Yesterday, the Fourth of July, I decided to try to come up with the baker’s percents and weights for Buzz’s Giordano’s deep-dish pizza pie. Buzz had originally posted his recipe for his re-creation of the famous Giordano’s deep-dish pizza at the opening post at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,1184.0.html
. Because of the popularity of Buzz’s version, and since Buzz uses volume measurements rather than weights, I posed several questions to Buzz (see Replies 7, 8, 24 and 25 at the above thread for Q&A) in an effort to divine his exact procedures so that I might replicate them in my own kitchen and come up with weights for the various ingredients (mainly the flour, water and oils) and the corresponding baker’s percents. In a sense, what I am now trying to do is to reverse engineer Buzz’s reverse engineering of the Giordano’s deep-dish pie. The value of baker’s percents in this case, of course, is that they permit one to make a deep-dish pizza of any size, not only the 9 1/2-inch size that Buzz’s recipe makes.
To make my test dough, I tried to follow Buzz’s standard practice in making the Giordano’s clone as he described it at the above thread. I used volumes only and weighed everything on my digital scale. I tried to follow exactly Buzz’s instructions to make the dough, including combining and kneading everything by hand, with a final knead of no more than 2 minutes (I even set a timer). I found that I needed only one teaspoon of extra water in order to get the dough to the stage I believe Buzz aims for. The test dough I ended up with was allowed to ferment (covered) at room temperature for 8 hours. During that time, I estimate that the dough rose by less than a quarter—and that was at a very warm room temperature. To be able to make the pizza on the Fourth, I placed the dough (covered) in the refrigerator the night before.
Eighteen hours later, I brought the dough to room temperature, covered it loosely with a sheet of plastic wrap, and set it aside to warm up. About 2 hours later, I proceeded to roll out and shape the dough to fit a 9 1/2-inch-by 2-inch deep pan—the same size as Buzz’s. As Buzz instructed, I rolled the dough out as thinly as possible (around 13-14 inches), folded it in quarters and then rolled it out again as thinly as possible. I had no problems whatsoever in rolling out the dough, and needed little in the way of bench flour. After I finished rolling out the dough, I lifted it up gently and draped it over the 9 1/2-inch-by 2-inch deep pan (lightly oiled) and pressed the dough down into the pan to fit snugly. Since the diameter of the rolled-out dough was greater than the pan could handle (as Buzz had indicated it would be), I trimmed off the excess. And I weighed it (2.15 oz.). I did this in order to be able to calculate the “net” weight of dough that would be needed to practice Buzz’s recipe in the event one wanted to make only the exact amount of dough for his recipe, i.e., without the excess. That way, one wouldn’t have to guess at how much dough should be put into the pan. And, since the dough handles and “spreads” easily once in the pan, one can adjust the dough to fit snugly in the pan. (This approach is intended for a pan with a side that is 2 inches deep. For a deeper pan, one would press the dough up to 2 inches, or the dough amounts would be adjusted upwardly to fit the entire depth.)
To bake the dressed pizza, I placed it on the middle rack position of a 500 degrees F. preheated oven (electric) and, after lowering the oven temperature to 450 degrees F when the pizza went into the oven, I allowed the pizza to bake for about 25-30 minutes. About 20 minutes into the bake cycle, I noticed that the crust was browning faster than I thought appropriate (my pan is dark and fairly heavy). So for the remaining 10 minutes I covered the pie with a sheet of aluminum foil, which seemed to work well.
Based on the amount of data I now have, I believe I can actually come up with two sets of baker’s percents—one for Buzz’s original recipe, which will produce a bit more dough than actually needed, and one for the “net” amount of dough (without the excess). However, before settling on a final set of baker’s percents, and for the sake of accuracy, I would like to have Buzz’s input and feedback as to whether I came close to how he makes the dough for his recipe and, if not, where I went astray or erred. To assist him in this regard, I have posted photos of the dough at different stages, and hope that they are adequate to be of value to Buzz’s analysis. I have also presented photos in the following thread of the finished pizza. The first photo below shows the final, kneaded dough. The second photo shows the dough as it came out of the refrigerator and was put on my countertop to warm up before rolling out and shaping. The third photo shows the pizza after it was dressed.
For the sake of completeness at this juncture, I have set forth below the preliminary weights and baker’s percents and other relevant information for Buzz’s recipe as I calculated them, on the chance that Buzz (or anyone else for that matter) might pick up on something that appears to be out of order. The volume measurements are Buzz’s, the weight measurements and baker’s percents are mine.
100%, King Arthur brand all-purpose flour (11.7%), 1 1/2 c. (7.40 oz.)
2.03%, ADY (SAF brand), 1 t. (0.15 oz.)
2.7%, Kosher salt (Morton’s brand), 3/4 t. (0.20 oz.)
2%, Sugar, 3/4 t. (0.15 oz.)
10.1%, Canola oil (5 1/2 t.) and Classico brand light olive oil (1/2 t.), (0.75 oz. total)
41.9%, Water (bottled, at 105-115 degrees F), 6 T. (3.10 oz.)
Total dough ball weight = 11.50 oz.
Finished dough temperature = 85 degrees F.
“Net” dough ball weight (total dough ball weight less 2.15 oz. scrap) = 9.15 oz.
Thickness Factor (TF) = 0.07 (tentative)