Author Topic: dough stretching  (Read 3711 times)

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Anne

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dough stretching
« on: May 14, 2005, 07:38:58 PM »
Hi again. 

I have seen some mention of the technique used in stretching out the dough can make a difference in the final product.  I typically use my rolling pin, but that is probably NOT the best method.

I checked the 1st 10 pages of this forum and didn't see any thing.  Could you point me to a previous discussion on this topic?  Or if there isn't one, would someone be willing to give a brief overview on approved stretching techniques? 

Thank you.  Hope everyone is enjoying their pizzas.  Mine tonight was still way too bready, but it did cook better thanks to a tip from Randy in one of these threads. 

Anne, pizza maker wanna-be. 


Offline Nathan

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Re: dough stretching
« Reply #1 on: May 14, 2005, 08:01:31 PM »
Using a rolling pin is a big NO NO...  (http://tinyurl.com/c3nt5)  It ruins the air bubbles in the crust and makes it more dense.

There are several (debated) ways to form the dough but here's what I do.  I use a long fermentation in the fridge and make sure the dough is at room temp before I form it.  I press it down with my fingers in the center and out towards the edges on the peel (without disturbing the rim).  I then pick it up on my fists and start to stretch and rotate it letting gravity do most of the work.  Depending on what type of dough you're using will determine how good this method works.  If you're using a good NY style dough it will work very well.  And fast.  From what I have learned the best dough will stretch easily and not fight back.



« Last Edit: May 15, 2005, 07:07:15 AM by Nathan »
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Offline pyegal

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Re: dough stretching
« Reply #2 on: May 14, 2005, 11:44:37 PM »
Thanks for explaining your technique, Nathan. Now...does anyone have a video we can watch?

I'll have to say that since I have been using the dough recipes and various methods of mixing/resting/cold rise, etc. the crusts I have made have been much easier to stretch than in the past - before I discovered this forum. Now, I just have to practice to find my technique so I can stretch out a dough quickly and not warm it up to a sticky mess before I flop it up on the peel.

pyegal

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Re: dough stretching
« Reply #3 on: May 14, 2005, 11:58:59 PM »
Teresa,

Check this out: http://www.taunton.com/finecooking/pages/cvt033.asp. Just don't pay too much attention to the rolling part, although I believe the woman makes reference in the video to Roman pizzas which are thin and can have a cracker-like crust.

Peter
« Last Edit: May 15, 2005, 12:03:56 AM by Pete-zza »

Offline Anne

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Re: dough stretching
« Reply #4 on: May 15, 2005, 05:33:19 PM »
Thanks for the replies!  I checked out the video.  Yes, she does state that the roller is if you want a cracker-thin crust.  Definitely not my goal; I was already able to get that type of crust. 

Using the roller is probably part of why my dough is so bread-like.    :-[   

I've been scouring the boards and checking out the various dough recipes.  I need to compare them to the one I got from my "The Art of Pizza Making" book.  That is the one I've been using these last couple of attempts, although I am still using K.A. bread flour (haven't placed my order yet for S.L. or any 00 flour). 

Anne, pizza maker wanna-be

Offline pftaylor

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Re: dough stretching
« Reply #5 on: May 16, 2005, 09:07:54 AM »
Anne,
I have discussed the importance of dough stretching at length in two different threads. The Patsy's Reverse Engineering thread as well as the somewhat related Pizza Raquel thread. I hope it helps.
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Offline Anne

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Re: dough stretching
« Reply #6 on: May 18, 2005, 08:50:58 PM »
pftaylor:  Thanks for pointing those out.  I started to wade through them; I haven't gotten to the dough stretching parts yet!  I think I'm almost there. though. 

(If you plant herbs, warning:  they like to spread.  Mint is particularly prone to taking over everything.) 

I just placed my order for both K.A.S.L. and for Caputa 00.  And I've been looking through all the threads with the various baker's percentages for the dough (Lehmann, Old Faithful, etc).  Who ever thought pizza making could be so complicated.   :o   
Anne, pizza maker wanna-be

Online Pete-zza

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Re: dough stretching
« Reply #7 on: May 19, 2005, 12:10:58 AM »
Anne,

I can understand how something like baker's percents can be perplexing. Baker's percents are simply a tool that bakers use to scale a recipe up or down. Here at the site, we use baker's percents to take a recipe like Tom Lehmann's recipe for a NY style dough, which calls for 50 pounds of flour, or a recipe like Big Dave's Old Faithful, which calls for 46 pounds of flour, and scale them down to a single-pizza size of any desired diameter. Without baker's percents (and some other data), we couldn't do this. Unfortunately, baker's percents make use of weights rather than volumes--with which most home bakers are much more familiar--so you will usually see ingredients specified by weights rather than volumes. To get to volume measurements means having to take the additional step of converting weights to volumes--which many of the recipes at this site do.  So, unless you would like to learn how to use baker's percents to downsize or up-size a recipe, I wouldn't worry about them. Instead, find a recipe you think you will like and try to master it using the information and help available at this site.

Peter

Offline pftaylor

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Re: dough stretching
« Reply #8 on: May 19, 2005, 09:08:47 AM »
Anne,
Thanks for the heads-up on mint. I could use a lot for iced teas since its awfully hot in Tampa but do you have any tips for keeping it in check?

Also, regarding the topic of stretching, I would point you in the direction of mixing first. My position is that if your mixing process is anything less than robust than you will have stretching challenges. Get the mixing part right and then stretching is easy. In fact, the entire process of making a pizza is quite inter-dependent on the previous step. Each "next step" is dependent on the previous one. So if the previous step is compromised for some reason, than you will only be able to achieve a certain percentage of success with the current step. A cascading process if you will.

Good luck!
Pizza Raquel is Simply Everything You’d Want.
www.wood-firedpizza.com

Online Pete-zza

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Re: dough stretching
« Reply #9 on: May 19, 2005, 09:48:48 AM »
pft,

Don't even think about trying to contain mint :). Once it is in the ground, it will spread through an aggressive and tenacious rooting system and it will be almost impossible to eradicate (without using chemicals) once it starts to spread. I found that the way to control mint is to grow it in large, wide pots a safe distance away from soil, as on a patio deck.

I echo what you say about optimizing the likelihood of success by following sound mixing and kneading techniques. It's even more important in a home setting where our standard KitcheAid mixers, which is what most of our members seem to be using, are no match for what professionals use. That you have been able to achieve such good results without resorting to a machine such as used by Varasano or one of the higher end machines recommended by pizzanapoletana (Marco) is all the more remarkable.

Peter
« Last Edit: May 19, 2005, 09:51:10 AM by Pete-zza »


Offline pizzamagic

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Re: dough stretching
« Reply #10 on: May 19, 2005, 01:25:02 PM »
Like Varsano, I am using the Electrolux DLX (DX2000) and I get consistently well kneaded doughs. It isn't any more expensive then a good Kitchen Aid.
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Scott


 

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