Author Topic: Little Caesars Dough Recipe?  (Read 169064 times)

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Offline Ronzo

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Re: Little Caesars Dough Recipe?
« Reply #25 on: February 03, 2006, 12:30:19 PM »
I have one of those Hamilton Beach Big Mouth food processors. I wonder if making dough in that would be a good idea. I think I'll check out the specs on it.
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Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Little Caesars Dough Recipe?
« Reply #26 on: February 03, 2006, 01:11:13 PM »
Ron,

From what I can tell from a quick Google search, the Big Mouth unit is a 14-cup unit. The unit can be used to make enough dough for two loaves of bread. You should be OK. The unit even has four speeds, along with a pulse feature, which should give you even better control over things.

If you are interested, I recently gave some tips on how to use a Cuisinart food processor for making a NY style dough, at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,2189.0.html. The principles would be the same, however, for most other processors and doughs.

Peter
« Last Edit: February 03, 2006, 01:15:14 PM by Pete-zza »

Offline foodblogger

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Re: Little Caesars Dough Recipe?
« Reply #27 on: February 05, 2006, 12:33:49 PM »
I just made the sauce up.  It was tasty but I couldn't resist spicing it up a bit.  The recipe as is was pretty bland.  I went to Sam's Club today and low and behold a 5 pound bag of Stella mootzarel!

Offline foodblogger

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Re: Little Caesars Dough Recipe?
« Reply #28 on: February 05, 2006, 06:52:42 PM »
Pizza is done and eaten.  It was a really good example of the typical American pizza chain, only a little better do to better ingredients.  As expected with the 57% hydration, the crust had uniform bread like bubbles.  I took photos, but it was with a film camera.  My digital camera jumped to its death after photographing schawarma about a month ago.  I'll post when I get them developed.

I ended up using a blackened steel pan dusted with corn meal as suggested by one of the posters above.  I placed the pan on a baking stone on the lowest rack in a 550 degree oven with another stone on a rack 7.5 inches above to provide top heat.  Everything got done at the same time so I think I will stick with that oven configuration when making this type of pie.

Offline foodblogger

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Re: Little Caesars Dough Recipe?
« Reply #29 on: February 13, 2006, 11:08:07 AM »
I finally got my photos back.  Here is a photo of a pie using the recipe above.

Offline foodblogger

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Re: Little Caesars Dough Recipe?
« Reply #30 on: February 13, 2006, 11:09:02 AM »
And here is a slice. 

Offline IlliniPizza

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Re: Little Caesars Dough Recipe?
« Reply #31 on: March 20, 2006, 04:42:56 PM »
I made Randy's American Style Recipe this weekend.  For a while now I have been trying to perfect Little Caesar's Pizza Dough.  Thou Randy's is very good, it doesn't quite have the same flavor that Little Caesars has, it tastes more like Papa Johns.

After making the pizza these are some of the proposed changes.

Instead of Honey use Lite Corn Syrup, and instead of Olive Oil, use Vegetable Oil.  I use to work at a little caesars about 12 years ago, I wish I had paid more attention now. 

A few of questions for the "Experts",

1.  Little Caesars seems to have more spring then Randy's American Style. Could this be due to the amount of yeast.  I let it rise for about an hour in the pan, but it doesn't have spring when baked that caesars does.  Would more yeast result in a better spring?  If I recall from my little caesars days we only punched it down once & not twice would this make a difference?

2.  Randy's crust browns pretty quickly, I know this is due in part to the sugar in the dough, I also know Little Caesars has quite a bit of sugar in their dough.  Could the increased browning be due to the type of sugar i.e. Honey.

3.  Peter Reinhart wrote in his book the Bread Baker's Apprentice that to get good Voids you needed to knead less, because overkneaded dough lead to uniform voids, like bread.  Would Randy's pizza benefit from less knead time.

Has anyone tried any of these suggestions.  I love caesars pizza since I was a kid, and would like to get as close as possible to the real recipe.  We have a good start with Randy's Recipe.

Also if anyone has any suggestions on improving the Sauce, this is the closest I have ever come to the original sauce, the recipe on the Top Secret Recipe site is off by a mile.  This one is closer, but still not quite their, I know they use fresh spices and this one uses dried spices.  Would that make a difference?

Thanks for all the help.  I wish I had more time to experiment.


Offline IlliniPizza

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Re: Little Caesars Dough Recipe?
« Reply #32 on: March 26, 2006, 02:59:55 PM »
Little Caesars Experiment:

I took Randy's American Pizza Recipe and I modified it slightly to get it to closer resemble Little Caesars.

These are the changes.

 - I increased the yeast by 25%, I use SAF Bakers Yeast (compressed cake).

 - I exchanged the honey in the recipe oz. for oz. for Lite Corn Syrup.

 - I reduced the salt in the recipe by half.

 - I used Vegetable Oil instead of Olive Oil

 - I used the Little Caesars Sauce recipe I posted earlier, and a 65% Part Skim, Low Moisture Mozz. to 35% Muenster Cheese Blend.


Results: 

This is the closest I have ever come to the actual recipe.  It is very, very close.  It still wouldn't pass a blind taste test, but It is very good.

In future experiments, I may increase the amount of Vegetable Oil used and decrease the Water.

I also, made Little Caesars Bread Sticks using the changes above, and I am pretty certain they would pass a blind taste test.

Any Comments?

Offline ihavezippers

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Re: Little Caesars Dough Recipe?
« Reply #33 on: March 29, 2006, 11:15:11 PM »
Illini, I will try it this weekend.  Thanks for the post and the continued research/experimentation.


Offline ihavezippers

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Re: Little Caesars Dough Recipe?
« Reply #34 on: March 29, 2006, 11:28:48 PM »
Illini (or anyone for that matter)
It's been too long since I have eaten a good Little Caesar's pie, but what I remember about the crust was that it had a buttery coating on the outside, with what I think was ground parmesian lightly sprinkled...am I way off here or is my memory serving me correctly?

How would you go about re-creating that aspect of their pizza?  Randy's recipe is great (the greatest), but it still tends to be more Papa Johns-like in my experience.  It is drier on its exterior, where as I remember LC being a little greasy (in a good way though).

I am guessing this is not a pre-bake addition.  I am thinking they might brush it on after they bake.  Still, brushing butter onto what I remember the texture of Randy's crust to be like wouldn't quite get you there. 

Any thoughts?

Offline ihavezippers

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Re: Little Caesars Dough Recipe?
« Reply #35 on: March 30, 2006, 04:35:20 PM »
On another thread, Petezzza gave me some ideas that I am going to infuse into your recipe, Illini.  To attain the "buttery" flavor of LC's crust, I am going to replace the soybean oil in your recipe with melted butter (well, margerine).  I also am going to brush butter on the crust after finished.

I'm looking forward to seeing how corn syrup works in lieu of honey.
I'll post my results/opinion at some point after Friday's pizza.

Offline IlliniPizza

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Re: Little Caesars Dough Recipe?
« Reply #36 on: March 30, 2006, 05:10:16 PM »
I worked for a Little Caesars about 10 years ago, when I was a kid who didn't care about cooking, I never made the dough, because it was made early in the morning, and I usually never worked before 1 O'clcok.

After posting, I picked up a pizza from caesars, and realized that their was something missing in the crust.  Its a buttery, parmasean flavor.  I vaguely remember that when a pizza came out of the oven it was many times coated  with the same brushed used on the crazy bread. 

Caesars crust has more of a soft leathery crust, similar to a New York style pizza.  Randy's tend to have a crunchier crust.  Margarine may be the key!

I know when we panned the dough, we never used a dough dressing, before putting the sauce on.  I am not sure if they added some parmasean or butter during the actual dough making process, but I may try that next.

I am glad you guys mentioned it, because I was about to update the post, because I realized that the crust was missing some flavor. 


Caesars Variation to try next:

          - Add Butter ie margarine to the dough

          - Add some parmasean during the dough process, and after to see the difference.

Adding parmasean during the dough making process reminds me of cheesy biscuits like you get at red lobster, I think it would melt very uniform in the crust. 

I do remember some of the stuff we used at little caesars, it was pretty basic stuff, not a lot of chemistry.  I have noticed that the sauce recipe I posted is very close.  Don't use the recipe from the Top Secret Recipe site, its not even close!  Mine is really close, but its missing something.  I know we used Hunts Tomato paste for the sauce, we watered it down, and simmered it for 30-40 mins. in big stock pots, but when I simmer it tends to darken in color and take on a smoky flavor, where as caesars is very fresh.  I don't know if they add lemon juice, or citric acid to the sauce to maintain the fresh flavor and color.

Another thing I remember is that Little Caesars dough, we would stretch by hand after being sheeted, and it would stretch very easily, but not quite as easily as Randy's.  I have a hard time with randy's because when I stretch it by hand, it will almost stretch thru in the middle.  Caesars had a slightly firmer texture.  Would anyone know what might be responsible for the difference, knead time?, hydration %.

Good Luck, Hopefully we can crack this recipe.  If their are any Caesars people out their who would like to share, please chime in.
     


Offline ihavezippers

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Re: Little Caesars Dough Recipe?
« Reply #37 on: March 30, 2006, 08:33:44 PM »


I know when we panned the dough, we never used a dough dressing, before putting the sauce on.  I am not sure if they added some parmasean or butter during the actual dough making process, but I may try that next.



What do you mean by a "dough dressing"?

Before I got turned on to hi-gluten flour, I was trying everything I could to get a better taste out of my general flour.  Towards the end of my regular flour days, before conversion to hi-glutes, I was taking whatever the measurement for flour was and making 1/4 to 1/3 of that amount parmesian cheese...in other words, 3/4 flour 1/4 parmesian cheese.  It was decent, for general flour crust.  I haven't tried that since conversion, though.  It might be worth investigating again.

Not that you are looking in this area, but last weekend, I took Randy's recipe but used milk instead of water.  I remember reading a post by Petezzza where he commented on being able to get a "browner" crust with milk/powdered milk, and what Papa Johns crust seems to have that Randy's doesn't is a darker crust (otherwise, they are fairly similar).  I was pretty happy with the results; although I still didn't get the brown-coloration I was looking for, it seemed to even closer resemble the Papa Johns flavor than my previous Randy recipe creations had.

Anyhow, wrong thread for that thought probably.  I'm off to go make my LC dough for tomorrow, complete with Lite Corn Syrup and margerine instead of soybean oil.  After cooking it, I'll brush it over with a parmesian/melted butter mix and hope for the best.  This weekend will also be my first time using tiles...so I could have a major breakthrough this weekend...or it could be a disaster.
« Last Edit: March 30, 2006, 08:35:41 PM by ihavezippers »

Offline ihavezippers

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Re: Little Caesars Dough Recipe?
« Reply #38 on: March 30, 2006, 10:41:13 PM »
I'm going to go ahead and post my recipe alterations tonight, seeing as once I actually cook the pizza, I'll either lose my alteration measurements or otherwise be too lazy to post.  I used Randy's recipe in the beginning of this thread as the base to start from; this is slightly different than the Randy's recipe I've used in the past...infact, the mixed dough ended up being wet and sticky, and I had to add approximately one cup of flour to get it manageable.

2 & 1/2 c H.G. flour
1/2 c ground parmesian cheese
1 c + 2 tbl water (a google search told me this is the equivalent of 9oz water)
2 tbl sugar
1 tbl corn syrup
2 tsp salt
1 & 1/2 to 2 tbl melted margarine

This recipe is not including the extra cup of flour I added afterwards.  After mixing, I got this yellow wet ball that just didn't look right at all, hence more flour...maybe I should have left it the way it was.

Anyhow, we'll see how it goes.  I'm going to make Illini's sauce as well, except use Stanislaus Tomato Magic in lieu of Hunts and the water.
Unfortunately, I don't have any Muenster blocks laying around...so, my cheese will be 50% low moisture mozzerella, 40% (regular?) mozzerella, 10% sharp cheddar.

Offline IlliniPizza

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Re: Little Caesars Dough Recipe?
« Reply #39 on: March 31, 2006, 10:14:04 AM »

Dough Dressing is what some pizzamakers brush on their panned dough before adding the sauce.  Its usually oil, or butter with a little garlic.  Its used mainly to keep the watery sauce from soaking into the dough, and making the pizza soggy.  The cliche about water and oil don't mix, it acts as a barrier. 

I am going to make a pizza this weekend.  I don't think I will use margarine exclusively, I will probably use a blend of margarine and vegetable oil (soybean oil).  I remember from Little Caesar's we had a lot of Vegetable Oil and a lot of margarine.  The margarine was always used for the butter sauce that we slathered on the breadsticks, so I don't know if any of it made it into the dough, but the vegetable I know did.

Good luck, hope to see your results.

Offline IlliniPizza

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Re: Little Caesars Dough Recipe?
« Reply #40 on: March 31, 2006, 10:25:06 AM »
To add another little tidbit about margarine.

A friend of mine, his family owns about 4 pizza places in town.  His family is very italian, and have been making pizza for years, and I always give him grief, because he tends to have an ego about how great his pizza is.  And truthfully his pizza is excellent.  I am constantly asking him for his recipe, which he will never reveal, but usually if I say something stupid or nieve about how to make a pizza he will usually tell me I'm wrong and then reveal some little technique.  I play dumb alot.

He told me to get a good rise out of his dough, with good voids that he never uses oil in his dough, it weighs it down.  He told me instead he uses something "similar" to oil and alot more flavorful i.e. butter or margarine.  Trust me I can taste it.  He parbakes the dough, to get a good rise then he uses a dough dressing of extra-virgin olive oil and garlic powder to flavor the dough.  He also claims that great dough recipes start from great bread recipes.  So start dusting off your copy of the Bread Baker's Apprentice.

So I can attest, margarine or butter I guess doesn't hurt.
« Last Edit: March 31, 2006, 10:27:08 AM by IlliniPizza »

Offline ihavezippers

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Re: Little Caesars Dough Recipe?
« Reply #41 on: March 31, 2006, 11:54:04 PM »
I am happy to report my attempt at this LC recipe was fairly successfull.  Although it doesn't look like much, it tasted pretty close to the real thing...I can't distinguish a difference between the two, but it has been many years since I ate a LC pie. 

I used the recipe posted above with my alterations (Peter's alterations really).  I also made a mix of 3-4 tbl margerine with 1/2 tsp garlic powder and 2 tbl parmesian cheese to brush on the crust after I baked it.  I put two coats of the margerine mix on, and then sprinkled parmesian cheese over the crust.

Again, it was really close; especially the buttery element of the crust that I remember most about LC was there.  If anything, it could have used more parmesian...but that could just be an issue of using a better quality parmesian cheese than what I used.

I'm having problems attaching the photo...I have reduced the photo to the smallest size my photo editor will perform, and I am still getting a message it is too large.


Offline ihavezippers

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Re: Little Caesars Dough Recipe?
« Reply #42 on: March 31, 2006, 11:56:11 PM »
One more try...good, worked.  Thats my ugly baby.

Offline ihavezippers

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Re: Little Caesars Dough Recipe?
« Reply #43 on: April 04, 2006, 08:51:46 PM »
Illini?  Did my ugly pizza scare you away?
Really, it was quite good.  I plan on making the same crust this weekend.  The sauce was quite good too; at first it was too bland for me, but once it cooked on the pizza, it was right on.

Offline IlliniPizza

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Re: Little Caesars Dough Recipe?
« Reply #44 on: April 07, 2006, 05:27:40 PM »
Sorry,

Too many irons in the fire.  I tried your alteration, but instead I added the margarine & parmasean directly to the dough mix.  It was pretty good, except that i think my yeast went bad on me.  The pizza barely rose at all.  Its to be expected, I use SAF compressed cakes of active yeast, it has about a 10 day life span once opened, but i freeze it and extend it, but i think the yeast is officially dead now. 

I think I added too much parmasean to the actual dough itself, but the margarine was about right on, I will experiment further to get the correct percentage of margarine.  I used land o lakes margarine, which looks a whole lot more like butter then Walmart's Great Value margarine that I tried before.  I used kraft 100% real grated parmeasean cheese, but a restaurant supply store will probably have a commercial version of Grated Parmasean. 

I also use a 60/40 Mozzarella to Muenster Cheese Blend by weight.

Keep cranking away, and in no time i am sure we will have the recipe in no time.

As far as the sauce goes I will experiment with not cooking the sauce, I know the little caesars I worked for never had a stove, but they may have had a portable burner like outdoor deep fryers use, I can't remember.  My sauce is a little on the dark side right now, and it has more of a smoky flavor then I would like.

As far as oven temperature goes, I have heard varying temps.  Someone said 425, but i thought I remember them using 650 on a middleby-marshall conveyor oven.

Sorry, I'm sort of a perfectionist, I probably won't be happy until our recipe beats a blind taste-test from someone who works at Caesars.

Offline ihavezippers

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Re: Little Caesars Dough Recipe?
« Reply #45 on: April 07, 2006, 09:08:29 PM »
I made the Caesar's recipe tonight, except w/o the parmesian substitution for the flour.  I really smothered my dough ball in melted butter before putting it in the fridge for it's overnight rise.  Should be biting into that badboy in another hour, so I'll post my findings.  Otherwise, I plan to keep the recipe/alterations intact...I still plan on brushing on the butter/garlic powder/parmesian mix after it is done.

Peter has suggested I use my Broil setting on my oven, as I have been cooking pizzas at 500 degrees.  As you might be able to tell from my picture, my cheese doesn't melt like commercial pizzas, Peter's, and many of the posted pizzas on this site...it comes out with this plastic-like texture, with no brown-spotting like you typically see in any of the takeout places. 

Offline ihavezippers

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Re: Little Caesars Dough Recipe?
« Reply #46 on: April 07, 2006, 11:36:37 PM »
Here is a picture of tonight's Caesar.  It looks a lot better than last week, as I followed Peter's tip and baked on the broil setting.  However, I think last week's tasted more like LC.  Not to say this week was bad by any means...just further away from L.C.  So either I left it in too long, or the parmesian substitute got me closer.

Offline ihavezippers

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Re: Little Caesars Dough Recipe?
« Reply #47 on: April 07, 2006, 11:38:52 PM »
A little off topic, but here is my PapaJohn styled from tonight (Randy's recipe with milk substitute instead of water).  As you can see, the L.C. is a lot more buttery.

Offline Lynny

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« Reply #48 on: June 11, 2006, 02:42:23 PM »

 ;D

I find that my new job and life in general takes me away from the people and the things I love, but..having said that.  Everytime I come back to this forum, I feel like I'm at home.  I read through the post and I'm smiling the whole time.  I know it sounds sappy, but I think its great.  I love pizza, I love baking my own and experimenting, and you all just feel like kindred spirits.  Thanks.   

I came looking this time, for a good starting off place for making CiCi's cheesey/garlic bread.  My wife and I absolutely love it, and I want to be able to make it at home.  If anyone has any suggestions or comments on the subject they will be appreciated.  I experimented with a crust the other night and my wife made the comment "if it had lots more cheese, and NO sauce..it would be great cheesey breadsticks", which coming from her picky eater self..means something, and it got me thinking..as usual.   :chef:



Peace,
Lynny

Offline noon

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Re: Little Caesars Dough Recipe?
« Reply #49 on: August 09, 2006, 03:09:54 PM »
Was poking around looking for a LC dough recipe and stumbled upon this forum.  This has been the most helpful site I've found so far.  My first job was LC and worked there for a few years in H.S.  I was an assistant manager, so was involved in all aspects of the operation, including making my share of sauce and dough.  Now, I just wish I remembered more -- that was 20 years ago!  Interestingly, I grew up in the little suburb of Detroit (Garden City) where LC got its start -- I didn't work at store #1, but did work at another LC in Garden City -- the one I worked at used to be a sit down restaurant, complete with beer (before it relocated down the street and before my time working there) -- one of my fond memories from childhood was going to that sit-down LC with my parents -- dark wood, kind of dim lighting, pizza ovens right there when you walked in the door where you could watch the guys making the pizzas.  Anyway, I digress...

Some people have mentioned cooking the sauce -- we NEVER cooked the sauce -- there was no stove on which the sauce could even have been cooked.  The ingredients were mixed together in a big stock pot the night before and placed in the walk-in cooler where the seasoning had time to infuse the tomato sauce.

Definitely correct on the mozzarella/muenster ration.

Just wish I could remember more about the dough ingredients.  We'd put all the ingredients in the Hobart (the big mixer) and then break it apart into chunks of certain weights (anyone remember the weights? and what size pan corresponded to which weight?), we'd ball it to get a tight skin, put it on an oiled tray and brush the balls with the oil and put it in the walk in cooler.  Some people have suggested that the dough sat in the cooler for longer than I remember -- I remember using the dough we made in the morning thorughout the day.  It was mechanically sheeted-out and then hand stretched, put in the pan with cornmeal and allowed to rise for about a half-hour.

Would be great if we could find someone who works there now or more recently with more specific info.

The sauce was seasoned with a packet of seasoning, so replicating the exact seasoning presents a bit of a challenge, but I am encouraged by the recipes posted here.

The dough should be very easy to replicate, because there were no secret ingredients -- we had a very direct and straightforward recipe that we followed -- just wish I could remember what it was.


 

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