Author Topic: Thank you all, we couldn't have done this without you  (Read 1181 times)

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Offline breffni

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Thank you all, we couldn't have done this without you
« on: June 11, 2013, 04:30:36 PM »
While obviously still a long ways to go (particularly my formation and loading skills), the people on this board have been invaluable to getting us started on our wf pizza oven journey - choosing an oven, curing, firing, tools, ingredients, recipes, tips & tricks, etc. etc. etc...
Surely will be more of a lurker than a poster, but fornographer prompted me for photos so here are several from our first two bakes.

Forno Bravo Andiamo 70
Cured for 10+ days, initially small paper and kindling, then a few days of slow burning 'real' charcoal, then chunks and 1 log, then 2, 3, eventually roaring blaze. Seems to have worked well, and the charcoal trick was great as was unable to be home and add to small fires every couple hours.
Best find/'value' so far - found a seller of a marble wash table for $40 of Craigslist, works perfectly for our needs, just the right size.
Tools from JConk007 are outstanding.
Able to get great ingredients (55kg Caputo 00, All Trumps hi gluten, San Marzano tomatoes, frozen bufala mozzarella, Grande or Polly-O mozzarella curds...) from a local central NJ restaurant supply company E&S Foods.

Initial doughs a hybrid of Craig, Bill & Marco's NP dough with Ischia starter recipes...probably closer to 3% starter ratio.
First batch bulk fermented in proofing box for about 48 hours in mid-60's wine cellar, balled and put in proofing box, then close to 12 at room temperature;
2nd bake was bulk around 36 hours mid-60's, balled and put into round plastic containers instead of proofing box, then 8 hours around 78 degrees.
The NY-style dough in second bake was made along with the first batch of NP, bulk fermented 48 hours, balled, then in the refrigerator for a couple days, then 8 hours 78 degrees.

Given my inadequate dough formation skills, was definitely easier approximating a round pie from the rounder doughs from the plastic containers, as the balls in the proofing box ran together into more square form.

No launching into the oven problems, but loading onto the peel trials and tribulations also attributed to various shapes and below amoeba pies. My youngest son got the the knack though, so probably switch to an assembly line where I form, he loads. Cooking/turning process ok...after a couple early that got too close to the coals, was interesting to witness how dough edges would catch fire just from touching a hot coal!

Also followed Chau's video and method for making homemade fresh mozzarella. First attempt foolishly followed the higher temp version from the Jersey Shore maker, but as was making a smaller batch the water temp was too high and cooked out all the butter fats. A few days later tried again, baking several batches adding max 160 degree water at end stages, cooked/melted beautifully...although as with doughs, have a ways to go to improve my formation skills.

Sauce - hand crushed San Marzano tomatoes, juices and pulp further smashed with potato masher
Cheese - on NP, 1/3 of the pies were made with bufala mozzarella and 2/3 from our homemade mozzarella...NY pies were from bag of shredded store bought mozzarella
Whenever added chili oil to a pie, especially the tre carne, it was elevated to another level

Overall pleased with our initial efforts - although visually far from perfection, they tasted great and we are incentivized to improve. 

(hopefully will get lucky and the attached pictures will load on my first attempt...if not I'll try to figure it out and resubmit) 


Offline breffni

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Re: Thank you all, we couldn't have done this without you
« Reply #1 on: June 11, 2013, 04:33:06 PM »
second part of first bake

Offline breffni

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Re: Thank you all, we couldn't have done this without you
« Reply #2 on: June 11, 2013, 04:36:39 PM »
Homemade mozzarella and 2nd bake

Gluten free dough was from a local grocery store, actually came out very good

Offline Chaze215

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Re: Thank you all, we couldn't have done this without you
« Reply #3 on: June 11, 2013, 06:20:46 PM »
Congrats on your new toy! Your setup looks great and I dont think those pies look bad at all for a 1st and 2nd bake! And as long as they tasted good, who the hell cares what they look like!  :-D Im in NJ as well, where are you located?
Chaz

Offline dhorst

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Re: Thank you all, we couldn't have done this without you
« Reply #4 on: June 11, 2013, 06:40:53 PM »
Impressive!  I'm jealous, I must say.  That's pretty cool that your son has a knack for the oven!  That mozzarella looks pretty nice, I must say.  I'm assuming that you made it from curd?  Get your hands on some Aleppo chile and try that on a pizza or three.  It's terrific.  I have quite the stash and would be happy to mail you some. 

Offline f.montoya

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Re: Thank you all, we couldn't have done this without you
« Reply #5 on: June 11, 2013, 06:44:37 PM »
Congrats on your new toy! Your setup looks great and I dont think those pies look bad at all for a 1st and 2nd bake! And as long as they tasted good, who the hell cares what they look like!  :-D


I echo the above.

Heck, you should see the pies from my first bake! I didn't even have the oven up to temp and my first one came out like an egg! Nice start to your Neapolitan journey!  :)

Offline jeffereynelson

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Re: Thank you all, we couldn't have done this without you
« Reply #6 on: June 11, 2013, 08:00:43 PM »
I'm jealous of your setup. Maybe when I find a somewhat permanent house I can finally get a WFO. Also it seems as if your dough balls flattened too much. When I've done dough balls in proofing trays they stayed a lot more poofed up and round.

Offline breffni

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Re: Thank you all, we couldn't have done this without you
« Reply #7 on: June 12, 2013, 10:22:39 AM »
Thanks all.
Chaze - Basking Ridge
dhortst - thanks for the offer, may hit you up at some point, they sound great
jeffereynelson - definitely still in the learning/experimenting curve on making dough. Probably over-hydrated as was my first batch and figured easier to start wetter and move to drier as I get more comfortable (trying to delude myself that they spread because I put 6 balls in too big a box, but a recent picture Norma posted quickly popped that balloon...)

Any and all comments, criticisms and suggestions are appreciated as I try to figure this out!

Offline Jackie Tran

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Re: Thank you all, we couldn't have done this without you
« Reply #8 on: June 12, 2013, 10:29:23 AM »
Nice looking oven.  I can't remember but is this one bricked lined on the inside?

That Mozz makes me proud!  ;D  Just keep having fun with everything.  The mozzarella, pizzas, and oven management will get easier as you go along. 

Chau

Offline TXCraig1

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Re: Thank you all, we couldn't have done this without you
« Reply #9 on: June 12, 2013, 10:39:47 AM »
I bet they were good. Keep it up!
I love pigs. They convert vegetables into bacon.


Offline breffni

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Re: Thank you all, we couldn't have done this without you
« Reply #10 on: June 12, 2013, 11:20:09 AM »
Chau - no not the brick one, next generation/design after the Primavera, refractory not brick. Now have to figure out the proper stretching thickness and how to properly ball the muhtz...look good at the top of the wrapper but not too pretty on the bottom! But was excellent on the pies.
I used Grande curd, was very good. Met a cheese guy the other day and he recommends PollyO Gold as the best, so will try that next time to see if much of a difference.

Craig - would love your thoughts about the dough...safe assumption that it was too hydrated? was kind of following your process combined with a slightly more hydrated (probably 62+% whereas I think you are 60-61%?) and higher starter percentage (3% vs. 1.7%) dough closer to a version Bill and Marco had posted as good starting point ratios. As new to the process - is it much more difficult to handle drier dough, or just give it a shot and see what happens? (and is only a couple % drier going to make that much difference in handling, stretching & folding anyways?)
And the flavor was great. Somewhat happy the 2nd batch turned out decent, for some reason the starter did not activate as well as the first batch and didn't have as much time in bulk ferment, so tried final 8 hours or so around 78 degrees to see what happened.

Offline RobynB

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Re: Thank you all, we couldn't have done this without you
« Reply #11 on: June 12, 2013, 04:42:36 PM »
Great score on that marble-top table, it's perfect.  Your setup looks great, and so do the pizzas!

Offline breffni

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Re: Thank you all, we couldn't have done this without you
« Reply #12 on: June 17, 2013, 10:57:25 AM »
Forming & loading skills improving (aka letting my youngest load onto the peel!)
Cut the hydration to around 60%, much better dough, need to learn to stretch it better as a bit thick.

Margarita with some sliced garlic scape rounds.
My oldest likes his toppings under the cheese and the basil not burnt, so the second shot is essentially a upside down tre carne with chili oil.