Author Topic: Today's JerryMac pies - still struggling with oven spring  (Read 1670 times)

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Offline steelsieve

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Today's JerryMac pies - still struggling with oven spring
« on: November 20, 2010, 08:36:51 PM »
Today I made JerryMac's NY style:

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5851.0.html

I used KASL, and ADY instead of IDY, but otherwise followed the instructions just as written.  I was initially really concerned about the elevated hydration of the dough, which I think Peter calculated to be around 68% (my usual Lehmann-style that I've gotten comfortable working with is 63%).  I was planning to use parchment if the dough proved to be difficult to manage, but after forming the skin I felt like I could effectively get it off the peel and did so without a problem.  The first pie was red sauce and mozzarella, and the second one was basil pesto with goat cheese and just a little mozz.  Overall I thought the pizzas were very good--crispy, chewy, good flavor, but still lacking the oven spring I've been trying to achieve.  Note, these pizzas were cooked on soapstone in a 550 oven preheated for about 90 minutes.

I'm almost ready to conclude that I'm doing something in my handling of the dough that's detrimental.  Here's my process: put the dough ball out onto a cutting board lightly dusted with a 50/50 mix of KASL/semolina and press out in the middle working outward.  My dough balls often have large bubbles that will work their way out to the edges and I'm careful not to break them (except the really big surface ones).  Once I get it to about 6 or 7 inches in diameter, I typically give it a toss and then stretch it out over the backs of my hands until it's about 14".  These pies got to about 14" after just a single toss.  I try to be careful not to press any of the gas out of the dough, but I'm getting the feeling that this part of the process is what's hanging me up.  Appreciate any suggestions.

Meredith


Offline pizzablogger

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Re: Today's JerryMac pies - still struggling with oven spring
« Reply #1 on: November 21, 2010, 06:31:01 PM »
Steelsieve, do you have any pictures of the skin, flattened and ready to dressing, which shows the air bubbles you are talking about? How large are the air bubbles....smallish or larger bubbles which really have expanded out of the dough?

BTW, I still think your pizzas look very good.

I'm done with Napoletana for a while, so I'm gonna start delving into NY Style intensely and pics like your pies recently are excellent inspiration. I'm convinced a good spring can be achieved without needing to rely on bromated flour.

We'll see.

Keep posting pics of those pies you have been cranking out! --K
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Online Tscarborough

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Re: Today's JerryMac pies - still struggling with oven spring
« Reply #2 on: November 21, 2010, 08:52:40 PM »
I don't think that there is a question that excellent spring can be achieved without bromate.

Offline steelsieve

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Re: Today's JerryMac pies - still struggling with oven spring
« Reply #3 on: November 21, 2010, 09:44:08 PM »
Steelsieve, do you have any pictures of the skin, flattened and ready to dressing, which shows the air bubbles you are talking about? How large are the air bubbles....smallish or larger bubbles which really have expanded out of the dough?

Thanks for the encouragement!

I don't have any pics of the skin, but here's what the dough looked like just before I formed it.  If you look at the very top you can see a slightly darker area, which is one of the spots where a bubble had developed really close to the surface.  Once the dough was pressed out, there were probably 6 or 8 bubbles of that type around the rim--not really large, but just very noticeable because of being so close to the surface.  They frequently inflate while in the oven, sometimes even in the center of the pie.

I guess I'm trying to figure out how to get larger voids deeper into the rim, rather than having so many thin surface bubbles.  I would think that with the number of bubbles I see on the surface, there would be at least as many inside the dough but that doesn't seem to be the case.

Meredith

Offline scott123

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Re: Today's JerryMac pies - still struggling with oven spring
« Reply #4 on: November 21, 2010, 10:59:38 PM »
I don't think that there is a question that excellent spring can be achieved without bromate.


True, but there is a question as to how easily  oven spring can be achieved without bromate, especially for the NY style pizza maker with a home oven. For the beginning NY pizza maker, getting good oven spring without bromate can be incredibly difficult. Much like sourdough, working with unbromated flour, imo, is very advanced pizzamaking.

Meredith, keep using up your KASL. By the time you struggle through the whole bag, you will have honed your skills to such a point where oven spring on the next bromated bag will be a complete no brainer.  As much as I hate KA, it's inferior baking qualities make it an excellent training tool.  That's how I cut my teeth on pizza making- except I suffered through KA for about 3 years. By the time I figured out that my less than stellar pies were the flour's fault and found bromate, I had spent so much time compensating, that my first bromate pie was like the heavens parting and angels breaking into song.

In the mean time, one thing that you might want to revisit is your proofing container.  Tall container walls are not ideal, as removing the dough can stress it and deflate it a bit. You can compensate slightly by using a lot of oil, but I find oily dough balls pick up a lot of flour and don't come off the peel quite as easily. A good proofing container should be very lightly oiled and the fully proofed dough should come out with gravity.

Detecting proper fermentation by monitoring the bottom of the dough is critical for beginners, so clear containers are important to start with.  I'd invest in something like this:

http://www.amazon.com/Pyrex-Storage-7-Cup-Round-Plastic/dp/B000LOWN3C/?tag=pizzamaking-20

As you learn to predict yeast activity and detect the signs of proper fermentation through other means such as smell and volume, then it's time for something that releases gas a little better, like this:

http://www.bakedeco.com/a/plastic-dough-pan-s-12232.htm

Offline norma427

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Re: Today's JerryMac pies - still struggling with oven spring
« Reply #5 on: November 21, 2010, 11:10:44 PM »
steelsieve,

I agree with pizzablogger, your pies do look very tasty.  :) I also agree with Scott123 that you will learn to work with KASL and be able to develop good oven spring with it.  I had started with bromated flour too, but now find I can get decent oven spring while using KASL.  It just takes a little practice.  Scott123's idea about changing your container you store your dough balls in are good.

Norma
Always working and looking for new information!

Offline steelsieve

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Re: Today's JerryMac pies - still struggling with oven spring
« Reply #6 on: November 22, 2010, 10:25:14 PM »
I bought a few of the above pictured containers recently for my regular cold fermented dough, which doesn't increase much in size, but this JerryMac one-day definitely needed something bigger.  Particularly since it was a bit stickier than usual, it was a little more difficult to get out of the container than I expected.  Next time I'll try something with a wider bottom.

I always take regular looks at the bottoms of my containers to check out the yeast development, but other than getting a general idea of how things are going from the looks of it, is there anything specific I should be trying to detect from the smell?

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Re: Today's JerryMac pies - still struggling with oven spring
« Reply #7 on: November 22, 2010, 11:36:13 PM »
The easy way to get doughs out of the container, oil or not is to place good amounts of flour all around the edge, then use a spatula to push the bench flour down the edges to release the dough from the container.  This is what I do after the initial doubling. As a rule, I just use my fingers to ease the dough off the sides of the (oiled) container, sprinkle some flour on top and then plop the container down on the counter.  This gives me a nice rounded, but upside down, ball to work with.

You have to put flour on top because if you have much bench flour on the work table, it will make a mess when you plop the container on the worktop.  I use 1 quart disposable plastic containers, oiled pretty well.  They clean up easily, and are large enough that a 14" thin crust dough releases easily.

Offline scott123

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Re: Today's JerryMac pies - still struggling with oven spring
« Reply #8 on: November 22, 2010, 11:46:28 PM »
Meredith, based upon the markings, your container is in the 5 cup realm.  The pyrex container I posted is 7 cups, so if you have a big dough ball, you should be reaching for the large pyrex.  The plastic proofing pan that I posted is closer to 8.5 cups. A wide, relatively shallow container is critical.  The wider the better, as it mitigates wall contact.  The less the dough has contact with the walls, the easier it is to remove.

As a dough ferments, the enzymes are breaking down the starch into sugar, so it will smell a little sweeter as the days progress.  A slightly sweet smell is one indicator.  Another is alcohol. The yeast is generating CO2 and alcohol, so it will start smelling a little beery.  As a dough ferments, it will begin without any alcohol smell, then, after a day or two, if properly fermented, will have a slight alcohol note.  If you open the cover, though, and get a strong alcohol odor, you've gone too far (imo).

Offline scott r

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Re: Today's JerryMac pies - still struggling with oven spring
« Reply #9 on: November 23, 2010, 01:03:09 AM »
My dough balls often have large bubbles that will work their way out to the edges and I'm careful not to break them (except the really big surface ones). 

meredith, your pizza looks amazing to me, but from the above comment I think it is possible that your dough is slightly over fermented.    A younger dough can definitely give much more oven spring.   Somewhere else I also noticed you mentioned a sticky dough.    This could mean under mixing.    I think over fermenting and under mixing are two of the most common mistakes in pizza making, even with professionals.      You might want to try using your dough earlier and if that doesn't help try a longer mix time.   Good luck!
« Last Edit: November 23, 2010, 01:04:42 AM by scott r »


Offline Outatime

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Re: Today's JerryMac pies - still struggling with oven spring
« Reply #10 on: November 27, 2010, 01:50:01 PM »
At first this looked like classic overyeasting, but the large bubbles on the surface of the cold-proofed dough are a clear indicator to me of overproofing.  Verisano has a picture of this that clued me in, and he was right: cold proofing achieves many good things up to a point.  Where that point is depends on what's in the mix; for me, it's 48-56 hours at 38-degrees F. 

The biggest mistake is to increase ADY/IDY to achieve better oven spring and better crumb.   I've found that it degrades the dough unless proofing time is decreased.  And the less time in the fridge, the breadier the finished dough.   Try cutting back the proof time by 12 hours at a time until you get more spring and the large bubbles on the surface disappear.
The finished product looks GREAT, but you're right: more oven spring and a lighter crumb would make it better.

Offline JerryMac

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Re: Today's JerryMac pies - still struggling with oven spring
« Reply #11 on: February 08, 2011, 09:38:51 PM »
Meredith,  Your pies look realy good and it sounds like you're doing everything right  :) To me oven spring in  pizza dough and bread always equals water and heat. Keep at it, you will get it.

Mangia Bene,
Jerry :chef: