Author Topic: first attempt how to improve from here? (pics)  (Read 8455 times)

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Offline s00da

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Re: first attempt how to improve from here? (pics)
« Reply #40 on: May 12, 2010, 03:50:47 PM »
you know that your dough over fermented when it has a strong beer like smell AND/OR that it just disintegrates as you handle it being too wet and having no elasticity


Offline Pizzalogy

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Re: first attempt how to improve from here? (pics)
« Reply #41 on: May 13, 2010, 08:05:35 PM »
ah ok, haven't had that happen yet.

well i made my first 100% whole wheat pizza today using king arthur white whole wheat flour. i followed charbo's recipe from the speciality-grain forum except i omitted the sugar and refrigerated it 42 hours instead of 30 like he suggests. i used the same stretching technique and baked it the same way and same time as my last few pizzas. quick question: should you let the dough warm up at all when taking it out of the fridge before stretching?

http://i44.tinypic.com/a3edjt.jpg

http://i41.tinypic.com/34smrea.jpg

http://i44.tinypic.com/e1565f.jpg

i was very pleased with the crust. it was droopy and foldible like NY style but had a nice whole wheat flavor to it. i am going to give up on making traditional  NY style for the time being and just make whole wheat.

also, i used some fresh mozzarella on part of this pizza instead of my usual cheese and while it wasn't the flavor i was looking for, it did tell me that the cheese i have been using (GFS whole milk mozzarella) has been giving my pizzas a sour, almost bitter taste.  so that is definitely what i plan to change next. maybe the sauce isn't even the problem.

anyway, thanks for all the help you guys have given me (especially tranman). i will go post this in the grain forum.

Offline Jackie Tran

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Re: first attempt how to improve from here? (pics)
« Reply #42 on: May 13, 2010, 10:12:17 PM »
Pizzalogy, your welcome!  ;D  I'm glad you are having a fun time making pizza.  Afterall that's what it's really about....and eating pizza too of course.

Should you let your dough warm up before stretching?  Hmmm, tough question to answer.  Yes and no depending on how much yeast is in the dough.   In general, warming the dough up to room temperature before stretching will make it easier to stretch the dough.  Stretching a low hydration dough while it's cold can result in tears.  BUT as the dough is warming up, the yeast will become active and start producing their byproducts (enzymes being one of them?) which can lead to some gluten breakdown which can then lead to the dough being too pliable and extensible.   

Now if you have a dough that has little yeast in it, say 1/16 tsp per 300gm ball, you can let that guy proof to room temps and beyond without the negative effects.  I have room temp (72F) proof such a dough up to 9-10hours and it opened easily without issues.   On the opposite end of that if you have 1/2 tsp yeast per 300gm doughball, you'll only want to proof AT room temps for about an hour or 2 max.  You'll want to stretch it while it's slightly cool.  If you let it get to room temps, you run the risk of it overproofing and then as s00da says it will fall apart in your hands.   If this does happen and you do reball it, then you want to let it sit for another 45m minimum before trying to open it again.   You now run the risk of the yeast having spent all the sugars in the dough and you may not get that extra spring in the dough in the oven.

The easiest answer is to follow the specifics of the recipe.  Usually each recipe has been (re)tested multiple times and the author will note the times at which you should bulk rise, cold ferment, and proof.   After awhile, if you've been studying your recipes and times, you'll develop a sense of how a dough is suppose to look or how much it has proof vs how much it can depending on the amount of starter or yeast.   Once you get there, you can fudge the times a bit and know when a dough needs to be baked vs how much longer it can go and at what temps.  But of course, expect to ruin a bunch of dough along the way while you experiment.   ::)

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: first attempt how to improve from here? (pics)
« Reply #43 on: May 13, 2010, 10:29:29 PM »
(enzymes being one of them?)

Tran,

The enzymes that attack the gluten, mainly protease, are already in the flour. Also, if the attack and degradation of the gluten is extreme, as can happen if the dough overferments, the dough rarely can be saved by reballing and resting, or adding flour to absorb the wetness of the overfermented dough and trying to salvage it. For all intents and purposes, the dough is unsalvagable. The risk is higher with a lot of yeast and warm room temperatures but a dough can overferment even with small amounts of yeast. I learned this from the experiments I conducted with low-yeast, long room temperature fermented doughs, especially those made in the summer.

Peter

Offline Jackie Tran

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Re: first attempt how to improve from here? (pics)
« Reply #44 on: May 14, 2010, 12:31:51 AM »
Thanks for explaining it better than I did Peter.  I agree with you that sometimes the dough can not be salvage, therefore it's always best to avoid the situation by following the instructions set forth by the author. 

The only thing I have been able to do with overproofed (over fermented dough) is to roll it out and make fried pizza dumplings.  Either that or enjoy a thin and crispy pizza.

Offline Pizzalogy

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Re: first attempt how to improve from here? (pics)
« Reply #45 on: May 21, 2010, 12:24:54 PM »
hi tranman. i have a question about your recipe(s). what is the reason that you say to mix 75% of the flour and then let the dough rest before adding the rest? i am interested in trying some recipes where you just add all of  the ingredients right away, because it's a bit simpler and it also seems easier to play around with the hydration that way. i don't really know much about kneading though. a lot of the recipes on this forum, just give the dough ingredients and then they expect you to know how to knead them. i don't really know though, besides your method.

i think i want to try using my bread machine to knead. so i was thinking of this, mix my ingredients in a bowl and then let rest for 30 minutes. then add to bread machine and let it knead for 20 minutes. then put the dough in the fridge. how does that sound? i get confused over whether it's better to let the dough rest, knead again (i will have to see exactly what my bread machine does) as well as how long to leave it out before refrigerating. i know you gave me some advice on this, but does it apply to all recipes or just your recipe?

for the lehman calculator, what kneading and fermentation times are expected?


btw, i am going back to using the organic white flour now. the reason for this is that i am pretty pleased with my 100% white whole wheat crust but rather than just make pizza with the same crust over and over again, I would like to also perfect my white flour crust and I would also like to work on a whole wheat/white flour blend.

last night I made 2 dough balls with the organic flour as a quick experiment. i made one dough ball at 60% hydration and one at 64% hydration with vital wheat gluten. i then let the dough rest 30 minutes, followed by 10 minutes of kneading and then refrigerated it. how does that sound?

one other thing, I have begun hydrating the yeast rather than adding it according to your method and I have noticed it is much more active this way. do you have any comments on this? you tend to use a very small amount of yeast and you donít hydrate it, so now I feel like I am using too much yeast. I guess basically I would like to know the reasoning behind everything you do, so I understand what I am changing as I change things.
« Last Edit: May 21, 2010, 12:28:12 PM by Pizzalogy »

Offline Pizzalogy

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Re: first attempt how to improve from here? (pics)
« Reply #46 on: May 21, 2010, 12:53:08 PM »
never mind about the bread machine. i did some more reading and it sounds like you need to use more dough or the bread machine wont knead it properly. i want to make single dough balls right now, since i am just experimenting.

Offline Jackie Tran

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Re: first attempt how to improve from here? (pics)
« Reply #47 on: May 21, 2010, 02:14:59 PM »
Pizzalogy, I somehow missed this post and will try to answer your questions.  If mixing by hand and you add 100% of the flour it will be hard to hydrate the flour without getting dry lumps.  You want to actually add around 60%, mix well, and add in more flour slowly. If using a machine to mix, you can add it all in at once and mix.

You can play with various methods and techniques of kneading to find something you like. The one I posted I use a variation of now for all recipes. It works well.

Yes do experiment with your bread machine. Machines do a great job of mixing so no need for autolysing or resting periods. This is not to be confused with the bulk rise or rest periods after kneading.

ADY, as Peter has posted many times, it's best to rehydrate ADY for best results.  I don't out of laziness and   in the interest of keeping things simple by cutting out one step. I get great rise either way so I don't fuss about it. If you find that your getting more or faster rise than you want, just cut back the amout of yeast. Remember that recipe is for you to learn how to make your favorite pizza by modifying it. It is not a recipe to follow exactly all the time.
  I would still leave the amount at 1 tsp for the sake of it being easy to remember whether you hydrate or not.  Many recipes call for a packet of yeast and mine is well below that.
« Last Edit: May 21, 2010, 02:23:45 PM by Tranman »

Offline Pizzalogy

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Re: first attempt how to improve from here? (pics)
« Reply #48 on: May 21, 2010, 02:22:35 PM »
is it ok to mix the dough with your hands a bit? not really knead it, but squeeze it and play with it until the flour is all mixed in? it was a bit difficult to stir in all the dry lumps with a spoon, so i just squeezed the dough with my hands for a couple of minutes had no problems with dry lumps. then i let it rest 30 minutes before kneading.

i plan to try the bread machine at some point, like i said my fear is that only one dough ball won't be enough dough for it to work with. i guess i could make two and discard one.

Offline Jackie Tran

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Re: first attempt how to improve from here? (pics)
« Reply #49 on: May 21, 2010, 02:28:02 PM »
Yes it is ok pizzalogy. It's also ok to experiment and try new mehods and recipes.  There are no rules for me.  Let your results dictate what is right and wrong. Don't be afraid to venture off the well travelled road and do some exploring.

The info I share with you took me 6 months of reading, studying, experimenting, and learning. It's ok to fail as I do often but you learn that way.  Keep it up, you're on your way.


Online scott123

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Re: first attempt how to improve from here? (pics)
« Reply #50 on: May 21, 2010, 04:23:24 PM »
Regarding gentle hand mixing- it really depends on the flour.  My bromated all trumps sucks up water so fast that if I don't get the whole thing mixed and onto my bench for kneading in a matter of seconds, I get dry lumps through the dough. I'm looking forward to a slightly lower protein flour so that I can get a little more window to work with.

Offline Jackie Tran

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Re: first attempt how to improve from here? (pics)
« Reply #51 on: May 21, 2010, 05:12:21 PM »
Scott are you into mixing flours to decrease the protein content?  I agree about some flours drinking up the water while others like caputo doesn't seem to take it up at all.  This is why I like to add 50-60% of the flour to the water and stir to mix it well before I add more flour. I almost never add all the flour and end up with a higher hydration than initially intended.

Offline Pizzalogy

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Re: first attempt how to improve from here? (pics)
« Reply #52 on: May 21, 2010, 09:18:07 PM »
i made 3 pizzas tonight and they all turned out bad. the whole wheat one was over fermented. apparently properly hydrating the yeast caused it to rise too much. this made it hard to stretch and it came out too thick in certain areas. the recipe worked much better when i didn't know how to hydrate yeast, lol.

as for the other two with the organic bread flour, the crusts were both crispy rather than leathery like NY style. i didn't notice much difference between the one with VWG and the one without, but that could be because i baked them different times. i am not sure where to go from here, except to keep trying.

i also got my order from pennmac, the grande cheese and some stanislaus tomatoes. i like the grande cheese, it is incredibly rubbery but i don't really mind that.

Offline Jackie Tran

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Re: first attempt how to improve from here? (pics)
« Reply #53 on: May 22, 2010, 12:36:07 AM »
i made 3 pizzas tonight and they all turned out bad. the whole wheat one was over fermented. apparently properly hydrating the yeast caused it to rise too much. this made it hard to stretch and it came out too thick in certain areas. the recipe worked much better when i didn't know how to hydrate yeast, lol.

as for the other two with the organic bread flour, the crusts were both crispy rather than leathery like NY style. i didn't notice much difference between the one with VWG and the one without, but that could be because i baked them different times. i am not sure where to go from here, except to keep trying.

i also got my order from pennmac, the grande cheese and some stanislaus tomatoes. i like the grande cheese, it is incredibly rubbery but i don't really mind that.

hey sorry to hear you had a bad pizza night.  I've had many of those. lol.  Like I said, if the yeast is too much just cut in in half or whatever you think is appropriate and try again.  You don't realize it but it's through these screw ups that you learn how to use yeast instead of following some recipe.   Keep in mind, the goal is to work away from the recipes.   Once you can do that, you'll have more freedom.

I didn't panic tonight when I had to work late unexpectedly and couldn't bake pizza as I had planned.  I knew that my dough would go another day in the fridge.  If you know approximately how much yeast will get how many days, you can start varying the amounts to suit your needs. 

I'm getting to a place where I can vary the room temp, cold ferment,  warm proof time base on the amount of yeast or starter to bake when I need to bake instead of waiting for the dough to be ready. 

Good luck and post some more pics. 

The crispy pizza sounds good to me.  :)

Offline Pizzalogy

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Re: first attempt how to improve from here? (pics)
« Reply #54 on: May 23, 2010, 11:15:52 PM »
made some more pies. here's are the results:

http://i48.tinypic.com/29qlb2s.jpg

that's my first sourdough pizza, also is 100% whole wheat. as you can see, i did not get much rise. this could be because i only refrigerated it 12 hours when i was supposed to for at least 24. i wanted to eat it today though, and couldn't wait. will have to try this again and perhaps with more starter. also, i could not stretch this dough without it tearing. not sure why, since i used vital wheat gluten. could it have something to do with the starter and it having not risen enough?

http://i49.tinypic.com/2evvj15.jpg

that's another attempt at NY style, with organic bread flour, 61% hydration. the crust came out crispy again though and not chewy or leathery. also, not much flavor to the crust. this pizza, like all my previous ones, seemed to have almost zero oregano flavor despite the fact that i put tons of oregano on it. hope to solve that issue with thezaman's oregano. also, i apologize for the blurriness. some pizza grease got on my camera lens.

http://i45.tinypic.com/33e38rc.jpg

this is a pizza i made with the king arthur sir lancelot flour, 64% hydration (which was too much). i did this to make sure it wasn't the flour i was using that was causing my problems with the crust. if you remember, after i switched the unenriched flour is when my crusts went downhill. however, i had pretty much the same issues with my crust using the sir lancelot flour as with the organic bread flour, so this makes me think maybe the flour isn't the problem. my most new yorky tasting crusts were actually achieved before i got the baking stone, do you think the stone is causing the crispiness and bready flavor and if so, how can i get around that?

http://i46.tinypic.com/1z5t5ow.jpg

that's the bottom crust of a piece of my sir lancelot pie.

http://i49.tinypic.com/2dijb6f.jpg

side view.
« Last Edit: May 23, 2010, 11:22:13 PM by Pizzalogy »

Offline Jackie Tran

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Re: first attempt how to improve from here? (pics)
« Reply #55 on: May 23, 2010, 11:58:19 PM »
Perhaps you are doing something that I'm doing, which is experimenting with too many factors/variables at one time.    This can really muddy up the waters and making  it even harder than it has to be.  Whether you have successes or failures, it's not always clear which factors played a role in which. 

I would suggest sticking to one recipe or type of pizza until you can do it well.  Then change one or 2 factors at a time and see how that affects your standard or base pie and make adjustments accordingly.

It's tough to start working on a wheat pizza if you don't have a good basic pizza to begin with.  Also it's even harder to start mixing in VWG if you don't have the basics down.  You need more practice and it sounds like you've been doing a lot of that.  With more practice WILL come more understanding and things will start to gel and make more sense.  Right now you are a little lost b/c you're still new and that's ok.  Go back to the basic NY pie.  Once you get that down, then slowly replace the flour with a little wheat flour at a time.  Forget the VWG for now. 

when I tell you it's ok to experiment, it still has to be done within reason.  I don't mean to try out a new recipe every time you bake or every other day.  That might be ok if you've made a 100 of the same pies or so, but not now.  Experiment with small changes at a time. 

Also you are having trouble with the stone b/c it's new to you and gives a different baking characteristic.  It should give you a better result, especially with more practice.  You really need to just try and figure things out.  I know that's easy to say and doesn't really answer your questions but I alone don't have all the answers to your questions.  You are fustrated so it would be easy to want to go back to doing things the old way.  At least then it would give you a bit of confidence again.  I say don't do it.  Work with the stone and make it work for you.  You have what it takes to figure it out.  Trial and error.
It's impossible for me to help you more specifically as I don't have intimate knowledge of the type of oven and type of stone you have.  If I were there with you, the best I could say is try this or that.  That's basically what I do in my kitchen. 

What you experienced with your first few pies can be credited to beginners luck.  We all have it from time to time so enjoy any good pizzas you make.  My best pie I made was back when I didn't really know wha I was doing.  I'm still chasing that one down. 

Just remember, making pies ain't easy!  Keep your chin up, I'm rooting for ya. 

Online scott123

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Re: first attempt how to improve from here? (pics)
« Reply #56 on: May 24, 2010, 12:14:29 AM »
Oregano- pulverize it with the heal of your hand and add it to the sauce- at least 2 hours before you bake the pie.  If you give it some time to hydrate, you'll taste it.

The bran in whole wheat cuts into the gluten and decreases volume.  Although I haven't run across too many successful ww pizza attempts, I'm sure it can be done. As Tranman suggested, though, ww is advanced pizza making and probably should be approached after you master non ww pies.

Breadiness is usually a result of greater thickness factors and long baking times.  How long are you baking the pizzas?

Flavor=extended cold fermentation.  Dial back the yeast, make the dough, and leave it in the fridge for 3 days.

The KASL 64% looks a little bready, but it doesn't appear crispy.  Was it crispy?

Could you cut and paste your current recipe? That could be where the breadiness is coming from.

Offline Pizzalogy

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Re: first attempt how to improve from here? (pics)
« Reply #57 on: May 24, 2010, 02:37:27 AM »
thanks guys.

Quote
The bran in whole wheat cuts into the gluten and decreases volume.  Although I haven't run across too many successful ww pizza attempts, I'm sure it can be done. As Tranman suggested, though, ww is advanced pizza making and probably should be approached after you master non ww pies.


just to be clear, i've made 100% whole wheat pies already that i had no problems stretching (could stretch them too thin even) using vital wheat gluten and active dry yeast, you can see one here: http://i39.tinypic.com/2mww7wz.jpg i posted that in the specialty grain forum also. this last one though that failed to stretch, was my first sourdough attempt, so it's no surprise it didn't come out well. i realize that i'm just a beginner and probably shouldn't be attempting 100% whole wheat sourdough pies right now but my starter that i originally made to use with bread just happened to be at it's peak activity stage at the time i was making that pizza and i simply could not resist trying it. i was not at all surprised it didn't rise, but i was just wondering if that was the reason it didn't stretch. i am not sure the relationship between rising and stretching.

but anyway, back to the basics.  i do want to go back and work with the organic white flour and see if i can get the crust to be like new york style with the stone.

i am baking these pizzas 8-9 minutes and the rim tastes bready and feels firm even if it hasn't browned much. and yes the KASL was crispy to a degree. basically the crust of my pizzas comes out firm and breakable, so you can pick up the pizza like a frisbee. i don't think it should be like that. when you slice it though, the individual pieces are foldible, because only the bottom of the crust is crispy.

here's the recipe i used (for one dough ball):

flour - 100% - 182 g
water - 61% - 111 g
ADY - .5% - .25 tsp
salt - 2.3% - .75 tsp
oil - 1.2% - .5 tsp

the KASL is the same recipe except 64% hydration, but next time i will be decreasing the hydration with the KASL because the dough was too wet and stuck to everything. i will be increasing the hydration a little bit with the organic bread flour, because it was too dry. interestingly, despite the KASL being to wet and the bread flour being to dry, i did not notice a ton of difference between the two crusts when baked. does that make sense? what are general effects of too much and too little hydration?
« Last Edit: May 24, 2010, 02:46:24 AM by Pizzalogy »

Online scott123

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Re: first attempt how to improve from here? (pics)
« Reply #58 on: May 24, 2010, 05:38:39 AM »
Here's some thoughts.

Baking Time

The oven spring from a super hot stone is critical to the airy chewy texture of a NY style pizza.  That 8-9 minutes- we have to shorten that.  How hot does your oven go?  How long are you pre-heating the stone?

Thickness Factor

Besides being a little dense, I think the texture of your pizzas would improve if the crust was a little bit thinner.  Are your pizzas close to filling your entire stone? If so, I'd play around with decreasing the ingredients by 10% while still stretching it to the same size. Stretching dough thin and evenly is no easy task.  Flour is pretty cheap as is yeast (in the quantities we use it), so you might want to double your recipe and have an extra skin (or two) on hand in case you mess up or just want a little extra practice.

Oil

Although there isn't much oil in your crusts, in the pictures, the crust looks a little oily- both top and bottom. Are you forming the skin using oil or with flour? 

Proofing

A big part of oven spring is a dough that's proofed long enough to have plenty of bubbles before forming- and formed in such a way so that many of the bubbles in the rim are still intact.  This generally translates into not pinching/pressing the outer rim during forming. It also means that you've used enough yeast so that the dough has approximately doubled in the fridge and, by the time it's warmed up, it's tripled (or even quadrupled). Another important aspect to keeping the bubbles in the dough is using a container, that, after being lightly oiled, will release the dough easily after being warmed up.  If you have to mangle the dough to get it out of the container, you lose a lot of the bubbly goodness.

Hydration

Puffy airy crusts are a result of high heat and elevated hydration. The water creates steam, which, in turn, drives the crust up.  After the pie is baked, residual water softens the crust and makes it floppier. KA bread flour used to be incredibly sticky and unmanageable for me, so I stopped using it.  I've never worked with KASL, though. Just to clarify, though- dough should be tacky and require plenty of flour to work with comfortably.  If you flour a dough ball and leave it on the counter for a couple of minutes, it should stick.  If you leave it on the peel for a couple of minutes- same deal. It should be a little difficult to handle/require fairly constant flouring, but not be impossible to handle.
« Last Edit: May 24, 2010, 05:41:31 AM by scott123 »

Offline Pizzalogy

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Re: first attempt how to improve from here? (pics)
« Reply #59 on: May 24, 2010, 12:48:44 PM »



Here's some thoughts.

Baking Time

The oven spring from a super hot stone is critical to the airy chewy texture of a NY style pizza.  That 8-9 minutes- we have to shorten that.  How hot does your oven go?  How long are you pre-heating the stone?

it either goes to 500 or 550. the numbers on the dial go to 500 but you can turn it more than that, im not sure if thatís just turning on the broiler though, or actually making the oven hotter. i usually preheat the stone for at least 1 hour. what do you suggest as a target baking time? i can bake one at that time and see what the result is as an experiment.

Quote
Besides being a little dense, I think the texture of your pizzas would improve if the crust was a little bit thinner.  Are your pizzas close to filling your entire stone? If so, I'd play around with decreasing the ingredients by 10% while still stretching it to the same size. Stretching dough thin and evenly is no easy task.  Flour is pretty cheap as is yeast (in the quantities we use it), so you might want to double your recipe and have an extra skin (or two) on hand in case you mess up or just want a little extra practice.

they are not close to filling the stone, itís 15.5 inches and my pizzas are 12-14 inches. i was trying to make them thicker though, because in the past when I made them too thin I got cracker crusts.

Quote
Although there isn't much oil in your crusts, in the pictures, the crust looks a little oily- both top and bottom. Are you forming the skin using oil or with flour? 

flour.

Quote
A big part of oven spring is a dough that's proofed long enough to have plenty of bubbles before forming- and formed in such a way so that many of the bubbles in the rim are still intact.  This generally translates into not pinching/pressing the outer rim during forming. It also means that you've used enough yeast so that the dough has approximately doubled in the fridge and, by the time it's warmed up, it's tripled (or even quadrupled). Another important aspect to keeping the bubbles in the dough is using a container, that, after being lightly oiled, will release the dough easily after being warmed up.  If you have to mangle the dough to get it out of the container, you lose a lot of the bubbly goodness.

I did not know that. I was pressing the outer rim.


 

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