Author Topic: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza  (Read 114371 times)

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Offline pftaylor

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #20 on: March 15, 2005, 06:25:13 PM »
Pete-zza,
Is it too late to standardize on a 13" with your standard thickness? I promise this is the last substantive change (I hope).

Friz,
I just made two dough balls based on the earliest version posted. They weighed only 12.6 ounces each and were really hard relative to my normal super wet dough balls. Tomorrow we will have the first verdict on il pizzaiolo's recipe (modified with a starter).
« Last Edit: March 15, 2005, 06:31:48 PM by pftaylor »
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Offline varasano

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #21 on: March 15, 2005, 06:25:40 PM »
As far as going with no starter, I think that's a waste. If steve can send it around, maybe we can all use the same culture and really get this going. If we do this together, we should all try to do the real thing. Get the oven temp right, the starter, the same ingredients, real digital thermometers, the whole deal. Otherwise I'm not sure what we are going to learn from each other's experiments.

Even if we end up with smaller group, we will learn more and even the ones that can't duplicate all this will still learn more.

What do you think?

Offline pftaylor

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #22 on: March 15, 2005, 06:36:06 PM »
Jeff,
I'm all for the inclusion of a starter. I just didn't want to alienate anyone. Nor did I want to earn Steve a part-time job at the post-office. But you are right. If we are going to do a homemade version of a Patsy's pizza than we should all do it the same.

Petezza,
If it's not too late can we go back to including the starter?

At times like these you really need a chat room.
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Offline pizzanapoletana

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #23 on: March 15, 2005, 06:52:44 PM »
Jeff
I am the first one to support the fact that the technique is more importante then the ingredientss or following a recipe. I have had to work with different types of flours, water, yeast etc. But I had always to produce a good dough.

The most important thing to achieve lightness and flovour, is long fermentation and hydratation.

I already said that would be too complicate to explain with a keyboard how to replicate my own dough. There are hundread of steps involved that all become a way of working.


Offline pftaylor

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #24 on: March 15, 2005, 07:00:14 PM »
pizzanapoletana,
Out of curiosity when you say long fermentation and hydration do you mean high hydration?
If so, I'm confused. I know you are a proponent of higher than normal hydration levels - as I have been up until Jeff and ilpizzaiolo suggested otherwise.

Can you explain how to get what is arguably the lightest crust in America with only a 60% hydration?
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Offline pizzanapoletana

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #25 on: March 15, 2005, 07:09:29 PM »
Yes I meant an high hydratation.

However over long resting time, over 24 hours, some of the water in the dough is released by the molecular bond. 

What I am saying is that there are ways to achieve a light crust with a no so wet dough, but then there are some other factors that need to vary.

It is simple to start from high hydratation and long fermentation to obtain similar results.

I have tried Grimaldi's pizza, which some believe to be similar or even better then Patsy's. It was light, but notthing so special or even comparable to mine or Da Michele dough.

Offline pftaylor

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #26 on: March 15, 2005, 07:39:59 PM »
pizzanapoletana,
Thank you for the clarification on hydration.

I have also eaten at Grimaldi's on occasion and I can tell you that the only things they have in common are that they both use a coal oven and at one time they were related. Nearly every other aspect is different. Patsy's crust is considerably lighter and much more flavorable. The difference in crust is even more noticable as the pie cools. The Patsy's crust does not go limp.

The ovens look different and seem to perform differently as well. Grimaldi's has a line outside the door most of the time and Patsy's is generally empty. The effect on the oven is profound. The Patsy's oven is much hotter due to not pumping out as many pies.

Grimaldi's sauce is bland whereas Patsy's is bright. The one area where Grimaldi's is better, in my opinion, is with their toppings. Grimaldi's sausage is special. However, I consider the best pizza to be a Margherita so I never worry about toppings (unless I'm eating at Di Fara's where the toppings are the show).


« Last Edit: March 15, 2005, 09:14:42 PM by pftaylor »
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Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #27 on: March 15, 2005, 07:50:03 PM »
pft,

As you have requested, I have set forth below the ingredients and quantities necessary to make a 15-inch skin with a thickness characteristic of a NY style. For purposes of calculating the required dough ball weight, I used a thickness factor of 0.10, which is a fairly standard figure for a thin NY style dough. Using that thickness factor, the dough ball weight comes to 17.7 oz. (3.14 x 7.5 x 7.5 x 0.10 = 17.7). Using the baker's percents for ilpizzaiolo's recipe, the ingredients and amounts are as follows:

High-gluten flour (100%, KASL), 10.90 oz.
Water (60%), 6.55 oz.
Salt (2%), 0.22 oz. (a bit over 1 t.)
IDY (0.25%), 0.027 oz. (a bit over 1/4 t.)

If one chooses to forego refrigeration/retardation of the dough and instead rely on fermentation at room temperature, a process generally favored by ilpizzaiolo and Pizza Napoletana, then an even smaller amount of IDY would be used. The amount is so small and hard to measure using standard measuring spoons, I estimate that it would be about 1/3 of a 1/8-t. measuring spoon. That's about 3 modest pinches of IDY between the thumb and forefinger.

What should be noted from the above is that what we have basically created is a recipe for a relatively low hydration (60%) Lehmann NY style dough. I don't believe that that is what Patsy's is making, so I'd like to suggest that the recipe and amounts of ingredients set forth below be used as a starting point if one wants to try to emulate the Patsy's dough using pizzaiolo's recipe. Both pft and Jeff have clearly indicated that their doughs are super thin, and I think that that is the secret of their success, along with using a high temperature bake. And, from looking at what both have done in their efforts to emulate the Patsy's dough, I have concluded that the more applicable thickness factor may be closer to 0.06 and 0.07. In the spirit of compromise, I split the difference and chose to use 0.065. Using this thickness factor, the dough ball weight is much smaller, around 11.5 oz. (3.14 x 7.5 x 7.5 x 0.065 = 11.48 oz.). For this weight of dough ball, the ingredients and quantities are as follows:

High-gluten flour (100%, KASL), 7.10 oz. (1 1/2 c. plus 4 t.)
Water (60%), 4.25 oz. (between 1/2 and 5/8 c.)
Salt (2%), 0.14 oz. (a bit less than 3/4 t.)
IDY (0.25%), 0.018 oz. (between 1/8 and 1/4 t.)

Again, if one chooses to use a room temperature fermentation, the amount of IDY should be reduced. In this case, the amount is smaller than in the previous examples given. It comes to about a pinch and a half between the thumb and forefinger. I have no idea as to what the outcome will be using such a small amount of yeast, but I have learned from experience that it doesn't take much yeast to get a dough to rise.

Using the calculation techniques described above, it is fairly easy to calculate a dough ball weight for another size pizza. For example, if one wants to make a 13-inch pizza, again using the 0.065 thickness factor, the calculated dough ball weight comes to about 8.6 oz. (3.14 x 6.5 x 6.5 x 0.065 = 8.62 oz.). In this example, the ingredient listing is as follows:

High-gluten flour (100%), 5.30 oz. (a bit under 3/4 c.)
Water (60%), 3.20 oz. (about 3/8 c.)
Salt (2%), 0.11 oz. (a bit over 1/2 t.)
IDY (0.25%), 0.013 oz. (1/8 t.)

On the chance that one wishes to use a different thickness factor or a different dough ball weight or pizza size, the above calculations demonstrate how to use the baker's percents to achieve the desired amounts of ingredients for the dough configuration selected.

Peter



« Last Edit: April 14, 2005, 11:18:49 PM by Pete-zza »

Offline pftaylor

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #28 on: March 15, 2005, 08:09:38 PM »
Pete-zza,
You are a good man. I appreciate all the time, energy, and effort you have put into this project.
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Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #29 on: March 15, 2005, 08:10:33 PM »
I see that there was a flurry of activity as I was burning up the keys of my calculator and measuring things on my digital scale.

It's not a problem to re-incorporate the use of a starter in the list of ingredients. However, it will be necessary to determine how much starter is to be used. For Neapolitan style pizzas, Pizza Napoletana recommends 1-5% by weight of water. If that is the guideline to be used in the present case using ilpizzaiolo's recipe, and assuming that the starter is about 50% flour and 50% water (or any other specified ratio), then the recipe for any size pizza can be modified accordingly. What will help me is to know what percent of starter is to be used, and the size of pizza. As may have been noted from my prior post, I shifted gears on everyone by suggesting the use of a lower thickness factor. If a different thickness factor is preferred, then it should be specified and I will reflect it in the final calculations.

Peter


Offline varasano

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #30 on: March 15, 2005, 08:26:25 PM »
Hey Marco,

Grimaldi's is not that great. If you look at Zagat and other surverys a lot of places beat Patsy's. But it's not because of the pizza. Patsy's is in a horrible dangerous neighborhood and no one goes there. I've been the only customer in there at times. It's a throwback to the old days. My fear is that in the last year Patsy's has a new guy cooking and the pies have gone way down hill. The Patsy's up until last year was incredible, way better than Grimaldi or Lombardi's or John's, etc.

It possible that Steve's yeast is already contaminated with some of Sourdo.com's cultures. From his description, I think it's 50/50 that it's no good. Send me your address. You are the new post office for the project.

Regarding high hydration. My best pies are high hydration. But Patsy's doughs are not. So I'm close, but that's an important area of difference.

Marco uses 1-5% starter, I'm at 40%. Another huge, huge difference to work on.

Jeff

Offline pftaylor

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #31 on: March 15, 2005, 08:52:22 PM »
Pete-zza,
I would defer to pizzanapoletana on the correct starter percentage. Whatever would yield the greatest margin of error is my vote.

Jeff,
pizzanapoletana lives in the UK so he is not the logical choice. Fewer distribution points will raise the integrity of the poolish. That means either me or you. With you as the father of Frankenstein...
« Last Edit: March 15, 2005, 09:16:41 PM by pftaylor »
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Offline friz78

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #32 on: March 15, 2005, 09:27:01 PM »
Pete,
When you use these numbers (3.14 x 7.5 x 7.5 x 0.10 = 17.7) to explain the dough ball weight could you explain what each one represents.  I understand that the 0.10 probably refers to the thickness factor, but not sure about the rest.
Friz

Offline pizzanapoletana

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #33 on: March 15, 2005, 09:29:57 PM »
Hey Marco,

Grimaldi's is not that great. If you look at Zagat and other surverys a lot of places beat Patsy's. But it's not because of the pizza. Patsy's is in a horrible dangerous neighborhood and no one goes there. I've been the only customer in there at times. It's a throwback to the old days. My fear is that in the last year Patsy's has a new guy cooking and the pies have gone way down hill. The Patsy's up until last year was incredible, way better than Grimaldi or Lombardi's or John's, etc.

It possible that Steve's yeast is already contaminated with some of Sourdo.com's cultures. From his description, I think it's 50/50 that it's no good. Send me your address. You are the new post office for the project.

Regarding high hydration. My best pies are high hydration. But Patsy's doughs are not. So I'm close, but that's an important area of difference.

Marco uses 1-5% starter, I'm at 40%. Another huge, huge difference to work on.

Jeff

Jeff

For what I have tasted in NY last November, Totonno's was the best, then Grimaldi, Lombardi's and John's had to be the last...

I would not mind run some test on the Patsy's starter, but I would not be able to send it back to US.

The sourdo Italian starters are not really sour, or notthing really compared to the San Francisco sourdough. However as I said before, depends, on how you manage your starter, and there are ways to correct them.

One of them (ischia) is slightly more sour and slower then the other one "camaldoli".




Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #34 on: March 15, 2005, 09:59:52 PM »
friz,

The expression to calculate the dough weight for a particular size (diameter) pizza is Pi (the Greek letter, equal to 3.14) times the radius (the diameter divided by two) squared, times the thickness factor (TF). Pi times the radius squared is the surface area of the pizza. The thickness factor is something that someone must have come up with through experimentation. It has a typical value of 0.11 for an average (medium) pizza crust thickness, a value of 0.10 for a thin crust, and a value of 0.12-0.13 for a thick crust. There's nothing sacred about those numbers. They are guidelines, and one can choose to modify them at will based on personal experience.

The above expression can also be used for dough scaling purposes based on actual experience. Assume, for example, that you determined through the process of experimentation or trial and error that the ideal, or “perfect”, dough ball weight for a 14” pizza is 15 ounces. Using the expression (Pi x R x R), where R is equal to 7, the surface area of the pizza is calculated to be 153.86 square inches (3.14 x 7 x 7).  A value for the thickness factor TF based on the 14” size pizza would then be calculated by dividing 15 by 153.86, or 0.0984912.  To determine the dough ball weight for another size pizza using that "personal" thickness factor, say, 12”, the corresponding value of the new dough ball weight is calculated by multiplying the surface area of the 12” pizza, or 113.04 square inches (3.14 x 6 x 6), by 0.0984912, or roughly 11 ounces. To scale up to a larger size pizza, say, 16 inches, the amount of dough required would be 200.96 (3.14 x 8 x8) times 0.0984912, or 19.8 ounces. The dough ball weight for any other size pizza, up or down in diameter, would be calculated in the same manner. It's a pretty good tool to use to calculate just the right amount of dough you will need for any size and thickness of pizza. The really neat thing about using the expression is that it then allows you to calculate the amounts of ingredients to use for the dough based on the baker's percents, if you are lucky to have them.

The rules are a bit different, of course, for deep-dish, because you have to take into account the dough that goes up the sides of the pan. It's just another step to be factored into the overall calculation, but not a difficult one.

Peter


Offline pftaylor

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #35 on: March 16, 2005, 07:43:27 AM »
Let's do a level set to see where we are at.

I just want to thank everyone for their contribution to the effort. Even those that haven't contributed yet but perhaps will. Jump in, we need and value your comments. A special mention goes to:

Pete-zza,
You are amazing for your attention to detail and willingness to help. With you memorializing our thoughts into a usable format, there will be nothing that will stop us from assiduously achieving our stated goal of reverse engineering a Patsy's pizza. I have leaned into you recently for the recipe conversions but now look to you for cleaning up and clarifying the dough preparation steps. You are the best wordsmith we have and communicate the most effectively of us all with the written word.

il pizzaiolo,
You are the father of the home made recipe. It's simplicity is as understated as your humble but lethal guidance. We are all indebted to you for starting us in the right direction. Look at what you have started. To date, there have been 35 posts and 240 views of this thread. Clearly when you speak, we listen.

varasano,
Holder of the Patsy flame and perhaps the only other member here who is as big of a believer in the quality of Patsy's crust as I. Your militaristic attitude toward success for six long years is about to be rewarded.

pizzanapoletana,
As a master pizzaiolo you understand better than most the power and benefit of a starter. We will one way or another get you the varasano Patsy's starter for complete analysis. You will then be able to put to rest the mystery of whether or not Patsy's uses some form of starter to get their intense flavor. We all want to learn from you. Teach us!

Friz,
Your KISS voice was heard loud and clear. You are about to be part of the single most competent dough recipe known to mankind. Stay tuned. 

Steve & Randy
A very special thanks for allowing the membership here to use this forum and contribute so many noteworthy ideas in such a short time. With a little trial and error baking in the coming days, we will return a recipe that can be used faithfully by all. The collective genius of the forum will not be denied. Your tolerance and acceptance of this runaway train is much appreciated.

Arthur,
Get your wood burning oven built will ya. And get the state's priorities straight. Virginia isn't for lovers. It's for pizza!

How can everyone help right here? Right now?

Well take a look at our suggested dough preparation sequence and technique. If you know of a way, I don't even care how small, to improve a step - kindly suggest it. If you notice something that we are missing - bring it to our attention. One specific question I have is this: Does Patsy's or any pizza joint rub the dough balls with oil to prevent sticking? If not, how do they ferment their dough balls while avoiding the sticking issue. I realize this is a small point but one which should be pretty easy to nail properly.

Everybody deserves a little Patsy's!
« Last Edit: March 16, 2005, 08:23:18 AM by pftaylor »
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Offline Steve

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #36 on: March 16, 2005, 08:37:01 AM »
With a little trial and error baking in the coming days, we will return a recipe that can be used faithfully by all.

Once we get the recipe "perfected," I'd like to put the recipe out on the main website.  ;)
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Offline jimd

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #37 on: March 16, 2005, 09:01:20 AM »
Hi: I am a brand new member, but have been long obsessed with pizza. Discovered this website and have developed an obsession with it. I have gotten so much out of the posts, and need to express my gratitude for everyone sharing their wisdom.

I have very little to add right now, but hope to have more in the future. One suggestion I do have is for those interested to visit the website of Woodstone Ovens (they make wood burning ovens used by many restaurants). One of their employees recently went on a training session to Naples. The session was sponsered by Caputo flour, and the fellow trained under one of the master pizza makers (for a day at least).   The website has a narrative and pictures of the lessons, and describes techniques for kneading and shaping. I have tried the kneading technique and so far it has produced the best dough I have made (but remember I am in the early stages).  The description of how to divide the pizza dough is fascinating, and very difficult to get right.

I think some of you might enjoy it, and it is worth a look. Here is the link:

www.woodstone-corp.com/cooking_naples_style.htm


BTW, I have just treated myself to a wood burning backyard oven, which I keep on Cape Cod. It is a great deal of fun, and I expect to spend a good part of the summer trying to get comfortable using it. I will be happy to share my experiences trying some of the recipes with a wood oven.

Regards,

Jim

Offline pftaylor

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #38 on: March 16, 2005, 09:16:49 AM »
Steve,
It would be our greatest privlege to be forever a part of pizzamaking.com. I'm glad I suggested to have Pete-zza write up the recipe and procedure. I'll volunteer to take the pictures. It's all coming together now...

jimd,
Great first post. Good reference site.

A number of our senior members are quite well versed with it. One of the things you may find of interest is that we actually have pizzaiolo who possess the same skills as the one on the site. The only difference is they dispense their wisdom here and often.

Since you have the real deal in the backyard, your job should you choose to accept it, is to test out the Patsy's recipe and report back.

Welcome aboard the Patsy's train!
« Last Edit: March 16, 2005, 09:23:53 AM by pftaylor »
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Offline pftaylor

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #39 on: March 16, 2005, 05:18:39 PM »
So I made the first batch of two pies tonight. I will let the pictures speak for themselves but I do have a few brief comments:
1) Very hard dough to stretch. Dough tore a couple of times. That's a no-no
2) 21 hour refrigerated rise with a 2 hour counter rise.
3) Not the normal amount of oven spring.
4) I lowered my tiles trying to get more even baking and failed. The bottom cooked quicker than the top. As DC PM would say: Burn pizza will give you cancer!
5) a few blister holes were noted on the bottom of the pie(s)
6) It just didn't "Look" as pretty as my previous efforts
7) No oil was used to coat the dough balls...
8) The family gave it a thumbs down

Here goes nothing:
« Last Edit: March 16, 2005, 05:28:55 PM by pftaylor »
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