Author Topic: Drive-In Theatre Pizza  (Read 11546 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline crazybob

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 52
  • Location: Linden, PA & Millville, NJ
  • Mom & Pop
Drive-In Theatre Pizza
« on: May 11, 2010, 01:44:45 PM »
I own a drive-in theatre in central PA, & I want to sell homemade pizza so that the customers won't bring their own. I've been selling my 14" pizza's like crazy for 9.99 (two for 17.99), but I'm making my dough in a 14 cup Hamilton Beach food processor. Yesterday I "won" a used, 20 qt. Hobart mixer on ebay. I will go pick it up probably tomorrow. I know that I should get a 30 qt. or bigger, but this is all I could afford right now. How much flour will this safetly hold. I'm thinking 6lbs? I've been making 18 oz. dough balls. Can I get away with 16 oz.?  ??? I like a crrust thickness somewhere between NY, & American. I'm new to making dough & always learning. My compitition drive-in (about 15 miles away) sells frozen pizza's from Aldi's. Thanks!


Offline pcampbell

  • Supporting Member
  • *
  • Posts: 768
  • Age: 34
  • Location: Warren VT
Re: Drive-In Theatre Pizza
« Reply #1 on: May 11, 2010, 01:54:44 PM »
According to this

https://my.hobartcorp.com/resourcecenter/ProductDocumentation/F-40089.pdf

you can do 9-20 pounds of DOUGH (not flour) depending on hydration and type of flour.

It sounds like you might be right if you are around 57-58 % hydration with high gluten flour - around 6# of flour.

You may be able to squeeze more in if you use a little more water and maybe if you mix it just for a few seconds, and then let it sit to let the water absorb for 20-30 minutes.  For me this keeps the flour from flying everywhere and seems to make an easier job for the mixer. This is what I usually do on my 5 quart and can do up to 2.25# of flour.  But prefer 1.85# as a more comfortable max.

My guess is that the jump from 5 quart to 20 quart is not exactly linear as the 20 quart is a real machine vs the 5 quart a home use product :)


good luck sounds like a lot of fun.
Patrick

Offline crazybob

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 52
  • Location: Linden, PA & Millville, NJ
  • Mom & Pop
Re: Drive-In Theatre Pizza
« Reply #2 on: May 11, 2010, 02:38:43 PM »
Thanks! I've been using All purpose flour from Sam's Club that comes in 25lb. bags for less than 7.00. Should I switch to high gluten? I also use IDY (1 teaspoon per 4 cups of flour & 12 oz. of 100-110 degree water, in the foods processor. Plus sal,t sugar, & olive oil.) ..I'll keep your absorpsion tip in mind when I get the mixer. Thanks again for the help!

Offline Mad_Ernie

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 733
  • Age: 50
  • Location: Kansas City area
Re: Drive-In Theatre Pizza
« Reply #3 on: May 11, 2010, 03:56:51 PM »
Thanks! I've been using All purpose flour from Sam's Club that comes in 25lb. bags for less than 7.00. Should I switch to high gluten?

CB:

As to your flour question, I think it depends largely on how you want the final product to taste and the texture you're looking to create.  If you are comfortable with using the all purpose flour, and you're getting good results, then I would stick with what you know and avoid any major changes.  However, experimentation can sometimes lead to some better results.  Given the type of operation you have and the pizza you are trying to create, if I were going to switch to another flour, then I would try a bread flour.  Gold Medal's Better for Bread would be a rather inexpensive product that might give your crust a little more oven spring and chewiness to the crust.  King Arthur makes a very good bread flour and would be a fine second choice.  Of course, price-wise, Sam's Club products are often hard to beat, so it becomes a decision of how much more quality in the final product will you get for the $$.
For now, go with what you know, and heed pcambell's comment about the non-linearity of increasing your production from 5 to 20 quarts at a pop.  That might also require some experimentation until you have the dough the way you want it.

-ME
Let them eat pizza.

Offline crazybob

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 52
  • Location: Linden, PA & Millville, NJ
  • Mom & Pop
Re: Drive-In Theatre Pizza
« Reply #4 on: May 11, 2010, 09:42:34 PM »
 Thanks, -ME. I made a pizza a few hours ago The oven was at 600 degrees. I put on 6 oz of sauce, 6 oz. of mozzeralla, 3 oz. white cheddar. Bake time was about 5 minutes.  It is a little thin maybe? It reminded me of Wildwood boardwalk pizza! I going to try a batch of "Better For Bread", when I get the 20 qt. mixer. It's fun to experiment until I get it right.

Offline norma427

  • Lifetime Member
  • Global Moderator
  • *
  • Posts: 22453
  • Location: Lancaster County, Pa.
    • learningknowledgetomakepizza
Re: Drive-In Theatre Pizza
« Reply #5 on: May 11, 2010, 10:52:48 PM »
I own a drive-in theatre in central PA, & I want to sell homemade pizza so that the customers won't bring their own. I've been selling my 14" pizza's like crazy for 9.99 (two for 17.99), but I'm making my dough in a 14 cup Hamilton Beach food processor. Yesterday I "won" a used, 20 qt. Hobart mixer on ebay. I will go pick it up probably tomorrow. I know that I should get a 30 qt. or bigger, but this is all I could afford right now. How much flour will this safetly hold. I'm thinking 6lbs? I've been making 18 oz. dough balls. Can I get away with 16 oz.?  ??? I like a crrust thickness somewhere between NY, & American. I'm new to making dough & always learning. My compitition drive-in (about 15 miles away) sells frozen pizza's from Aldi's. Thanks!

crazybob,

I also have a 20 qt. Hobart mixer.  I mix 15 lbs. of dough at a time.  Your crust thickness will determine how many dough balls you would be able to get in my opinion.  My hydration is now 61%, but I also used hydration from 58%-60%.  My mixer Hobart mixer doesn't have any problems with mixing the dough. 

Norma
Always working and looking for new information!

Offline crazybob

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 52
  • Location: Linden, PA & Millville, NJ
  • Mom & Pop
Re: Drive-In Theatre Pizza
« Reply #6 on: May 11, 2010, 11:19:43 PM »
Thanks, Norma. How many lbs. of flour for 15 lbs of dough? (That sounds like 15 pizzas per batch?). We're heading down to Reading, PA., tomorrow to pick up the mixer. ..Here's the oven that came with the drive-in. It's an electric Bakers Pride. The small oven on top makes good pizza to.

Offline norma427

  • Lifetime Member
  • Global Moderator
  • *
  • Posts: 22453
  • Location: Lancaster County, Pa.
    • learningknowledgetomakepizza
Re: Drive-In Theatre Pizza
« Reply #7 on: May 12, 2010, 06:28:02 AM »
crazybob,

This is the formula I was using before with good results.  I have a pizza stand at our local farmers market in Manheim, Pa.  The Lehmann dough was made one day and then left to cold ferment for one day, before making the pizzas.  As you can see there was 9.31 lbs of flour used.  I did up the hydration different times up to 61 %. If you want to try this formula, just use the Lehmann calculator to up the hydration.  It would just be a little more water.  It would depend on your thickness factor how many dough balls you would get from this formula.  I didnít use a thickness factor for this.  Your ovens look great.   :)  I make a NY style pizza and my pizzas are thin.  I am now using a  poolish preferment for the Lehmann dough.


Flour (100%):
Water (58%):
IDY (0.30%):
Salt (1.75%):
Olive Oil (1%):
Total (161.05%):
   4224.77 g  |  149.02 oz | 9.31 lbs
        2450.37 g  |  86.43 oz | 5.4 lbs
           12.67 g | 0.45 oz | 0.03 lbs | 4.21 tsp | 1.4 tbsp
           73.93 g | 2.61 oz | 0.16 lbs | 4.42 tbsp | 0.28 cups
           42.25 g | 1.49 oz | 0.09 lbs | 9.39 tsp | 3.13 tbsp
           6804 g | 240 oz | 15 lbs | TF = N/A

If you want to know anything more, let me know.

Best of luck,

Norma
« Last Edit: May 12, 2010, 06:32:28 AM by norma427 »
Always working and looking for new information!

Offline crazybob

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 52
  • Location: Linden, PA & Millville, NJ
  • Mom & Pop
Re: Drive-In Theatre Pizza
« Reply #8 on: May 12, 2010, 11:51:04 AM »
Thanks, Norma! I see that you use no sugar. I was using more sugar than salt. I did also add honey but tried it without the honey, & it was fine. I'm new to dough making so I must learn fast. This forum & youtube has beneftited me alot! We study your videos like this one This how I learned alot.  I've been reading what you've been writing on here & PMQ, about Mack's Pizza. I'm trying to make a a pizza along those lines too! I grew up on that stuff. I try to make a thinner pie than they're use to up here near Williamsport.

We live in South Jersey. I'm a retired Postal worker & movie projectionist. This drive-in is how we spend our retirement (& our grandchildrens inheirentence).My sister lives near Lancaster. Some Tuesday, this summer, we'll come have some of your pizza at the farmers market & say hello!

Offline norma427

  • Lifetime Member
  • Global Moderator
  • *
  • Posts: 22453
  • Location: Lancaster County, Pa.
    • learningknowledgetomakepizza
Re: Drive-In Theatre Pizza
« Reply #9 on: May 12, 2010, 12:37:42 PM »
crazybob,

I use no sugar because I only cold fermented the dough formula for one day after mixing. I donít know how long you want to be able to use your dough. I also was new to dough making only about a year ago.  I learned many things on this forum, but I still have a lot to learn. 

I am only experimenting with the Mackís pizza to be able to recreate it for others and myself to go back in time.  At this point, I donít think I will ever sell it at market.  I am satisfied with the dough I am using.  Mackís pizza is different and I hope we can get it recreated. 

Since you are from South Jersey, I am not familiar with what kinds of pies people eat there, other than Mackís.  Running a drive-in sounds like fun.  All of our drive-ins closed down years ago.  Stop by market anytime and introduce yourself. My stand is small, but if you want you can also try our dough and make pizzas with us. You probably will be able to meet Steve (Ev), too.  He is also a great pizza maker and passionate about pizza making.  He made a Greek pizza yesterday, that was to die for.  It was so soft, had the best blend of cheese and the crunchy cheese at the edges. The Greek pizza did also have a lot of white cheddar cheese. I have three slices that were left over to eat.  I will post the pictures when Steve wants me to.  It was Peterís formula.  Steve said he was going to make another Greek pizza at home last night.  The Greek pizza Steve made was much better in my opinion than Mack's pizza.

If I can be help in any way, let me know,

Norma
« Last Edit: May 12, 2010, 12:41:10 PM by norma427 »
Always working and looking for new information!


Offline crazybob

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 52
  • Location: Linden, PA & Millville, NJ
  • Mom & Pop
Re: Drive-In Theatre Pizza
« Reply #10 on: May 13, 2010, 12:05:11 AM »
Hi, Norma. I plan to make dough on thursday nights, & hope it's enough for the weekend. The last two weeks I almost ran out on Friday night, & had to make more on Saturday morning. I picked up the 20qt Hobart today & set it up on the prep table. This thing is quite heavy! I got it from a Russian woman who made bread, etc. for her 11 children, are now all grown & moved out. We went right to her house & got it. She had it for over forty years. The mixing bowl is tin plated. I probably should find a SS one. It wasn't used in a commercial venue. I paid around 800.00 for it.

We look forward to meeting you some tuesday at the farmers market. I hope that I can get a slice of that greek pizza! There is some real bad Pizza in South Jersey! Also some very good. I think that it gets better towards North Jersey. I lived in Trenton, NJ in the early 70's and became addicted to Marucu's Tomato Pies. They were around the corner from the Greenwood Theatre, where I worked.

It's fun to run a drive-in. It's the best way to see a movie with family & friends. Very affordable too! It's a shame that they keep tearing them down. I think that the Columbia is near you? I think that it's just sitting there.

Offline petef

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 585
  • Location: New Jersey
Re: Drive-In Theatre Pizza
« Reply #11 on: May 13, 2010, 02:47:30 AM »

It's fun to run a drive-in. It's the best way to see a movie with family & friends. Very affordable too! It's a shame that they keep tearing them down.

Bob, I sure miss the drive-in movie theaters. Last time I went to a drive-in movie here in central NJ was probably in the early 1980s. All the drive-ins in this area have vanished. So thank you for keeping up with the old tradition of the Drive-in Movie theater. Hopefully someday, there will be a return of the drive-ins and pizza would definitely be an item on the menu I'd like to see.  I wish you much success!

Long live the drive-in movie theaters!

---pete---

Offline norma427

  • Lifetime Member
  • Global Moderator
  • *
  • Posts: 22453
  • Location: Lancaster County, Pa.
    • learningknowledgetomakepizza
Re: Drive-In Theatre Pizza
« Reply #12 on: May 13, 2010, 06:13:29 AM »
crazybob,

Since you plan on making the dough on Thursday nights and keeping it till the weekend, you might need to add sugar to your formula.  I am not sure, because I havenít kept the dough I was making before that long.  What kind of flour will you be using and what kind of formula do you currently use?  I found it is important to get a finished dough temperature around 80 degrees F and ball each batch of dough up right away, so the dough doesnít over ferment.  It took me awhile to get all the steps down, so my dough was more consistent. Each step you take in making your dough is important. In my opinion the Lehmann dough is a great dough.  If you have time to look though that thread it can be very helpful.  I did use sugar when I first started making dough, but since have eliminated it.  Maybe someone else can comment on this, because I havenít made dough commercially to last for the amount of time you want to use it.  My pizza stand is only a one day a week operation. 

Your mixer looks great. Hobartís are real work horses.  I am not sure about the tin plated mixing bowl and being okay with inspection.  It does look to be in great shape. The price sounds good. My mixer is a floor model and I know how heavy they are.  I had to move mine a few times and even scraped some of my floor tile up. 

The tomato pies sound great where you grew up.  I think that is something in the line of Mackís pizza, because from what I have learned the family that started Mackís pizza were originally from Trenton, NJ.  I donít think they used all cheddar in those pies, but I have never tasted a pie from Trenton, NJ. 

I look forward to meeting you, too.  My husband and I used to run two other stands at markets.  We made Caramel Popcorn the old fashioned way in the big copper kettle, cotton candy, others kinds of popcorn, candies, and other food items.  We also had a concession trailer that we used to take to festivals and fairs.  We sold snow cones, too.  That was exciting, but was a lot of work.

I agree with you and petef, that itís a shame they keep tearing drive-ins down.  I remember when there were quite a few around our area.  Yes, Columbia drive-in has been closed for a few years now. 

I donít know if Steve will be making a Greek Pizza when you decide to visit.  They are really good though.  These are a few pictures of his Greek Pizza when he starting making them at this thread.

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,691.msg97459.html#msg97459   

Maybe you could try one at home or at your drive-in if you have time.  The last one he made this past Tuesday, was the formula Peter set forth.  It was great.

Best of luck with continued success with your drive-in and making pizza.   :)

Norma
Always working and looking for new information!

Offline crazybob

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 52
  • Location: Linden, PA & Millville, NJ
  • Mom & Pop
Re: Drive-In Theatre Pizza
« Reply #13 on: May 15, 2010, 02:35:45 PM »
Hi, Petef & Norma. There is only one drive-in in the whole state  NJ. It's the Delsea in Vineland, Cumberland county.  It was closed from 1987 to 2004. I how the last movie in 1987, & got to show the first one there in 2004. Here's a youtube that I made from my 2004 pictures:
A local doctor bought it to make it into a skateboard park. Instead, I helped him turn it back into a drive-in. We had no electric or water that summer.

I hope you folks come visit us up here this summer. You can bring a self contained camper or tent! We stay in our camper all summer. We are on US Route 220 between Williamsport, & Jersey Shore, PA.  http://moondrivein.com
 
Instead of keep on trying to re-invent the wheel, Last night I made a batch of the Lehmann dough recipe. I made 12- 16 oz.dough balls with a little left. I used AP flour.
It was beautiful to work with! I took this picture at noon today. It looks like I should be able to make a 14" pizza? I will start making pizza's around 7pm. What time should I take the dough out of the fridge? I learning as I go along. I have a lot of studing to do!

Offline norma427

  • Lifetime Member
  • Global Moderator
  • *
  • Posts: 22453
  • Location: Lancaster County, Pa.
    • learningknowledgetomakepizza
Re: Drive-In Theatre Pizza
« Reply #14 on: May 15, 2010, 03:01:19 PM »
crazybob,

That is interesting how you started the drive-in.  I enjoy History and like people that try to preserve what is around.   :)  The video was very interesting. 

As for you dough.  I donít use AP flour for my pizza stand.  I did used Pillsbury Balancer, then All Trumps and now KASL.  They are all High-Gluten flours.  As for using that kind of flour for a Lehmann dough, I am not sure how it will perform.  What kind of hydration, sugar, salt, oil and IDY did you use for your formula?  What do your dough balls weigh?  That should help determine what size pizza you are going to make.  Also, how thick do you want your pizzas? 

Usually I let the dough balls warm-up anywhere between 1 hr.-3hr. depending on the temperature.  If I see the dough is getting to hard to handle or over-fermenting, I just put them back in the deli case or cooler.  The only problems I had with using a colder dough ball when opening the skin and then baking, was the crust wants to bubble.  I have a bubble popper in case that happens. 

Maybe someone that is more familiar with AP flour in Lehmann dough can also help you.

If you have any other questions I can help you with, just ask.  Just keep going and you will learn.

We just went by Vineland, NJ last week on the bypass on our way to Wildwood.

Norma
Always working and looking for new information!

Online Pete-zza

  • Lifetime Member
  • Global Moderator
  • *
  • Posts: 22301
  • Location: Texas
  • Always learning
Re: Drive-In Theatre Pizza
« Reply #15 on: May 15, 2010, 03:21:00 PM »
crazybob,

The Lehmann NY style dough formulation is intended to be used with high-gluten flour, as Norma mentioned. The Lehmann dough formulation also works well with bread flour, which is a step down in protein content from the high-gluten flour, but not quite as well with all-purpose flour, which is a step down in protein content from bread flour. When using all-purpose flour with the Lehmann formulation, I think it is a good idea to lower the hydration (the amount of water in relation to the amount of flour). If you don't do that, the dough will handle very well, as you noted, but it will ferment faster and the dough balls will start to slump faster and flatten out. They will also be more extensible (stretchy) than when using stronger flours and may be more difficult to shape and stretch out to size because of the increased extensibility. So, I don't think that I would warm them up too quickly and have them sit around too long. You should be able to get a measure of the situation when you start working with the dough balls.

In terms of the pizza size, you should be able to make a 14" NY "street" style pizza with a 16-ounce dough ball. That would correspond to a thickness factor of 0.10394. If you go out to 15" , if you can manage that with a dough that might be quite extensible, you should end up with a crust thickness that is more representative of a NY "elite" style. You might try both sizes for comparison purposes. If you like the Lehmann dough formulation, you might consider moving up the flour chain to stronger flours for that style. You will get more crust color, flavor, chewiness and oven spring by doing so.

Please let us know how things turn out.

Peter

Offline crazybob

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 52
  • Location: Linden, PA & Millville, NJ
  • Mom & Pop
Re: Drive-In Theatre Pizza
« Reply #16 on: May 15, 2010, 03:37:19 PM »
Thanks, Peter. I will wait until about 6pm to take the dough balls out of the cooler. They were balls, last night, & now have flatened out. The NY street pizza thickness is what I'm shooting for. I followed the Lehmann dough formulation very close as I could. I will get bread flour next. I'm out of ap now anyway.  ..I'm getting more confident in myself each day.

 Instead of sitting around the house all winter, I'm thinking about getting a part time job in a pizzeria. I did do it part time about 25 years ago in a pizza/sub shop in Vineland, NJ. The guy made his sauce in a 30 gal trash can (clean), but he rolled up his sleeve, & stuck his hairy arm all the way in to stir the sauce!

Offline norma427

  • Lifetime Member
  • Global Moderator
  • *
  • Posts: 22453
  • Location: Lancaster County, Pa.
    • learningknowledgetomakepizza
Re: Drive-In Theatre Pizza
« Reply #17 on: May 15, 2010, 03:53:24 PM »
crazybob,

Peter is right about how the problems with dough being extensible. I also had those problems when I first started out making pizza dough.  I had dough that wanted to stretch back, over fermented dough, dough balls that ran together and many other problems.  I was determined as you are the get this whole dough management right.  I still have some problems, but nothing like I had in the past.  Just keep practicing and you will get it right. 

Do you have a distributor near you that sells high-gluten flour?  It is so much easier to work with.  Just an idea.

Eww that guy with the hairy arm in the sauce.   :o

Hope your night goes well,

Norma
Always working and looking for new information!

Online Pete-zza

  • Lifetime Member
  • Global Moderator
  • *
  • Posts: 22301
  • Location: Texas
  • Always learning
Re: Drive-In Theatre Pizza
« Reply #18 on: May 15, 2010, 03:54:56 PM »
Instead of sitting around the house all winter, I'm thinking about getting a part time job in a pizzeria. I did do it part time about 25 years ago in a pizza/sub shop in Vineland, NJ. The guy made his sauce in a 30 gal trash can (clean), but he rolled up his sleeve, & stuck his hairy arm all the way in to stir the sauce!

crazybob,

I remember reading a story by Big Dave Ostrander, a former independent pizza operator who later became an industry consultant, in which he described doing something like the operator you mentioned but using a commercial immersion blender instead of his arms, which I am sure health inspectors would frown upon today. I would imagine that the blender that Big Dave used looked something like the one shown at http://www.webstaurantstore.com/waring-wsb70-big-stik-variable-speed-750-watt-heavy-duty-immersion-blender-21/929WSB70.html. If you end up with a volume that justifies buying such a blender, you will have become a big success with your pizza making prowess.

FYI, Tom Lehmann generally recommends that one remove a three hour supply of dough balls from the cooler for use to service orders. However, I think that in your case you may want to cut that back some until you get a measure of the situation.

Peter

Offline petef

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 585
  • Location: New Jersey
Re: Drive-In Theatre Pizza
« Reply #19 on: May 17, 2010, 12:56:04 AM »
crazybob,

That is interesting how you started the drive-in.  I enjoy History and like people that try to preserve what is around.   :)  The video was very interesting. 

crazybob, I also found the drive-in video interesting.
Nice work producing that video!

---pete---


 

pizzapan