Author Topic: My latest pies (where do I go from here?)  (Read 689 times)

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Offline I Have Feet

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My latest pies (where do I go from here?)
« on: October 03, 2012, 01:44:27 AM »
Here's some shots of a couple pizzas I made on Sunday, the first ones in a few weeks.  Had another go at a lower (for me) hydration, 65%.  Used a flour milled by a local artisan bakery that grinds their flour daily.  I bought it about two weeks ago so it was still quite fresh.

-100% flour
-65% water
-0.25% yeast
-2.5% salt

Did a ~30 minute autolyse at 100% hydration then mixed in the remaining flour, yeast and salt in my KitchenAid at speed #2 for 3 minutes.  Let the dough rest for over 30 minutes (not sure of exact time) and then did a stretch-and-fold, at which point the dough was perfectly smooth.  Overnight room-temp bulk ferment (approx. 10 hours).  In the morning, weighed out and formed dough balls (250g) and put into Glad containers to proof for another 10 - 11 hours.  Stretched out to around 12 inches (just a guess, didn't bother to measure).

The results were much better than my previous attempt at a lower hydration.  This time the crumb was open and airy.  There was still a bit more chew than my higher hydration crusts, but it was a good amount of chewiness I think.

First pizza is fresh mozzarella base, heirloom cherry tomatoes, basil and olive oil post bake.  The pie baked in 2:00, my fastest yet and probably my best.  It had some nice spotting, good char.

Second pizza was fresh mozz base, pancetta, quail eggs, basil and shaved parmesano reggiano post bake.  This one took longer as I screwed up the timing of the broiler cycle.  3:00.  I was hoping for the eggs to be medium-soft with a bit of a runny yolk but they were firm.  Still very delicious though.  I think if I had nailed a 2:00 bake and used the eggs straight from the fridge rather than room-temp it would have been perfect.  The pizza was very tasty but I kind of felt like it was missing something.  But...what?  Any ideas?  Perhaps some arugula?

Since I found this forum my pizzas have really started to improve and I am really happy with the results at this point. But, I always want to get better however at this stage I'm not sure what direction to move in or what to focus on?  Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

Cheers,

Brendan


Offline vtn98

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Re: My latest pies (where do I go from here?)
« Reply #1 on: October 03, 2012, 05:54:23 AM »
Looks good!  How are you getting a 2 minute bake in the oven?  Can you describe your method?  My pizzas usually bake about 9 minutes in an oven at 550 on a pizza stone. 

Offline I Have Feet

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Re: My latest pies (where do I go from here?)
« Reply #2 on: October 03, 2012, 02:50:02 PM »
Looks good!  How are you getting a 2 minute bake in the oven?  Can you describe your method?  My pizzas usually bake about 9 minutes in an oven at 550 on a pizza stone. 

I'm using a Lodge cast iron pizza pan. I preheated on the bottom rack for an hour at 500f (though my oven seems to run slightly hot, so it may have been slightly higher). Then moved the pan to the top rack and switched on the broiler while I stretched and topped the pizza. I make sure the broiler element is glowing bright red before launching the pie. After about a minute or so, once oven-spring has finished and the crust is set I open the door a bit to check how quickly it's browning. This also let's a bit of hot air out, ensuring the thermostat doesn't shut the broiler off. I definitely think that any loss in air temperature from opening the door is far outweighed by making sure the broiler doesn't shut off.

It's is the first time I've had a 2:00 bake, usually they are more like 3:00. I will definitely have to try and figure out what I did differently to speed things up so significantly. The results were great I think.

Cheers,

Brendan

Offline Don K

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Re: My latest pies (where do I go from here?)
« Reply #3 on: October 03, 2012, 03:06:11 PM »
I'm using a Lodge cast iron pizza pan. I preheated on the bottom rack for an hour at 500f (though my oven seems to run slightly hot, so it may have been slightly higher).
I'm guessing that it runs more than slightly hot. I bake at 550 and I have never came even close to 2:00.
The member formerly known as Colonel_Klink

Offline I Have Feet

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Re: My latest pies (where do I go from here?)
« Reply #4 on: October 03, 2012, 03:39:47 PM »
I'm guessing that it runs more than slightly hot. I bake at 550 and I have never came even close to 2:00.

Maybe. The other day I checked it with a thermocouple probe, with the dial set to 450f. The temp climbed as high as 480 and dropped down to 420 before the element turned back on. So while it does get high, it also yo-yos quite a bit and spends almost as much time below temp. I've never found it to be so significant that any of my other baking burns when setting the dial to the temperature stated in the recipe and using recommended baking times. For example, this weekend I made some baguettes. They took 20 minutes with the dial at 450, which is exactly what I'd expect.

I think it has more to do with the fact that my broiler element seems to get quite hot, and on the top shelf the top of the cornicione gets to less than 2" away (I'm guessing). Also, the bottom shelf is maybe 1.5" above the bottom element and so during preheat the cast iron can soak up a ton of heat.

Brendan


 

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