Author Topic: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!  (Read 331259 times)

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Online scott123

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #740 on: October 21, 2011, 06:31:40 PM »
I recently bought a slab of 1.25" soapstone, and while the heat retention is tremendous, I am finding it cooks the bottom of the pizza very rapidly, but I am missing the proper charring of the top of the pizza.

1. Put the soapstone slab on the highest shelf.  Because it'll be further away from the bottom element, it will take a bit longer to pre-heat, but it will still reach the peak temp your oven can achieve.

The highest shelf will be tight quarters to work in (2-3") but you need that proximity to the broiler to brown the top of the pizza as quickly as the bottom.

2. In order to ensure that your broiler goes on and stays on, you can't preheat your stone to the oven's peak temp. You've got to shoot a little bit below it.  If, say, your oven goes to 550, then you'll need to pre-heat to 525 in order to make sure the broiler stays on for the duration of the bake.

3. 1.25" soapstone slab, when preheated to 525, will give you a 4 minute bake (at best, depending on the composition of the stone).  Even if you can get a 550 pre-heat and manage to get the broiler to stay on, that's still in the 2.5-3 minute realm. In order to hit Neapolitan bake times in a conventional oven with soapstone, you've got to incorporate an oven trick that will buy you another 100 or so degrees.  As far as oven tricks go, 650 is pretty safe, although I wouldn't go much higher than that. Do a forum search for frozen towel trick.  That's one of the more gentle oven mods and will get you that 100 degree bump.

4. The reason why soapstone can do 90 second bakes at 650 while it takes traditional WFO firebrick floors 850 to achieve the same thing is because soapstone is quite a bit more conductive.  You can capitalize on this phenomenon and get Neapolitan bakes at even lower temps by using an even more conductive material- steel. 1/2" steel should be able to do 90 second bakes at 600, while 3/4" steel should be able to do it at 550. The downside to 3/4" steel is that it's heavy, so you'll most likely need to reinforce your oven shelf to be able to handle the weight. Most ovens should have no problem with 1/2" plate, though.


Offline salvatoregianpaolo

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #741 on: October 21, 2011, 07:11:59 PM »
Scott,

Thank you very much.  Believe me, I read quite a few of your postings concerning stones/baking before I purchased the one I have now!  What I initially tried was placing the stone on the floor of the oven, then creating a makeshift ceiling with the extra rack by covering it with foil.  I preheated my oven to max (which is around 585 since I re-calibrated the temp for +35deg), and was able to get the stone temp to around 700deg.  The bottom of the pie cooked in 60sec, but the top just wouldn't brown in that short period of time.  I wasn't sure if I had enough reflective heat off the "ceiling" to get the desired result. 

That led me in the two-stone direction, and while it works, obviously it is a bit of a hassle.  I did notice when I removed my "ceiling" to place the second stone directly under the broiler, the bottom stone only reached about 625deg.  In order to keep the broiler on, I did the following:

1. preheat oven max for 2hrs.
2. switch to broiler
3. shape and make pizza
4. slide pizza on to bottom stone, keeping door open
5. after 90 sec move pizza to top stone under broiler (door still ajar)
6. cook an additonal 2min

I think tomorrow I will try moving the stone all the way up and see what type of temps and results I achieve.  I don't want to hijack Omid's thread, so I think tomorrow might be a good time for me to finally post a little bit about what I'm working on.  Thank you very much!

Salvatore

Online scott123

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #742 on: October 21, 2011, 07:30:56 PM »
Salvatore, the good news is that you've already tricked your oven to what are, imo, potentially damaging temps (700) and it survived, so, should you ever need to take it 650, I think it will be fine.  By covering the shelf with foil you basically isolated the top thermostat, and, to an extent, prevented heat from reaching it, allowing the bottom of the oven to reach extreme temps.

With the stone a few inches from the broiler, assuming you can pre-heat the stone to 585, as well as keep the broiler from cycling off, that could give you a 2 minute bake. Maybe.

Offline salvatoregianpaolo

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #743 on: October 21, 2011, 07:38:01 PM »
I figured if it could handle a cleaning cycle, it could handle what I was attempting.  (Not saying I didn't cross my fingers, though!)

I have found the conductivity of the soapstone to be tremendous.  I especially realized this two days ago when baking baguettes, and using my normal baking temp of 460 resulted in some burning on the bottoms... and approximately 8 less minutes of total bake time.  That's a pretty drastic difference.  Only now, as I write this, do I realize what you mean when you say lower temps with soapstone can give much greater results.  I guess this is an "Aha!" moment!

Offline Pizza Napoletana

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #744 on: October 25, 2011, 02:18:20 AM »
Again, I redesigned my gas oven. I added a drum below the pizza stones. The drum makes a significant difference; it keeps the floor cooler than the dome by 5 percent—only within the first hour. Hence, the base and face of pizza bake in a more synchronized manner. Too bad my digital camera ran out of battery! The last picture below shows the pizza baking at the floor temperature of about 912° F.
« Last Edit: October 25, 2011, 09:53:14 AM by Pizza Napoletana »
Recipes make pizzas no more than sermons make saints!

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Offline salvatoregianpaolo

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #745 on: October 25, 2011, 08:32:16 AM »
Omid,

What type of stone is that?  It looks to be thicker than the one you were using before (weren't you stacking two stones?).  Your new design has me wondering if by implementing something similar, it would allow me to bypass using the broiler.

Grazie,
Salvatore

Offline Pizza Napoletana

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #746 on: October 26, 2011, 04:09:14 AM »
Omid,

What type of stone is that?  It looks to be thicker than the one you were using before (weren't you stacking two stones?).

Grazie,
Salvatore

Dear Salvatore, the top stone, which is insulated by aluminum casing is made out of some kind of baked clay. The bottom stone, insulated by aluminum foil, is made out of refractory material.  I think your stone is much better, since it probably does not absorb dough moisture as much as clay or refractory material. Good night!
« Last Edit: October 26, 2011, 02:23:36 PM by Pizza Napoletana »
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Offline Pizza Napoletana

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #747 on: October 26, 2011, 04:36:52 AM »
Here are the results of baking pizzas in my newly redesigned oven...

_______________________________________________________________________________________
1000 gr. Caputo Pizzeria     (Datum Point)
595   gr. Water                 (59.50%)
28     gr. Sea Salt              (2.8%)
40     gr. Sourdough Culture (4%)

♣ The dough was prepared with Kitchen Aid (Direct Method: Water ⇒ Salt ⇒ Sourdough Culture ⇒ Flour)
♣ Mix & kneed time: 10 minutes & 19 seconds (on slowest speed)
♣ Fermentation Period: 4 + 26 hours (at controlled room temperature)
_______________________________________________________________________________________

♣ Conventional Gas Oven Temperature: 912° F Floor & 925° F Dome for Margherita; 799° F Floor & 824° F Dome for mini pepperoni and mushrooms
_______________________________________________________________________________________
Recipes make pizzas no more than sermons make saints!

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

Offline Pizza Napoletana

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #748 on: October 26, 2011, 04:38:19 AM »
Continued . . .
Recipes make pizzas no more than sermons make saints!

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

Offline salvatoregianpaolo

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #749 on: October 26, 2011, 09:25:03 AM »
Omid,

Beautiful, especially the second pie.  Are you going back and forth between the Santos and the KA?  I'm curious what your latest thoughts are concerning the Santos?

Grazie,
Salvatore


Offline salvatoregianpaolo

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #750 on: October 26, 2011, 10:26:22 AM »
Omid,

I also wanted to thank you for your description of how you maintain your natural starter.  It has helped me tremendously in keeping mine balanced in the exact manner I prefer. 

Salvatore

Offline Pizza Napoletana

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #751 on: October 26, 2011, 07:20:19 PM »
Omid, beautiful, especially the second pie.  Are you going back and forth between the Santos and the KA?  I'm curious what your latest thoughts are concerning the Santos?

Grazie,
Salvatore

Dear Salvatore, occasionally I use my Santos Fork Mixer so that it would not gather dust on my kitchen counter! I wrote "occasionally" because Santos has one major flaw, which renders it substantially inferior to Kitchen Aid and some other mixers, in my opinion. While the French mixer is solidly designed and built with quality parts, its fork speed is excruciatingly fast: 84 rotations per minute at 60Hz.

In contrast, The Italian Pietroberto mixer "La Vittoria 35" has a fork speed of 26 RPM for its 1-speed model, and fork speeds of 20.5 RPM and 31 RPM for its 2-speed model. Furthermore, Pietroberto mixer "La Vittoria 17" has a fork speed of 23 RPM for its 1-speed model, and fork speeds of 20.5 RPM and 31 RPM for its 2-speed model. The Iranian counter-top fork mixer I owned prior to Santos had a fork speed of 25 RPM. Santos' 84 RPM is excessively fast for production of Neapolitan dough.

One of the main attractions of Santos fork mixer is that it seems to be the only commercially available counter-top fork mixer in the U.S. with a relatively lower capacity. If the fork speed can be considerably reduced, Santos has the potential to be one of the best counter-top mixers. The Santos representative in France, Mr. Nicolas Fouquet, has been made aware of this problem through the generous efforts of Mr. Louis ("Zeppi" in this forum). He has told him that the Santos engineers are trying to come up with a solution to reduce the fork speed. I can't wait! I hope that Santos realizes how much this issue may have hurt their sales in the United States. I know many individuals that have decided not to purchase Santos fork mixers particularly due to this problem. Good night!
« Last Edit: October 28, 2011, 01:04:04 PM by Pizza Napoletana »
Recipes make pizzas no more than sermons make saints!

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Offline salvatoregianpaolo

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #752 on: October 27, 2011, 11:41:33 AM »
Omid,

Thank you for all of the information.  It would be wonderful if Santos can resolve the issue.

My question now is when you are using the KA mixer, are you employing the paddle or the dough hook?  I know my KA, when using 1st speed, has 40 RPM.  If you use it with the spiral dough hook, however, this translates to 94 RPM. 



Grazie,
Salvatore

Offline pizzablogger

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #753 on: October 27, 2011, 01:03:36 PM »
Spider man webbing in there!  :)
"It's Baltimore, gentlemen, the gods will not save you." --Burrell

Offline pizzablogger

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #754 on: October 27, 2011, 01:03:37 PM »
Omid, stop leaving these beautiful broads in the dark!
« Last Edit: October 27, 2011, 01:17:53 PM by pizzablogger »
"It's Baltimore, gentlemen, the gods will not save you." --Burrell

Offline Pizza Napoletana

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #755 on: October 27, 2011, 06:41:52 PM »
Omid . . . My question now is when you are using the KA mixer, are you employing the paddle or the dough hook?  I know my KA, when using 1st speed, has 40 RPM.  If you use it with the spiral dough hook, however, this translates to 94 RPM.  
Grazie,
Salvatore

Dear Salvatore, when I use my KitchenAid stand mixer (Pro 620) for the purpose of making pizza dough, I always use the "spiral dough hook" on the slowest speed only, i.e., the "stir" speed.

If you meant to compare the RPM of the KitchenAid Mixer with the RPM of Santos Fork Mixer, each has its own unique dynamics that make comparison between the two not easy. In other words, the 84 RPM of Santos' fork is of a different class than the, as you put it, "94 RPM" of KitchenAid's spiral hook.

It appears that the KitchenAid mixers have two simultaneous RPMs at each speed:

1. The clockwise, horizontal-axis RPM of the "shaft" (AKA "beater shaft") to which the hook is attached, and
2. The counter-clockwise, horizontal-axis RPM of the "shaft holder" (AKA "planetary") which orbits the rotating shaft around the circumference of the mixer bowl which is stationary.
(And, of course, there is the RPM of the "motor" itself, which is the impetus underlying the "shaft" RPM and the "shaft holder" RPM.

I am not sure to what extent, if at all, the clockwise rotation of the "shaft" and the counter-clockwise rotation of the "shaft holder" cancel out or counter-effect one another. I know for sure that the speed of the "shaft holder" of my KitchenAid is 40 RPM at the "stir" speed. I do not know the "shaft" RPM. (Last week, I telephoned a KitchenAid representative who unfortunately could not find out the RPMs of my mixer!) In contrast, Santos has only one RPM:

1. The motor speed of 1800 RPM (at 60 Hz), which translates to vertical-axis, not horizontal, counter-clockwise fork RPM of 84. (The motion of dough rotates the non-motorized mixer bowl clockwise.)

Generally speaking, some Santos owners, including myself, believe that 5 minutes of kneading with Santos (which has only one speed) is probably tantamount to 20 minutes of kneading with KitchenAid at the slowest speed. As you can see, the excessive fork speed of the Santos mixer is quite overwhelming!

Fork mixers, in general and in contrast to planetary mixers, more effectively contribute to "physical rising", not biological rising, of dough during kneading, which implies that the dough is oxygenated in a better manner (without heating up) for the purpose of making Neapolitan dough.

Unfortunately, the fast speed, not the physical design, of the Santos mixer's fork over-oxygenates and heats up (not as much as many other mixers such as the Kitchen Aid) the dough, in addition to over-buttressing the gluten network throughout the dough mass—which results in a crust that is not tender enough for Neapolitan pizza. Having a Santos fork mixer is akin to owning a Stradivarius violin that has its tuning pegs permanently glued to the peg holes inside the headstock! There is no point playing the violin if it can not be tuned, does not matter how divine it sounds. Good day!
« Last Edit: October 27, 2011, 06:46:00 PM by Pizza Napoletana »
Recipes make pizzas no more than sermons make saints!

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Offline salvatoregianpaolo

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #756 on: October 27, 2011, 07:14:04 PM »
Omid,

The Stradivarius analogy is wonderfully accurate!

I have been in contact with Kitchen-Aid, and here are the RPMs for my Professional 5 Plus Series:  (I believe they will be the same for your machine)

        Shaft               Shaft-Holder
Stir   40 rpm                94 rpm
#2    54 rpm                127 rpm
#3    79 rpm                186 rpm
#4    104 rpm              244 rpm

I didn't pay much attention to anything higher.  It is a shame, because the motion of the Santos looks wonderful.  Hopefully they resolve the issue and find a way to slow it down to a usable rate.

Salvatore

« Last Edit: October 27, 2011, 07:15:35 PM by salvatoregianpaolo »

Offline Pizza Napoletana

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #757 on: October 27, 2011, 07:18:25 PM »
Omid, stop leaving these beautiful broads in the dark!

Dear Pizzablogger, thank you so much for the enhancement of the pictures of my pizzas! You make them look better than what they actually are. Good night!  
« Last Edit: October 27, 2011, 11:04:21 PM by Pizza Napoletana »
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Offline Pizza Napoletana

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #758 on: October 27, 2011, 07:21:05 PM »
I have been in contact with Kitchen-Aid, and here are the RPMs for my Professional 5 Plus Series:  (I believe they will be the same for your machine)

        Shaft         Shaft-Holder
Stir   40 rpm                94 rpm
#2    54 rpm                127 rpm
#3    79 rpm                186 rpm
#4    104 rpm              244 rpm

Thank you for the valuable data.
« Last Edit: October 27, 2011, 07:22:54 PM by Pizza Napoletana »
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Offline Pizza Napoletana

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Re: A PHILOSOPHY OF PIZZA NAPOLETANISMO!
« Reply #759 on: October 27, 2011, 08:29:17 PM »
Omid, do you use a special light bulb in the light that we see that you use for all of your pictures?

Dear Jet, for lighting I use one single "Jansjo Work lamp" (which I purchased for $9.99 from Ikea), plus the ordinary light bulb on the ceiling of my kitchen that I usually turn off. (See the picture of my setup below.) Moreover, I use a Canon PowerShot S95, usually set on "auto". I do not use any flash at all. I hope this helps. Good night!
« Last Edit: October 27, 2011, 08:34:55 PM by Pizza Napoletana »
Recipes make pizzas no more than sermons make saints!

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