Author Topic: Pursuit of leopard spots and light airy crust  (Read 9263 times)

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Offline Jackie Tran

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Re: Pursuit of leopard spots and light airy crust
« Reply #20 on: November 18, 2011, 06:39:06 PM »
I use a piece of masking tape.  I can write notes on it like dough weight, hydration, type of dough, and time and date.   I usually do different types of doughs for the same bake, so this helps keep them straight.  Plus the tape won't migrate like rubber bands can.



Offline johnamus

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Re: Pursuit of leopard spots and light airy crust
« Reply #21 on: November 23, 2011, 12:48:41 PM »
A 3/4 inch steel plate has been ordered! It was $75 total including the plasma cut and it should be in my hands early next week.  For shiggles I got a quote on stainless - $250  ::)

Hopefully I can help take the speculation about thicker steel and put it into practice. If 3/4" lives up to its billing then I think my biggest challenge (besides reinforcing my oven shelf :D) will be to get the top of the pizza to bake as fast as the bottom.


Offline scott123

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Re: Pursuit of leopard spots and light airy crust
« Reply #22 on: November 23, 2011, 12:52:53 PM »
That's fantastic news. Going where no man has gone before  ;D

What size did you get?

Offline johnamus

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Re: Pursuit of leopard spots and light airy crust
« Reply #23 on: November 23, 2011, 02:17:18 PM »
Being a NYC guy you might be disappointed, but I went with 13 x 15.  This size will fit into my convection oven and will handle my normal tester pie size of 12".  If things work out well I'll buy a larger size for my non-convection oven to be used for larger pies.

Offline scott123

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Re: Pursuit of leopard spots and light airy crust
« Reply #24 on: November 23, 2011, 02:54:37 PM »
Well, actually, I'm a bit disappointed from a Neapolitan perspective as well (12" is too small for Neapolitan, imo), but, if this is how you want to do it, I'm behind you.

Does the convection have the same broiling element with the same number of watts as the main oven?

buceriasdon

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Re: Pursuit of leopard spots and light airy crust
« Reply #25 on: November 23, 2011, 05:07:40 PM »
If memory serves me right carbon steel is several times more thermally conductive than stainless so it's the best choice regardless of cost.
Don


A 3/4 inch steel plate has been ordered! It was $75 total including the plasma cut and it should be in my hands early next week.  For shiggles I got a quote on stainless - $250  ::)





Offline johnamus

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Re: Pursuit of leopard spots and light airy crust
« Reply #26 on: November 23, 2011, 07:50:22 PM »
Scott, the size problem is only an aesthetic cornicione-center ratio issue right?   In other words the small diameter won't screw up my bake times, right? 

Both my convection and standard oven use a similarly sized broiler element. When I'm back at my house I'll refer to the manual to give you a wattage spec. They both shutoff around 550 F.

Don, until you mentioned it I wasn't aware of the difference in conductivity, good thing I didn't pay for the "upgrade".  My preference for the stainless was based on its corrosion resistance properties. Do you have any idea on how to handle and store the steel in order to minimize corrosion?

Offline scott123

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Re: Pursuit of leopard spots and light airy crust
« Reply #27 on: November 24, 2011, 05:42:00 AM »
Yes, Johnamus, it's an aesthetic thing and won't impact your bake times. I shouldn't have even brought it up. Right now, this isn't about size-  it's about Neapolitan bake times and leoparding, which, now that you're getting 3/4" plate, should be within your grasp.

Offline scott123

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Re: Pursuit of leopard spots and light airy crust
« Reply #28 on: November 24, 2011, 06:12:25 AM »
If memory serves me right carbon steel is several times more thermally conductive than stainless so it's the best choice regardless of cost.

For what it's worth, for NY, I wouldn't mind an affordable material in the conductivity realm of stainless.  Between soapstone at around 6 and carbon steel in the 50s, there's not much in between.

buceriasdon

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Re: Pursuit of leopard spots and light airy crust
« Reply #29 on: November 24, 2011, 06:21:04 AM »
I never wash my steel plate, just brush off the flour residue with a dry towel. If the plasma cut edge is a bluish color then it has left an oxide layer which will resist rust. Since you are not cooking, as one would with a cast iron skillet, no seasoning is required. I season because I live on the beach with lots of salt air to contend with.
Don



Do you have any idea on how to handle and store the steel in order to minimize corrosion?


Offline johnamus

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Re: Pursuit of leopard spots and light airy crust
« Reply #30 on: December 20, 2011, 08:14:57 AM »
My 3/4" steel plate is ready for pickup, I should have it in my hands by this weekend.

Offline scott123

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Re: Pursuit of leopard spots and light airy crust
« Reply #31 on: December 20, 2011, 08:30:10 PM »
Sounds good!  You are still the very first to breach the 3/4" steel Neapolitan barrier, so what you're attempting is very exciting stuff.

How are you doing for flour? Do you have Caputo?  Do you have a solid Neapolitan recipe?

Offline johnamus

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Re: Pursuit of leopard spots and light airy crust
« Reply #32 on: December 21, 2011, 09:01:06 AM »
I don't have 00 flour or a Neapolitan recipe; this experiment will start from square one  :) (on the positive side, I do have an infrared thermometer). 

Do you have any good ideas for a starting point recipe?  My on-hand flour selection is "Better for Bread" and a generic AP, but KAAP and KABF are available at the local supermarket.  There are a few restaurant suppliers in the area (St Louis MO) that I assume would offer more varieties, but their websites indicate that a membership is required.

Offline scott123

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Re: Pursuit of leopard spots and light airy crust
« Reply #33 on: December 21, 2011, 09:29:10 AM »
Johnamus, here's a source for Caputo pizzeria flour in St. Louis:

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=10786.0

There doesn't really seem to be a definitive Neapolitan recipe in the forum, at least, not the last time I looked.  I would probably suggest, since you're starting out, to avoid sourdough/starters. Other than that, if you can score the Caputo, then I go with something along the lines of 60% hydration, 2.5% salt and an overnight coolish room temp 12 hour bulk fermentation and then maybe 12 hours balled with enough yeast to double the dough during those 24 hours.

Offline johnamus

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Re: Pursuit of leopard spots and light airy crust
« Reply #34 on: December 21, 2011, 10:12:47 AM »
Scott,

Thanks for the link to the St Louis Caputo thread. The market mentioned in that thread has a website here: http://www.digregoriofoods.com/ and looks promising.  Hopefully they offer caputo in a smaller size bag - The last thing my wife needs to see is a 50 lb bag of flour to go along with the 50 lb plate of steel  :D -.

Should I start with 100% 00 flour, or mix in a little AP or BF?  My main concern is that I'll be able to achieve Neapolitan temps on the hearth (i.e. steel plate) but my dome (i.e. broiler) won't be able to keep up.

-John

Offline sum1else

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Re: Pursuit of leopard spots and light airy crust
« Reply #35 on: December 21, 2011, 10:26:38 AM »
I'm excited to see what this 3/4 steel can do.
FYI, I saw Caputo (2.2# Red bag) at Whole Foods this week.

Offline scott123

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Re: Pursuit of leopard spots and light airy crust
« Reply #36 on: December 21, 2011, 11:17:27 AM »
The best case scenario would be that you could preheat the plate to 550, then turn the broiler on and have it stay on for 90 seconds until the probe hit 585. If my calculations are correct, you'll probably need 550 on the hearth.  If the extra thermal mass of the steel really delivers and you can work with 525, then you should be in good shape, as the broiler should stay on for a while with a 525 to 585 jump. 

John, could you take a photo of the probe in your oven? I've spent some time with Tyler (Sum1else) going over some gentle mods to get a slight temperature bump, and, while he's still finding the one that's best for him, he needs a few more degrees than you do and he's working with a far weaker gas broiler. Shielding his probe with a foil pouch didn't seem to buy him enough degrees to keep his broiler on, but, in your case, it might give you just enough a bump to do the trick.

Could you also take a shot of your broiler element?  Beyond making sure the element stays on, you're going to want to shrink the space between the broiler and the stone as much as humanly possible- 2.5" or less.

You had mentioned earlier that you were going to look into the wattage on the broiler element in the top (and bottom) oven. That will go a long way in telling us how much of top heat it can deliver.

If the broiler does end up being a bit anemic, there's workarounds we can try, like using a malted flour such as KAAP.  Until then, though, I'd try starting the with the Caputo, if you can get it.

Offline johnamus

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Re: Pursuit of leopard spots and light airy crust
« Reply #37 on: December 21, 2011, 12:19:54 PM »
My oven is a few years old and no longer stocked, but the published specs for the current comparable model list the broiler element wattage as 3600w. 

I'll post a photo of the oven temp probe when I have a chance. There is a piece of metal directly in front of the probe which makes the sleeve placement process very difficult.  This metal piece is connected to the broiler element and could possibly be removed, but more investigation is due on my part.

As a side note, I've done the oven calibration tweak a few times to increase the dial temp by 30, but the problem with my oven is that the broiler element shuts off at 550 regardless of the oven calibration to 580.

Offline sum1else

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Re: Pursuit of leopard spots and light airy crust
« Reply #38 on: December 22, 2011, 06:35:26 PM »
Quote
As a side note, I've done the oven calibration tweak a few times to increase the dial temp by 30, but the problem with my oven is that the broiler element shuts off at 550 regardless of the oven calibration to 580.

I think that's what my oven does too, although there is no way to know for sure.

Offline johnamus

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Re: Pursuit of leopard spots and light airy crust
« Reply #39 on: December 23, 2011, 10:18:32 AM »
Here's a couple photos of my oven's temperature sensor.


 

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