Author Topic: What happens if I skip the bulk ferment all together?  (Read 2752 times)

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Offline arspistorica

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Re: What happens if I skip the bulk ferment all together?
« Reply #20 on: November 22, 2013, 03:50:34 PM »
I assume that Ian's discussion in Reply 14 above is with respect to dough that is fermented at room temperature, or at least not at refrigerator temperatures. Once you go to refrigerators or commercial coolers, which quite a few pizza operators use in the U.S. to make Neapolitan style pizzas, arguably the convenience swings the other way, that is, it is more convenient and efficient to do the division up front, rather than after the period of cold fermentation of the bulk dough. This is a subject that came up recently when another member, Ryan, wondered whether it was likely that a commissary could deliver cold fermented dough in bulk to its chain of stores to be divided at the store level. For those who are interested, in Reply 210 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,25774.msg287972/topicseen.html#msg287972, I provided links to threads and posts that discuss various aspects of this subject.


Pete-zza, as always you are a godsend to this forum.  The reasons I gave in favour of bulk fermentation are because I believe it produces a better dough, for a variety of reasons, even when using cold fermentation while the dough is in its final shape.  Just so I'm clear, do a lot of the American Neapolitan pizzerie ball straight from the mixer, or do they allow the dough a 1 - 2h riposo while in bulk before doing so, refrigerated or otherwise? 
"Senza il mio territorio sarei solo un panificatore."
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Offline Pete-zza

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Re: What happens if I skip the bulk ferment all together?
« Reply #21 on: November 22, 2013, 07:06:25 PM »
Just so I'm clear, do a lot of the American Neapolitan pizzerie ball straight from the mixer, or do they allow the dough a 1 - 2h riposo while in bulk before doing so, refrigerated or otherwise?

Ian,

It is difficult to say how many pizza operators who specialize in the Neapolitan style use cold fermentation, simply because they rarely publish the specific details of their dough formulations and preparation and management. However, on the forum, one of the earliest discussions of the use of cold fermentation for the Neapolitan style was way back in 2005 in the A16 thread at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,1298.msg11672.html#msg11672. And if you look at the very first post in that thread, you will see that the dough was given a one-hour rest at room temperature before being prepared for refrigeration. One dough formulation that came out of that thread and generated a lot of interest was the pieguy formulation at Reply 58 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,1298.msg12512.html#msg12512. Again, the instructions for that dough formulation called for proofing the dough at room temperature before going into the cooler. The A16 thread attracted a lot of members and users, and was early in addressing cold fermentation of Neapolitan style doughs, so it is quite possible that that thread influenced a lot of people who went on to use cold fermentation of Neapolitan style doughs, including professionally. Even with little recent activity, the A16 thread has almost 130,000 page views. That makes that thread the eleventh most popular thread on the forum as measured by page views.

You will also see that another forum member, who went by the handle of Mo, was also interested in the use of cold fermentation for the Neapolitan style, as he discussed in the thread at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,8104.msg69675.html#msg69675. Mo also let the dough rest at room temperature before going into the cooler. Mo eventually went on to open up his own pizzeria in Iowa (http://vesuvius-wfp.com/Vesuvius_Wood-Fired_Pizza/Promise.html) but I don't know if he used cold fermentation. He also started playing around with natural leavens but I don't know if he incorporated them into his dough making.

There have been several other members who have experimented with cold fermented versions of the Neapolitan dough. One member who posts frequently on the use of cold fermentation in a professional setting is thezaman, better known as Larry. As noted in Reply 6 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,15639.msg153968.html#msg153968, Larry mentions using a two-hour bulk rise before refrigerating. See, also, Reply 1 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,14613.msg145574.html#msg145574.

As you can see from the above examples, the term riposo was not used. As you no doubt know, Marco (pizzanapoletana) was a big advocate of the use of riposo, as he so noted in Reply 59 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,1415.msg15195/topicseen.html#msg15195. However, what I found amusing was that Marco was very specific as to the duration of the riposo. So, when he said 15-20 minutes, he apparently meant 15-20 minutes, not 10 minutes or 40 minutes, as he noted in Reply 9 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,3873.msg32478/topicseen.html#msg32478] [url]http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,3873.msg32478/topicseen.html#msg32478[/url].

Once you get out of the Neapolitan realm, the most common practice with cold fermented doughs in a professional setting is to forgo the use of a formal rest period before refrigerating. I say "formal" rest period because the dough gets some rest as the bulk dough is divided, scaled and rounded. The time to perform these steps is typically around 20 minutes if done by hand. However, there are some pizza operators who do intentionally let the bulk dough rest for a specified period before dividing, scaling and rounding. This is usually done to allow the dough to kick start the dough from a fermentation standpoint and to fit a specific fermentation window for the dough so that it is ready to be used when needed the next day.

Peter

Offline arspistorica

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Re: What happens if I skip the bulk ferment all together?
« Reply #22 on: November 22, 2013, 07:31:33 PM »
Ian,

Once you get out of the Neapolitan realm, the most common practice with cold fermented doughs in a professional setting is to forgo the use of a formal rest period before refrigerating. I say "formal" rest period because the dough gets some rest as the bulk dough is divided, scaled and rounded. The time to perform these steps is typically around 20 minutes if done by hand. However, there are some pizza operators who do intentionally let the bulk dough rest for a specified period before dividing, scaling and rounding. This is usually done to allow the dough to kick start the dough from a fermentation standpoint and to fit a specific fermentation window for the dough so that it is ready to be used when needed the next day.

I have been away from the States for 5 years but still maintain ample professional contacts there.  During this time, there's been an explosion and proliferation of Neapolitan joints throughout the country, more than I could ever imagine.  I asked this question because I didn't want to generalise about this Neapolitan movement, as I have been away for many years. (Incidentally, I met Nate Appleman before his Chipotle days a few times back when he was still at A16 and was visiting New York, and from what I could tell from talking to him they would use their walk-in as much as possible, both during bulk and when the dough was in its final shape; I'm sure things have become more systematised since his departure.)

The term riposo isn't specific to Marco but to the Italian baking tradition in general, and it does imply a bench rest and not the length of time I specified (it can mean up to 45 minutes, though, in most contexts).  I used the term to also cover those pizzamakers who were mixing their doughs extremely cold, so as to defer fermentation as much as possible before division.

I asked the question I did to point out what I view as the obvious:  even at two hours in bulk, pizza operators are still enjoying the benefits of the mass effect, at least rheologically speaking, before shuttling their dough balls into a refrigerated environment.

Thanks again for your reply.
"Senza il mio territorio sarei solo un panificatore."
                                  -Franco Pepe


 

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