: Texas
  • Always learning
Re: Papa Gino's Recipe
« Reply #90 on: March 30, 2009, 01:16:29 PM »
Pocket

Wheat flour, dry yeast, salt, water
Allergen:  Wheat
Pocket Dusting Flour

Semolina, wondra flour
Allergen:  Wheat


Marc,

When I found the semolina reference, I went back to the Papa Gino's ingredients list and re-read it to see if there were any clues to the presence of semolina flour in the pizza blend. I also found the material you quoted above. However, the fact that semolina is not specifically listed as one of the "shell" ingredients does not necessarily mean that it is not present since semolina is a "wheat flour". I don't know if you remember the famous Sherlock Holmes story where the dog did not bark in the presence of an intruder (the criminal), but that told Sherlock Holmes that the dog knew the intruder and allowed him to go on to solve the crime. It's possible here that the semolina flour is the "dog that doesn't bark".

I appreciate your offer to buy a PG pizza and to use your considerable skills to help narrow the issues. But I don't expect you to go that far. It should be the members who have the greatest personal stake and interest in reverse engineering the PG pizzas that might do so.

Peter

Offline scott r

  • Supporting Member
  • *
  • Posts: 3061
  • Age: 43
  • Location: boston
  • I Love Pizzafreaks!
Re: Papa Gino's Recipe
« Reply #91 on: March 31, 2009, 01:07:03 AM »
zalicious,

At the Stanislaus website, the only reference I found to a "plum" tomato is with respect to the Alta Cucina Naturale product. I don't know offhand whether "pear" tomatoes are the same as "plum" tomatoes, but there are a couple Stanislaus products that use the "pear" term but not the "plum" term.

Peter


Peter, I have spent the last few years buying and sampling the entire Stanislaus and Escalon product lines.  The pear and plum tomatoes that Stanislaus sells are very different in flavor, with the pear tasting richer to me and the plum tasting brighter.  There are a number of Stanislaus products that taste to me like plum tomatoes in their lineup that dont specify what tomato is being used.  The 74/40, for example, taste just like strips of Alta Cucinas. 

Escalon products taste to me as if they favor the pear tomato in the products that don't specify which one they are using.  In a side by side taste test I found that the two whole tomato varieties that they sell, the Christopher Colombo and the Bella Rosa, taste like the same pear tomatoes in different viscosity juices.  Even their more processed products seem heavy on the richer pear taste.  The differences between these two types of tomatoes are subtle, but you can learn to pick them out once you get used to their individual traits.   

It tastes to me like the major difference between the Escalon and Stanislaus product lines other than the use of citric acid is that Escalon = mostly plum tomatoes and Stanislaus = a blend of plum and pear. 
« Last Edit: March 31, 2009, 01:34:19 AM by scott r »

Offline Pete-zza

  • Lifetime Member
  • Global Moderator
  • *
  • Posts: 21868
  • Location: Texas
  • Always learning
Re: Papa Gino's Recipe
« Reply #92 on: April 01, 2009, 01:21:16 PM »
I have been finishing up my PG pepperoni clone pizza by reheating slices in my toaster oven, and they have been delicious. It is almost worth making an extra pizza just for slices. I think the slight "underbake" makes the pizza almost ideal for slices and keeps them from getting too hard and dry from the additional reheat. I also shaved some extra white cheddar cheese on the slices before reheating and that has worked out nicely also. I see that PG's also sells slices at lunch, at $5.49 for two pepperoni slices (http://www.papaginos.com/standard_menu.html). However, I believe their lunch slices are larger than my 1/8th pizza size or maybe they use a larger pizza size for slices.

Peter

Offline JConk007

  • Vendor
  • *
  • Posts: 3649
  • Location: New Jersey
  • Lovin my Oven!
    • Flirting with Fire
Re: Papa Gino's Recipe
« Reply #93 on: April 01, 2009, 07:40:47 PM »
 5 pages now where is freddy?
I really like the looks of the slice and the screen action I picked up a 16" screen today to play.
john
I Love to Flirt with Fire! www.flirtingwithfirepizza.com

Offline Pete-zza

  • Lifetime Member
  • Global Moderator
  • *
  • Posts: 21868
  • Location: Texas
  • Always learning
Re: Papa Gino's Recipe
« Reply #94 on: April 04, 2009, 04:16:29 PM »
I decided over the past couple of days to make another try at a Papa Gino’s pepperoni clone pizza reflecting what I have learned to date. As a result, I made several changes in an effort to get my numbers closer to the numbers reflected in the PG nutrition data for a 14” pepperoni pizza.

First, I decided to use 18 ounces of dough, instead of the 16 ounces I used before. This was to try to increase both the unbaked and baked weights of the clone pizza while maintaining a “slim” overall profile for the pizza. Second, instead of using a blend of the King Arthur bread flour (KABF) and the semolina flour, I used a blend of the KABF and vital wheat gluten (VWG). I replaced enough of the formula flour with VWG to get an effective protein content of 14%, which is typical of a high-gluten flour. To do the calculations, I used November’s Mixed Mass Percentage Calculator at http://foodsim.unclesalmon.com/. The VWG used was the Hodgson Mill brand of vital wheat gluten. Third, I increased the amount of the three-cheese blend from 8.5 ounces to 9 ounces. While I was at it, I also changed the percentages of the three cheeses in order to emphasize more the flavor of the sharp white New York cheddar cheese. This time, I used 70% low-moisture, part-skim mozzarella cheese, 28% New York sharp white cheddar cheese, and 2% grated Romano cheese. As before, the three cheeses were comminuted into dice form, along with about ˝ teaspoon of dried leaf oregano, in my food processor. Fourth, I slightly increased the amount of pizza sauce (the same composition as before) from 6 ounces to about 6.2 ounces. To summarize, from a quantitative standpoint the ingredients for the pizza looked like this:

Dough: 18 ounces (310.72 g./10.96 oz. KABF and 7.68 g./0.27 oz. VWG) (Note: the VWG = 2.56 t.)
Three-cheese blend (9 ounces): 70% low-moisture part-skim mozzarella cheese (178.61 g./6.3 oz.); 28% NY sharp white cheddar cheese (71.44 g./2.52 oz.); 2% grated Romano cheese (1 T.)
Pizza Sauce: 6.2 oz./175.78 g.
Pepperoni: 3.07 oz./87 g. (weights are after microwaving the small Hormel pepperoni slices to render some of the fat; the pre-rendering weight was 104 g.)

From the above, it can be seen that the total unbaked pizza weight was 36.27 ounces, or 1028.26 g.

The dough formulation itself, which I prepared using the expanded dough calculating tool at http://www.pizzamaking.com/expanded_calculator.html, was as follows:

King Arthur Bread Flour/VWG Blend* (100%):
Water** (60.8%):
IDY (0.375%):
Salt (1.5%):
Total (162.675%):
318.4 g  |  11.23 oz | 0.7 lbs
193.59 g  |  6.83 oz | 0.43 lbs
1.19 g | 0.04 oz | 0 lbs | 0.4 tsp | 0.13 tbsp
4.78 g | 0.17 oz | 0.01 lbs | 0.86 tsp | 0.29 tbsp
517.95 g | 18.27 oz | 1.14 lbs | TF = N/A
* The blend includes 310.72 g./10.96 oz. of KABF and 7.68 g./0.27 oz. Hodgson Mill brand of VWG (2.56 t.)
** The water was at 76.4 degrees F
Note: Bowl residue compensation = 1.5%

The dough was prepared almost identically to the last PG clone dough. It came in at a bit over 18 ounces but was trimmed back to 18 ounces. The dough management was also essentially identical to the last PG clone dough. As before, I used the poppy seed trick as described at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,6914.0.html and even the expansion behavior of the latest dough was very much the same as with the last dough. As before, the latest dough was cold fermented for about 50 hours, with the dough just about doubling by that time. The last dough also about doubled after 50 hours. This leads me to believe that two days of cold fermentation is a good compromise in terms of handling qualities and good crust performance.

I shaped and stretched the dough out to size, 15”, and placed it onto my 16” pizza screen. As previously described, the 15” size was used to allow for some loss in size during baking. At 18 ounces of dough for the 15” skin, the effective thickness factor is 0.1018592. That is plausibly still on the “thin” side as might be perceived by the person eating the pizza. A slight departure from my last dough is that I used semolina flour on the bench when shaping the dough rather than cornmeal.

The latest dough behaved almost identically to the last one, in terms of elasticity/extensibility and being able to go airborne with it. I also shaped the rim to be thin and with a low profile so that it wouldn’t expand much during baking. As before, I had no problems doing this. The pizza was dressed in the same manner as previously described, and it was baked, while on the screen, on my pizza stone. The stone had been placed on the lowest oven rack position and preheated for about one hour at 475 degrees F. The pizza on the screen was baked on the stone for about 3 minutes, at which time I slid the pizza off of the screen directly onto the pizza stone for about another 3-4 minutes of baking. The finished pizza weighed 930 g./32.80 oz. That represented a loss during baking of about 9.57%. That was a smaller loss than my last PG pepperoni clone pizza. The PG nutrition data for a 14” pepperoni pizza indicates a baked weight of 34.71 ounces. That is a couple of ounces more than the latest pizza. The difference may be due to different ovens being used to bake the pizzas. I might have to try to simulate a deck oven in my home oven to test out this possibility. The finished pizza had a diameter of a bit over 14 ˝”. So, starting out with a larger skin size seems to create a thinner overall profile for the pizza.

The photos below show the finished pizza. Overall, it was excellent. It was quite similar to the last PG pepperoni clone pizza although I could detect the heavier weight of the slices of the latest pizza because of the larger amount of crust. The pizza was also softer at the rim and less chewy, no doubt due to the fact that I did not use semolina flour this time. I also liked the increased presence of the NY sharp white cheddar cheese. At a little over 6 ounces, the sauce was not overpowering in any sense. It was on the watery side to begin with and this may have understated its presence on the pizza. It may also suggest that more sauce can be used without losing the balance of ingredients on the pizza.

There was very little to find fault with with the pizza. It was very good in all respects, from execution of the plan to the finished product. I am looking forward to enjoying the leftover slices over the next few days.

Peter

EDIT (3/4/13): Replaced Calculator link with the current link.
« Last Edit: March 04, 2013, 07:38:06 PM by Pete-zza »

Offline Pete-zza

  • Lifetime Member
  • Global Moderator
  • *
  • Posts: 21868
  • Location: Texas
  • Always learning
Re: Papa Gino's Recipe
« Reply #95 on: April 04, 2009, 04:20:46 PM »
And photos of the slices....

Peter

Offline Pete-zza

  • Lifetime Member
  • Global Moderator
  • *
  • Posts: 21868
  • Location: Texas
  • Always learning
Re: Papa Gino's Recipe
« Reply #96 on: May 11, 2009, 12:44:24 PM »
I recently decided to use a PG clone dough using semolina flour to make a pasta-based pizza as part of the May 2009 Monthly Challenge, as reported starting at Reply 7 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,8476.msg73951.html#msg73951. The dough was similar to the one described in Reply 79 in this thread but using 25% semolina flour instead of 15% and using slightly more dough (18 oz.). I thought that the PG clone dough would be a good fit for the pasta-based pizza because of the light finished crust coloration and chewy character of the finished crust. Using the expanded dough calculating tool at http://www.pizzamaking.com/expanded_calculator.html, I came up with the following dough formulation:

KABF/Semolina Flour Blend* (100%):
Water (60%):
IDY (0.375%):
Salt (1.75%):
Total (162.125%):
319.48 g  |  11.27 oz | 0.7 lbs
191.69 g  |  6.76 oz | 0.42 lbs
1.2 g | 0.04 oz | 0 lbs | 0.4 tsp | 0.13 tbsp
5.59 g | 0.2 oz | 0.01 lbs | 1 tsp | 0.33 tbsp
517.95 g | 18.27 oz | 1.14 lbs | TF = N/A
*The KABF/Semolina Flour Blend includes 239.98 g./8.47 oz. KABF and 77.99 g./2.82 oz. semolina flour
Note: Bowl residue compensation = 1.5%

The dough was made following the procedures previously described, and was used after about 3 days of cold fermentation. The dough at that stage was still firm to the touch and, although it was quite extensible (stretchy), it was easy to open up to the final size (15"). The finished crust had the characteristics I was looking for, but I concluded that I preferred the PG semolina clone version using 15% semolina flour, principally because of the softer crust and crumb.

The photo below is representative of the finished pizza using the modified PG semolina clone dough formulation presented above.

Peter

Offline Pete-zza

  • Lifetime Member
  • Global Moderator
  • *
  • Posts: 21868
  • Location: Texas
  • Always learning
Re: Papa Gino's Recipe
« Reply #97 on: June 17, 2009, 11:30:43 AM »
I spent a week in Massachusetts recently and had a chance to visit a local Papa Gino’s restaurant to purchase a typical large pepperoni pizza and to see how the pizzas are made in general in a typical Papa Gino’s store. Since the particular PG store I visited was physically designed and laid out such that customers cannot see the pizzas as they are being made, I asked the gal behind the counter if I could go behind the counter to see the pizzas actually being made by the workers. She allowed me to do so. Otherwise, I would not have been able to see anything or be able to engage anyone in conversation about the pizzas. Based on my visit, I was able to learn quite a bit about the PG dough and pizzas. However, I was not able to learn much about the specifics of the dough, sauce and cheeses. As with other big pizza chains, the workers who make the pizzas are just pizza assemblers who know very little about the ingredients that go into making the pizzas. However, I did learn the following:

-The dough balls are made at a central commissary and delivered to PG stores in refrigerated vehicles about twice a week, as I speculated earlier in this thread. There are some stores that have deliveries three times a week, and for those stores that are too remote for delivery, the dough balls are made in-store, much as scott r indicated to be the case before PG went to the commissary business model. The workers I saw making the pizzas did not know the weight of a dough ball used to make a large (14”) pizza or the type of flour used. I was told that there was nothing particularly unusual about the dough. Also, I was told that no semolina flour is used on the work surfaces where dough balls are opened up to form skins. Only finely ground cornmeal is used.

-The dough balls are processed using a metal mold such as shown in Reply 45 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,2061.msg39550.html#msg39550.  What surprised me was the size of the mold. I thought that it might be the same size as the finished pizza--14” in this case. Rather, it was around 8-9” in diameter. To use the mold, it is first scattered with cornmeal. A dough ball is then flattened into a disk of the same size as the mold and put into the mold. It is pressed into the channel at the outer edge of the mold using the fingers while gradually turning the mold. Once this operation is completed, the skin is flipped over. At this stage, it has an appearance such as shown in Reply 46 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,2061.msg39551.html#msg39551. The dough so prepared is then opened up on the work surface, in this case, a metal surface, using the “two flat palms” method. There is a lot of cornmeal on this work surface. Once the skin reaches a certain size, it is lifted up off of the work surface and stretched by hand to the final size without touching or disturbing the rim. I only saw one skin that was tossed in the air after forming. The skin is then placed on a wooden peel. The wooden peel has circles formed on the surface for the sizes of pizzas that PG makes. I was told that the workers are supposed to use the molds, although one of the workers I spoke with said that he worked at another PG store and often opened up the dough balls entirely by hand. The skins I saw during my visit were quite thin, much as scott r indicated. It appeared that dough balls are used both warm and cold, and some are opened up and left on the work surface pending customer orders.

-The sauce and cheeses used on the pizzas are portioned using cups. When I asked a worker how much sauce was used, he looked up at a series of charts showing how to make different pizzas and said that it was 6 ounces, which I took to mean 6 fluid ounces. A Spoodle-like ladle was used to spread the sauce on the skin. It did not look like a lot of sauce. The worker did not know how much cheese was used but I saw them use two measuring cups of cheese. The cheese itself is a three-cheese blend as earlier described. However, the cheese looked homogeneous. That is, I could not detect grated Romano cheese particles and I could not detect any dried oregano in the cheese. Also, the cheese was in shredded form but the shreds were short, maybe ˝” long. The pepperoni slices I saw being used were quite large and were paper-thin. I also observed that they shrunk during baking. The 14” pepperoni pizza that I purchased and later examined (more on this below) had around 40 pepperoni slices.

-The pizzas at the PG store I visited are baked in a Baxter “ferris wheel” oven. I believe that Baxter refers to such ovens as a “revolving tray ovens”. The one I saw looked like the one shown at http://www.baxterbakery.com/products/commercial-ovens/revolving-tray-oven.aspx but possibly wider (it’s hard to say without seeing the dimensions). The ferris wheel ovens have traditionally been popular choices for baking Chicago-style pizzas. The one used at the PG store I visited uses a metal baking surface. One of the workers I spoke with said that he thought that a deck oven with a stone surface was a better choice based on his personal experience.

-The 14” pepperoni pizza I purchased was, in fact, 14”. Its baked weight after about 15 minutes cooling time (the transit time from the PG store to a friend’s place) was 28.7 ounces. This compares with the 34.71 ounces I derived from the PG nutrition data. That strikes me as a huge difference.

-Photos of the pizza I purchased are shown in the next post. The crust exhibited some bubbles at the rim and, as scott r has noted, the crust area away from the rim had a pasty or gumline characteristic here and there. I believe that this can be seen in the second photo below. Overall, I found the crust to be breadlike and puffy, with a fairly tight crumb. I also found the crust to be quite salty. Based on my tastebuds, I believe that the salt usage in the dough is over 2%. The pepperoni slices were quite spicy, much more so than the Hormel slices I typically use. I thought that the sauce had a fair amount of spice also but that may have been because of the excretions of the pepperoni slices during baking.

-The pizza I purchased was closer to the one I made and described in Reply 94 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,8167.msg71789.html#msg71789 than to the semolina-based pizza as described at Reply 79 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,8167.msg71404.html#msg71404. I try to be objective about the pizzas I make in relation to the pizzas I am trying to reverse engineer and clone, but I would say that my pizzas were better than the one I purchased from Papa Gino’s. But, since my objective has been to reverse engineer and clone the real thing, some adjustments to the dough formulation and dough management will be required. The main change will be to use less dough and possibly less cheese. I might also bake the next clone on a pizza stone and use the dough while it is still cool.

Peter
« Last Edit: April 19, 2012, 02:26:28 PM by Pete-zza »

Offline Pete-zza

  • Lifetime Member
  • Global Moderator
  • *
  • Posts: 21868
  • Location: Texas
  • Always learning
Re: Papa Gino's Recipe
« Reply #98 on: June 17, 2009, 11:35:54 AM »
Here are the photos of the 14" pepperoni pizza I purchased from Papa Gino's.

Peter


Offline JConk007

  • Vendor
  • *
  • Posts: 3649
  • Location: New Jersey
  • Lovin my Oven!
    • Flirting with Fire
Re: Papa Gino's Recipe
« Reply #99 on: June 17, 2009, 11:50:17 PM »
Thanks for the update inspector cluso ! ;D
Glad you were able to acertain such info on the process .
I did mention the ferris wheel ovens so at least I had that right from 35 yrs ago. So its Very little sauce and less cheese, short shred, not diced. and no visble oragano? Hmm very interesting. The look has not changed since my last one.
 You feel PJs  is much better as chains go? And yes I am sure yours was WAY better.
John
I Love to Flirt with Fire! www.flirtingwithfirepizza.com