Author Topic: FGM (Four Grand Mere) Fire Management  (Read 1114 times)

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Offline mitchjg

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Re: FGM (Four Grand Mere) Fire Management
« Reply #40 on: October 17, 2014, 10:23:31 AM »
I really don't get why they burned THAT fast.
Can you post your entire formula?
Oh, and what kind of peel are you using?
What process are you using to assemble the pie? (what I mean is that , for example, if you assemble the pie on a plain metal peel and you are not fast, you will get a lot of sticking)
And, I know this may drive you crazy, but if you use too much flour you will have a different problem.  The flour will burn up on the bottom of the pie and make it all bitter and not very edible.



Offline h8stn4d

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Re: FGM (Four Grand Mere) Fire Management
« Reply #41 on: October 17, 2014, 11:24:56 AM »
I really don't get why they burned THAT fast.
Can you post your entire formula?
Oh, and what kind of peel are you using?
What process are you using to assemble the pie? (what I mean is that , for example, if you assemble the pie on a plain metal peel and you are not fast, you will get a lot of sticking)
And, I know this may drive you crazy, but if you use too much flour you will have a different problem.  The flour will burn up on the bottom of the pie and make it all bitter and not very edible.

For dough, I am using the Forno Bravo formula with 63% hydration and 3% salt. .6% ADY. Mix 80% flour and all other ingredients for 2 mins. Autolyse for 20. Mix for 5 mins, add remaining flour slowly over the next 3 mins or so. Mix at higher speed until dough is roughly balled. Remove, knead about 10 times. Bulk ferment for 2 hours. Ball. Ball ferment for 1 hour or refrigerate balled dough and remove about an hour before baking. I have used 100% 00 and 50/50 (00,KAAP). I realize this is a pretty fast ferment, but I have not been able to get anywhere near the desired dough consistency with any other method. I will keep trying to find a recipe that enables a longer fermentation.

Regarding process: I unfortunately don't have a lot of space outside around the oven, so opening dough and topping the pie is done inside, about 30 feet from the oven. The pizza is constructed on a wooden peel, which is used to launch the pie into the oven. (Because I'm inside, long-handled peels are a bit of a nuisance.) I construct construct and launch the pie from the same peel. Once in the oven, I use a turning peel to turn, dome and remove the pie when done.

I am painfully aware of the flour-under-peel conundrum. With the oven at 700-750, I was able to use a bit of semolina, as that did not burn. With a hotter oven, semolina and 00 were burning instantly, which didn't help matters. I think I need to work on dough opening technique, and maybe with a lower hydration dough, I'll have less sticking. Hopefully I'll have some more positive results (and pictures either way) this weekend!

Offline mitchjg

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Re: FGM (Four Grand Mere) Fire Management
« Reply #42 on: October 17, 2014, 03:09:46 PM »
I do encourage you to let it sit In the fridge overnight. Big flavor difference. 

Also, you mentioned going to 200 grams.  How big are the pie diameters?

Offline h8stn4d

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Re: FGM (Four Grand Mere) Fire Management
« Reply #43 on: October 17, 2014, 03:25:36 PM »
Thanks for the suggestion re overnight in fridge. I wonder whether I should cut the yeast at all if I do 2 hours bulk at room temp and then 24 hours cold. Certainly, TXCraig's chart suggests that the ADY should be far less than what FB suggests. I might try a bit less hydration as well until my dough skills improve.

The doughballs last weekend were 260g and I'd guess we were at about 11", but I didn't measure. Went mostly by thickness, and in some cases the edges were far too thick. I also think I was stretching the dough too much, rather than slapping it back and forth and letting gravity do the work. With smaller balls, at least until I'm more skilled, I think I might have more luck getting the pies thinner in less time. We'll see.

My last couple of firings were with 260g and I don't recall the diam of the 200g balls. I'll watch more closely this weekend.

Thanks again!

Offline mitchjg

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Re: FGM (Four Grand Mere) Fire Management
« Reply #44 on: October 17, 2014, 04:19:41 PM »
Ok, the reason I asked was to try to understand if they were "too thin", "too thick" or what.  You may have studied "thickness factor" in the forum already.

A thickness factor (ounces of dough/square inches of pie) for a 12 inch pie will be about 0.08 for a dough ball of 256.5 grams.  For a 10" it would be 178.1 and for 11" it would be 215.5.

for reference, I would guess (my subjectivity here after surfing this site for a long time and my own experience) most newbies will be able to readily to a thickness factor of 0.10.  Below .07 and you are in a rarified place.  Above 0.10 and you are entering the land of thick pizza.

You can use the Lehman Dough Calculator to come up with different numbers.  But, for example, say you want a thickness factor of 0.10 for a 12 inch pie.

The math is 0.10/0.08 X 256.5 = 1.25 X 256.5 = 320.6.

Long story short, I would suggest you target around 0.08 - 0.10 (at the most).  Don't go lower (yet, if ever).  You mentioned 200 grams for a dough ball.  If you are stretching to somewhere in the 10"-11" range, you should be fine.


Offline h8stn4d

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Re: FGM (Four Grand Mere) Fire Management
« Reply #45 on: October 17, 2014, 05:33:51 PM »
Thanks; yes--I have encountered thickness factor many times on the forums, but the recipes I have been using have suggested the rough size based on doughball size, so I've been using that as a guide. However, given my issues, it is high time I pay more attention to diameter and uniform thickness as I open the dough. More Sunday challenges await!

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Re: FGM (Four Grand Mere) Fire Management
« Reply #46 on: October 18, 2014, 08:35:23 AM »
Here a few pictures of a pizza through the different steps to try to give you an idea of what ti should look like in term of dough thickness and toppings. For this one, the oven wasn't very hot, maybe 700 on the floor and 800 at the top.
I think it is the one JJ made in my oven at the TPS3. Could have use a little more heat and more time in the oven, but it was great.
WFO cooking is about passion.

Offline h8stn4d

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Re: FGM (Four Grand Mere) Fire Management
« Reply #47 on: October 20, 2014, 04:38:20 PM »
Well, I had grand plans of getting the oven fired up early in the morning and taking it to 850+ core, but plans (and interim vegetable roasting) intervened and I ended up starting the pizzas at about core of 700 and finished with the core. At that temperature, using semolina liberally, I did not have bottoms that were overly burned (although they did char in spots). I also didn't get the leoparding I'd love to see, but I realize that's a function of of heat. I tried to pay attention to time, and certainly by 30-45 seconds, there was no charring on the bottom, which is certainly good. So unless/until I fire again at 800-900 core, I'll use semolina.

As a side note, my current struggles are with dough...I just can't seem to get the elasticity I'm after with dough and I can't quite figure out what variable is causing me heartburn. I also had two batches end up in the trash, which was a bummer. Needless to say, I will have to study the many, many threads on the subject and see where I'm going awry. I'm thinking it might be related to water temp and dough temp post-mixing/kneading, and/or possibly the amount of kneading I'm doing in the KA. I tried to follow Jeff Varasano's methodology (mixing 5+ mins with very wet dough before adding the remaining 20% of the flour) and I wasn't able to get to a .10 thickness factor without having tearing. But I digress, given the title of this thread.

Attached are some pictures of tops and bottoms.

Thanks again to everyone!!


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Re: FGM (Four Grand Mere) Fire Management
« Reply #48 on: Yesterday at 02:07:56 PM »
You don't need to fire your oven to 700 F at the core to cook the pizza.
Typical I start cooking my pizza when the oven is about 450 F at the core, the dome has completely cleared and I get with the IR 800 F on the floor and above 900 F or "too high" on the dome.

Looking at your pizza, from the way the cheese melted, it looks like your oven was pretty hot, probably where you wanted it to be.

How long was the fermentation and proofing time for the dough?

Antoine
 
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Offline h8stn4d

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Re: FGM (Four Grand Mere) Fire Management
« Reply #49 on: Yesterday at 02:33:24 PM »
You don't need to fire your oven to 700 F at the core to cook the pizza.
Typical I start cooking my pizza when the oven is about 450 F at the core, the dome has completely cleared and I get with the IR 800 F on the floor and above 900 F or "too high" on the dome.

Thanks. Do you have more time between pizzas to allow the floor to get back up to 800F? I'm guessing that after a couple of pizzas, the floor will cool down rapidly if the core is at 450? Or do you re-spread the coals on the floor, let it re-heat and go again?

How long was the fermentation and proofing time for the dough?

This is a far more complicated question than I care to admit. I have my log at home, but I made various batches of dough this weekend (in part because I lack refrigerator space and in part because I have no idea what I"m doing and want to get at least one of them right). All but one were 100% 00 Caputo red. One was 70% Caputo red/30% KAAP. One was a 22 ferment at 74 degrees using a tiny bit of yeast .2g. One was a 3-day cold ferment using .7g ADY. Two were FornoBravo formulations, made on Sunday, with a 2-hour bulk + 1 hour ball (or longer if they were in the fridge).

Bottom line is that none of the doughs were optimal and as I read more about using caputo 00 dough, I think I had multiple issues: (1) My hydration of 60-62% was too high, (2) Jeff Varasano's method of wet mixing for a long time in a planetary mixer may have over-kneaded (and overheated?) my dough, although the one doughball I did remember to measure was 74 deg, not too warm, and (3) I generally may have over-mixed in the KA planetary with the dough hook.

As a general rule, with all of these batches, I mixed all ingredients (using room temp water and, if using ADY, a small amount of 100-110F water to activate yeast) for 2 mins at stir, let autolyse for 20 mins, added 80% of flour, mixed for 5 mins at 2-4 KA speed, then added the rest of the flour over the next 2-4 mins or so at 2-4 KA speed. NONE of my doughs could have passed a windowpane test at this point; they all tore easily. One of the batches required significantly more flour to come together.

Anyway, I have been reading about caputo 00 dough and need to study what others have said here for the past 9+ years...I have found some very useful threads and may try a 50% hydration and far less KA use (and more hand kneading) next time.

I had some leftovers last night and found the dough to be quite tough and underdeveloped (very dense crust). I was shaking my head with every bite. My harshest critic by far.

I cannot thank you all enough for your help, enthusiasm and support!


Offline Mmmph

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Re: FGM (Four Grand Mere) Fire Management
« Reply #50 on: Yesterday at 04:12:55 PM »

I think it is the one JJ made in my oven at the TPS3. Could have use a little more heat and more time in the oven, but it was great.

Yep...That's mine. I admit I'm a little gun shy when using a new oven. I'd rather err on the lighter side, rather than burn one.
It was a tasty pie and a very cool, huge oven. The next one I made was spot on.


JJ
Sono venuto, ho visto, ho mangiato

Offline mitchjg

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Re: FGM (Four Grand Mere) Fire Management
« Reply #51 on: Yesterday at 04:41:12 PM »
Thanks. Do you have more time between pizzas to allow the floor to get back up to 800F? I'm guessing that after a couple of pizzas, the floor will cool down rapidly if the core is at 450? Or do you re-spread the coals on the floor, let it re-heat and go again?

This is a far more complicated question than I care to admit. I have my log at home, but I made various batches of dough this weekend (in part because I lack refrigerator space and in part because I have no idea what I"m doing and want to get at least one of them right). All but one were 100% 00 Caputo red. One was 70% Caputo red/30% KAAP. One was a 22 ferment at 74 degrees using a tiny bit of yeast .2g. One was a 3-day cold ferment using .7g ADY. Two were FornoBravo formulations, made on Sunday, with a 2-hour bulk + 1 hour ball (or longer if they were in the fridge).

Bottom line is that none of the doughs were optimal and as I read more about using caputo 00 dough, I think I had multiple issues: (1) My hydration of 60-62% was too high, (2) Jeff Varasano's method of wet mixing for a long time in a planetary mixer may have over-kneaded (and overheated?) my dough, although the one doughball I did remember to measure was 74 deg, not too warm, and (3) I generally may have over-mixed in the KA planetary with the dough hook.

As a general rule, with all of these batches, I mixed all ingredients (using room temp water and, if using ADY, a small amount of 100-110F water to activate yeast) for 2 mins at stir, let autolyse for 20 mins, added 80% of flour, mixed for 5 mins at 2-4 KA speed, then added the rest of the flour over the next 2-4 mins or so at 2-4 KA speed. NONE of my doughs could have passed a windowpane test at this point; they all tore easily. One of the batches required significantly more flour to come together.

Anyway, I have been reading about caputo 00 dough and need to study what others have said here for the past 9+ years...I have found some very useful threads and may try a 50% hydration and far less KA use (and more hand kneading) next time.

I had some leftovers last night and found the dough to be quite tough and underdeveloped (very dense crust). I was shaking my head with every bite. My harshest critic by far.

I cannot thank you all enough for your help, enthusiasm and support!

- If you bake as Antoine described then, yes, re-spreading coals if the floor gets too cool is a good thing to do.  And, do keep a strong fire going on the side - it will help a lot.

- Windowpane is not important, and probably counterproductive, with pizza dough.

- 60-62 is not really "too high."  You may want to go down as low as 58 if you think too much hydration is happening.  50 is wayyyyyy too low.

 - you mention the 0.2 g and the 0.7g of yeast but how much flour was that applied to?  Good to understand as Baker's Percents to assess the amount.

- Dense / tough?  Maybe not fermented enough.  Do you put the doughballs in Glad type containers so you can see what is happening?  Take a look at Craig's photos here: http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,20477.msg202048.html#msg202048
"The dough is just about ready" and the one after give you a nice range to go by to assess if your dough is ready.  Does yours look like that?

- Don't be ticked at me for being a broken record but I think you have too many things going on at once.  Start with one recipe, like the Forno Bravo, and then keep refining and seeing what each change does.  You have "more variables than data points" right now and it is hard to discern cause and effect when that happens.  (Trust me, I have been guilty of this crime more than once).

Pictures?

- Mitch
« Last Edit: Yesterday at 04:42:45 PM by mitchjg »

Offline h8stn4d

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Re: FGM (Four Grand Mere) Fire Management
« Reply #52 on: Yesterday at 05:04:05 PM »
Quote
- Windowpane is not important, and probably counterproductive, with pizza dough.

This is good to know! Earlier this a.m. I watched a video with Tom Lehmann that suggested taking a "hen-egg-sized ball" and basically stretching it slightly and seeing if (and how much) the dough tears.  Perhaps this is a better test?

Quote
- you mention the 0.2 g and the 0.7g of yeast but how much flour was that applied to?  Good to understand as Baker's Percents to assess the amount.

Sorry, yes, my fault for not being clear. My batches were all using 1kg of flour, so the percentages were .02% and .07% for those two batches, respectively. The former was 22 hours at 74 degrees and the dough had basically exploded into something I had never seen before (should have taken pictures) and the latter was 3 days at 38 degrees.

Quote
- Dense / tough?  Maybe not fermented enough.  Do you put the doughballs in Glad type containers so you can see what is happening?  Take a look at Craig's photos here: http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,20477.msg202048.html#msg202048
"The dough is just about ready" and the one after give you a nice range to go by to assess if your dough is ready.  Does yours look like that?

Thanks to your prior reference to this thread, I definitely have those pics in mind when I watch my balled, refrigerated dough in glad containers (the ones on cookie sheets are tougher, but I do also use a clear tray that permits inspection). I pulled some balls out of the refrigerator a few hours before use when they needed more fermentation, but even then, with activity that "looked" right to me, the dough was still sticky and tore before I got to a 0.10 thickness factor.  It is true that my dough may indeed have been less fermented than the TXCraig benchmark.

Quote
- Don't be ticked at me for being a broken record but I think you have too many things going on at once.  Start with one recipe, like the Forno Bravo, and then keep refining and seeing what each change does.  You have "more variables than data points" right now and it is hard to discern cause and effect when that happens.  (Trust me, I have been guilty of this crime more than once).

Not at all ticked off (in fact, just the opposite!), but here's the main reason for my multi-variable approach: I again had people over at the house and if I made one or two batches the same way and they were a disaster, I'd be in trouble. I think what I really have to do is to start making dough even if I am NOT firing the oven. Just make dough, test the process, test the dough, and trash it regardless.

Alternatively, if I fully understood the characteristics of "optimal" dough before I started fermentation (ie right after mixing/kneading), I could toss 'bad' dough at that point. More importantly, if I could get the dough-making *process* right and fixed (nonvariable), then that would eliminate a lot of the variables to which you refer.

I have seen many different dough mixing processes and many references to the use of a KA planetary mixer....and need to narrow down a tried-and-true method for me. Maybe they all work just fine and my issues lie elsewhere, but in this case, I had multiple dough recipes, none of which was ideal and all used essentially the same process from ingredients to the start of fermentation.

Quote
Pictures?
Next time (looks to be 11/1-11/2), I will take more 'process' pictures from start to finish, showing dough, etc. Since my initial goal of the thread was to deal with fire management and prevent burning, those were the pics I took. Sorry!!

Offline h8stn4d

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Re: FGM (Four Grand Mere) Fire Management
« Reply #53 on: Yesterday at 05:55:37 PM »
BTW, the simplicity of the mixing/kneading procedure in this post makes me think I am vastly over-thinking the dough-making process.

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,1298.msg12142.html#msg12142

 

Offline mitchjg

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Re: FGM (Four Grand Mere) Fire Management
« Reply #54 on: Yesterday at 05:59:36 PM »
I have never done the test that Tom describes.  So, I do not know.  I think the way you are mixing seems fine.  I tend to use speed 1 or 2 for most of the total of 10 minutes and then up it to 2-5 for the last minute or 2.  But, given you ended at 74 degrees, I would guess you were fine.  I go more by look at feel.  Again, check out Craig's pictures.  They really help.  If, after you take it out of the mixer and give it a stretch and fold and it is pretty smooth, I would think you are ok to go.

Check out this thread: http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,20137.0.html
There are 2 points in there.  Some people do not like the idea of a a cold ferment for Caputo 00.  And, I think your yeast was too low for the cold ferment.  There are few other threads that this one points to and I think they are worth the read.

If you have time on your hands, read this thread: http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,14506.0.html
It is really looking.  There are many entries in which Omid describes the amount of yeast he uses, the number of hours and the temperature.  I think it can give you a great feel for what works.  And, lots of pictures of properly mixed and risen dough to see.  At least scan it. 

I hear you on the fact that you had people coming over.   I tend to do everything I can to avoid experimention with guests coming.  I use a recipe I know works.  You tried to manage the risk by having more than one recipe on hand.......On the other hand, flour is cheap (although the wood may not be).  I would suggest you set aside a day to make pizza on your own with no pressure of guests showing up.  If you want to make more than one dough recipe, live it up.  Then, you can try to see what works and what does not with more ease, etc.  I remember doing that when I had trouble with a 90 second bake with a lot of risk of making a mess.  I made about 8 dough balls and spent the afternoon making pies that we could toss out if we wanted.  Turned out to be a great use of my time.  And, some of them came out good- my wife and I were stuffed!

Keep trying, you will be a master sooner than you think!

- M


Offline h8stn4d

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Re: FGM (Four Grand Mere) Fire Management
« Reply #55 on: Yesterday at 06:49:38 PM »
Thanks for those links! On my to-do list will be the 134-page Philosophy thread. I started in on the A16 thread and from one of your links I landed here, which seems quite promising:

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,19928.0.html

Thanks!


Offline mitchjg

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Re: FGM (Four Grand Mere) Fire Management
« Reply #56 on: Yesterday at 06:55:54 PM »
Yep.  Actually, one of the links in the thread I referenced takes you to the same place.  :-D

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Re: FGM (Four Grand Mere) Fire Management
« Reply #57 on: Today at 03:36:17 PM »
Do you have more time between pizzas to allow the floor to get back up to 800F? I'm guessing that after a couple of pizzas, the floor will cool down rapidly if the core is at 450? Or do you re-spread the coals on the floor, let it re-heat and go again?


No need to spread back the coals. Your dome is low enough that if you keep a good fire the floor will climb back up fairly quickly.
Compare to Mitch, you have a much larger oven so make the most of it. Unless you are cooking 3 pizza at a time, you can place the pizza in different spots.
After a while you will notice that the pizza doesn't need to be picked-up from the floor anymore. Just with a good flame, your pizza are going to cook evenly top and bottom.

Antoine
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Offline h8stn4d

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Re: FGM (Four Grand Mere) Fire Management
« Reply #58 on: Today at 03:52:18 PM »
No need to spread back the coals. Your dome is low enough that if you keep a good fire the floor will climb back up fairly quickly.
Compare to Mitch, you have a much larger oven so make the most of it. Unless you are cooking 3 pizza at a time, you can place the pizza in different spots.
After a while you will notice that the pizza doesn't need to be picked-up from the floor anymore. Just with a good flame, your pizza are going to cook evenly top and bottom.

Antoine

Great; thanks Antoine. If you're going from a cold oven to 450-700F+, at any point in the process do you pull coals out of the oven to give you more space further from the flame? By the time I get to 700, I've got a pretty decent amount of real estate taken up by the fire. If I move the fire far left, I'd say the coals (with logs on top) end about where the left side of the door begins. Still plenty of space for pizzas, but if I'm going to try to find 3 independent places for 11" pies, I'd have one that's pretty close to the fire or pretty close to the front of the oven. In one case, the pie would be very close to the flames and in the other, it'd be far from the flame/close to the door--which means a cooler floor.

Another question, if you don't mind, on the subject of fire management: When I move the fire far left and build up a large fire, I've got flames running to the front and up the chimney. Aside from a possible waste of heat, is there any harm in that? I've got a very long chimney, so it's pretty efficient.

(BTW, my first batch of wood was olive; the latest batch is white oak.)

Offline mitchjg

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Re: FGM (Four Grand Mere) Fire Management
« Reply #59 on: Today at 04:27:37 PM »

Compare to Mitch, you have a much larger oven so make the most of it.
Antoine

Go on Antoine, rub it in!!!!  You know I want a bigger one!


 

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