Author Topic: Problems with Dough  (Read 3200 times)

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Offline VarunS

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Problems with Dough
« on: September 02, 2011, 04:06:00 AM »
Hi Guys,

I have been playing around with New York Style Pizzas of late but after about 4 attempts I am running into the same problem.

My Dough keeps tearing. It seems to have very poor strength. I am from India and we don't get bread flour or high gluten flour off the shelves in the supermarket so I had to order a 50 pound bag of the stuff from a specialty food supplier!

This is the dough formulation that I used:

Flour (100%):    602.63 g  |  21.26 oz | 1.33 lbs
Water (63%):    379.66 g  |  13.39 oz | 0.84 lbs
IDY (.25%):    1.51 g | 0.05 oz | 0 lbs | 0.5 tsp | 0.17 tbsp
Salt (1.75%):    10.55 g | 0.37 oz | 0.02 lbs | 1.89 tsp | 0.63 tbsp
Oil (1%):    6.03 g | 0.21 oz | 0.01 lbs | 1.34 tsp | 0.45 tbsp
Total (166%):   1000.37 g | 35.29 oz | 2.21 lbs | TF = 0.104
Single Ball:   333.46 g | 11.76 oz | 0.74 lbs

I made two batches of the above on different days. The first day I mixed all the dry ingredients together, made a well and then added the water gradually till it came together. Followed up by adding the oil and hand kneading for about 5 mins. While hand kneading I had to use to some flour to keep the dough from sticking to the counter. I then balled the dough, oiled it and put into the refrigerator for 24 hours. I let the dough warm up for a couple hours before trying to stretch it by hand. It was very weak and started tearing almost immediately  :(. There was no significant change in the size of the dough ball so I doubt it was overproofed.

The next batch I hand kneaded for 20 mins as I thought the gluten may not have been worked enough and the dough was slightly better but still nowhere close to usable for hand stretching, it was quite frustrating. I had to keep using flour while kneading on the counter top, could this have altered my dough formula? What could the causes for tearing be if it has been kneaded sufficiently and not been overproofed. I am quite sure the quality of flour is good. The company says it can be added to All Purpose flour or used as is. I used it as is.

Finally I also tried a food processor method using the pulse feature for 3-4 mins and then hand kneading for a minute. Still no luck, same issues.

I believe the 20 min hand kneaded dough turned out to be the strongest of the lot.

Also my oven goes up to 240 C and after cooking for 8 mins my rim did not show any browning and felt dry and chewy. Bottom also felt undercooked.

Here are some pics


Offline scott123

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Re: Problems with Dough
« Reply #1 on: September 02, 2011, 10:15:10 PM »
Varun, it seems like you're putting a lot of effort into this and it's commendable.  From what I can tell you have two problems, one large, one small.

Your biggest problem, by far, is a 240C oven.  That's going to be really difficult to get a great NY pizza from.  A lot depends on your stone material/thickness, but even the best possible stone (1/2" steel plate) may not even give you a respectable time/good oven spring at 240C.  You're going to want a great stone AND some sort of oven trick that will draw out a few more degrees from the oven- maybe 300 or even 320.

The other issue is that I think you might be dealing with weak flour.  The last time I researched Indian flours, they were all geared toward either naan or roti- naan flour is too weak and roti flour is whole wheat, which contains gluten slicing bran. Neither will work. Strong bread flour really shouldn't be that sticky/require all that much bench flour at 63% hydration. What brand of flour are you using? Do you know the protein content for your flour?

Another slight possibility is that the flour is too young/milled too recently and that it hasn't had the chance to age and develop gluten producing potential.  Most millers in the U.S. will age their flour prior to selling it, but, in India, perhaps it's different.

Has the dough doubled by the time it comes out of the fridge? Proper fermentation is important to handling.

Show us a photo of your proofing container.  If the dough dries out, it will have a tendency to tear when stretched.

How are you stretching your pizza dough?  You let the dough warm up, then remove it from the container being careful not to mangle it, correct? Are you opening the skin like this?

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SjYqw1CLZsA" target="_blank" class="aeva_link bbc_link new_win">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SjYqw1CLZsA</a>


I just want to be certain that you're not kneading the dough after it's been refrigerated or re-balling it.

Offline VarunS

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Re: Problems with Dough
« Reply #2 on: September 03, 2011, 03:02:49 AM »
Scott, thank you for replying.

I thought the temperature was an issue as well. This is my home oven, its a convection model but it does not seem to go any higher. There is no self cleaning cycle either. Will check if there is anything I can do to get it closer to 300. I am using a grey teracotta tile as my stone which has not been polished. I let the oven pre heat for atleast an hour and thirty mins.

I do have a much more powerful oven in my kitchen space I use for catering but unfortunately my exhaust is broken and the entire kitchen gets too smoky if I run it. Also when I did try making pizza on that the bottom browned within a minute and since there is no heating element at the top it was very difficult to control the bake.

Eventually I want to start doing take out pizzas and perhaps even deliveries in the future and will invest in a deck oven soon  :) until then this is what I can practice on.

You are absolutely right that the flour available here is weak and is used to make Naans and Rotis primarily. "Maida" is what you would call All Purpose Flour used to make Naans and Breads. "Atta" is what is more widely know as Whole Wheat Flour and is used to make Rotis. However it is still different from the Whole Wheat Flour you get in USA. Vital Wheat Gluten is what all bakeries use to increase the strength of the flour. I have mailed the company from where I purchased this "Artisan Flour" so hopefully in a couple days I will get some more information. However from what I understand it should be at least 13-14% protein as there is a big premium they charge for it over the widely used Maida.

I do not think the dough had doubled in size when it came out of the fridge. At best it had increased by 50%.

Not sure why but youtube does not seem to be working for me at the moment. Will try checking the link again in awhile.

I took the box out of the fridge (attached pic below), let it warm up for a couple hours, then took one ball (approx 10 ounces) and put it in a big bowl of flour, covered both sides with flour and then proceeded to hand stretching it.

Thanks again for your help.


Edit: I checked out the video and I followed a similar method but was a complete failure both my lack of skills and the dough tearing.

This is the description of the flour I got from the company website - "This is a strong flour, enriched with natural enzymes, vital wheat gluten and improvers. It can be used 'as is' in recipes calling for a strong flour/durum flour/winter flour, or can be blended with regular flour to strengthen it. Suitable for up-gradation of flours for noodles/pasta, pizza bases, artisan breads, regular white breads, and laminated dough ! Recommended for European and artisan baking. 25 kilo bags"
« Last Edit: September 03, 2011, 01:56:46 PM by VarunS »

Offline VarunS

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Re: Problems with Dough
« Reply #3 on: September 11, 2011, 09:46:59 AM »
I did get a reply from the company regarding the protein % and it is only 11%  :-[. The way they advertised this product it seemed to be in the 13-14% range. A representative of the company said he was surprised that this was only 11% and he expected it to be higher as well. He said they would run some sample tests to verify the numbers. I am very surprised that they are not sure of what they are selling  ???

I tried the following dough formulation using vital wheat gluten with slightly more successful results :

1. A.P. Flour (10.5% Protein) 100% - 596 grams
2. Vital Wheat Gluten to achieve a 15% protein - 54 grams (dont know exact protein in my vwg i assumed 65%)
3. Water 62% - 370gms + 60 = 430gms grams because of additional gluten. I have read from Peter's posts that 1 1/2 - 2 times the weight of VWG water needs to be added. I took little less than this as I felt dough would be very wet.
4. IDY 0.25% - 1.5 grams
5. Salt 1.75% - 10 grams
6. Oil 1% - 6 grams
7. Sugar 0.55% - 3.3 grams

Mixed the dry ingredients, added the water oil and kneaded for a few mins until it formed a smooth elastic ball. The dough looked better than my earlier attempts. However I did not try the windowpane test. Perhaps I should do this as I am still concerned with the strength and extensibility a little bit.

I got 5 dough ball each weighing 200 grams from which I made 10" pizzas and one 300 gram ball from which I made a 12" pizza.

I put them in the refrigerator for 16 hours before letting come to room temp on the counter for couple hours. My major issue earlier which was tearing was present but ever so slightly and that is when I got it real thin. Are the weights that I have used for the pizza sizes appropriate? It does not feel as easy to manipulate as I have seen in videos and I have to pay some attention so I dont stretch it too much and tears (I am being gentle I promise :P not manhandling the dough)  

Tried making pizza this time in my higher temperature gas oven which touched 320 degrees (608F). Baked the 10" pie for 6 mins 15 seconds.
My finished pie was really thin and drooping and was quite light. The rim was not too dense either. Would some for water in the dough formulation give me an even lighter rim (crust)?? I did not feel like eating that part.

Here are a couple pics, would really appreciate the thoughts and advice of you experienced folk here



Offline VarunS

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Re: Problems with Dough
« Reply #4 on: September 13, 2011, 05:51:07 AM »
Would appreciate if anyone can guide me

Thanks

Offline scott123

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Re: Problems with Dough
« Reply #5 on: September 14, 2011, 12:18:45 PM »
Varun,

First off. Really nice job.  You should be really pleased with the improvement over the last pie. The shorter baking time/superior oven made a world of difference.

Here are a few observations.

1. Unless Peter is calculating it differently, vital wheat gluten is a form of flour, so you need to add the vital wheat gluten to the flour to get total flour and then use that figure for your hydration.  According to my calculations, you're at 66% hydration.

66% sounds about right for 15% protein flour, but, 15% is a little high. I would shoot for somewhere along 13%.  Based upon the current amount of flour you're using (650g), you will want to use

620g 10.5% flour
30g VWG

It's just a rough guesstimate, but, based upon a final protein content of 13%, I'd go with 62% hydration. You need to see how the dough reacts to kneading, fermentation and forming.  Forming is one of the easiest indicators- if the dough is too tight/elastic, then chance is, you'll need a bit more water (or less kneading- see below).

This all being said, I'm not a big fan of VWG.  I highly recommend that you continue your quest to find higher protein bread flour.  Are you anywhere near a city where you might find a baker making baguettes?  They'll need higher protein flour for that.

2. Regarding dough ball size- use the dough calculator

http://www.pizzamaking.com/dough_calculator.html

For NY style, you'll want to put in a thickness value of between .07 and .08

3. Don't cook the sauce and/or used cooked tomato sauce (such as pasta sauce). You want to either track down tomato puree/passata or get whole peeled canned tomatoes and seed them/crush them yourself. To that you'll want to add some salt, sugar, oregano, and, if you have it, a little chopped fresh basil.

4. For dough that is to be refrigerated for 16 hours, a 'smooth' dough ball prior to refrigeration is indicative of too much kneading.  I would dial back the kneading until the dough ball is somewhere between a cottage cheese appearance and smooth.

5. Can you get that high temperature gas oven a little hotter? Perhaps if you preheat if for a bit longer?  Tell us about the hearth that you're baking the pizza on. How thick is it and what material is it made out of?

6. You've got a bad case of bowling on the form (very thin center to big rim). It's tough to keep the center from getting too thin, but with practice, you'll master it.  I find that starting with a small mound of dough in the middle as you press it out helps. It also really helps to master what I call the rotating 10 o'clock 2 o'clock technique that Tony does in the video that I posted earlier.  That will thin out the outer pre-rim inch before knuckle stretching. Also, you want to press out a little less rim. Pressing out a smaller rim will give you a bit more oven spring which will make it a bit more palatable.

7. How much larger was the dough ball prior to baking than it was after forming?  Sufficient expansion/yeast activity is important for dough handling as well as a puffy and airy crust. If you can, next time, take photos of the dough ball in the container before refrigeration and before forming and post them here.  Take shots of the side of the container (to show volume) and of the bottom of the container (to reveal the bubble structure).

I know it sounds like I'm pointing out a lot of shortcomings, but in reality, you're most of the way there. It's just a few tweaks here and there.

Online Pete-zza

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Re: Problems with Dough
« Reply #6 on: September 15, 2011, 09:11:00 AM »
VarunS,

I agree with what scott123 has been advising you.

The advice to add water that is about 1 1/2 times the weight of VWG derives from Tom Lehmann and is intended to apply where one adds VWG to a given amount of flour. For hydration calculation purposes, you want to treat the flour and VWG together, as scott123 mentions. This is the method I use when I use the various dough calculating tools. To calculate the amount of VWG to add to a given amount of flour, I use the Mixed Mass Percentage Calculator at http://foodsim.unclesalmon.com/. If one uses the Mass figure (weight of flour and VWG) from the Mixed Mass Percentage Calculator in one of the dough calculating tools as the "Flour", the hydration will be taken with respect to that Mass number.

The use of VWG to bring the protein content of your Indian flour to 15% is on the high side. Even in the U.S., where we are blessed with many choices of high-gluten flours, the protein content of such flours rarely exceeds 14-14.2%. Unfortunately, outside of the U.S., it is sometimes hard to avoid using VWG. I have found that using VWG to increase the protein content of bread flour to achieve the protein content of high gluten flour meets my needs but I think that a jump from all-purpose flour to high-gluten flour from a protein content standpoint is too big a jump, and hence do not use VWG for that application. As a professional, you are bound to have greater success seeking out a source of a higher protein flour than if you are a home pizza maker, so you might continue to pursue that goal as best you can.

The thickness factors for your 200 gram/10" pizzas and your 300g gram/12" pizzas are 0.0892 and 0.0936, respectively. There is nothing per se wrong with those values and some, in fact, even like larger values (as I do personally), but the more traditional value for an authentic NY style is in the roughly 0.07-0.08 range that scott123 mentions. In your case, I would experiment with different values to see which values best meet your needs using the flours that are available to you. It is always hard to advise people outside of the U.S. because their flours are often a lot different than those that we use in the U.S.

I wondered whether you were using enough yeast but after seeing that the outside temperature in a place like Delhi is around 26-33 degrees C (77-91 degrees F), I would think that 0.25% IDY would be sufficient. It might still be useful nonetheless to increase the IDY to something like 0.375% to see if that helps.

I agree with scott123 that you are making good progress.

Peter

Offline VarunS

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Re: Problems with Dough
« Reply #7 on: September 15, 2011, 04:03:31 PM »
Peter and Scott thank you very much for your replies.

I did go over to PMQ and asked Tom for his advice his well, my main problem with the tearing may have been that my dough was not fermenting enough. I never let it ferment at room temperature, it went straight in the refrigerator after kneading and the next day after taking it out I did not give it sufficient time to rise. I think the yeast needs a certain temperature to really start working its magic?? After following his suggestions it certainly did make a significant difference.

Scott I was incorrectly calculating my hydration based on flour weight without considering gluten as part of the flour. Thanks for pointing that out. I definitely will continue my quest for finding a quality flour which will make it easier for me and hopefully give a better product as well. There are some bakeries around but they all use VWG from what I know.
Also I have managed to get some Italian whole peeled tomatoes but just crushing them and using seems like a watery sauce? But I am guessing the sauce will have a fresher flavor like this so will give it a try. I have seen a pizzeria in Italy do this but always thought most people cook it first.

This weekend I will try another round of pies and see how hot I can get my oven. I cooked the pizza directly on firebricks which are 3-4" thick. Will post pics definitely.

I just noticed that my rim is much thicker than the center  :-[ , need some practice at hand stretching still, hopefully now that I am on the right track where I have a dough that is accommodating it should be fun.

Peter thanks for that link, I got it from one of your other posts and used the same. I am from Mumbai and in the kitchen temperatures are easily 30 degrees without air conditioning. The thoughts of a representative of the company whom I purchased the flour from said my yeast % may be too low so will increase and see if its better.

How do you guys account for shrinkage in the oven? Say you want to cook a 12" pie would you hand stretch it to 12.5 - 13 " depending on the cooking time and temperature?

Appreciate the help and encouragement.

Varun

Offline scott123

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Re: Problems with Dough
« Reply #8 on: September 15, 2011, 05:16:42 PM »
Varun, there's nothing wrong with making the dough balls and putting them directly into the fridge. That's what many people do, including myself.  If you're doing a large batch of dough and the mixing process results in an elevated temperature, it's a good idea to let the dough cool prior to refrigeration, but your dough quantity doesn't appear to be that large.

Your tearing isn't a fermentation issue, but an extensibility issue.  VWG, being processed to heck and back, just doesn't have the extensibility of bread flour. Some additional yeast and/or some additional time at room temp (pre or post refrigeration) might help a tiny bit, but an AP/VWG blend will always have some stretching issues.

Here are some possible bread flour sources in Mumbai:

The French Loaf, Bandra West, Mumbai
Category:  Bakery
Phone:  (022) 65146144
Address: 6, Carlton Court Building, Turner Road, Bandra West , Mumbai- 400050 , Maharashtra
Landmark: In Carlton Court Building

The French Loaf, Andheri West, Mumbai
Category:  Bakery
Phone:  (022) 65275583 , (022) 65275584
Address: 1, Ajmera Royal Classic, Wing-A, Andheri Link Road, Andheri West , Mumbai- 400058 , Maharashtra
Landmark: Opposite Crystal Plaza

This Mumbai resident says she found Waitrose strong bread flour at the store.

Bread flour: Iíve noticed Waitrose strong bread flour at the store, but besides that I donít know of any place that has bread flours.

If you can score a bag of Waitrose bread flour, you're set.

If your hearth, is indeed, 3-4" thick (that's really thick, might you have meant centimeters?), then it will take a very long time to completely preheat- as long as 3 hours.   The heating element/burner is beneath the firebrick hearth, correct?

The peeled tomatoes will most likely come in a 'puree', but the puree will be quite watery. If possible, just seed and crush the tomatoes on their own.  That will give you the right consistency.

Take another look at the Gemignani video I posted earlier, specifically 1:33 to 2:07. That's the 10 o'clock 2 o'clock thing I was talking about. He talks about hitting the sides while you're doing it. Don't hit the sides :)

I have, personally, not noticed a great deal of shrinkage from the finished skin to the baked pie. In fact, the finished pie can be a bit bigger when the dough stretches a bit during the launch.

Online Pete-zza

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Re: Problems with Dough
« Reply #9 on: September 15, 2011, 05:59:54 PM »
VarunS,

I saw your post over at the PMQ Think Tank and Tom Lehmannís response, starting at http://thinktank.pmq.com/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=8973&sid=97cec42ce812ba683bb762f158f95e41#p73538.

From your post, I believe that Tom responded to your post as though you are a home pizza maker rather than a professional (or budding professional). I believe that is why Tom suggested that you prehydrate the IDY (he typically recommends this if the knead time is less than about 4 minutes) and the rest for two hours before refrigerating  (apparently to give the dough a jumpstart on fermentation).

The recipe you used is a commercial recipe and appears at the PMQ Recipe Bank at http://www.pmq.com/Recipe-Bank/index.php/name/New-York-Style-Pizza/record/57724/. You will see that the instructions for preparing and managing the dough are different than for a home application. There are some pizza operators who use a rest period before going to the cooler, but that is not part of the method that Tom usually recommends for professionals. When I use the recipe (in a home environment), I do not rehydrate the IDY (but I knead for longer than 4 minutes) and I do not use a rest period before refrigerating the dough. You will also note from the recipe that the recommended protein content for the flour is 13.5-14%, and your use of IDY is at the upper range of the amount suggested in the recipe (one third of the cake yeast amount).

I think that scott123 may have a point on the VWG, especially if you are using enough to get the total protein content to 15%. I never used that high an amount to be able to speak from personal experience.

Shrinkage during baking is fairly common. I sometimes increase the final skin size to compensate. I was once told by a professional pizza operator that shrinkage can frequently occur during the process of loading (shuffling?) pizzas into the oven, and that the cure is just more practice.

I look forward to the results of your next attempt after you have considered the advice you now have in hand.

Peter
« Last Edit: January 25, 2013, 09:04:43 PM by Pete-zza »


Online Pete-zza

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Re: Problems with Dough
« Reply #10 on: September 15, 2011, 06:05:01 PM »
VarunS,

I looked for the post where I discussed the shrinkage issue and found it at Reply 77 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,8167.msg71109.html#msg71109.

Peter

Offline VarunS

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Re: Problems with Dough
« Reply #11 on: September 16, 2011, 06:32:32 AM »
I spoke to the company that I purchased the Artisan Flour from to verify if the numbers sent to me were correct. They ran some tests and said that the protein % is higher than 15% vs 11 % on the spec sheet they sent to me earlier. They also said that there may be a variation of 1% in difference batches. For what its worth they dont age the flour (not sure how this affects everything) . If it really is that high I should not have an extensibility issue even though I did only cold ferment it, correct?

Thanks for the links Scott, I did try them sometime ago but it was a imported flour and was not available.

Peter I am using a recipe which I found looking at your NY style Road Map sticky , the 12" hand kneading one , reply #68 http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,576.msg5674.html#msg5674 This was how I made the first recipe in this thread. Second one i don't remember :(. I need to review all this information and try a few different combinations to see what works best. Going to get to work on that now.

Post back soon

Varun
« Last Edit: September 16, 2011, 06:51:34 AM by VarunS »

Offline VarunS

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Re: Problems with Dough
« Reply #12 on: September 19, 2011, 02:37:18 PM »
I tried some pies today with small improvement. However I did not find much difference in the doughs made with the "Artisan Flour" vs dough made with 11.5% AP flour + VWG. They both handled very similarly and were not very hard to work with. Taste wise I found it difficult to tell the difference, maybe I had eaten too much pizza already  :-[ but i am quite certain that there was no significant difference. What is common to both the dough's is that even cooking at a relatively high temperature 325-350 C for little over 5 minutes there was a certain chewiness (toughness). This gets really unpleasant at the rim (I would leave it). Other pizzerias in the city have a much higher thickness factor but their base is super soft and so is the rim. Perhaps the only way to achieve this using the flours at my disposal will be to add "Bread Improvers" which are widely sold and used by bakeries here; though I don't have experience in using them. Their base is soft like a sandwich bread and does not feel cumbersome to eat which I think mine does.

Anyway here are some pics  
Still some bowling, working on it :)



Offline scott123

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Re: Problems with Dough
« Reply #13 on: September 19, 2011, 09:29:31 PM »
Varun, the most frequent contributor to tough crusts is high protein flour that's been kneaded too long. We talked a little bit about kneading less earlier in the discussion.  How much are you kneading now?

Besides making sure that you're not overkneading, you can also use a lower protein flour.  It would really help to know the protein that you're working with now. To be honest, I'm not really certain that 15% protein for flour is even possible.  Even if it is, it's very hard to find.  For this company to first tell you 11%, then 15%, is a little sketchy.  Based upon your description of the crust, it's probably neither 15 nor 11, but somewhere in between.  Between lowering the protein by mixing it with A/P and kneading less, I'd probably play around with kneading first, but you can also try blending and see what impact that has on the texture.

Take some photos of the dough after balling and after refrigeration. That will both tell us how much kneading you're doing and will help us to better ascertain a protein content ballpark.

P.S. Really nice pie.
« Last Edit: September 19, 2011, 09:31:04 PM by scott123 »

Online Pete-zza

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Re: Problems with Dough
« Reply #14 on: September 19, 2011, 09:42:23 PM »
Scott,

Do you think that the protein content of flours in India is rated on a "dry" basis rather than on a "wet" basis as is done in the U.S.? See, for example, the section "Protein" in http://web.archive.org/web/20060822034202/http://www.kingarthurflour.com/stuff/contentmgr/files/15ec5c94af1251cdac2d7a25848f0e27/miscdocs/Flour+Guide.pdf.

Peter

Offline VarunS

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Re: Problems with Dough
« Reply #15 on: September 20, 2011, 01:13:40 AM »
Hi Scott,

I had taken some pictures of the dough however forgot to put them up. The balled dough is put in ziploc bags before going in the refrigerator.

Also I kneaded for not more than 3 mins by hand. Yes I am not sure what to believe from the company with such a huge variation in protein %.

What are your thoughts?

Thanks
Varun

Offline VarunS

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Re: Problems with Dough
« Reply #16 on: September 20, 2011, 01:14:57 AM »
Continued
« Last Edit: September 20, 2011, 01:40:10 AM by VarunS »

Offline VarunS

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Re: Problems with Dough
« Reply #17 on: September 20, 2011, 07:54:50 AM »
  :) Made some more pies today with a bread improver added to them. One batch without gluten and another with. For both batches I used a AP flour with 11.5% protein. These were left to rise at room temperature for 2 hours and they almost doubled in size. Then I divided them into 11.5 oz balls and let them rest for 20 mins. A 11.5 oz dough ball was slightly difficult to stretch to a 12" diameter for both the batches.

Here is what I noticed; with the bread improver added (0.15% in comparison to flour weight) my pie was definitely softer which is a good thing for me atleast. The batch with the gluten had a better oven spring as well or so I think. What I did for my last couple dough balls with gluten was to run them in a food processor fitted with a metal blade for a minute or so, then let it rest for 10-15 mins. This warmed up the dough nicely and it felt easier to stretch.

I definitely want to go the hand stretching route vs rolling as the pizza tastes much much better like this. Looking into various bread improver's now as there are different ones used for various purposes (some are more suitable for loaf bread, some for multi grain and apparently they have a specific one for pizza as well so hopefully can get my hands on that soon!)

Also my pies have too much charring on the bottom now because I only have bottom heating and since I wanted the temperature really high the base gets real hot but in any case let me know what you guys think.

What size can you guys comfortably stretch a 11.5 oz ball to without worry of it tearing ?

Cheers

Varun

Some info I found on the company website about bread improvers

http://www.abmauri.in/Documents/Bakers_corner_docs/Bread%20Improver.doc?phpMyAdmin=b1630465fe298adbb41cd3f0e2acc9e2

« Last Edit: September 20, 2011, 08:08:54 AM by VarunS »

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Re: Problems with Dough
« Reply #18 on: September 20, 2011, 08:32:33 AM »
VarunS, Looking at the pictures of your dough they appear to be in the mid 40% hydration not in the 60% range. My thin and crispy dough at 40% looks quite similar to your photos, scrappy and cottage cheese like. My balled 60% plus dough balls using AP flour are quite smooth and somewhat sticky. I can only ask, how are you weighing the flour and water?
Don

Offline VarunS

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Re: Problems with Dough
« Reply #19 on: September 20, 2011, 08:43:55 AM »
Hi Don

I am using a weighing scale that can measure upto a gram and a jewelry scale for measurements less than 1 gram. For 815 grams of flour + gluten I have used 489 grams of water. Perhaps I am using a lot of bench flour? However I am quite sure that the above numbers are accurate.

My dough was definitely sticky and the ones I threw in the food processor came out really smooth as well. I needed a good amount of flour both on the work surface and my hands to prevent bits of dough from sticking to my fingers.

Varun


 

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