Author Topic: Pushing and pulling back fermentation  (Read 284 times)

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Offline Roman

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Pushing and pulling back fermentation
« on: January 19, 2015, 08:38:51 AM »
This may be more of a blanket dough question, but that most consider the properties of "00" flour typical to Neopolitan Style, I would like your thoughts about regulating the fermentation with this dough regardless of what yeast is used. The Craig's yeast / temp / and time chart is a handy resource. So often  though, uncontrolled fluctuations in temp push the dough unexpectedly either faster or slower to its peak.

Say I have a gathering that pizza will be the focal point and dough is made estimating ideal fermentation to hit that exact time for baking.  Assuming the "ideal" fementation can only be gauged visually, what is the process most use to either enhance rise by bringing dough to a higher ambient temp or bring it to that sweet spot and cool it to preseve the sweet spot for Neoploitan?

Online TXCraig1

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Re: Pushing and pulling back fermentation
« Reply #1 on: January 19, 2015, 09:11:39 AM »
To a large extent this is simply experience. I look at my dough 12 hours before I want to bake, and I can tell if I need to speed things up or slow them down. I want to get things "right" sooner rather than later so that I can be sure the dough is back to the proper temperature well before baking. Working with warm dough really sucks, and dough that is too cold is not that much better.

What you don't want to do is make dramatic corrections (another reason to do things sooner rather than later) - you just want to nudge it a bit. This will help maintain your window of usability. 30 minutes in the cooler or maybe 45 in a warm environment - then back to the planned fermentation temp. After another 30 minutes, repeat if necessary.

Generally with an extended ferment time, changing the fermentation speed will take longer than you think (another reason to do things sooner rather than later). I think it's best to error on the side of having a dough that is a bit overfermented as opposed to one that is underfermented.
Pizza is not bread.

Offline Roman

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Re: Pushing and pulling back fermentation
« Reply #2 on: January 19, 2015, 09:50:51 AM »
Reading dough is an art in itself. Rather than mixing enough dough for two pies and then dividing each to their own containers after their initial 24,  I've gone to dividing the dough and flipping the containers over the indidual balled doughs onto a cutting board for their second ferment. The trade off is that you can't read the underside of the dough as you would in a container, but with a dough scraper you easily pull the dough off the board and are far less invasive on the cornicione. The dough in the containers would have its own level of rise and thus another measure for a consistent sweet spot to pull. The board also pulls a slight amount of moisture from the bottom to aid in handling and opens beautifully.  Of course, the dough now on the board has both spread and rise for a new method in judging the sweet spot.

Craig, your adjustment methods are what I guessed  but I'm still many pies away with experience.
« Last Edit: January 19, 2015, 09:53:30 AM by Roman »

Online TXCraig1

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Re: Pushing and pulling back fermentation
« Reply #3 on: January 19, 2015, 10:18:44 AM »
In pizzamaking, there is no substitute for experience and only one way to get it. Luckily pizza doesn't have to be perfect to taste great.
Pizza is not bread.

Offline MotoMannequin

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Re: Pushing and pulling back fermentation
« Reply #4 on: January 23, 2015, 12:20:49 PM »
Luckily pizza doesn't have to be perfect to taste great.

Ha - so true and a principle I rely on regularly here!

Offline Roman

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Re: Pushing and pulling back fermentation
« Reply #5 on: January 23, 2015, 04:43:28 PM »
" Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."

We're all looking to make the perfect pie.

Online TXCraig1

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Re: Pushing and pulling back fermentation
« Reply #6 on: January 23, 2015, 04:49:44 PM »
" Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."

We're all looking to make the perfect pie.

Every now and then, I get really close, and that makes all the insanity worthwhile.
Pizza is not bread.