Author Topic: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF  (Read 140974 times)

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Online Pete-zza

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #80 on: May 30, 2005, 11:45:35 PM »
Friz,

Congratulations on having come this far so soon. The pizzas look great.

I wondered how you would compare the pies at this stage with the one you had at A16.

About the salt, I want to mention that pizzanapoletana's recipe is intended to be used for room temperature fermented doughs. From what I have been able to gather from reading Marco's posts and from my own experience, salt plays a somewhat more complicated role in room temperature fermented doughs, which are the norm in Naples, than in retarded doughs. Most people tend to think of salt in terms of its taste, but it also affects fermentation (and more so when using a natural preferment for leavening purposes), enzyme activity (by its effect on protease and other enzymes), and gluten development. There are also temperature related effects that I am still trying to get my mind around. I believe that Marco has indicated that he uses 60 grams of salt at higher temperatures but actually prefers 45-55 grams, because the higher salt levels can result in a gummy dough when the dough cools down. If I didn't state that right, Marco should feel free to correct me. In any event, if Marco's recipe were to be used in a retarded environment, you should be able to safely reduce the amount of salt--which should show up in a less salty taste.

Peter


Offline scott r

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #81 on: May 31, 2005, 12:05:47 AM »
I made pizzas and a loaf of bread with Marco's dough tonight. A 24 hour room temp rise dough with a starter.  The dough had the most amazing flavor.  Luckily it seems like my days of having too sour of a flavor are over.  I noticed that when I make doughs with a starter culture I don't mind the extra saltiness as much as when I am making IDY based doughs.  The extra flavor of the culture seems to cover up the salt a little, and everything comes out perfect.  When I use Marco's recipe, I also cut back on the salt in my tomatoes, and use no salt at all on top of the pizza.  Fresh (in water) cheese also has much less salt in it than the grande, and even the cryo pack (polly o etc.) cheese.  I think his recipe works great if you stick to the traditional toppings like they would use in Naples.  I did make the mistake once, though of upping the salt amount to 58g because it was hot in my apartment.  I would not recommend going much above the 45g per liter in his base recipe.  On the hot days, I just tend to use the dough before the 24 hour mark, and everything works out.

Offline duckjob

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #82 on: May 31, 2005, 10:32:15 AM »
Friz, I agree with you about the rim being a bit large. That was just a result of the way that I shaped it. I had a request from a family member for the large rim, I prefer a smaller one like how yours came out.

Offline giotto

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #83 on: June 02, 2005, 04:01:30 AM »
Well, as I sit here drinking my Hoegaarden biere, I can't help but think about a liquor store that I once lived near while going to college.  It's not that they carried quality beers or anything.  Instead, the store comes to mind because they used to make a cardboard pizza that was about as awful as one of my first tries with the Caputo flour.

I'm used to making NY style pizzas, which earn their name of Neo-Neapolitan because they don't cling to the same restrictions as a pizza that comes out of Naples.  As such, a teaspoon of sugar will not only remind you of a Mary Poppins' song; but it will give you a nice browning effect on a NY style pizza like this:
(http://home.comcast.net/~keck-foundation1/NY.jpg)

When following the ingredients of A16 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,1298.msg12887.html#msg12887), I had to realize that I was working with quite a different product.  My concern was twofold:

1) Without a fire-breathing dragon for an oven, as is the case of A16, I knew a white crust pizza was likely to surface.  I considered an Italian style oven like a friend owns, but then I woke up:
(http://home.comcast.net/~keck-foundation1/Pizza_Oven.JPG)

2) Without oil, which was to be accompanied by a smaller and potentially thinner crust, and less water hydration than usual, the pizza was likely to be ready in less time.

Initially, I used my screen, placed the 10 oz dough (which had been made into a 14" pizza) toward the top of the oven and left it for the usual 8 minutes at 550F.  The taste of the crust was fine; but the pizza experience was garbage.  It was the wrong texture all together.  It was too tough and seemed over cooked. The idea of ever rolling it up or expecting it to melt in my mouth was beyond consideration.  I knew that I had placed presentation (e.g., browning) before the ultimate product.

So then I tried to drench the next baby with oil, along with a bit of extra sauce, hoping to soften the outside without re-doing the inside.  That went over like a headstone in the back yard.

Finally, I sat back and thought about it.  My instincts told me that either I was placing too much emphasis on browning it and was therefore over-cooking it, or I was rolling it too thin (Roman style rather than Naples style per Reinhart), or I needed to soften it when first making the dough. 

I decided not to blame the procedure for making the dough, and instead I took a closer look at the cockpit. I moved my top rack in the oven down to the middle, placed a stone in it, and pre-heated it for 20 or so minutes at 550F, and then followed these procedures:

1) Took a 10.5 oz dough and stretched it into a 12" pizza
2) Placed the dough on the screen without any toppings and placed it on the bottom shelve for just under 1 minute
3) Added sauce and 5 cubes of Grande cheese, and then placed it on the stone, no screen.

5 minutes later, I took it out.  It had formed some outside browning; but this was no longer my focus. Since I tend to add toppings like grilled vegetables or thin meats toward the end, I decided to add a very small portion of prosciutto at this time. I put it back on the stone for about another 40 seconds.  If I were to just place the pizza initially on the stone, and leave it in for the duration, I'd have it in the oven for 6 minutes, max.

If you were to read the last paragraph on page 23 of Reinhart's American Pie, he describes a Neapolitan pizza as initially crisp; but then it softens.  Well, this baby was perfect.  My teeth actually connected when I bit into it.  That's very important to me, regardless if it is crispy or soft.  I sat out on the deck, knowing that I could now enjoy the taste of the Caputo crust, along with its almost transparent texture.  It was a delight knowing that Christophe's touch was now in my hands, except a charring from his wood fire that he well deserves.  I got a picture in right before my battery died.  And then I went back out onto my deck.
(http://home.comcast.net/~keck-foundation1/caputo-slice.jpg)


Online Pete-zza

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #84 on: June 02, 2005, 10:41:20 AM »
giotto,

Your experience with browning of the 00 crust reminded me of my early experiences using Neapolitan style doughs made with 00 flours. In my case, it was the Bel Aria brand of 00 flour, which was a low protein (around 10%?), low gluten 00 flour that, in retrospect, was perhaps better suited for baked goods other than pizza (although it was recommended for pizza use). As was my practice, whenever I made a new pizza dough, I would take notes and keep them with the recipe for future reference. I went back this morning to find an example of such notes and found the following in connection with the basic Neapolitan style dough recipe I was using at the time:

"Because the recipe does not include any sugar or olive oil (other than for oiling the bowl), both of which normally contribute to the golden brown color of pizza crusts, the color of the pizza crusts made with this recipe will be lighter—almost white or a light tan color.  Consequently, you will have to look for the melting or browning of the cheeses used, or check the bottom of the crust for light browning, to know that the pizza is done."

At the time I recorded the above notes, over a couple of years ago, I thought the pizzas made with the Bel Aria 00 flour were great. They opened my eyes to an entirely new style of pizza. I didn't give a second thought to the fact that the pizzas were "almost white". I just accepted that as a byproduct of using the 00 flour and, as best I could tell in any event from all the reading I had done on Neapolitan pizzas, the ones I made had just about all the qualities of the real thing except for the char and the nice woody overtones that come from a wood-fired oven operating at very high temperatures. Not having been to Naples, I had no frame of reference to compare my pizzas against, so if I was missing something I didn't know about it.

Since my early experiences, after playing around in the meantime with the Delverde 00 flour and the King Arthur 00 clone in search of a better 00 flour, I discovered the Caputo 00 flour, which the best pizza operators specializing in authentic Neapolitan pizza all seemed to be using. At the time, the Caputo 00 flour came only in 55 pound bags, and it was only after pleading with the importer of the Caputo 00 flour that I was able to get samples in 1 kilo bags to experiment with and to report on at this forum. Since then, he has seen that individuals are also interested in the Caputo 00 flour, and when I occasionally speak with him he is absolutely amazed and impressed to hear that several of our members have actually gone out and bought 55 pound bags of the Caputo 00 flour to use in home settings. Fortunately, the Caputo 00 pizzeria flour is starting to appear in smaller packages.

The Caputo 00 flour, because of its higher protein content (11.5-12.5%), has better crust browning qualities than the other retail brands of 00 flour because of the interactions during baking between the protein in the dough and the maltose and other natural sugars in the dough, commonly referred to as the Maillard reactions. In the absence of very high temperature ovens, we may still not get the deep browning of crusts as with other styles of pizza, like the high-gluten flour based crusts, but it should be better than the earlier brands available to us as home pizza makers. The way I see it, there has to be a good reason why the Caputo 00 flour is used not only by A16, but also by Una Pizza Napoletana, Il Pizzaiolo, Pizzeria Regina Margherita, DiFara's and Naples 45. The trick for us as home pizza makers is to determine how best to use the flour and how to modify our practices in order to coax from the flour the best features it has to offer--whether it is through the use of refrigeration, use of olive oil in the dough, use of preferments, clever baking techniques, or whatever. The one thing I am fairly certain of is that the advances will occur here at our forum, through the efforts of Friz with the A16 project--and yours, giotto--and the efforts of others at the forum with their newfound Caputo 00 pizzeria flour.

Peter
« Last Edit: June 02, 2005, 10:48:08 AM by Pete-zza »

Offline friz78

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #85 on: June 03, 2005, 12:16:33 AM »
Giotto,
Congratulations!  That A16 clone looks fantastic and very similar to the real A16 pizza, without the benefit of a wood oven. 

I noticed that your dough ball weight and subsequent thickness factor were greater than your original post from what you learned from Christophe Hill at A16.  Based on the picture you posted, it does indeed look like your pizza was thicker than the ones I have made thus far in the A16 re-engineering project.  Would you say that your new thickness factor is better than the original one you posted?  It sure looks quite similar to A16 thickness.  Or did you find that it was a bit thicker than you would optimally prefer?

Pete, I wonder if you would mind adjusting Giotto's recipe based on the different thickness factor that he noted in his last post?  Instead of a 9.5 oz dough ball for a 13 inch pizza, he came up with a 10.5 oz dough ball for a 12 inch pizza.  I would like to try this different thickness factor and see how it compares to my previous efforts.

Giotto, any more details you can provide on your latest A16 pizzamaking efforts would be welcome.  Thanks for sharing and your pizza looks great!

Offline giotto

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #86 on: June 03, 2005, 06:19:27 AM »
We're a lucky bunch at pizzamaking.com.  We have a great Neapolitan pizza topic here, great passion for a great result, and unique testing of the best Italian Caputo pizzeria flour to share.   

By the way, I enjoyed meeting Abatardi at Amici's New York style Pizzeria. Watching the pizza move from one part of the fired oven to another, it produced a nicely charred and somewhat light NY style crust.  And they were cool enough to make us a 1/2 Margherita, 1/2 grilled onion, pepper and olive pizza.  We were both blown away to find they use an All Purpose flour, considering its stretching capability.  No use of oil to make the dough resulted in a nice crispy crust that was easy to fold. 

Regarding the thickness factor with a 10.5 oz Caputo, the 12" pizza was certainly comparable to what A16 turns out.  I'll have to measure their final result.  I had to be careful not to over stretch the dough though, because it will stretch quite thin without tearing. 

When I experiment with only 2 lbs or so of flour, the dough hook in my Kitchenaid doesn't do much more than twirl around in circles until it reaches the top of the dough hook.  In this case, I worked with 1/3 of what A16 uses for its ingredients.  So I employed a simple kneading technique. 

After the dough came together in my mixer, I reached in and squeezed those loose dry pieces at the bottom three or so times into the dough.  I let it sit for a couple of minutes so I could better gauge its saturation.  Since the flour is what all ingredients are based upon, I want to avoid adding more flour unnecessarily.  Once together, I took it out, placed it on a floured board, and pushed downward and outward, left to right.  Then I flipped it from top to bottom, right to left, and did it again for about 10 times. 

Sometimes I will put dough back into the mixer, always careful to run it at level 1, and never to run it over 1 minute at a time, so as to re-create the hand kneading effect and keep the friction way down.  I gave the dough a tug, and it broke off prematurely (usually, it should pull about 1 1/2 inches).  That's my windowpane test.  I rarely worry about under kneading beyond this test, since less kneading results in an airy crust, and the dough will strengthen during fermentation with additional push downs as I'll note later.

I kneaded it a few more times, searching for breadiness and working toward smoothness.  It passed the test.  I placed it in a stainless steel bowl, lid loose, and then in the veggie compartment of my refrigerator for 1 hour.  This helps extract the heat quickly, while drying it a bit.  I then let it sit for 24 hours and took it out:
(http://home.comcast.net/~keck-foundation1/caputo-dough.jpg)

I pushed the dough down. Then I took it out, squeezed it and reformed it into a ball, and placed it back in.  One day later, I did the same.  Since I had made it at night, I waited until the 3rd day to cut it into 3 dough balls of slightly different weights for testing.  I then placed each into a slightly thicker-than-normal produce bag.  I made one that AM, and two that evening.

Online Pete-zza

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #87 on: June 03, 2005, 09:34:24 AM »
Friz,

I, too, had noted that giotto increased the thickness of his pizza and, with the details he provided, I determined that his thickness factor based on 10.5 oz. (dough ball weight) and a 12-inch pizza size was 0.093 (10.5/(3.14 x 6 x 6) = 0.093). That is a bit thinner than a standard NY style crust. Extrapolating to a 13-inch pizza size with the same thickness factor yields the following formulation:

100%, Caputo 00 pizzeria flour, 7.62 oz. (a bit less than 1 3/4 c.)
57.3%, Water, 4.36 oz. (a bit more than 1/2 c.)
2.4%, Salt, 0.18 oz. (between 7/8 and 1 t.)
1.79%, Extra-virgin olive oil, 0.14 oz. (a bit less than 7/8 t.)
0.30%, IDY, 0.023 oz. (a bit more than 1/5 t., or about 9 pinches between the thumb and forefinger)
Total dough ball weight: 12.32 oz. (for a 13-inch pizza)
Thickness factor (TF) = 12.32/(3.14 x 6.5 x 6.5) = 0.093

Peter

« Last Edit: September 15, 2005, 09:23:25 AM by Pete-zza »

Offline JimBob

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #88 on: June 03, 2005, 05:53:24 PM »
I'm excited to try this recipe.  I've ordered my caputo so I'll be eating my experiment next Saturday for sure.  ;D
JimBob

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #89 on: June 03, 2005, 06:44:13 PM »
Welcome Aboard, JimBob!.


Offline giotto

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #90 on: June 04, 2005, 04:50:13 AM »
Pete-zza:

The ratio of 10.5 to 12 does not appear to be the same as 12.32 to 13, at least not when I eye it.  I see that the TF suggests otherwise.  But when I take 10.5 (dough weight) and divide by 12 (pizza crust size), the percentage is commensurate with your extrapolated dough (12.32) divided by 14 (i.e., 88%).  
« Last Edit: June 04, 2005, 05:08:34 AM by giotto »

Online Pete-zza

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #91 on: June 04, 2005, 10:13:17 AM »
giotto,

The expression I use, that is, Dough Weight = 3.14 x R x R x TF, is somewhat of a fiction to begin with (I got it from Lehmann/Ostrander), and there is a certain mathematical nonlinearity to it, just as you can't take an amount of dough to make, say, a 14-inch pizza with a certain thickness and make two 7-inch pizzas of the same thickness. So, for example, if the dough for a 14-inch pizza weighs 16 oz., and you want to make two pizzas out of that with the same thickness, for example, using TF = 0.10 (for a typical NY style), you would solve for R in the above equation using half the amount of dough (8 oz.). In this example, R would be equal to the square root of 8/(3.14 x 0.10), or 5.04. Doubling that gives you a diameter for the two pizzas of 10.08, or a bit over 10 inches--not 7 inches. Some people use a rule of thumb of 1 ounce of dough per inch of diameter, but that rule of thumb will not maintain a constant thickness.

Because TF in the above expression was most likely derived through experimentation and trial and error, you will go crazy trying to make the expression work linearly. I say this because I tried to do it myself and finally gave up. Fellow member Canadave once jokingly referred to TF as a "cosmological constant".

Peter

« Last Edit: June 04, 2005, 10:17:00 AM by Pete-zza »

Offline giotto

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #92 on: June 06, 2005, 04:59:37 AM »
Pete-zza:

Thanks for examples that illustrate the difficulty of maintaining thickness while changing dough weight.  Since I normally work with just over 1 oz of dough for 1" of NY style pizza, I was worried about going too far the other direction with the Neapolitan.  So 12.32 oz for a 13" sounded just right.

I couldn't believe it when my 2 doughs came out exactly, and I mean exactly, to 12.32 oz when I following the re-calculated ingredients for the 13" Neapolitan.  I knew some extra flour was added as a result of mostly hand kneading the dough. And I decided to use Active instead of Instant Yeast, so I added .25 more yeast to make up the difference (e.g., instead of 1/6 + 1/6 or 1/3 tsp for 2 doughs, I used .4 tsp or just under 1/2 tsp).

I now refer to my Neo-Neapolitan or New York style pizza as my Pepsi Cola, and my Neapolitan style as my Coca-Cola. While they both have their following, Coke was the first to market and as such it's pitched as the real thing. The New York style is slightly thicker, a bit breadier, and may crunch as you enjoy the experience of the crust with the pizza.  Whereas, the Neapolitan is transparent, and while there is a slight crunch, your teeth immediately come together and you realize that it is the experience.

So while Neapolitan pizza awaits those in Italy:
(https://home.comcast.net/~keck-foundation1/Italy.jpg)

The real thing awaits us here as well (this 25% pizza slice stayed crispy even as it softened):
(https://home.comcast.net/~keck-foundation1/my-cola-slice.JPG)

Okay, I did Americanize it a tiny bit by giving it a tan, expanding the outside brim, and providing America's favorite topping. I did it naturally though, with 2 fermentation days, hand stretching and some maneuvering around a 540F oven stone for just over 6 1/2 minutes:
(https://home.comcast.net/~keck-foundation1/my-cola.JPG)
« Last Edit: June 06, 2005, 05:31:53 AM by giotto »

Online Pete-zza

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #93 on: June 07, 2005, 07:46:03 PM »
Cheesy,

I'm fairly certain that we don't have a photo of a pizza from A16. Otherwise, I think it would have been posted. However, based on information that was given by some of the workers at A16 to fellow members Friz and giotto, who have been to A16 and eaten pizzas there, we have a pretty good idea of the parameters of a basic A16 pizza (ingredients, quantities, size of pizza, typical dough ball weight, etc). Member pieguy also seems to know a fair amount about A16 or at least its pizzas. Based on the collective knowledge, Friz and others have been trying to recreate (reverse-engineer) the A16 pizza. The latest recipe that is under consideration has been posted at Reply #87 at this thread.

As for the Caputo 00 flour to look for, what you want is the Caputo 00 pizzeria flour that comes in a blue bag. Until recently, we had to buy the Caputo 00 pizzeria flour in large bags of up to 55 pounds. However, PennMac (at pennmac.com, see Pizza Makers tab) recently started repackaging the Caputo flour in five-pound bags. They also sell the big bag.

The "00" designation is one that is used by millers in Italy that produce the 00 flour. Carol Fields, the author of The Italian Baker, explained the different flour classifications, including 00, better than I can, as follows:

"The Italian baker had five grades of grano tenero to choose from, although they are classified not by strength and protein content like ours but by how much of the husk and whole grain have been sifted away. The whitest flour has the least fiber; the lower the number, the more refined and whiter the flour, so that of the five categories, "00" is the whitest and silkiest flour, "0" a bit darker and less fine, since it contains about 70 percent of the grain, "1" even darker; "2", darker and coarser yet yet, has almost disappeared from Italy.  Integrale, ... contains the whole wheat berry...'

Peter
« Last Edit: June 07, 2005, 07:53:03 PM by Pete-zza »

Offline JimBob

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #94 on: June 07, 2005, 08:23:40 PM »
Just received my 00 flour... going to whip up my first try so it will be ready for Friday.  ;D
JimBob

Offline friz78

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #95 on: June 08, 2005, 01:27:22 AM »
Jimbob,
Can't wait to hear your results.  Remember, it's your first effort so don't expect perfection right away.
Friz

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #96 on: June 08, 2005, 06:13:21 AM »
So far the dough ball came out of the mixer perfectly.  The 1 hour room temp rise yielded about a 25% increase in size after which I folded the ball, covered it and placed it in the fridge.  I'll fold it again tonight and tomorrow before using it on Friday.  If it turns out well I'll post in more detail.
JimBob

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #97 on: June 08, 2005, 08:20:13 AM »
Hi,
Cheesy,you may want to go to the A16 webpage and I think you'll find a picture for reference there. (click on the Knife + fork image)

http://www.a16sf.com/Home.html
If you're looking for a date... go to the Supermarket.If you're looking for a wife....go to the Farmers market

Offline JimBob

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #98 on: June 08, 2005, 06:00:45 PM »
I could'nt wait until Friday.  The dough looked good so I thought I would give it a twirl.  I've never eaten a neapolitan anywhere before so I don't really have much to compare it to, but I'll have to say that I will continue making these.  I'm very happy with them.  The pictures did not turn out but the interior of the crust looked just like the rest of the pies on this thread.  Here are the pictures:

JimBob

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #99 on: June 08, 2005, 06:10:54 PM »
JiMBob,

I'd say you did very well 8). Congratulations. You just made one of the toughest types of pizzas to make at home. Which recipe did you use and how did you bake the pizzas (stone/screen, temperature, etc.)?

Peter