Author Topic: OVENSPRING QUESTION  (Read 2166 times)

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Offline gabaghool

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OVENSPRING QUESTION
« on: October 28, 2011, 05:48:34 PM »
If you guys had to guess at the culprit of insufficient ovenspring, what would your guess be.

New Haven style pizza isn't known for big puffy edging.  The edges, are, in most cases, fairly thin.  One exception, and its a glorious one is Zuppardi's.  Since I will be trying to duplicate this dough, the ovenspring is one challenge I have to figure out.

Even in my own places, one location has far less oven spring than my other two.  I've checked on recipe, manipulations, mixing time, oven temps....all the same.  I actually brought a dough from a location with decent ovenspring and cooked it in our bad ovenspring location and the spring was fine, so I think that would eliminate oven temp.  Water???  But, I just don't believe that water thing, maybe Im wrong.

Scott has stated that ovenspring has less to do with yeast activity as it does with steam and little air pockets.  Could you further explain this??

My one guess on Zuppardi's thicker edge is simply the guess that they CONSCIENCELY try to form an edge.  Most NH pie men KNOCK DOWN the edge when opening a dough ball with their hands, fingers spread far apart so some parts of the edge are knocked down and others are left alone.  But this is just a guess.  I am going back to Zupp's this week and eat a pie or two while keeping my eyes open.

So, what are the main culprits of ovenspring.  Thanks again, as usual for any help.


Offline scott123

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Re: OVENSPRING QUESTION
« Reply #1 on: October 28, 2011, 06:38:57 PM »
Nick, water, when converted to steam, expands to 1700 times it's original volume.  Yeast excretes the CO2 that forms bubbles in the dough, but it's the moisture inside the bubbles, that, when exposed to heat, converts to steam, causing it to expand violently and send the dough soaring. The hydration of the dough, the strength and extensibility of the dough and the fermentation time and conditions, among other factors, will impact oven spring, but, all factors the same, the king of spring is heat.

If you're getting oven spring at one location, there's got to be a variable that you're missing.  Are the flour deliveries all coming at the same time and from the same distributor?  Is the flour stored in the same conditions?  Have you watched the employees at all the locations make the dough?  Could the walk in temps vary?  Are the containers the same?  Could the temperature in the warm-up area vary? Are the mixers the same? Are they running them at the same speed?

Out of all the possibilities (and there are many), I'd start off comparing the appearance of pre-fermentation dough balls at both places. I'd also check windowpaning.  There's a really good chance it's something else, but I think comparing gluten development would be a good start.

Zupps is, without a doubt, forming a rim, which is relatively standard for NY style:

<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>


Knocking down the rim will not only deflate that precious bubble framework that the yeast has built, but it will activate gluten and could make the dough less extensible/expandable. Everyone has their own preferences, but, between the knock downs and anti-oregano stance, I'm kind of wondering what these New Havenites are thinking.

Edit: When you go back to Zupps, try to get a bake time. Btw, do you own a video camera?  ;D
« Last Edit: October 28, 2011, 07:03:22 PM by scott123 »

Offline gabaghool

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Re: OVENSPRING QUESTION
« Reply #2 on: October 28, 2011, 07:29:37 PM »
Thanks scott.......I check EACH AND EVERYONE of those....recheck in most cases.

I actually like a NOT TO PUFFY CORNICH.  If you look at the rims of a NH pizza, you can actually SEE where the fingers pressed down and where the spaces between the fingers left the dough alone.  Their reasoning, I think is that the dough will rise on its own WHERE the sauce and cheese are absent.

Ill check bake time at zups this week.  I have a video cam in my phone.

I follow your line of reasoning with the flour.  But its impossible to store and recieve the flour at the same time.  But the distributor is the same.  I am sure the pizza making sections vary in degrees, but not by alot.  All three are NOT in the main kitchen, so, in restaurant terms, the pizza making sections, even with the ovens, are reletively cool...you know in the high 80's low 90's.  The mixers are all the same brand, run at the first speed for the same amount of time.

The thing is, the location with low spring is our oldest location, now on 5 years, so no matter WHO makes the dough (and it will always vary a bit from employee to employee) the result is always the same.  The flavor is there, the amount of crisp and chew is there, but the spring isn't.  I've rolled the dough with them, nothing stands out.  All the reach in cold ferm coolers are the same temp (more or less, due to door opening and closing)  But, the rack of balls reaching room temp before pounding is sitting in a warmer spot in the bad spring area then any other location.  In other words, the trays of doughs pulled out to warm up and proof a bit sit in a warmer area in the bad spring location.....they rise a bit more.  On thing I can't be sure of is if the guys let the balls rise enough outside the retarder...BUT...employees change.....so I would have noticed Some difference....no??

You think Zup's FORMS a rim, huh??  My thought exactly.  Its far to fat to be simple rise....especially since the rest of the crust is thin crust (though a BIT thicker than the rest of New Havens mavens.  And, yeah, the oregano, I just don't get.  I understand oregano NOT being put in the sauce when the sauce is made (the acid effects the oregano and the oregano in turn seems to sour the tomatoes....but NOT to sprinkle it on each pie as it goes in.....i don't get.  But check out sally's plain. It got SLICES one of Cts 8 best pies...not a STITCH or oregano to be seen....NH isn't in love with the single herb that spells PIZZA to me.

I'll post when I go to Zups this weekend. ......How the hell that crust is so different when they are using All trumps is beyond me.........I guess it just goes to show how important HANDLING is, I guess...

Offline norma427

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Re: OVENSPRING QUESTION
« Reply #3 on: October 28, 2011, 10:04:19 PM »
Nick,

If you are interested in what Peter posted about oven spring, in addition to what Scott is helping you with, this is where he replied to me at Reply 515 http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,9908.msg104559.html#msg104559

Peter gave a detailed list what does go into having oven spring.

Norma
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Offline scott123

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Re: OVENSPRING QUESTION
« Reply #4 on: October 29, 2011, 12:30:41 AM »
Nick, there's a camp that believes that, for best results,  dough should be a bit below room temperature when going into the oven.  I haven't tested this as thoroughly as I'd like, but I think I'm tentatively in this camp. If memory serves me correctly, you're going with relatively quick tempers at all your locations, right?  Is the dough slightly chilled when you form it?  It might be a matter of the warmer temper producing inferior results because the dough is closer to room temp at baking time.

Or it could be something else  ;D These kinds of mysteries can be hard to solve. You saw the list of Peter's that Norma posted a link to, right?  The number of variables can be mind boggling. If you filmed the entire process at all your locations, and took readings of every possible temperature, I'm sure that, together, we could figure this out, but, at this point, I'm not sure it's worth the trouble.  Just remember, going forward, that there are a boatload of little factors influencing oven spring, but the biggest player, by far, is heat.  If the heat is right, you're 85% of the way there.

Offline c0mpl3x

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Re: OVENSPRING QUESTION
« Reply #5 on: October 29, 2011, 03:37:00 AM »
proper gluten formation (water and flour that's fresh and a higher protein content, that sits without rise) hydration beyond 60% (65-75%), dough that isn't over fermented or blown out from sitting too long, and good fermentation of the yeast, with an oven that provides direct heat over an oven that holds heat without element/burner coming on, in my experience, is key to spring.
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Re: OVENSPRING QUESTION
« Reply #6 on: October 29, 2011, 01:00:23 PM »
My limited experience tells me that the two important factors are hydration and gentle handling of the dough.

The following pizza bianca had a HR of 87.5%, used IDY and AP flour, and in the home oven at 550F.  No-knead method with a few folds at the end. So gentle dough handling.

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,1464.msg94299.html#msg94299

This pie was 70% HR, used a starter, 50/50 00/KASL ,and on the 2Stone at about 800F. Tartine method, so gentle handling of the dough.

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,13911.msg155044.html#msg155044

The only things the pies had in common was gentle handling and higher hydration.  Also, no mechanical mixing.  Results may very.....





Offline gabaghool

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Re: OVENSPRING QUESTION
« Reply #7 on: October 29, 2011, 01:56:19 PM »
Thank you Norma....I will read and reread that thread.  I appreciate you going to the trouble of finding it.

Scott-
People believe that the dough should be slightly COOLER??  REALLY??   I dont see that AT ALL.  Again, I've come to that conclusion simply through doing thousands of pizzas, not really from UNDERSTANDING IT, but through the motions.  I HATE when I catch an employee pounding out colder dough.  Its easier to make round, so they do it.....but the pie CONSTANTLY has LESS spring.

-We pull the pans of dough out from fridge.

-It sits in a dough rack, in the pizza room for AT LEAST one hour....longer the better (In fact, pounding,   stretching and making a pizza with a dough ball that is ALMOST BLOWN always seems to produce the best spring, best taste and most character)

- the balls are pounded flat and folded, piled no more than three high (this is the way its done in ALL the pizza places I've worked, 8 all together.)  When the pounder flattens the dough, the edges are knocked down but the MIDDLE is always left alone, so each dough circle should have a little bump in the middle.  This is done so when the dough is stretched, the middle doesn't become super thin.  Also, most places I worked seldom put sauce in the MIDDLE of the skin, saying the sauce will naturally gravitate to the middle as it cooks, therefore the middle doesn't become "soupy".

-the flattened balls are stretched by the pizza man.  The EDGES are stretched, not the center.  Its placed on the peel, decorated and immediately thrown into oven.

Now, my reasoning for using very risen dough is that the yeast is very active at this point. when it is thrown in the oven, since the dough is already at least room temp, the yeast can go crazy BEFORE the crust is formed.  If the dough is chilled on its way into the oven, doesn't the heat have to get the dough temp up to where the yeast is very active.....and at the same time the crust is browning, preventing more spring??  In other words, the yeast gets a kick start before being placed in the oven, it reaches temp, dies, gives off gas as it dies, blowing the dough up before the crust has a chance to harden?  I know I may have the science all wrong, but that makes sense to me. Kinda like making sure the bread loaf you are about to bake has risen to its max before you place it in the oven...Again, I can be totally screwed up in this thinking, cause I know you've mentioned the yeast places little role in rise, its the steam.

ANd I've never worked in a place that wants the skins cool when they are turned into pizza.  Gotta be a reason, no??

Comp  what do you mean by this?
proper gluten formation (water and flour that's fresh and a higher protein content, that sits without rise)   Without a rise??

Parallei-
Those are gorgeous pics of great oven spring..the crumb is fantatic...but those hydrations are impossible in MY commercial settings.  I realize that high hydration gives great spring and huge holes in the crumb.  Just can't do it.  Now, for a sicilian pie, yes.  We can do that.  Our hydration is 64%, which is higher than most, but still managable in portioning and balling.  I don't think you could even BALL that high of a hydration WITHOUT adding a ton of flour....and I hate that.

Thanks to all for all your advice.  Its greatly appreciated.


Offline gabaghool

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Re: OVENSPRING QUESTION
« Reply #8 on: October 29, 2011, 02:05:25 PM »
Scott

Do you know whatever happened to the poster GUIDOPIZZA?  I read his 25 or so posts and he is DEFINATELY an old time NY pizza guy.  His insights make a ton of sense (top pizza places changing cheeses, tomatoes, flours, etc.......methods of commercial making of grandma's pies, etc.......life as a pizza man in NY) He was very informative and then he simply stopped posting.  He said he retired, could he have passed away??

Anyone know.

Offline gabaghool

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Re: OVENSPRING QUESTION
« Reply #9 on: October 29, 2011, 02:31:09 PM »
One thing I noticed on all the oven spring pics was that people are simply using more dough for a small pie.

In otherwords, the pies seems to range from 7 to 10 inches and the skins were pretty thick.  This HAS to have something to do with how thick the edge is.  We use 10 oz for a 12 inch pie, 24oz for an 18 " pizza.

Are these weights and measurements about equal to those ovenspring pics??


Offline norma427

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Re: OVENSPRING QUESTION
« Reply #10 on: October 29, 2011, 02:54:16 PM »
Nick,

I am sure not an expert on anything about dough or pizzas.  I still learn each day, just by doing experiments and with each experiment there is something learned, but also at times, I canít figure out what is going on.   :-D

Just to give you one example, this past Tuesday I took my regular preferment Lehmann dough and wanted to see if it would have good oven spring if I only let the dough ball warm-up for 30 minutes. (it was still quite cool, because the market temperatures were about 58 degrees F).  I also wanted to test something else out.  I wanted to see if my preferment Lehmann dough pizzas could be baked before my deck had come up to temperature. (temperature on the deck was only 458 degrees F with an IR gun, and that was the hottest part of the deck.  That pizza had just as much oven spring as my other pizzas do, and it could have even had better oven spring, or so I thought by just looking at the pizza and crumb.  I had taken pictures of the whole process, but accidentally deleted them, when my memory stick became full.  That is only one reason I canít understand pizzas.  I would think you at least need a decent temperature to get oven spring, and a warmer dough too, but that wasnít the case with my experiment on Tuesday.  If I have time this coming Tuesday, I am going to do the experiment again, and try again to take pictures.  My preferment Lehmann dough can be opened right out of the deli case or pizza prep fridge with decent results in the final pizza.  I donít know, but think with each formula something just happens differently and you need to identify what happens to change things.  I might be wrong though.

With another formula for a Mackís pizza I have been trying, if the dough ball wouldnít really be pressed on hard before opening it, it would have decent oven spring, but because of pressing on the dough ball so much before opening it, the finished pizza doesnít have much oven spring.  That is just one more example.  I could go on forever, but donít ever completely understand why things happen.

Norma
« Last Edit: October 30, 2011, 07:54:33 AM by norma427 »
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Online Pete-zza

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Re: OVENSPRING QUESTION
« Reply #11 on: October 29, 2011, 03:15:38 PM »
Nick,

I used to view the effect of yeast on oven spring like you, but I was turned around on the matter by Jeff Varasano and November in the course of this thread: http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,3557.0.html.

I also understand what Norma is saying about getting good oven spring when you might not expect it, as in making a pizza using a low hydration, for example, in the low 50s percent. In such cases, a large amount of yeast may be necessary, especially if the dough also contains a lot of sugar that can slow down yeast performance through osmotic pressure. I have also learned to assess each case and each dough formulation
on its own facts when it comes to oven spring rather than as a generic event, whether it is analyzing an existing dough formulation or creating a new one. In so doing, one also has to take into account the circumstances, including the type of dough management and the type of oven and the related oven protocol, under which the dough formulation is to be used. The dough formulation and the oven environment have to fit together like hand and glove.

Peter
« Last Edit: October 29, 2011, 03:31:30 PM by Pete-zza »

Offline gabaghool

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Re: OVENSPRING QUESTION
« Reply #12 on: October 29, 2011, 04:49:06 PM »
Pete
Wouldn't sugar make the yeast more active?

Offline gabaghool

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Re: OVENSPRING QUESTION
« Reply #13 on: October 29, 2011, 05:38:20 PM »
Pete, Im reading your link to the thread.  Excellent thread.  I left a question at the end...but the thread is over 5 years old, I don't know if it will get answered.  So I cut and pasted it here.  I hope that isn't against any rules.  If it is, my apologies.  At the end of the above thread I asked"

shango

I know this is a very old thread, but I hope it gets answered.

I asked a similar question a while back.

So if I get this right.  You would mix a batch of dough, let it bulk rise at room temp, roll it into the fridge to let it double again...pull it out, portion, ball, and back overnight in the fridge.  Then out to the room, let the balls get to room temp and THEN make a pizza with it?

So, what problems do you see with a batch of dough, mixed, portioned, balled and straight inot the fridge for a few days, slowly fermenting, then pulled out and left to get to room temp before pounding and baking?  This is pretty much standard NY style of dough making?  Where do you see errors?

Thank  you very much for any info.

Online Pete-zza

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Re: OVENSPRING QUESTION
« Reply #14 on: October 31, 2011, 10:08:58 AM »
Pete
Wouldn't sugar make the yeast more active?


Nick,

Yes, but only up to a certain point. Sugar and other sweeteners are hygroscopic in nature and can absorb water from their surroundings. However, if there is too much sugar or other fermentable sweeteners in a leavened dough (such as honey, molasses, maple syrup, barley malt syrup, fructose, etc.), they can cause liquids in the yeast cells to leach out by osmosis and inhibit the performance of the yeast. A typical amount of sweetener that can do that is around 5%. This condition doesn't have to be fatal but it can mean having to use a longer fermentation period (maybe even considerably longer if the amount of yeast is very small) or a longer temper time (or tempering at a higher temperature), or possibly a combination of both measures. One can also increase the amount of yeast up front in the dough formulation so that even after some impairment it can still perform adequately. Another alternative would be to use a strain of yeast that was specifically developed for sweet doughs with high sugar content.

There is a very good article on how yeast uses sugars in the article at http://www.theartisan.net/dough_development.htm.

Peter

Offline scott123

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Re: OVENSPRING QUESTION
« Reply #15 on: November 06, 2011, 08:56:04 PM »
Update: I was researching residual sugar and came up with an interesting notation regarding yeast's impact on oven spring.

http://mro.massey.ac.nz/bitstream/handle/10179/268/02_whole.pdf?sequence=3 (page 20)

Quote
The solubility of CO2 falls as temperature rises during baking and dissolved CO2 evaporates into gas cells, producing a rapid expansion of dough known as Ďoven springí. It is often stated that oven spring is due to accelerated yeast activity with increasing temperature, but the yeastís contribution to oven spring is small (Dennis Lonergan, pers. comm. 2005).


Dennis Logeran, during the time of this personal communication was a Strategic Technology Director for General Mills, and, prior to that, a Research Fellow for Pillsbury.

While evaporating CO2 is an interesting premise, it's important to note that this is referencing bread in general. For pizza, I still believe that with the intense heat involved and faster bake time, steam is the bigger player.  Regardless of whether or not CO2 is more important than steam, I think that it's safe to assume that yeast isn't a major part of the equation.

Offline Jose L. Piedra

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Re: OVENSPRING QUESTION
« Reply #16 on: November 11, 2011, 01:46:38 PM »
Assuming that there isn't some sort of bad practice that gets perpetuated across turnover (e.g. new employees learning bad habits from the older ones), maybe it's that the warmer balls don't stand up as well to being handled.

With respect to oven spring in general, I've found that variables pertaining to gas, namely the amount of gas and the ability of the dough to retain its gas, are of utmost importance. This in turn boils down to rise on the one hand and kneading and flour type on the other. Hydration doesn't seem to be all that important, at least, not at lower oven temperature ranges. I did a bunch of mad-scientist type experiments over the past summer and made several doughs at 95% or higher hydration. To the exact extent that these doughs were relatively under-kneaded (because they stuck to the bench too much, making it impractical to give them a really good workout), they showed less oven spring than very well-kneaded doughs of 62-7% that I've made.

JLP
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