Author Topic: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF  (Read 142953 times)

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Offline friz78

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Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« on: May 01, 2005, 11:48:32 PM »
As follow up to my recent post on a San Francisco restaurant in the restaurant portion of our forum, I would like to describe and ultimately replicate the pizza at A16 restaurant.  While A16 is a full fledged, high end Italian restaurant in San Francisco, it is their pizza that I experienced and subsequently fell in love with.  Beyond the wonderful experience of eating an A16 pizza, I also had an opportunity to study and learn from one of the finest pizzaolo's in America today.  Christophe Hille is a world class chef as well as a Neapolitan pizzaolo who is certified by the Italian government.  His understanding of pizza and how it is prepared is unparalleled by anyone whom I have ever had the opportunity to meet.  I only wish the folks on this forum could have the opportunity that I just had at A16, as the free flow of ideas and questions was very special indeed.

In visiting with Christophe Hille, I learned that pizza has indeed become a culinary art form, albeit a very rare and unique one.  Make no mistake, Christophe is the executive chef at A16 and his abilities, knowledge and skills go well beyond pizza making.  But also make no mistake, that at his very core, he has an incredible passion for pizza making and pizza making is at the core of what A16 is all about.  All of this is proof to the point that has been made on this forum time and time again - great pizza making is all about paying attention to detail, using the highest quality ingredients, and never wavering on producing the highest quality pizza product possible for customers, your family, or for yourself.  Christophe Hille and A16 live up to this standard and, as we have discussed, this is very rare in the commercial pizza business today.  That also explains the aggressive pricing on a 12 inch pizza at A16, but for folks like us, money is not a problem if it results in the highest quality pizza.

A16 has a great feature known as a 'chefs counter' where you can watch pizzas being made and watch certified pizzaiolo’s perform their craft.  In addition, the chef’s counter allows you to interact with the pizzaiolo while he is making pizza, which is an invaluable exercise to say the least.

It’s getting late and I need to get some sleep.  Before I do, I will provide some initial feedback on what I know about A16 pizza and then, with everyone’s help, I hope we can set out to successfully re-engineer an A16 pizza for the home pizza maker.  While everyone at A16 was extremely helpful and talkative, they stopped short of sharing their exact recipe.  This, no doubt, will be the greatest challenge in the re-engineering process.  The good news is that they were very open with discussing their ingredients, techniques and procedures.  We will need to fill in the blanks regarding the measurements for these ingredients.

Here is what I know about the A16 pizza:

•   They use 100% Caputo “00” Flour (Pizzeria variety)
•   Other ingredients include ADY, Water, Salt, and Olive Oil
•   ADY and water are mixed first, then salt and oil are added and mixed, and then the flour is added gradually to complete the mixing process.  It is a short mixing time after the flour is added and there is no autolyse
•   After mixing, the dough is given a one hour room temperature rise.  It is then pounded down and placed in the refrigerator for a TWO DAY cold rise.  One of the pizzaolo’s stated that he thought 3 days works best.  He said that I was lucky because, as a lunch customer, I was eating dough that was on its third day of refrigeration.
•   The dough is pounded down atleast once during the refrigeration process.  Perhaps someone can explain this to me, as most of my doughs do not rise much at all during refrigeration.
•   After refrigeration, the dough is allowed to rise at room temperature for 2-3 hours
•   At one point one of the pizzaolo’s said that the dough is always “proofed atleast 3 times before using.”
•   No preferment is used in the dough
•   While the pizzaolo stated that the hydration percentage was not very high, viewing the dough balls he was working with would speak to the opposite.  They looked quite wet.  He was reluctant to reveal exact hydration percentages during our visit and I didn’t want to be too pushy in this regard.
•   Ample amounts of bench flour were used in forming the dough round.  This was also probably to counteract the extreme wetness of the dough.
•   The dough handled and shaped beautifully
•   San Marzano DOP tomatoes were used for the sauce – nothing else (no additives)
•   Fresh Mozzarella
•   The end product was perfectly puffy and soft, yet crisp and chewy.  I won’t bore folks with praise of this pizza, but it was the finest pizza I have eaten anywhere in my life, and that includes all of the great NYC pizzerias.

I will be ordering my Caputo flour tomorrow and can’t wait to get started on this project.  I look forward to those who have worked with Caputo flour to participate and provide any insight, advice, or otherwise in this regard.  This is so exciting because, for the first time, I feel like I have finally tasted and now know what AUTHENTIC NEAPOLITAN PIZZA is really all about (as opposed to NY style pizza).  Perhaps there is somewhat of an American flare to this pizza, but its Neapolitan inspiration is unmistakable and truly delicious.

Friz


Offline abatardi

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #1 on: May 02, 2005, 02:44:01 AM »
very interesting.  I think I'm going to have to make a trip up to the city to try this place out. 

Oh BTW, I think ItalFoods in South San Fran stocks Caputo in case you don't want to order it:
http://www.italfoodsinc.com/productPage.asp?tblName=Flour_and_Grains_Flour

PIZZERIA "00" FLOUR (farina di grana terero tipo "00") CAPUTO  1/25 KG

- Aaron
Make me a bicycle CLOWN!

Offline friz78

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #2 on: May 02, 2005, 11:32:23 AM »
Aaron,
By all means, if you love great pizza and you live close enough to get there, you won't be disappointed in making the trip to A16.  When you do make the visit, it would be great if you could sit at the chef's counter and gather some more information from the pizzaoli about their recipe, ingredients, and techniques.  I tried to gather as much info as I could on  my visit, but there is only so much you can absorb on one visit.  I don't live in the Bay area and I only get to SF on business about twice a year.  So you and anybody else that lives close to A16 could be a valuable resource to this re-engineering effort if you're so inclined.
Friz

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #3 on: May 02, 2005, 12:09:51 PM »
Friz,

Based on what you have said thus far about A16, here are my preliminary thoughts and comments:

1) I see that A16 in on the list of restaurants/licensees put out by the VPN (Verace Pizza Napoletana) association as being in compliance with the charter of the VPN. This may be neither here nor there since most restaurants either ignore the VPN, even those who are members, or they view the VPN as no more than a marketing gimmick. But I note that Chef Hille deviates from the charter by using ADY (instead of "yeast of beer", or fresh yeast) and by using olive oil in the dough. At least he doesn't use sugar, which is also verboten.

2) Chef Hille's use of retardation/refrigeration of the 00 dough is not typical of what is normally done in Italy, especially in Naples, where the better pizzerias appear to rely on long fermentation times (close to 20 hours) at a temperature of around 65 degrees F. Retardation/refrigeration of 00 doughs seems to be more common in the U.S., quite possibly because it lends itself better to the dough management practices commonly used by U.S. pizza operators. The long retardation/fermentation times (2 to 3 days) appears to be the mechanism chosen by Chef Hille to generate the by-products of fermentation (alcohol, acids, esters, etc.) that give the crust its distinctive flavor. He could have used room temperature fermentation/ripening instead, but apparently chose not to do so. (It would be interesting to know why he selected the approach he did.)

3) Marco and ilpizzaiolo can speak to this better than I, but I suspect that the Caputo 00 dough does not require a lot of kneading because of its higher protein content (11.5-12.5%) relative to other 00 flours with lower protein content, and quite possibly other, more esoteric factors like falling numbers, enzyme activity, etc. Many of the recipes I have seen for authentic Neapolitan 00 pizza doughs, including related rules put out by the Italian ministry, call for very long knead times, from 20-30 minutes in some cases, apparently to more fully develop the gluten, which is less abundant in many of the 00 flours than in other flours.

4) If Chef Hille is using a one-hour rise, then punches down the dough, and again one or more times while the dough is in the refrigerator, this suggest the use of a fair amount of yeast. It's not like a Lehmann NY style dough that uses as little as 1/8-1/4 teaspoon of IDY and doesn't rise much during the period of retardation. Usually, punching down a dough is to redistribute the yeast in the dough and to provide more uniform fermentation and gluten development through protease and other enzyme activity.

5) The hydration levels usually associated with 00 doughs, at least from the recipes I have seen from Molino Caputo and others, is in the range of about 52-55%. However, as we have learned from Marco and others, the hydration percent can be much higher, and I suspect that it has become quite common among Neapolitan pizza operators to use higher hydration levels.

6) As much as we may wish it were otherwise, what is very important, maybe even indispensible, to making a high-quality Neapolitan pie is high oven temperature. The most egregious example of misuse of the 00 flour that I can think of is Dom DeMarco's (at DiFara's), who makes his doughs 1 to 2 hours in advance of their use (which suggests the use of a lot of yeast), but he disguises and compensates for the dough's shortcomings by "proofing" his doughs in a warm and humid environment, using high oven temperatures (over 700 degrees F), and by using high-quality, abundant toppings. For those of us who have standard home ovens, we will most likely have to add olive oil to the dough to compensate for the shortcomings of our ovens and their low temperatures. pftaylor and Varasano and others with high-temperature grills and ovens will have a decided advantage.   

7) I am curious whether you were able to determine how much dough is used to make a standard pizza at A16. And can you tell us what size pizza you had in relation to such a dough ball size? And also its thickness. This information should be instructional once we decide on what recipe to use as a baseline for the experimentation. I think we will see that the A16 dough recipe itself, it it is ever ascertained, is fairly standard but that the results you experienced were governed more by the dough production process and high oven temperatures.

Peter

Offline friz78

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #4 on: May 02, 2005, 12:44:57 PM »
Peter,
Your feedback and insights are, as usual, fantastic and very much appreciated.  Many of the thoughts and premonitions that you suggest in your post I had as well, but hearing them from you goes a long way in reinforcing my own beliefs.  I especially agree with your assessment that a significant amount of yeast must be used, especially based on the multiple "punch downs" that the pizzaoli referred to at A16.  I was also aware, thanks to much of your input in prior posts, of some of the deviations present in the preparation techniques of A16 as compared with "authentic" italian pizza as it is made in Naples.  Hence, I guess we would have to say that the pizza at A16 is an "Americanized" version of authentic Neapolitan.  I wonder if part of the adjustments made in the A16 process are due to the limitations of their own oven - wood fired brick oven.  If I remember correctly, the italian ovens operate at a much higher temperature than even the wood fired ovens.  This is just a guess, but I think there might be something to it. 

Even more to your point, Chef Hille stated that the two most important factors in making his pizza were the Caputo 00 flour and the use of a high heat brick oven.  That said, I guess we needn't waste our time anguishing over our oven limitations at home, as I don't see that situatioin changing for most of us anytime soon.

One thing that struck me about the appearance of this dough was the color.  It wasn't as "white" as you normally associate with 00 flours.  Yet it didn't have the appearance of a NY Style crust color either.  It was a "tan" color and, dare I say, had a bit of a yellow tint to it.  I have no idea what might cause this unique coloring, but it was very noticeable to me almost immediately.

Perhaps the greatest attribute to this dough was the combination of softness and chew.  While it had a nice chew, it was a very delicate one and it didn't take away from the light, airy sensation of the crust, which was exemplary.  Again, I come back to the strong belief that this is the result of a high heat oven and some combination of a fairly large amount of yeast and a long fermentation.  Perhaps this could even account for the coloring?

To answer your question about the size of my pizza, it was 12-13 inches.  I do not know the dough ball weight, but visually speaking, it looked like a relatively small dough ball that wasn't very heavy at all.  It took the pizzaolo about 30 seconds to form the dough ball into a round, from start to finish.  The thickness factor, while not confirmed, I would classify as thin in the middle with a medium to small size rim.  In shaping the dough ball into a round, the pizzaolo made note that he tries to have the dough thickness uniform throughout the round.  That is to say that there is no pre-formed rim before baking - it is all the same thickness before baking.  My sense would be that a standard thickness factor could be used - something similar to the DiFara, Patsy's, or Raquel thickness factor.

One other gut level feeling I have about this dough.  Much like the yeast content, I have a suspicion that a relatively large amount of olive oil is used.  Not only did the dough balls look "wet", but they also looked "oily" when taken out of the plastic storage container for shaping.  As a matter of fact, I may classify the appearance of the dough as more "oily" than "wet."  The pizzaolo went out of his way to tell me that, after taking the dough out of the mixer it was not sticky at all, which of course would speak to a lower hydration %.  Could this then be a matter of more olive oil than usual?  And could it also account for the unusual coloring of the crust?  Again, I don't have the answers, but I look forward to experimenting with all of the key factors related to hydration, oil content, and yeast amount to discover the A16 mystery.

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #5 on: May 02, 2005, 02:26:31 PM »
Friz,

If you are referring to the slightly yellow coloration of the dough at A16 as opposed to the baked crust, I suspect what you saw was the effects of low levels of oxidation of the dough during kneading. The dough needs air (oxygen) for proper yeast action, but if there is excessive or aggressive kneading, the oxidation causes loss of pigmentation (damage to carotenoids), and loss of flavor as well. In a home mixer, it is easy to overoxidize dough. But if you knead on say, only the stir or 1 setting for the entire time, you will see that the dough retains its off-yellow color better, even if it takes longer to knead the dough as a result of using the lower speed. If I misinterpreted your comments and you were referring to crust color rather than dough color, it is quite possible that the olive oil, with its natural yellow or green color, was responsible for the yellowish color of the crust.

While I was at LaGuardia recently awaiting a flight back to Texas, I happen to see a pizza maker at the Famiglia pizzeria shape a dough that looked extremely oily, just as you described what you saw at A16. The Famiglia pizza maker was working on a marble-like surface and, as best I can tell, it looked like he oiled the surface and rolled the dough ball in it before shaping. But the dough definitely looked oily rather than wet from water content. Unfortunately, I had to leave before I could see the worker make another skin, but what he did stuck in my mind because it struck me as being very unusual.

In the course of your experimentation, you may want to take a look at Replies #10 and 13 at the thread on 00 flours at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=783.msg7219#msg7219. These posts describe a method for making Neapolitan pizza dough, as recommended by Molino Caputo, the miller of the Caputo 00 pizzeria flour (I converted the recipe from metric to U.S. standard in Reply #13). The recipe is intended to be used by operators who have high-temperature ovens, and is not intended for use with standard home ovens. You might also want to take a look at Reply #14 at the above thread, where Peter Reinhart (in an email exchange I had with him) discusses the baking problems associated with Neapolitan pizzas based on 00 flour because of the relatively low hydration levels of 00 flours. Reinhart's comments suggest that home ovens may require a higher hydration dough because of the longer bake times. Reply #15 discusses Ron Molinaro at ilpizzaiolo and his experiences with the 00 flour, which is also instructional.

Fellow member Marco also presented a recipe for making doughs using the Caputo 00 flour, with a higher hydration level than normal. (See Reply #21 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,861.msg8959.html#msg8959). I believe Marco's hydration level, at least the one he personally uses, is at the top end of the range, higher even than what is most commonly used by Neapolitan pizza makers. You may want to take a look at his recipe, since it suggests that you may want to use higher hydration levels and, from what he has said elsewhere, some olive oil in the dough if the recipe is to be used in a home setting using a standard oven.

There is also another recipe posted at the forum for making Neapolitan doughs, as was posted by several of our members (myself included), and apparently represent another Molino Caputo dough recipe. (See, for example, http://www.woodstone-corp.com/cooking_naples_style.htm).

Looking at all the above recipes might offer some insights that might be useful to you and the rest of us in the pursuit of a clone of the A16 dough.

As for the oven used at A16, if it is to be in compliance with the VPN rules, it must be "a wood burning oven and structured in a bell shape and of special brick with the floor of the pizza oven constructed of volcanic stone. The oven must be fired with only wood and kindling." 

Peter

« Last Edit: June 11, 2005, 09:06:12 AM by Pete-zza »

Offline pizzanapoletana

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #6 on: May 02, 2005, 03:56:12 PM »
  It was a "tan" color and, dare I say, had a bit of a yellow tint to it.  I have no idea what might cause this unique coloring, but it was very noticeable to me almost immediately.


The olive oil in the dough...

Offline friz78

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #7 on: May 02, 2005, 04:31:11 PM »
Pete,
As usual you have referenced a plethora of links that makes researding this topic on this forum abundantly easier.  Thank you for connecting me (and others) to so much background information on 00 flour and specifically the Caputo variety.  One thing that I have serious questions about is the effect that olive oil would have on the lightness and airy feel to a pizza crust.  It would seem to me that olive oil would promote a "heavier" crust with more crisp but not a light, airy crust with a gentle chew.  Again, I don't have anything to prove this theory at this point, but I would be interested to hear feedback from you and others on experiences you have had with olive oil in dough.

Also, Peter, what are your thoughts on the long fermentation time with Caputo flour?  Have you experimented with it at all? 
Thanks,
Friz

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #8 on: May 02, 2005, 07:32:07 PM »
Friz,

You are correct--up to a point--that using oil in the dough will make the crust crispier. This is because the oil will heat to a temperature considerably higher than water and promote browning and crisping because of better heat transfer. This is the principle behind the Pizza Hut pan pizza crusts which, as you may know, are "bathed" in oil before baking. In order to get increased softness in the crumb, you generally have to get above about 7% oil (by weight of flour). At that level, the oil behaves as a tenderizer by sealing the dough so that the gasses are retained and the crust achieves a softer, more tender and chewy character.

Your comments about the use of oil at A16 seem to be directed more to surface oil than to oil within the dough. So we can only speculate as to how much oil is actually used in the dough. It is therefore possible that the softness of the A16 crust is attributable to factors other than the oil. Remember also that oil in the dough also serves to increase the extensibility (stretchiness) of the dough (by lubricating the protein and starch granules). You seemed to imply that the A16 dough was quite extensible (you indicated that it handled and shaped nicely), so clearly the oil in the dough could be at least partly responsible for the good extensibilty. But it might also be because of a good mixing and kneading technique.

If oil is also used on the surface of the pizza skin, either brushed on the unbaked skin or drizzled on it, there are several effects to consider. First, the oil serves to capture and hold desired flavor components of the baked pizza. Second, it promotes browning/darkening of the crust, especially at the rim, because of the improved heat transfer. And, third, because olive oil is hygrophobic (it repels water), it prevents migration of water from the sauce into the dough. If A16 is making one or more of the four VPN "approved" pizzas (Margherita, Marinara, Ripieno, and Formaggio e Pomodoro), then all of these effects should be present to some degree since all of the approved pizzas use olive oil on top of the pizzas.

In answer to your question about my experience with long fermentation of doughs based on the Caputo flour, the answer is yes....I have experimented with such long fermentation. Most of the doughs I made and discussed at the Caputo 00/Caputo 00 Biga thread were long fermentation doughs, in most cases at room temperature. But they were in the context of using a preferment or old dough. If my memory is correct, I also used an overnight room fermentation for a DiFara dough clone or two, and the results were discussed at the DiFara reverse engineering thread. In fact, I should be soon reporting on the results of a couple more recent experiments with the DiFara dough clones (at the DiFara reverse engineering thread). Before all of those experiments, I also made many long fermentation doughs, both at room temperature and in the refrigerator, using the Bel Aria and Delverde 00 flours. What I have concluded to date is that, to be successful with 00 doughs, there is a delicate balance that has to be achieved between the amount and type of yeast used (commercial and/or preferment), temperature (whether room temperature or retardation/refrigeration), and time (which is usually dictated or influenced by the two other factors). There are other factors, to be sure, like the amount of salt used and the degree of hydration, but I deem them to be subsidiary to the other three factors.

Peter

Offline friz78

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #9 on: May 02, 2005, 08:59:42 PM »
Peter (and those with success using Caputo flour),
To better clarify my question, what to this point have you found to produce the best results when using Caputo pizzeria flour exclusively?  Does it respond any better or any differently to certain techniques that do not work as well when using KASL?

Just to get an idea if the A16 pizza resembles typical Caputo flour pizza, have you found your crust to be as described earlier in this thread?  That would include crust traits that are crisp with a soft chew, and light and airy without being too soft.  I recall in the past that you have referred to the difference between Neapolitan and NY style pizza, and after my experience at A16, I think I now know what you are talking about.

Could I/we possibly be over-analyzing this?  Could the simple solution be to just use a standard, proven dough recipe from this forum (Lehman, Raquel, or some other) and just replace KASL with Caputo?  Or am I correct in my sense that there is a bit more to it than that?  More specifically, could it be that there are very clear cut differences in the "best practices" on how to handle Caputo based dough versus KASL based dough?  In other words, perhaps there is a certain mixing technique that works for KASL but is not ideal for Caputo flour?  Or, is one mixing technique better suited for a NY artisan pizza but not ideal for an authentic Neapolitan pizza?  Your answer may be that you're not sure, which is fine because experimentation is a wonderful thing. 

I do recall that pft found the Caputo based pizzas he made to perform quite differently than KASL with the same mixing, preparation and cooking techniques.  It's just good to gather as much information as we can before we embark on the experimentation phase in this process.  Nothing wrong with arranging a few "step savers" before we start experimentation.
Friz


Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #10 on: May 02, 2005, 11:05:30 PM »
Friz,

I personally found that the doughs I made with the Caputo 00 and Caputo 00 preferment and a long period of room temperature fermentation/ripening to produce the best crusts/pizzas for my taste. Using the Caputo 00 flour with a commercial yeast or a combination of commercial yeast and a preferment will also work reasonably well. As will a refrigerated dough. But each approach has its own set of parameters that have to be worked out. Several of the Caputo-only doughs I made produced crusts having the characteristics you referenced in your earlier post. The Caputo/KASL crust I made today did also. What all of the crusts had pretty much in common is that they were all quite thin--much thinner than a NY style crust based on KASL. Yet, the crusts based on the Raquel recipe, which calls for KASL, are also very thin and have the charecteristics you described. I'm fairly confident that the crust you had at A16 was better than any of mine, because of the high-temperature oven, but I don't know that the differences would be monumental.

I don't think there is a big difference between making doughs with the Caputo 00 flour and other flours such as KASL. The Caputo 00 flour is considered a lower hydration flour, but I have discovered that I can get 65% hydration with the Caputo 00 flour if that is what I want. Doughs made with 00 flours are also often kneaded much longer than other doughs, but it seems to me that the higher-protein flours like the Caputo 00 flour don't require as much kneading as previously recommended for 00 flours in general. This seems to be confirmed by what you heard about the duration of kneading at A16--that it was quite short. I think it all comes down to understanding the basic dough processing steps and executing them properly. With experience, you get to know pretty well when the dough is right--as a sixth sense. As I reported today on the DiFara reverse engineering thread, I used autolyse with a combination of the Caputo 00 flour and KASL. I doubt that it would have mattered if I used only the Caputo 00 flour. I am now in the process of working with a Lehmann NY style retarded dough using only a natural preferment, KASL, and an autolyse. I won't know for a day or so what I will end up with. But, like you, I'd like to know what works best with each type of flour.

My recollection is that pftaylor experimented with Caputo 00 flour in his Raquel recipe. I don't specifically recall whether he used a preferment or whether it was a room temperature or retarded fermentation, but my recollection is that he got good crust flavor. We may want to revisit his posts on this since they may be instructional, especially since pftaylor used very high grill temperatures that are closer to the temperatures associated with Neapolitan style pizzas.

What I indicated at the outset is that we might come to see that the recipe used at A16 is fairly standard. And I believe that that is largely so. But where there seems to be a departure, maybe a significant one, is the way that olive oil seems to be used in the A16 doughs. It would be interesting, for example, to try to make a dough that uses a lot of olive oil and looks like what you saw at A16. You could start with one of the basic Caputo 00 dough recipes, assume a relatively high hydration, use a lot of oil and go for a 2-3 day retardation. It would be fairly easy to adjust the baker's percents and come up with a set of ingredients for the experiment. Or, if you'd prefer, you can take a step back and use a basic Caputo 00 dough recipe, select a hydration percent, use a bit of olive oil to start, and use a 2-3 day refrigeration, and make a pizza to see how it works out.  You can then decide the direction to go next.

Peter

Offline friz78

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #11 on: May 03, 2005, 10:10:09 AM »
Peter,
That's a great idea and I am happy to proceed with this experiment, which will begin first with testing the effect of various amounts of olive oil in a Caputo dough recipe.  Could I ask you to post a recommended Caputo/Neapolitan pizza recipe for me to work from?  Something that would make a 13 inch pie?  Once I get that from you, I will "tweak" the recipe as it relates to olive oil content and commercial yeast content, as I think these are two factors that seem to be in question at this time.  I will, of course, follow up with pictures and feedback after the experiment is executed.
Thanks,
Friz

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #12 on: May 03, 2005, 03:17:03 PM »
Friz,

I am scheduled to be going out of town for about a week but will try to come up with one or more sample recipes before I go.

I agree that the two open issues to explore are the amounts of yeast and oil.

Peter

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #13 on: May 03, 2005, 08:38:26 PM »
Friz,

I realize that you haven't yet taken delivery of your Caputo 00 pizzeria flour, but since I will be going out of town I wanted you to have a few recipes to consider and play around with until your flour arrives. What I did to get things going was 1) to take a look at all the Caputo 00 recipes that were given at the sites to which I provided links in Reply #5, 2) calculated the thickness factors (TF) based on the dough ball sizes and corresponding pizza sizes used in the recipes, and 3) then used the calculated thickness factors and the original baker's percents specified in the recipes to determine the dough ball weights and ingredient amounts required for the 13-inch size you decided to experiment with.

I decided not to include the recipe provided at the Woodstone site because, as I was reviewing the information at that site, I noticed that the Caputo flour used in the recipe is the red bag Caputo, which has a higher protein content than the Caputo 00 pizzeria flour. Since we don't have access to the Caputo red, there would be no reason to use the recipe. I also created a second version of the Caputo recipe that was provided to me by the importer of the Caputo 00 flour (called Caputo 1 below) because the recipe provided to me has a thickness factor of around 0.10, which is about the same as a NY style dough. My revised version (called Caputo 2 below) uses a thickness factor that is more in line with the last Caputo recipe (pizzanapoletana's) presented below, as well as the Caputo red recipe I chose not to use.

I converted the yeast (fresh yeast) for each of the recipes to IDY, so if you choose to use ADY, for example, you will have to multiply the amount of IDY, by volume, by 1.5 and use part of the total water for proofing purposes. This may be an exercise in futility since the IDY quantities are so small that you won't be able to measure them (or the corresponding ADY quantities) using standard measuring spoons. Except for the small quantities specified by volumes, I have specified weights, on the theory that we can ultimately convert everything to volumes (as well as weights) once a recipe proves worthy of our respect. For each recipe, I have included some comments that might be helpful as you begin your experimentation. Here are the candidate recipes (along with baker's percents):

Caputo 1 (TF = 0.10)
Flour, Caputo 00 pizzeria flour, 8.68 oz. (100%)
Water, 4.34 oz. (50%)
Sea salt, 0.243 oz. (a bit less than 1 1/4 t.) (2.8%)
IDY, 0.006 oz. (a few small pinches between the thumb and forefinger) (0.07%)
Total dough ball weight: 13.27 oz.
Comments: This recipe is for a low hydration dough intended to be used in high-temperature ovens. For a home oven, it will be necessary to increase the hydration percent and to add some olive oil to the dough. The crust produced using this recipe will be about the same thickness as a typical NY style crust. A thinner version is presented just below this version.

Caputo 2 (TF = 0.075)
Flour, Caputo 00 pizzeria flour, 6.51 oz. (100%)
Water, 3.26 oz. (50%)
Sea salt, 0.18 oz. (between 7/8 t. and 1 t.) (2.8%)
IDY, 0.005 oz. (a few small pinches between the thumb and forefinger (0.07%)
Total dough ball weight: 9.96 oz.
Comments: I created this version to have a dough and crust thickness more in line with the remaining recipe presented below (which is also in line with the Caputo red recipe I chose not to present). The recipe is otherwise the same as Caputo 1 and will require a similar adjustment to the water hydration and the addition of olive oil.

pizzanapoletana (TF = 0.078)
Flour, Caputo pizzeria flour, 6.33 oz. (100%)
Water, 3.85 oz. (60.8%)
Sea salt, 0.17 oz. (7/8 t.) (2.73%)
IDY, 0.003 oz. (a couple of small pinches between the thumb and forefinger) (0.05 %)
Total dough ball weight = 10.35 oz.
Comments: This is a downsized version of a recipe originally provided to our members by pizzanapoletana (Marco). He originally advised against downsizing the recipe to the small dough weights I had in mind, but at the time I chose to proceed nonetheless for experimentation purposes. Note that the hydration percent is quite a bit higher than the other recipes. Hence, it may not be necessary to increase it further for purposes of the A16 experiments. Marco's hydration percent may serve as a good number to benchmark off of for the other recipes with their lower hydration levels. Marco also advises the addition of oil if the recipe is to be practiced in a home oven.

You should also take note that each of the above recipes has its own unique processing steps. For purposes of the A16 experiments, you will perhaps want to ignore those processing steps and try to adapt the recipes to the mode of processing you believe A16 is using. You will also have to determine what changes to hydration are necessary, along with determining how much yeast and oil to use to achieve a faster-than-usual rise (to permit punching the dough down one or more times) and to achieve an apparent above average degree of oiliness. I assume you will want to try for 2-3 days of fermentation. Whatever is done, I advise that you record the changes made and their degree (e.g., additions to the recipes and changes in volumes and/or weights of ingredients) so that they can later be incorporated back into the original recipes to recalculate a new set of baker's percents and ingredient amounts.

If I have forgotten anything, made any mistakes, or you have any questions, feel free to let me know.

Peter



« Last Edit: September 15, 2005, 06:12:20 PM by Pete-zza »

Offline friz78

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #14 on: May 03, 2005, 08:59:00 PM »
Peter,
You never seize to amaze me.  Your contribution to this and so many other endeavors on this forum is truly special.  In participating in all of this in such an unselfish and selfless way, you never once show anything but the utmost respect for every member of this forum.  Thank you so much for all of your contributions -  we would all be lost without you.

In speaking with Rose at Pennmac today, my Caputo flour should arrive on Thursday.  My experiment will begin immediately upon deliver of this flour.  Hopefully I will have some feedback and pictures by the end of this weekend.  Thanks again Peter for facilitating this experiment.
Friz

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #15 on: May 03, 2005, 09:51:59 PM »
Thanks, Friz. Tell me again....where am I supposed to send the money?

Peter

Offline abatardi

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #16 on: May 04, 2005, 02:48:09 AM »
Thanks, Friz. Tell me again....where am I supposed to send the money?

Peter

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Offline friz78

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #17 on: May 04, 2005, 12:01:39 PM »
Peter,
No need to send money, just send me a couple of your pizzas - preferrably Neapolitan pies that use Caputo flour!
Friz

Offline pizzanapoletana

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #18 on: May 04, 2005, 12:23:15 PM »
The reccomanded hydratation for both Caputo flour is 56%. The 50 % recipes are indeed to low.

Offline friz78

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Re: Re-Engineering A16 pizza in SF
« Reply #19 on: May 04, 2005, 08:46:25 PM »
Marco,
Are you suggesting that a 56% hydration would be the best point to start from for a home oven?  Or should I start with a bit higher hydration due to the limitations of my home oven?

Also, could the coloring of the dough ball been from an aggressive coating of olive oil on the dough AFTER it was prepared instead of during the mixing process?  Or do you think the olive oil was included in the actual dough recipe, or might it have been just alot of oil sprinkled on top of the finished dough ball?
Friz