I attended the class with Reinhart Thursday evening. I thought it was great. Some random notes:
- His passion, technical knowledge, and enthusiasism were all very evident and contagious, I felt very inspired on the drive home and afterwards.
- For me, it was helpful to see the doughmaking techniques and other aspects of pizza making in person, as opposed to just reading about them. I mentioned
this to him when he signed my book and he agreed its difficult to clearly write what your supposed to do in a kitchen, much better to see it.
- I knew that a long slow cold fermentation did a lot for a pizza dough, but he had a simple explanation that made me understand WHY we do that.
I'll butcher his words some (please someone correct me), but I think he basically said that once a dough is made, its a race between the yeast and the
enzymes to see who gets to the starch / sugar. The enzymes react with the flour/glucose/starch and bring flavor out, and the yeast eat the starch/glucose.
We refrigerate the dough because it slows down the yeast and gives the enzymes a chance to extact the flavor before the yeast gets to it (converting it
carbon dioxide and something else). This also helped me understand why we want to use as little yeast as possible and use more time.
- Thought his reference from the living to dead to living to dead was interesting. This was referring to the Wheat (alive) thats turned into flour (dead)
thats turned into dough (alive) that is killed (by baking it). I was distracted at this point and I missed the exact point of this thought.
- He has started writing a new book, about whole grain breads, due out in a year and a half or so.
- Sounds like he may prefer to make dough by hand versus a kitchen aid. He commented that sometimes the dough rides up the hook and doesn't mix as well,
which I seem to see a lot.
- He passed around the focaccio dough, I was surprised to see how wet it was.
- I think my favorite items we sampled was the white clam pizza and the focaccio with thin sliced tomatoes and pesto (added after removing from the oven)
- One question I had, it looked like he used extra virign olive oil for everything (doughs and marinades). Thought I'd read that most of the time should
use regular olive oil in pizza making, because extra virgin can be too strong
- Peter did all the recipe development for Amy's fozen pizzas (which explains why they are so good). I liked his story about the production manager having his
picture up with a target on it, because of all the work required for the caramelized sweet and sour onion marmalade
- All in all, he is personable, knowledgable and a good teacher, I'd love to be able to take a class with him at Johnson Wales Univ