Author Topic: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!  (Read 517958 times)

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Offline dellavecchia

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #50 on: June 30, 2011, 05:10:18 PM »
John, I definitely agree.   im no tom lehmann, but the dough I most often use is a 20 hour room temp, or 1 week in the fridge fermentation using tiny amounts of yeast.   I have done a bunch of tests over the years using a 20min-2hour autolyse with the salt and yeast, or without the salt and yeast, and for these very low yeast doughs I can't tell any difference between the two.  

P.S I know someone who paid Tom to do a consult, and at least back then he wasn't recommending the use of an autolyse.  

Thanks for the confirmation Scott. You are just as highly regarded in my book as Tom!

John


Offline Matthew

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #51 on: June 30, 2011, 05:16:02 PM »
Matt, the fact that a biga and poolish differ in consistency is not the sole reason they differ in taste. In fact, if we were to just consider the consistency, and nothing else, one might reasonably expect the more sour note to be delivered by the thicker consistency of the biga.

K,
My reference was specific to a biga naturale & not a biga made with yeast.  The Italians refresh the biga naturale by retaining very little & feeding it triple amounts of combined water & flour.  Again, the idea is to keep the madre extremely mild so there is zero sourness in the finished dough.

Matt

Offline wheelman

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #52 on: June 30, 2011, 06:35:06 PM »
The non-old dough version called for 0.1% salt in the preferment to control the enzyme activity. I think if I was to work more on this, I would cut out the salt and shorten the preferment time to somewhere in a 12-18 hour range.

CL

I always wondered what that pinch of salt was for!
I really appreciate you guys.  I have no background in baking, everything i know i've learned here. 
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Offline JConk007

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #53 on: June 30, 2011, 09:37:07 PM »
My head is spinning! I still do it the old fashion way 20 min autolyse 75% of flour no yeast. I feel like I am really missing out on something after pouring over this info, but its beyond me how to even start, or where I could find the time to refresh, keep alive, measure, time, all these things on a consistent basis for the larger scale 50+ dough balls. This knowledge  would also contribute to the true Pizzaiolo I got a long way to go ! But I got a lot of time too! and I am not one to give up. I just hope someday to comprehend the starter, biga, poolish, patte natural, preferment, levain....
Thanks for all the explanations. WOW details are so cool  ???
John
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Offline Jackie Tran

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #54 on: June 30, 2011, 10:07:46 PM »
Maybe it's just my lack of knowledge or my preference towards simplicity , but I often see a trend towards overcomplicating things.  Mix all ingredients together, let it sit for a long time, then knead and proceed as usual.

Kelly, given 2 of the same starters, one with a low(er) hydration, I would presume that the higher hydrated one would ferment faster and therefore produce more byproducts (flavor).  Correct or not?

Chau
« Last Edit: July 01, 2011, 01:49:00 AM by Jackie Tran »

Offline ninapizza23

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #55 on: June 30, 2011, 11:08:36 PM »
CT,
the more you complicate things the more you frustrate yourself. KISS is the way to go.  I have perfect hydration, fermentation, color and longevity.  Do Not stress the dough or your mind. ENJOY!

Offline Pizza Napoletana

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #56 on: July 01, 2011, 12:05:01 AM »
Ladies and gentlemen, with all due respect, the water is getting muddy! If I were you, I would strive for simplicity. (Yet, who knows? Perchance what you are doing may yield greater results, however complicated.) I would keep everything as simple as possible. (“We are lovers of beauty, but simple in our tastes.”) “Ockham’s razor”, a principle of simplicity, can definitely be applied to the situation at hand. According to the scholastic philosopher William of Ockham, Entita non sunt multiplicanda praeter necessitate: “Entities are not to be multiplied beyond necessity” or “The number of entities used to explain phenomena should not be increased unnecessarily”. In other words, of two or more possible explanations for a phenomenon, choose the one that explains what is to be explained with the fewest assumptions and explanatory principles. And, of course, as the great Aristotle stated, this is a rational (ratio, proportion) process. I think it is fair to posit that an underlying principle of Italian cuisine in general is simplicity.

Since here we are concerned with causation in transforming or changing the flour, Aristotle’s “four causes” may be of assistance here. Aristotle was of the belief that to understand a natural phenomenon, one should determine the four following causes thereof:

1. “Material Cause” (change produced out of which or what),
2. “Formal Cause” (change produced into which),
3. “Efficient Cause” (change produced by which), and
4. “Final Cause” (change produced for the sake of which)

If we walk on a beach and see footprints (the formal cause), we can legitimately infer that a human being (the efficient cause) must have walked there before we did. Because of past experience, we might even be able to tell the person's weight by examining the size and depth of the footprints.

Tonight, around 7:30 PM (Pacific time), I finished making a mass of dough that is hydrated at 48%!!! (I am pushing the limit to see how low I can go.) To get the hydration level as accurate as possible, I refrained from using liquid culture. Instead, I used precisely 0.20 grams of fresh yeast. We shall see the results tomorrow around this time. Good night everyone!
« Last Edit: July 01, 2011, 12:42:53 PM by Pizza Napoletana »
Recipes make pizzas no more than sermons make saints!

http://pizzanapoletanismo.com/2011/09/27/a-philosophy-of-pizza-napoletanismo/

Offline Jackie Tran

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #57 on: July 01, 2011, 12:39:22 AM »
Omid, the water is never too muddy.  Healthy discussion brings about ideas, inspiration, and learning.  So all exchange no matter how complicated is good exchange.  I have time, curiosity, and flour so I will drop the hydration to 55% (my lowest and 8 pts down from my previous) and see what happens.  I will also be using a not so fresh CY, so it should balance out nicely.  I will report back tomorrow.

CT,
the more you complicate things the more you frustrate yourself. KISS is the way to go.  I have perfect hydration, fermentation, color and longevity.  Do Not stress the dough or your mind. ENJOY!

Nina, that is the point I am making.  There is no "perfect" hydration, only balanced hydration.  Whether you prefer high or low, you still need to balance it with the multitude of other factors to bring about optimal results.

Chau
« Last Edit: July 01, 2011, 08:56:27 AM by Jackie Tran »

Offline Jet_deck

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #58 on: July 01, 2011, 12:47:25 AM »

4. “Final Cause” (change produced for the sake of which)


Can I order a final cause with pineapple?  No, seriously keep the dialogue coming I enjoy this discussion. :chef:
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Offline dellavecchia

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #59 on: July 01, 2011, 07:37:15 AM »
Understanding the processes behind dough and fermentation to make informed decisions about workflow does not diminish the simplicity of the four ingredients we are discussing here, nor the simplicity of the process. Chau summed it up beautifully. There is not one way to make dough, nor is there a perfect dough. I would like to see what perfection looks like from those who claim ownership. As is applies to neapolitan pizza, the preferred workflows of experienced bakers is the starting point. We just happen to know and understand that starting point enough, which is classic breadmaking, to make our own decisions.

John

Offline Matthew

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #60 on: July 01, 2011, 08:27:01 AM »
I would like to see what perfection looks like from those who claim ownership. As is applies to neapolitan pizza, the preferred workflows of experienced bakers is the starting point. We just happen to know and understand that starting point enough, which is classic breadmaking, to make our own decisions.

John

I couldn't agree more!  Okay......Who's first?

Offline Barry

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #61 on: July 01, 2011, 10:30:12 AM »
Hi Everyone,

I am loving this thread!  Could I make a suggestion for the sake of "keeping it simple" and helping us all understand the principles being put forward, by using a standard recipe that starts with, say, 1,000 millilitres (one litre) of water, and detailing each step with an explanation?

For example:

Step 1: Take 1 litre of room temperature, filtered water, and dissolve 28 grams of sea salt in it. This equates to 2.8% salinity.
Step 2: Weigh out 1,000 grams of Caputo "00" flour, and add it to the water using a sieve. This will ....
Step 3: Leave the mixture at room temperature for 14 - 18 hours.
Step 4: Add 35 grams of active starter to the mixture.
Step 5: Now slowly add more flour to the mixture until ....   The total flour used should be about 1,725 grams, which equates to a hydration of 58%.
Step 6. Etc, etc

What do you think?

Kind regards.

Barry


Offline Grimaldi

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #62 on: July 01, 2011, 12:33:11 PM »
Great thread!

I do a one weekend a month market with my mobile WFO and make around 75 pounds of dough for the event. My dough begins with a sourdough starter from local wild mustang grapes (the culture is now 1 year old). I expand the starter beginning on Monday before the event, by Thursday morning I have about 20 pounds of very active starter.

The dough mixing begins on Thursday. I do everything by weight. First, I add the starter, followed by the water...I use this order so I can sorta 'rinse' the container of all the starter, followed by about 80% of the AP flour (have not been able to get 00 at a price or in the quantity I need, so far...but I've had very good results with Central Milling Organic Unbleached AP). I mix the batch for a couple of minutes and then let it autolize for about an hour. Then I knead it with the dough hook (20 quart Univex) for about 5 minutes on low, during which time I add Redmond Real Salt, then add the remaining flour and knead for a few more minutes.

I put the dough on a marble surface covered with wet/damp cloths and start on another batch of dough. When I get to the point of autolizing the next batch, I start making the dough balls from the previous batch.

I try to get the dough balls chilled down ASAP to slow down the fermentation and proofing so the dough is in good condition for both Saturday and Sunday. Since I am working outside in some very severe weather conditions (100 degree temps for several months), it is very tricky working the dough. Sometimes I don't take the dough ball out of the cold before opening them. My work table is so hot that I just place the cold dough ball on the table and it becomes almost instantly workable. The long cold fermentation/proofing along with the natural leavening makes working in adverse conditions more manageable. The oven spring is a thing of beauty. I fire the oven with oak, pecan, and mesquite and try to keep the oven floor around 700+ degrees. I usually burn 1 or 2 to a crisp because 15 or 20 seconds can be the difference between char and charcoal. Lots of distractions... people love to talk about the oven and pizza making.

I have a line of orders all day long...it is really intense. 

   

Online tinroofrusted

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #63 on: July 01, 2011, 12:43:20 PM »
Great thread!

I do a one weekend a month market with my mobile WFO and make around 75 pounds of dough for the event. My dough begins with a sourdough starter from local wild mustang grapes (the culture is now 1 year old). I expand the starter beginning on Monday before the event, by Thursday morning I have about 20 pounds of very active starter.

The dough mixing begins on Thursday. I do everything by weight. First, I add the starter, followed by the water...I use this order so I can sorta 'rinse' the container of all the starter, followed by about 80% of the AP flour (have not been able to get 00 at a price or in the quantity I need, so far...but I've had very good results with Central Milling Organic Unbleached AP). I mix the batch for a couple of minutes and then let it autolize for about an hour. Then I knead it with the dough hook (20 quart Univex) for about 5 minutes on low, during which time I add Redmond Real Salt, then add the remaining flour and knead for a few more minutes.

I put the dough on a marble surface covered with wet/damp cloths and start on another batch of dough. When I get to the point of autolizing the next batch, I start making the dough balls from the previous batch.

I try to get the dough balls chilled down ASAP to slow down the fermentation and proofing so the dough is in good condition for both Saturday and Sunday. Since I am working outside in some very severe weather conditions (100 degree temps for several months), it is very tricky working the dough. Sometimes I don't take the dough ball out of the cold before opening them. My work table is so hot that I just place the cold dough ball on the table and it becomes almost instantly workable. The long cold fermentation/proofing along with the natural leavening makes working in adverse conditions more manageable. The oven spring is a thing of beauty. I fire the oven with oak, pecan, and mesquite and try to keep the oven floor around 700+ degrees. I usually burn 1 or 2 to a crisp because 15 or 20 seconds can be the difference between char and charcoal. Lots of distractions... people love to talk about the oven and pizza making.

I have a line of orders all day long...it is really intense. 

   

That's really interesting. I'd love to see some photos of your setup and pizzas.  Where is the market you attend? 

Regards,

Tin Roof

Offline Pizza Napoletana

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #64 on: July 02, 2011, 03:22:32 AM »
Tonight, around 7:30 PM (Pacific time), I finished making a mass of dough that is hydrated at 48%!!! (I am pushing the limit to see how low I can go.) To get the hydration level as accurate as possible, I refrained from using liquid culture. Instead, I used precisely 0.20 grams of fresh yeast. We shall see the results tomorrow around this time. Good night everyone!

Here are the results! But, first, the objective of this experiment was to examine the outcome of low—but "effective"—hydration. In this experiment, the dough was composed of the following elements:

872 gr. Caputo "Chef's Flour", tipo "00"
418 gr. Water
24 gr. Sea Salt
0.20 gr. Fresh Yeast

The hydration level was at 48%—the lowest hydration I had ever implemented. Every minuscule drop of water mattered! Moreover, the dough went through a state of fermentation/levitation for 22 hours (at controlled room temperature) before I formed her into 5 balls (see picture #1 below), each about 250 to 260 grams. The dough balls rested for 5 hours (see picture #2 below), and then they were drafted, dressed, and baked at about 652 degree Fahrenheit in my $99 modified Sears home gas oven. The pizza, as exhibited below, baked for 3 minutes and 4 seconds. The crust was surprisingly much softer and more flavorful than I had expected; it was soft enough not needing to be sliced by a slicer. Moreover, the crust did not feel burdensome to the stomach. Therefore, briefly put, effective hydration truly animates dough for generation of superior flavor and texture. After all said and done, in my opinion, dough of higher hydration produces better flavor and softer texture. Happy 4th of July everyone!
« Last Edit: July 02, 2011, 03:56:34 AM by Pizza Napoletana »
Recipes make pizzas no more than sermons make saints!

http://pizzanapoletanismo.com/2011/09/27/a-philosophy-of-pizza-napoletanismo/

Offline selprop

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #65 on: July 02, 2011, 03:43:29 AM »
Omid,
Great looking pies,
I am off to Mona Lisa tomorrow, will let you know how I make out

Mark

Offline JConk007

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #66 on: July 02, 2011, 08:10:41 AM »
Omid - I wish you had 900 degrees so us woodies could see how this is all working out in the higher heat evironment. Great looking Pies!


Grimaldi,
I am a new Mobile operator as well I would also love to see ome pics of the mobile oven and set upi maybe you could put a few over in Shop talk to Not distacr from this great thread.
Thanks

John
I Love to Flirt with Fire! www.flirtingwithfirepizza.com


Offline DannyG

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #67 on: July 02, 2011, 09:06:20 AM »
Here are the results! But, first, the objective of this experiment was to examine the outcome of low—but "effective"—hydration. In this experiment, the dough was composed of the following elements:

872 gr. Caputo "Chef's Flour", tipo "00"
418 gr. Water
24 gr. Sea Salt
0.20 gr. Fresh Yeast

The hydration level was at 48%—the lowest hydration I had ever implemented. Every minuscule drop of water mattered! Moreover, the dough went through a state of fermentation/levitation for 22 hours (at controlled room temperature) before I formed her into 5 balls (see picture #1 below), each about 250 to 260 grams. The dough balls rested for 5 hours (see picture #2 below), and then they were drafted, dressed, and baked at about 652 degree Fahrenheit in my $99 modified Sears home gas oven. The pizza, as exhibited below, baked for 3 minutes and 4 seconds. The crust was surprisingly much softer and more flavorful than I had expected; it was soft enough not needing to be sliced by a slicer. Moreover, the crust did not feel burdensome to the stomach. Therefore, briefly put, effective hydration truly animates dough for generation of superior flavor and texture. After all said and done, in my opinion, dough of higher hydration produces better flavor and softer texture. Happy 4th of July everyone!

Omid, would you step us through your process preceding the fermentation?

Offline Jackie Tran

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #68 on: July 02, 2011, 09:12:39 AM »
That's a nice looking pie Omid.  It shows your versatility with different hydrated doughs. 

I will drop the hydration to 55% (my lowest and 8 pts down from my previous) and see what happens.  I will also be using a not so fresh CY, so it should balance out nicely.  I will report back tomorrow.

Chau

So here are the results of my experiment.   I ended up making 2 doughs, one with a starter and the other with an older CY that was thawed after sitting in the freezer for ~2 months. 

The dough was mixed Thursday near midnight and the plan was to bake around 6pm (18hrs) on Friday night.  There was a change of plan for dinner and we went to a movie afterward so I could not get to the dough till near 11pm.  At 530pm though, the dough made with starter was ready as scheduled, so I had to put both doughs in the cold to slow them down.   When I got to the doughs after 10pm, the one with starter had fermented beyond what I would consider it's prime, and the one with CY was finally ready.

I also opted to bake these in my LBE to see how they would differ from a home oven bake since I had done that earlier. 

I bake the starter dough first b/c it was already risen high.  Both doughs required a bit of effort to stretch them out.  That is too say the didn't open up effortlessly.  These baked for around 2.5m in the LBE.

The starter dough was harder to open, did not puff up as high despite showing a larger starting volume, and the crumb was tougher than the CY pie.   Both of these were 208gm.

I enjoyed doing these experiments for several reasons.  First I would have never thought that I could make a decent pizza with a 55% HR using 00 and living in a desert climate.  I had always assumed that I had to make a higher hydration dough b/c of the dry air here, and I was wrong about that.  Climate does have an effect but can be overcome with a change of technique.   Also I'm getting better at balancing the dough out regardless of the flour (or flour blends), hydration, source of yeast, salt levels, etc.   It was also interesting to see how different the 00 flour handled at extreme ends of hydration 55% vs 68%.  I was able to see the effect of the lower hydration on the finish crust and crumb.  I don't have a need to go lower although I probably could.  I will likely be lowering my current hydration of 68% to about 62-63% next time I bake in the wfo. 

1st pie is the starter pie.  2nd one CY.   

Ciao

Offline thezaman

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #69 on: July 02, 2011, 10:26:44 AM »
 omid, those pizzas are absolutely beautiful, we eat with our eyes,mine are craving those pies. please fill in the blanks on your hydration methods,mixing methods ect.you have a bunch of information crazed pizza makers wanting as much information on pizza as we can get.
 tran, your pies are amazing as usual, did you detect flavor differences in the two methods?? what temperature did you cook your pizzas at?

Offline Jet_deck

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #70 on: July 02, 2011, 10:33:45 AM »
Thank you Chau and PN for the results they look wonderfully delicious.  PN how did you achieve the cappuccino design on the top of that margarita?  Looks like fancy artwork from Starbucks.
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Offline Jackie Tran

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #71 on: July 02, 2011, 01:18:48 PM »
Thanks Larry and Gene.   These pies were nothing special for me.   Certainly not compared to some of my better pies.  They were more or less experimental tester pies.  

Larry, the methods were very similar for both pies, only the source of yeast was different.  I use a very mild starter so the flavor was slightly better on the starter pie, but the texture on the CY for this bake was better.  I prefer texture first, then flavor 2nd.  

Then stone temp in the LBE is 650f, and the bake time is 2m30s to 3m.

Chau
« Last Edit: July 03, 2011, 08:30:15 AM by Jackie Tran »

Offline JConk007

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #72 on: July 02, 2011, 01:54:34 PM »
Chau,
I'm at 62% and staying put right there. 20-30 min autolyse and a kick ass Diving arm mixer make for some wonderful dough. I  Can't wait to cook em up today all 35!  :chef:
John
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Offline Pizza Napoletana

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #73 on: July 02, 2011, 04:26:51 PM »
Dear DannyG and Thezaman, every quest begins with a quest-ion! In one of the posts above, I was kindly asked, “Please fill in the blanks on your hydration methods, mixing methods etc. You have a bunch of information crazed pizza makers wanting as much information on pizza as we can get.” Please, forgive me, but doing so would defeat a vital thesis of my opening post in this thread:

● “Recipes and techniques do not make pizzas; they are merely instrumental in the act of creation.”

● “In making dough, often we implement steps for which we have no explanations other than ‘that’s what everybody else does’ or ‘that’s what I have been told.’”

● “Dare to think for yourself.”

● “In learning anything, always aim to understand the underlying principles as opposed to . . . the content [or ‘information’]. . . . if you know the principles, then you can always create your own content [i.e., recipes and techniques].”

● “A recipe is only half of the story! . . . ‘The map is not the territory’.”

● “The pizzaioli, prior to World War I, respected ‘time’ and the virtues of ‘patience’ and ‘excellence’—virtues that require time and reflection in order to be cultivated.”

● “As man works on nature outside himself and changes it, he changes at the same time his own nature.”

● Most important of all, let the Socratic maxim echo through your ears, "True wisdom consists in knowing that you know nothing." If one assumes that she or he knows everything, then she or her is not likely to question her or his own assumptions. Question everything; take nothing for granted!


Verily, my posts are primarily about "philosophy" of pizza than making pizza, for I believe it is more important, initially, to learn the principles of making Neapolitan dough first. The word “philosophy” itself may give us a clue as to what kind of distinctive activity we are talking about here. The ancient Greek word φιλοσοφ ί α (philosophia) is linguistically composed of two words: φιλο (philo, meaning “love”, which some say is an ingredient in making pizza) and σοφία (sophia, meaning “wisdom”). Judging purely by the word itself, philosophy seems to imply a “love” that entails “wisdom” as its object, or a “love” in quest for “wisdom”. And, in turn, “wisdom” implies action, activity, or doing something, such as figuring out how to make pizza. (What would be the value of wisdom that is not actuated or is not thrown into the world?) Yet, philosophy is more than that. It is also an activity that entails critical and reflective thinking, and evaluation of the thinking—in, for example, making dough! And, in doing so we may realize that we need to learn how to make love (sophia) all over again and train our eyes for what is most distant! May St. Abate be with you!
« Last Edit: July 02, 2011, 04:56:38 PM by Pizza Napoletana »
Recipes make pizzas no more than sermons make saints!

http://pizzanapoletanismo.com/2011/09/27/a-philosophy-of-pizza-napoletanismo/

Offline thezaman

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #74 on: July 02, 2011, 05:22:22 PM »
omid, i had to ask , i play with recipes all of the time and that is what makes this forum fun . your main points that i am interested in are your hydration and mixing methods. it seem that you get good results with low hydration because of something you are doing to get complete hydration in your dough. i feel that your thread is really good and want to pick up as many little tips as you make available. there are a lot of good pizza makers on this forum and a lot to be learned from all of them.keep your philosophy coming thanks. larry