Author Topic: Pizza Raquel  (Read 195514 times)

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Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Pizza Raquel
« Reply #60 on: May 02, 2005, 05:23:10 PM »
John,

The maximum pizza size my pizza stone can accommodate is 14 inches, which is why I downsized the Raquel recipe to that size. My usual practice is to bake on the stone (on the lowest oven rack) for about 5-6 minutes and then transfer the pizza to the uppermost rack, just below the broiler, and bake for about another minute or two under the broiler. Sometimes I will put a second stone on the top oven rack and preheat it, along with the lower pizza stone. Whether I use the second stone or not, I can't say that I notice a big difference. I usually turn the broiler on about 3 minutes or so into the bake process. Whether I use one stone or two, I preheat the oven for about an hour (a bit longer if I use two stones) at about 500-550 degrees F.

I agree that it may make sense to try a 500 degree F bake temperature (Tom Lehmann advocates around 450-500 degrees F) and lengthen the bake time, if for no reason other than to see if that improves the color in the crust. It may well have been that opening the door a few times lowered the ambient temperature of the oven by enough (I bet it was quite a bit over a hundred degrees) to prevent the top crust of the pizza from browning up sufficiently, even though the stone was still very hot. Opening the door to move the pizza from the stone to a position just under the broiler is not a problem because of the high direct broiler heat. In fact, the oven manufacturers often suggest that the oven door be kept ajar during the broil cycle.

Please let us know the results of your next attempt.

Peter


Offline Crusty

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Re: Pizza Raquel
« Reply #61 on: May 02, 2005, 09:15:56 PM »
IslanderJSF, my take is that the leading cause of the problem was the position of the stone in the oven.  Try moving your stone up a rack or two. My bet is that the position of the stone caused an "out of synch" condition where the bottom was on its way but the top did not recieve the higher oven temps that exist at the higher racks.  I experienced a similar condition when I had my stone on the bottom rack and in addition placed another stone three racks up to create a lower profile oven space.  It did not work beacause the bottom was browning but the top did not get the heat.  Also I beleive the pie was undercooked....try more time as another experiment.

Regards,

Crusty

Offline pftaylor

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Re: Pizza Raquel
« Reply #62 on: May 05, 2005, 06:21:53 AM »
IslanderJSF,
Glad to see that your apparent tearing problems are over. I look forward to seeing your next batch. After reading your detailed post I would suspect you may have opened the oven door one too many times.

My Raquel crust only browns in the last minute of grilling and if I open the hood too soon, I can't get browning either. One of the tricks I now employ, to keep toppings from burning, is to slice the cheese and place it in the freezer for a short period of time prior to dressing the skin. Try it, it may work for you as well.
Pizza Raquel is Simply Everything You’d Want.
www.wood-firedpizza.com

Offline pftaylor

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Re: Pizza Raquel
« Reply #63 on: May 06, 2005, 09:44:41 PM »
Here are photographs of my latest Pizza Raquel effort:
- 12 hour warm rise
- Grande Whole Mutz
- Flora D.O.P. Pomodori San Marzano (new brand @ only $2.99 28oz can)
- Grated Romano after grilling
- I had to pop a lot of bubbles hence the relative lack of spring

The new brand of San Marzano tomatoes were just as good as any D.O.P. San Marzano I have eaten to date.
« Last Edit: May 06, 2005, 10:01:32 PM by pftaylor »
Pizza Raquel is Simply Everything You’d Want.
www.wood-firedpizza.com

Offline itsinthesauce

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Re: Pizza Raquel
« Reply #64 on: May 07, 2005, 08:45:25 AM »
Outstanding!

Offline pftaylor

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Re: Pizza Raquel
« Reply #65 on: May 07, 2005, 08:57:22 AM »
itsinthesauce,
Thanks for the kind words.

Every time I use Grande cheese, it gives a NY Street appearance to Pizza Raquel. Here is the exact list of ingredients I used:

Ingredients Used to Mix Dough:
King Arthur Sir Lancelot Flour
Bottled Water
Varasano Preferment
Sicilian Sea Salt
IDY

Ingredients Used to Dress Dough:
Flora Pomodori San Marzano Dell’Agro Sarnese Nocerino D.O.P.
Grande Whole Milk Mozzarella Cheese
Italian Dry Spices
Locatelli Romano
Fresh Basil
Pizza Raquel is Simply Everything You’d Want.
www.wood-firedpizza.com

Offline pftaylor

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Re: Pizza Raquel
« Reply #66 on: May 07, 2005, 12:36:33 PM »
Here is my latest effort to craft a pepperoni version of Pizza Raquel. My son really likes this version of Raquel. The pepperoni made the pie quite juicy.
Pizza Raquel is Simply Everything You’d Want.
www.wood-firedpizza.com

Offline itsinthesauce

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Re: Pizza Raquel
« Reply #67 on: May 07, 2005, 05:00:04 PM »
I'd have to say that you nailed it.

Offline pftaylor

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Re: Pizza Raquel
« Reply #68 on: May 08, 2005, 02:26:21 PM »
Thanks for the compliment. Here is the effort for the day:
Pizza Raquel is Simply Everything You’d Want.
www.wood-firedpizza.com

Offline duckjob

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Re: Pizza Raquel
« Reply #69 on: May 09, 2005, 01:54:25 AM »
I had a nice little experience at work today. There is a woman I work with who lived in New York until she was in her mid 20's, and so I asked her if I could get her opinion on my pizza.  I brought her in a couple slices, she took a bite, and her face lit up. She said that she hadn't had pizza like that since she moved out here. She commented that the thin crust with the chewy airy rim was nearly identical to what she was used to in New York. Needless to say, it made my day. The modified raquel I made is described in this thread : http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,1258.msg11640.html#msg11640 I find that the higher hydration results in a more airy crust since I don't have access to the kind of heat that varsano and pftaylor have. Anyway, just wanted to share my experience,  I look forward to picking up some caputo 00 and giving Sophia a try.

Brian


Offline varasano

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Re: Pizza Raquel
« Reply #70 on: May 09, 2005, 10:30:38 AM »
hey pft,

You pies look great. I would make one suggestion. Try a pie with a slightly higher hydration, like 63 and a longer cold rise and see.  I think you will find that it's lighter and more springy with more flavor too.

Jeff

Offline duckjob

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Re: Pizza Raquel
« Reply #71 on: May 09, 2005, 04:02:36 PM »
hey pft,

You pies look great. I would make one suggestion. Try a pie with a slightly higher hydration, like 63 and a longer cold rise and see.  I think you will find that it's lighter and more springy with more flavor too.

Jeff

I agree, I have found the sweet spot with this dough to be about  a 3 day cold rise.

Offline pftaylor

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Re: Pizza Raquel
« Reply #72 on: May 09, 2005, 05:44:14 PM »
All,
I am always willing to try higher hydration percentages with Pizza Raquel. Who knows, maybe a better pie will result.

With my current travel schedule it's difficult to do more than a same day or full day rise. But I would agree that more than one day adds flavor. The Varasano preferment gets quite flavorful after the first day.
Pizza Raquel is Simply Everything You’d Want.
www.wood-firedpizza.com

Offline pftaylor

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Re: Pizza Raquel
« Reply #73 on: May 17, 2005, 03:50:20 PM »
I came back from a weekend in Ft. Lauderdale and had just enough time to do a 10 hour cold rise Pizza Raquel followed by a 2 hour counter rise. The crust was generally softer to the touch but the taste was full on. The first pie was a standard pepperoni, the second was a Margherita.
Pizza Raquel is Simply Everything You’d Want.
www.wood-firedpizza.com

Offline pftaylor

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Re: Pizza Raquel
« Reply #74 on: May 17, 2005, 03:51:18 PM »
And the Margherita...
Pizza Raquel is Simply Everything You’d Want.
www.wood-firedpizza.com

Offline varasano

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Re: Pizza Raquel
« Reply #75 on: May 17, 2005, 07:32:44 PM »
pft, what temp is your grill? Do you have a digital thermometer? You never mention it.

Offline pftaylor

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Re: Pizza Raquel
« Reply #76 on: May 17, 2005, 08:36:03 PM »
Varasano,
I have written a couple of times about not having a digital thermometer. The manufacturer of my grill claims the temperature at the grate level is 800 degrees. Since the average grill time has averaged slightly less than 3 minutes, I would have to guess that I'm in the 700 - 800 degree range. I have grudgingly accepted the fact that the TEC grill is at the end of the spectrum of usability for home pizza making. It has served me well. However, the simple fact is it was not designed to bake pizzas. Therefore I have decided to move on in pursuit of the ultimate expression of home pizza making.

I am planning on starting the true Neapolitan oven project this fall.

« Last Edit: May 18, 2005, 07:15:55 AM by pftaylor »
Pizza Raquel is Simply Everything You’d Want.
www.wood-firedpizza.com

Offline varasano

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Re: Pizza Raquel
« Reply #77 on: May 17, 2005, 09:15:16 PM »
the reason I ask is that the even browning rather than spot charing is usually indicative of a lower temp. But your bake times are indicative of a high temp.  Either way you should get a thermometer. i posted up about one under $60.

I'm really curious to hear your reports on the difference between the grill and brick oven. I don't think anyone has posted up about brick oven results without simultaneously using a different temp.  So some have gone from a 550 oven to a hot brick oven and seen a big improvement. But you'll be the first I've seen going from one high temp oven to th brick oven. I'm very interested to see the result. I wish I had a back yard for one.

Jeff

Offline pftaylor

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Re: Pizza Raquel
« Reply #78 on: May 18, 2005, 07:13:30 AM »
Varasano,
As you can well imagine, my days of trying to squeeze out the last drop of performance from the TEC are over. It simply doesn't have any more to offer. The ROI doesn't make sense at this point. I think it primarily has to do with it's poor insulation in the hood area. Hence the uneven bake with the bottom charring before the top.

The browning effect on the top you mentioned is a recent result of two seperate events. First, eliminating oil from Pizza Raquel and Pizza Sophia's formula. Second, I have been so time constrained that I have not had the time (I guess you could say I have relaxed my stringent standards for now) to really pre-heat the TEC for the half hour or so it takes to superheat the grilling area. Since I am no longer experimenting with ways of trying to turn the TEC into a real Neapolitan wood-fired oven, I am simply enjoying the fruits of many months of trial and error. I will have to be satisfied in knowing that I was able to produce a grilled pie which reasonably approximated a high heat oven. It has served me well and produced superior pie on a consistent basis. What more can a guy ask for?

Plenty. Now it is time to move on to the real thing. Real heat. 1200 blistering degrees if I so choose. It will be fun debating whether or not a 30 or a 60 second bake is superior to a 90 second bake. I can't wait.

With the help of pizzanapoletana and ilpizzaiolo's timely advice, I will be embaking on a journey toward the ultimate expression of pizza. I will finally be able to accurately control the last and most elusive element in the pizza making riddle - heat. I plan on sharing my adventure with this community and look forward to the collaboration which surely will be a part of the process.
Pizza Raquel is Simply Everything You’d Want.
www.wood-firedpizza.com

Offline IslanderJSF

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Re: Pizza Raquel
« Reply #79 on: May 18, 2005, 07:32:59 PM »
This past weekend my parents were in town to visit from Long Island which gave me another opportunity to try the Raquel recipe and resolve my crust browning issues from my first attempt.

With my first attempt my crust browned well on the bottom but was ghostly pale up top.  The original attempt left the pies in the oven for about 6.5 minutes.  With this second attempt I made it a point to avoid opening the oven door which I believe resulted in much better results.  I simply set my oven timer blindly for 8 minutes and gave one check at the 7 minute mark to see the crust browning nicely.

This dough was mixed according to my modified Raquel process for my bread machine and was allowed to rise for two days in the fridge.  Again my inexperience with starters left me wondering if it was active.  The starter is an absolute mystery to me.  If I were to ask anything, my question would be if once removed from the refrigerator and fed, is it normal for the "hooch" to appear so quickly?  It seems like my starter starts forming hooch within an hour or two of feeding and setting on the counter (or in proof box).  Does the 2 inches of foaming activity that identifies an active starter appear above the hooch?  Should there even be hooch?  Anyway I digress.

The result of this pizza effort was easily my best pies ever and I have been trying for over a year to produce a result like this.  No question about that.  I award much of the credit to this community and thank you all for "opening my eyes".    The final confirmation came when my parents declared that my pizza tasted like pizza that came out of a pizza shop on Long Island.  Although they may not be as fanatical as I, they are honest and that certainly was a positive for me. 

The pictures are not the greatest because the batteries were near dead and people were getting hungry.

On another note, I made some extra dough and used it to attempt a Sicilian (square) pizza.  This was a failed experiment.  Not much time on this board has been devoted to Sicilian pizza which I think is a shame.  It is an extremely popular style on Long Island but probably the most under appreciated (in my opinion) around the country.  I had very little to go on with this attempt and there were numerous problems.  With my upcomming visit to Long Island this summer I plan on making this a priority to compliment the traditional NY Style.  If anyone out there can provide assistance on the Sicilian style and process my ears are open.

Starter issues, sauce perfection, Sicilian style ...  So much to do, so little space in the fridge.

John
Can't fold it?  Aint real pizza.
Need a knife & fork? Aint real pizza.
Has pineapples or barbeque sauce?  Aint real pizza.
Dont' live in NY?  The only real pizza must be made at home.