Author Topic: Too much flour on finished pizza.  (Read 2823 times)

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Offline cosgrojo

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Too much flour on finished pizza.
« on: December 01, 2011, 05:12:28 PM »
As I begin to mess around with higher hydration doughs I am finding that I am requiring more flour lubrication on the peel to successfully launch the pizza.  Unfortunately this is causing a lot of flour attached to the bottom of the pizza, causing an unpleasant mouth feel and, well, loose flour in our mouths.  I don't like using cornmeal, I feel it takes over the flavor profile of the pizza.  Any suggestions? I do the shaking in between every topping add on, but if I don't over flour, it sticks. :(.  Help please.


Offline FeCheF

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Re: Too much flour on finished pizza.
« Reply #1 on: December 01, 2011, 05:54:33 PM »
I would suggest using 50/50 flour/cornmeal. Also to use a mesh pizza screen so you can shake off excess flour before adding your toppings. And to go even further, after you have it streched out on the mesh pizza screen you can use a spray bottle to spray a very fine mist of water over the rim to remove any left over dry flour dust. You could also brush some olive oil on the rim right before putting into oven, or better yet some garlic butter spray oil adds a nice garlic bread flavor on the crust.
« Last Edit: December 01, 2011, 05:57:17 PM by FeCheF »

Offline cosgrojo

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Re: Too much flour on finished pizza.
« Reply #2 on: December 01, 2011, 07:00:06 PM »
I've never used a screen... Am I supposed to launch the whole screen onto the stone? Then do I just wait for the dough to firm up and take the screen out? Thank for the tips... Appreciate it!

Online scott123

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Re: Too much flour on finished pizza.
« Reply #3 on: December 01, 2011, 08:11:51 PM »
Josh, screens extend bake times, so, unless you've got heat to spare (which most home ovens don't) I would steer clear of them.

From your other posts it looks like your wood peel might be on the smooth side.  For the best surface for launching, I find roughly sanded peels vastly superior.  Rough peels tend to grab hold of a layer of flour while the pizza slides across.

Btw, is there raw flour on your retrieving peel?

Also, how high are you going with the hydration and what flour are you using?  Sometimes a little more water can help with oven spring and texture, but if you really push it, at least for the style I'm seeing you post photos of, it can be counterproductive.
« Last Edit: December 01, 2011, 08:18:19 PM by scott123 »

Offline cosgrojo

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Re: Too much flour on finished pizza.
« Reply #4 on: December 01, 2011, 09:21:56 PM »
Ok, no screen... Don't like extra steps anyway, and I am pretty confident with my launching technique... No pro, but the pizza makes it on the stone.  My peel is wood, and definitely not smooth, and I have noticed that a good amount of flour stays on the peel after launching.  I am also now fighting the desire to slap myself in the forehead. Scot123 asks if there is flour on the retrieving peel... I'm an idiot.  It makes all the sense in the world, wipe the peel down after launching.  I'm getting transfer from the peel to the pizza.

I will definitely try that next time since it is the bottom of the crust that I am having the issue with, not the top or side.

Scot, I couldn't really tell you what exact hydration level I'm at. I dont use a formula for my doughs, I usually go by how the dough looks and feels. I have been recently experimenting with a wetter dough, but it is just by feel at this point. I'm not opposed to formula baking, it's just that I almost never use the same liquid twice, and I have found that different liquids require different amounts for same amount of flour. Eventually I want to get to a point that I have a stable of go to dough liquids, and then nail down the exact amounts for the style of dough I'm looking for. But I suspect you are right about the wetter dough for my oven ability and general style.  I don't think my oven gets hot enough to convert the extra moisture into steam fast enough to get an appreciable rise in the crust... But I do like bow the wetter dough feels in my hands.  This last dough I made was much wetter than I usually make, and it stretched sooooo easy, if I tried to toss it... Well it would have been a mess. My normal dough I am able to lightly toss without too much fear of ripping it, but mostly just hang off my knuckles for the stretch.

I'm currently using KABF bread flour. Don't have a lot of options at the supermarket in New Hampshire.  

Offline chickenparm

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Re: Too much flour on finished pizza.
« Reply #5 on: December 01, 2011, 09:34:06 PM »
I have another method or suggestion.

I bought the super peel(I have 2 sizes) and never looked back.When I bake using the pizza stone,not the screen,I love this peel.I use very little flour to open the dough and the cloth on the peel will grab the rest of the flour off the bottom of your dough before you place the pie onto the stone.Like you,I hate flour on the bottom of my pies.I do not even care for cornmeal much either.

I have cooked many pies with practically no bench flour ever sticking to the bottom of the pie,due to the cloth on the super peel.I have never had one mistake using this peel,with a pie getting stuck,or not coming off,ever.

When I'm done using the super peel,I hold it over the garbage,slide the cloth back and forth real quick,and watch any remaining flour fall out.

I sound like a sales person somewhat but Im just offering another alternative to using a standard wood peel.It works well for me.
 :)



-Bill

Offline cosgrojo

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Re: Too much flour on finished pizza.
« Reply #6 on: December 01, 2011, 10:23:12 PM »
Chickenparm- how long have you left the pizza on the peel for? I've always wanted to open up a skin and just let it rest on the peel to let it proof and relax a bit prior to topping and launching. Curious how long you have before even the super peel will begin marrying the dough.  It would be an interesting experiment anyway...

Offline chickenparm

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Re: Too much flour on finished pizza.
« Reply #7 on: December 01, 2011, 10:36:11 PM »
Chickenparm- how long have you left the pizza on the peel for? I've always wanted to open up a skin and just let it rest on the peel to let it proof and relax a bit prior to topping and launching. Curious how long you have before even the super peel will begin marrying the dough.  It would be an interesting experiment anyway...

I have never timed it,but I had a few on there for a few minutes.3-4 minutes at least.It never got stuck.I feel confident you can leave an open skin on there 30 minutes and it wont get stuck either.
I just cant see how,unless the dough skin is very sticky and hard to handle.

Also,the peel is designed that you can open the skin on the counter top and when ready,put the peel up against the pie and slide the cloth back and it will pick/pull it up off there onto the peel.I choose to open the skin then when I shape it to size,I place it right onto the peel to make sure it fits or is the correct size I want it to be,since Im using a 15 inch stone.

One trick I did with my super peels,I took permanent markers and I traced circles around different pizza screens onto the cloths peel,so I had different sizes marked on there,ready to go,so I never miss the size I need to make.When I place a skin down,I can see right away if its not open enough or can be tucked back inside the lines a little bit for that certain pie Im making.

That said,I dont make doughs with more than 65% water hydration,so I cannot comment of wetter,sticker doughs might stick to the cloth.


-Bill

Offline cosgrojo

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Re: Too much flour on finished pizza.
« Reply #8 on: December 02, 2011, 07:49:51 AM »
I must admit to being intrigued by the super peel. I went to the web site, looks like an ingenious solution. Most of the you tube videos I saw were demonstrating very stiff dry doughs, so there is a little apprehension there.  I think it might be worth a Christmas gift request... So it really works as good as the demonstrations? Cuz it looks almost like it's cheating... And I am not averse to cheating. :) if it allows me to use less bench flour, I'm all for it.

Offline Bill/SFNM

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Re: Too much flour on finished pizza.
« Reply #9 on: December 02, 2011, 08:20:39 AM »
I've been waiting for the Dough Doctor to chime in since this sub-forum is his, but I will say that this problem is more about reducing the stickiness of the dough in the first place. As hydration increases, the procedure you use for mixing, kneading, fermenting, shaping, etc. can all contribute to binding up more water in the gluten structure so that the dough is not sticky and requires little bench flour to remain workable. My recent tests using the Tartine fold and stretch method proved to me that this can be done with hydration exceeding 70%.

There are many ways to approach getting the flour to absorb more moisture, depending on the flour used, the style of pie, etc. Here is the procedure I use with Caputo 00 for Neapolitan-style pies (~63% HR) for a 2-day room temp fermentation, developed over the past 10 years with lots of help from the experts on this forum. It has taken a lot of practice and relies on recognizing the desired feel of the dough every step of the way and making adjustments accordingly. This is certainly more important than the exact order of the steps. This is the non-Tartine method:

1. Dissolve salt in water
2. Mix in 75% of the flour (sifting helps for higher hydrations) until all flour is wet.
3. Let rest for 5 minutes
4. Add starter and remaining flour and knead to desired stage (3-4 minutes in fork mixer)
5. Allow to rest for 20 minutes
6. Run mixer for a few turns around the bowl.
7. Bulk ferment.

Again, there are many ways to approach this, but what worked for me was to stick to a single routine, repeat it hundreds (thousands?) of times, making lots of mistakes and invalid conclusions along the way until I really learned my dough. Once you learn how to work the dough with a minimum of bench flour, you can then focus on adjustments to improve the flavor and texture. It is a critical first step.



Offline cosgrojo

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Re: Too much flour on finished pizza.
« Reply #10 on: December 02, 2011, 08:47:41 AM »
Could you explain the difference between "fold and stretch" vs traditional kneading procedure? I knead with a fold and a press... Any idea why that would make such a large difference in the malleability (for lack of better term) of the dough? Your routine is very similar to the routine I use... Minus the stretch, and the use of the starter ( and room temp ferment, that scares me)... So maybe not so similar...

Offline cosgrojo

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Re: Too much flour on finished pizza.
« Reply #11 on: December 02, 2011, 08:51:34 AM »
I've seen a couple mentions of rice flour, would love to read your opinions of that.

Offline Bill/SFNM

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Re: Too much flour on finished pizza.
« Reply #12 on: December 02, 2011, 08:53:24 AM »
I've linked to this little video I made so many times that regulars here must be rolling their eyes - apologies to them. This shows the entire "Tartine" process I use. However, these days I'm back to using an electric mixer.

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2SCWE9jZf2w" target="_blank" class="aeva_link bbc_link new_win">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2SCWE9jZf2w</a>


 
« Last Edit: December 02, 2011, 08:55:13 AM by Bill/SFNM »

Offline Bill/SFNM

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Re: Too much flour on finished pizza.
« Reply #13 on: December 02, 2011, 08:54:47 AM »
I've seen a couple mentions of rice flour, would love to read your opinions of that.

I use a mixture of rice and wheat flour for bread baking - never for pizzas in a WFO. I don't think I've ever tried it.

Offline cosgrojo

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Re: Too much flour on finished pizza.
« Reply #14 on: December 02, 2011, 10:47:18 AM »
I meant using rice flour as lubrication for the peel... Sorry for the confusion.

Offline cosgrojo

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Re: Too much flour on finished pizza.
« Reply #15 on: December 02, 2011, 10:51:30 AM »
Btw... LMBO at the video! That is some dramatic music and camera angles.... InformTive and funny. Thanks, needed that today.

Offline Bill/SFNM

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Re: Too much flour on finished pizza.
« Reply #16 on: December 02, 2011, 10:51:50 AM »
I meant using rice flour as lubrication for the peel... Sorry for the confusion.

Yes, I also meant using rice flour for lubrication for the peel.

Offline pbspelly

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Re: Too much flour on finished pizza.
« Reply #17 on: December 02, 2011, 11:54:32 AM »
Rice flour makes a really big difference, and does not have the flavor and texture altering effects of cornmeal.  I switched to rice flour a month or two ago and no longer worry about the transfer from peel to stone.  Which was always my biggest problem before.  I  use regular flour on my countertop when forming the dough into a pie, but then put rice flour onto the peel just before I move the pie from counter to peel. 

My only other comment is that you need to make sure that if you dress the pizza while it is on the peel, which I sometimes do, that none of the sauce or olive oil spills onto the peel. 

Offline cosgrojo

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Re: Too much flour on finished pizza.
« Reply #18 on: December 02, 2011, 12:55:08 PM »
Bill- so confusion was mine alone... I would like to say that i am not used to it... But I am :)

PBS- I think I will try the rice flour while I investivate the super peel further, thanks for the tip.

Offline norma427

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Re: Too much flour on finished pizza.
« Reply #19 on: December 02, 2011, 01:25:57 PM »
cosgrojo,

I use rice flour most of the time, as the release agent on the peel.

Norma
Always working and looking for new information!


 

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