Brendan, that's the best looking pizza I have seen made in a home oven. Great job on your heating technique too.
What recipe did you use for your dough? It looks great.
Thanks for the compliment, MightyPizzaOven. Personally, I think that other members (most notably Jackie Tran) have achieved better home oven results but I'm flattered that you would consider my pizzas to be in contention.
Okay, now lets talk about my dough.
I'll never be through with tinkering and trying different formulas but I have found one that works well. I am currently doing a 22 - 24 hour, room temp dough using a natural starter that I grew myself using the raisin method discussed in this thread: http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,10702.0.html
. I keep the starter at 100% hydration and refresh with a 1:1:1 ratio.
My flour is a 50/50 blend of Caputo and All Purpose. My dough formula is:
- flour blend, 100%
- water (room temp), 67%
- starter, 3%
- sea salt, 2.5%
I calculate specific weights based on the number of pies I'm making, aiming to have the final dough balls weighing in around 275g.
When mixing the dough I try to be as laissez faire as I can to avoid over developing the gluten and ending up with too chewy a texture. I generally mix by hand, only because I'm generally making only 2 or 3 pizzas and that small batch of dough is impractical in the size of Kitchen Aid stand mixer I have. I mix the ingredients together until just blended, then leave it to rest for at least 30 minutes. Then, I knead for perhaps 2 or 3 minutes. I use a gentle kneading technique where I fold the dough over itself, rotate 90 degrees, fold, rotate, etc. After a couple of minutes of kneading I give it another rest, at least 15 - 20 minutes. Then another 2 - 3 minutes of kneading, followed by one more rest and then a few final folds and I shape it into a silky ball and stick it in a large ziplock tub for an overnight bulk ferment (generally 10 - 11 hours).
(Note: I'm not at all picky about my rest times so long as it gets a minimum of 30 minutes after initial mixing and 15 minutes between each round of kneading. More than once I have given a full hour rest between each step. My experience is that the longer the rest, the less actual kneading is required to develop the gluten. My timing entirely depends on how early I get around to starting the dough and/or how late I'm willing to stay up.)
In the morning I weigh out and shape the dough balls and then put them in smaller ziplock containers to proof until I'm ready to bake. When making the pizza I stretch the ~275g ball to around 13.5 or 14 inches, however the dough springs back a bit when I peel it onto the stone and so the actual diameter of the pizza ends up being maybe an inch smaller than when I stretched it. (Does anyone have any tips on how to minimize this "spring back"?)
Room temp in my place stays around 18c (65f).
That's all I can think of right now. Any info I'm missing? Next time I make dough I will try and get a picture of the dough balls through the ziplock containers from the bottom, to try and show what level of fermentation I like when I make the pizza. I like them fairly well fermented.