Author Topic: Still Trying to Get Big Air Bubbles in My Rim  (Read 7593 times)

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Offline ddolinoy

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Re: Still Trying to Get Big Air Bubbles in My Rim
« Reply #20 on: December 31, 2010, 11:06:49 AM »
I forgot to attach the pictures of my soapstone.
Dave


Offline PizzaHog

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Re: Still Trying to Get Big Air Bubbles in My Rim
« Reply #21 on: December 31, 2010, 11:14:15 AM »
Dave
Glad you are getting closer to your goal.  I noticed your latest pie looked like some from my broiler experiments so thought I would add my 2 cents in case it applies to your situation.
My gas oven broiler is a 12 inch long straight single burner that does not throw heat evenly nor in a circular pattern.  The best results I obtained required making a pie under 12 inches in dia, elevating the pie to within a couple of inches of the broiler element, and then rotating the pie at least twice during the bake to try and even out the heat.  Maybe your broiler is similarly lame.
If so, there are other methods to obtain the all important and difficult top heat, such as Matthew's pan method which is my current fav for NY style bakes.  If you care to try it:
Stone on lowest oven rack
Second oven rack immediately above stone rack
When you slide the pie on the stone, place cookie sheet type pans on the upper rack end to end.
What is being attempted is to create a new and lower oven ceiling right above the pie which will tend to contain the hot air coming out of bottom element and gather it on top of the pie quickly and also to restrict that hot air from reaching the temp sensor usually located at the very top of the oven.  When all is right the burner will remain on for the entire bake time and jam some quick and even elevated temp air on the pie.  Variations include placing a second stone or thermal mass on the upper rack under the pans, placing the pans 5 minutes before sliding on the pie to preheat the new cavity, pulling and replacing the pans for each bake, etc.  As always, some experiments and trial and error are required.  Plus there are many other oven tricks to try if all else fails but this is fairly easy to do with what you might already have on hand and once worked out is quite consistent.
Your almost there so keep on baking!


  

Offline gtsum2

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Re: Still Trying to Get Big Air Bubbles in My Rim
« Reply #22 on: December 31, 2010, 12:10:06 PM »
The bottom of your pie did not look too dark to me and I would also venture a guess you need longer preheat times..just because the surface of the stone says 550, it does not mean it is thoroughly heat soaked...you put a wet dough on a stone that is not heat soaked and it saps the heat right out of it - if it is thoroughly heat soaked, you get much better results

Offline ddolinoy

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Re: Still Trying to Get Big Air Bubbles in My Rim
« Reply #23 on: December 31, 2010, 04:36:42 PM »
PizzaHog,
I have the same kind of broiler that you do.  I did rotate the pie, but the top still wasn't cooked enough.  I'm glad you reminded me of that technique using cookie sheets.  I actually used aluminum foil to cover the entire area and then a cookie sheet to hold the foil still.  I tried it once before http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,12577.0.html
Since my pizza was burned black, I gave up on the whole idea, but I think I'll give it another try.  Putting the stone on the bottom will certainly heat my stone up quicker.  The last time I tried it I set my oven to 550F and measured my stone at 730F.  I was told that was too hot and I tend to agree since it set off all my smoke detectors in less than 2 minutes.  What is the desired stone temperature for a NY style pizza?  550F?  How do you recommend I get the desired stone temperature?  Should I monitor the stone and as soon as it reaches 550F launch the pie?  I don't think I can trust the oven temperature sensor if I'm blocking the airflow to it.  I do have an infrared thermometer.  This could be tricky, but I'm willing to try.
Dave

Offline PizzaHog

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Re: Still Trying to Get Big Air Bubbles in My Rim
« Reply #24 on: December 31, 2010, 08:45:53 PM »
Wow Dave, that's alota heat from a 550 oven and a problem I wish I had that could work to your advantage.
For a first experiment I would determine what oven temp setting would result in a stone temp of 550-600 after a hour preheat on the lowest rack with your IR thermo.  So maybe setting the oven at 350 or so first try then repeating in a series of dry runs.  Establishing this will allow repeatability in the event you like the results.  I'm also thinking this is a better way to get an even stone preheat vs launching the pie whenever the stone hits 550 on its way up.
Then try the pan thing with the added step of cranking the oven setting up to 550 when launching the pies.  That should help keep the burner lit for the whole bake time for the best shot at some good top heat.
Hopefully this is step in right direction...

Offline scott123

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Re: Still Trying to Get Big Air Bubbles in My Rim
« Reply #25 on: December 31, 2010, 08:51:33 PM »
Dave, thanks for posting a photo of the soapstone.  The veins are little creamier than I like, but I think it a perfectly good stone.

4 days is, imo, kind of advanced pizzamaking.  With that length of time, you're really in a potentially sketchy territory when it comes to gluten degradation/enzyme activity.  You also could be producing too much alcohol and adversely affecting the flavor of the dough. I would save the extended fermentation until you've completely mastered the oven spring issue, and, for now, shoot for a 2 day dough.  Ideally, you want to use just enough yeast so the dough doubles in the fridge and, by the time you stretch it out, it will have tripled. I would stick with a half teaspoon and shoot for 2 days. It the volume increases too quickly, use it after a day and dial it back next week.

And, although I'm giving you conflicting advice here, I'm not a big fan of using warm water with yeast.  I strongly believe that the only thing yeast has to do prior to combining with the flour is dissolve in the water.  Room temp water and a minute or two of time will achieve this.  Scale out the water first, sprinkle on the yeast, give it a stir, and, by the time you have scaled out the dry ingredients in another bowl, the yeast will be fully dissolved. Yeast activity generates heat, so the warmer the dough is going into the fridge, the more yeast activity you'll have/the longer it will take to chill, which, in turn will generate even more yeast activity. Ideally, you want the dough to be pretty close to room temp going into the fridge so the yeast doesn't go crazy at the beginning of the process. I know some people use ice water, but, imo, it's just so much easier to start off with room temp water.

As Gtsum2 mentioned, unless you had darker areas that you didn't take a picture of, the bottom of this last pie was pretty much perfect, imo. That's how the bottom of the crust is supposed to look.  If you want a little more even coloring (both on the bottom and the rim), try adding a little sugar.  1% is a good jumping off point.

Isolating the bottom of the oven with foil is a good idea, although I'm a bit stumped as to what stone temp to shoot for, as the outside of the stone will get very hot quickly while the core will be quite a bit cooler.  I would try preheating the stone for 40 minutes, checking the temp, and if the top of the stone is close to 575, launching the pie and then cranking the heat so it collects under the foil and browns the top. If it's a lot higher than 575, turn the oven off until it cools to 575.  I would also go with the same 4" vertical space with the foil that you were using with the broiler.

Offline chickenparm

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Re: Still Trying to Get Big Air Bubbles in My Rim
« Reply #26 on: December 31, 2010, 09:52:37 PM »
I was doing some reading tonight and came across an old posting.I'm gonna do a Pete-zza and post the link,and its message # 7 that giotto posted about achieving bubbles in the rim/dough.

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,576.msg5351.html#msg5351
-Bill

Offline ddolinoy

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Re: Still Trying to Get Big Air Bubbles in My Rim
« Reply #27 on: January 01, 2011, 07:32:59 PM »
PizzaHog,
I think I was able to get 730F because I used a layer of aluminum foil 4" above my stone which insulated the oven temperature sensor.  I'll try your idea and set my oven to 350F and plot temperature vs. time.  The goal will be to get 550F after one hour.  I'll pay attention and notice if the burner ever turns off.
Scott123,
I think my 4 days of fermentation is another example of me getting all kinds of techniques confused.  There is so much information on this forum, that it is easy to get lost.  I appreciate you suggesting I try a 2 day fermentation.  I've always had in the back of my mind the idea that I've been overfermenting.  2 days will keep things simple.  I also am going to drop my water temperature a little.
Chickenparm,
Thanks for the link.  However, it made my biggest insecurity even worse.   ???  I'm confused on kneading time.  It's probably is due to my misunderstanding, but this is what I've noticed.  Some suggest I try to get a "cottage cheese" texture after about 3 minutes of kneading in my KA.  Others suggest I shoot for smooth skin on my dough ball with a 5-7 minute knead time in my KA.  If I'm trying to make a NY style pie, which is the right one.  Also, what speed should I set my KA?

With all these suggestions, I'm almost expecting the next post to suggest using a nuclear reaction to cook a pie!   :-D

Dave

Offline PizzaHog

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Re: Still Trying to Get Big Air Bubbles in My Rim
« Reply #28 on: January 01, 2011, 08:15:37 PM »
Quote
PizzaHog,
I think I was able to get 730F because I used a layer of aluminum foil 4" above my stone which insulated the oven temperature sensor.
So you hit 730 because you preheated with the foil in place?  If so, please feel free to ignore my previous suggestion.  You can still try it but maybe not just yet.  One can only fool their temp sensor some of the time, not all of the time, and equilibrium will not be denied.  The elevated temp will continuously dissipate introducing yet another variable.   
The basic pan trick preheats with only the stone and any second stone if used.  The barrier goes on when the pie goes in, or a measured short time prior to lauching the pie like 5 or 10 minutes.  Barrier is removed with each pie, the oven returns towards its original state, then the process repeats for each pie.  This is at least a consistent and repeatable way to start things off.
Sorry about my duh moment.
Hog

Offline chickenparm

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Re: Still Trying to Get Big Air Bubbles in My Rim
« Reply #29 on: January 01, 2011, 11:00:02 PM »
Sorry for the confusion,I just wanted you to read the part about the air bubbles in reply 7 of that link.

Here it is in shorter form,and not the entire link.

- For those who worry about airy results, this is definitely in the handling of the dough.  I do everything possible not to kill the air bubbles when preparing the dough. This combined with less kneading when creating the dough gives me the most consistent results.  By treating the dough with kid gloves during preparation, rather than slapping the heck out of it like some sites recommend, you can protect the bubbles (especially where the outer crust forms) and get airy results.  I don't use a roller; but instead lay it out by hand (toss, turn in air, and stetch gently by hand, always being careful of bubbles in outside edges. Any of these techniques are effective).

- You can also further increase your chances with airy results by placing the dough in the oven without any toppings for about 60 seconds at 515 F, which will result in some slight bubbles, allowing the top to separate from the bottom. 

-Bill


Offline norma427

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Re: Still Trying to Get Big Air Bubbles in My Rim
« Reply #30 on: January 01, 2011, 11:29:48 PM »
Dave,

I hope I donít confuse you more by my explaining how to get bigger bubbles in the rim of a pizza.  I had someone take this video over a year ago of me opening the dough.  I wasnít as experienced as I am now and donít know if this will help you are not.  I also opened my doughs at home something like this.  This isnít a professional video, but it can give you an idea how I open skins.

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UeEnKrgGZBE" target="_blank" class="aeva_link bbc_link new_win">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UeEnKrgGZBE</a>


I also wanted to comment that I didnít have to much luck with soapstone either.  I do have a soapstone something like yours, and my regular cordierite baking stone seems to do a better job in baking my pizzas at home.  I havenít done enough tests on my soapstone, but the tests I have done so far are inferior to the cordierite, at least for me.  My home oven canít get up to the higher temperatures your oven gets.  I also have a friend Steve (Ev) and his oven can get up to higher temperatures than mine.  I gave him a soapstone to use for awhile.  He also had problems with burning or browning to fast on the bottom of his pies when using a soapstone.  I donít know if either of us arenít going about using the soapstones right or not.  We both agree, we like our cordierite baking stones better.  Maybe in the future I will try out my soapstone to see if I can get better results.

Norma
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Offline chickenparm

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Re: Still Trying to Get Big Air Bubbles in My Rim
« Reply #31 on: January 02, 2011, 12:22:11 AM »
Looks like you were doing just fine there Norma!
 :)
-Bill

Offline norma427

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Re: Still Trying to Get Big Air Bubbles in My Rim
« Reply #32 on: January 02, 2011, 12:44:41 AM »
Looks like you were doing just fine there Norma!
 :)


Bill,

Thanks, that video and this video were when I was making a straight Lehmann dough with about 61% hydration. 
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XT2YoDEcBaQ&amp;NR=1" target="_blank" class="aeva_link bbc_link new_win">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XT2YoDEcBaQ&amp;NR=1</a>
  I usually don't like to post those videos, because I didn't know as much about opening the dough then.

Dave,

I also forgot to tell you  in my last post, that I have tried mixing until the dough is it came to about the smooth stage and the cottage cheese stage at home and both doughs came out okay.  Other members are right, that you might try a shorter fermentation time to see what happens.

Norma
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Offline ddolinoy

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Re: Still Trying to Get Big Air Bubbles in My Rim
« Reply #33 on: January 03, 2011, 10:09:02 AM »
Norma,
Thanks for sharing your video.  Your technique is very similar to mine.  However, I have a lot more trouble during the stage where you use both hands at the same time to push the dough and turn while on the table.  My dough tends to have too much friction with the table.  I've been blaming my dough, but after watching your video, I realized something.  In all the videos I've watched, the first step after removing the dough from the bag/container is to flip the dough around in a container of flour.  I don't, and that may be my problem.  I sprinkle dough on my Formica countertop and drop my oil coated ball on that and flip the dough a few times.  This creates a film of oil and dough that has stuck to the surface of my table.  I'm generous with adding flour to my table, but it doesn't seem to help.  I think the oil soaked flour stuck to the table is what is creating all the friction and why I have so much trouble pushing the dough with both hands.  Or, maybe my smooth Formica table is the problem.
As far as soapstone goes, I think it's high conductivity makes it very unforgiving.  I'm convinced it will yield great results once I figure out how to effectively use it in my home gas oven.
Dave

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Still Trying to Get Big Air Bubbles in My Rim
« Reply #34 on: January 03, 2011, 10:51:19 AM »
Dave,

The subject of what kind of work surface to use to open up dough balls and form skins comes up from time to time at the PMQ Think Tank. Examples are the threads at http://thinktank.pmq.com/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=8954&hilit=#p60984 and http://thinktank.pmq.com/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=6683&p=43707&hilit=metal+wood+lehmann#p43414. Also, when I was researching how Papa John's and Domino's prepare their dough skins, I noticed that they use a metal work surface along with a bench flour, cornmeal or a flour blend of some sort. See, for example, the videos at
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PPm8aHvpjE8" target="_blank" class="aeva_link bbc_link new_win">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PPm8aHvpjE8</a>
and
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1YyHe-dnJ4k" target="_blank" class="aeva_link bbc_link new_win">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1YyHe-dnJ4k</a>
. From what I can tell from my reading, metal seems to be the preference among many pizza operators in the U.S. In Italy, marble is a popular choice. I normally use a wood butcher block surface but I also have a slab of a material that is almost glass-like, and that works better for opening up a dough ball right on the surface of the slab, much as is shown in the abovereferenced videos.

Peter

Offline ddolinoy

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Re: Still Trying to Get Big Air Bubbles in My Rim
« Reply #35 on: January 03, 2011, 11:38:46 AM »
Pete-zza,
The videos were informative and entertaining, but do I really have to go out and buy a stainless steel surface or can I get by with a Formica countertop?  Is there something about Formica that is undesirable?  I understand that a pizzeria wouldn't want it since it wouldn't stand up to the wear and tear.  On the other hand, can I expect to be able to form the dough as was illustrated in the videos on Formica?  Those guys were lightning fast.  Would they have significant problems if they tried it on Formica?
Dave

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Still Trying to Get Big Air Bubbles in My Rim
« Reply #36 on: January 03, 2011, 12:09:55 PM »
Dave,

I referenced the different posts merely to point out that some work surfaces are better than others for opening up skins. I, too, have Formica work surfaces in my kitchen, but I don't use them for forming skins. So, I don't have an idea as to how using Formica compares with other alternatives. Maybe other members who also have Formica and form their skins on such a material will be able to speak more authoritatively on the subject.

Peter

Offline norma427

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Re: Still Trying to Get Big Air Bubbles in My Rim
« Reply #37 on: January 03, 2011, 12:20:48 PM »
Dave,

I have formica work surfaces in where I live too, and have used them to open dough.  They worked okay, but I usually use my old wood table to open my dough balls.  I donít know why, but the old wood table seems to work better for me, when opening dough balls.  I did also start with a stainless steel table at market to open dough, before I tried the marble slab I had stored in my shed.  The stainless steel table also worked well. 

I would be interested in hearing what other members have used to open their doughs and hear if they noticed any difference in opening their doughs on different surfaces.

It takes time to get lighting fast in opening up dough skins.  I still am not that fast in opening skins.

Norma
« Last Edit: January 03, 2011, 12:22:29 PM by norma427 »
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Offline Tscarborough

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Re: Still Trying to Get Big Air Bubbles in My Rim
« Reply #38 on: January 03, 2011, 12:25:08 PM »
I use Formica, plastic cutting board, and a marble slab.  I haven't noticed any particular difference.

Offline scott123

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Re: Still Trying to Get Big Air Bubbles in My Rim
« Reply #39 on: January 03, 2011, 01:09:40 PM »
Dave, it may seem counter intuitive, but excess oil can have a negative impact on dough manageability. I've noticed it most when launching off the peel, but I've also noticed it when stretching out the skin. I've also found it to create a less palatable, excessively floured crust as the oil really sucks up a lot of flour.

You want to use just enough oil on your containers so that the dough releases easily, but not so much that the dough is oily going on to the work surface. The shape of the container makes a big difference.  As the dough creeps up the side, there is a greater tendency for the dough to stick, creating a need for more oil to make sure the dough releases properly.  The wider the container, the better, with the ideal scenario, imo, being a large flat plastic proofing pan- large enough where the dough balls touch neither the walls or each other and can be scooped out gently with a plastic scraper. Unfortunately, standard proofing pans usually don't fit in average home refrigerators, and although there's a company that makes half size pans, the size may not  be large enough for typical NY style doughs with moderate hydrations.  In other words, a proofing pan may not work for everyone, but it's good to look for as much surface area as possible when choosing a container.