Author Topic: help with refrigerating dough  (Read 1557 times)

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Offline fersy

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help with refrigerating dough
« on: September 24, 2013, 08:13:12 AM »
ok this is the deal, i opened a pizzeria with my brother in june. we have been getting rave reviews about the town and generally the food is going down very well. however our finances are still not stacking up. as in our turnover is still not as high as we need to pay all our bills and overheads plus allow us a decent wage so we are looking at ways to cut costs. one of the things we looked at is the sheer volume of dough we are throwing away on a daily basis.
our current way of doing things is to make the dough daily. normally in 2 batches as one batch wont see the night out even if we dont use it as it blows up past the usable point after about 5 hours (most likely due to the amount of yeast required to make it and have it ready for cooking in a couple of hours)
anyway what this means is that most days we are throwing away approx 50% of the dough we make which is quite a lot of money going in the bin.
i have thought about making dough and refrigerating it and only taking out what we need when we need it however i made a few test batches and found that whilst they kept well when we hand stretch the pizzas from that dough the outer crust always want to do that tearing cracking thing.
basically im looking for some advice on how i could get this strategy to work more effectively.

some of the questions i have would be things like

do i need to ball the dough before refrigerating or just refrigerate the slab and cut off what i need as i need it?
does the dough need to be kept covered in plastic or in a dough tray with lid on etc?
how long should it take refrigerated dough to come to room temp when removed from the fridge?
how long could it keep in the fridge?

and basically any other advice any of u pros could give me.

thanks in advance guys


Offline Pete-zza

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Re: help with refrigerating dough
« Reply #1 on: September 24, 2013, 09:21:34 AM »
fersey,

I think it would help if you tell us the type of dough and pizza you are trying to make and also considerably more about your dough making procedure, including the window within which the dough is made and used (e.g., when do you start the dough making process and when do you use the dough to  make pizzas).

In the meantime, you might want to take a look at a typical process as set forth in Reply 18 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,7499.msg64554.html#msg64554. There may also be opportunities to recycle some of your unused dough as scrap but that may depend on when you make the dough and when you plan to use it.

Peter

Offline fersy

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Re: help with refrigerating dough
« Reply #2 on: September 24, 2013, 11:00:31 AM »
cheers pete.

basically i will start making the dough approx 2 hrs before i open for business.

it will be mixed and balled and resting for at least an hour before opening to allow it to rise sufficiently.

the usual mix for quieter days would be four levelled scoops of flour which amount to (5.88kg), 3 litres of water and 12 grams of high activity fresh yeast and some salt and sugar.

this allows the dough to rise/proof sufficiently to be great for stretching and so there is no blistering in the oven due to underproofing

however as i said the downside to this is that the dough needs to be used within about 4 hours of being ready or it becomes full of air bubbles and basically rubbish to use.

the reason i do it this way is because without refridgeration i cant really get it to sit overnight for example if i was to make it the evening before. hence this post to try and find a better way.

most pizza shops round here use the roller machines where they just drop the doughball in to roll it but the pizzas i make are hand stretched with a formed crust kind of similar in shape to dominos but without that textured stuff they put in it and stonebaked. here is a pic of one

« Last Edit: September 24, 2013, 11:36:48 AM by fersy »

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: help with refrigerating dough
« Reply #3 on: September 24, 2013, 01:02:31 PM »
fersy,

To be sure I understand, are you saying that you do not have any commercial refrigeration available to you? If you do have a cooler, can it store racks or trays of preformed skins (or shells or bases I believe you call them in Northern Ireland)?

I did a few calculations and it appears that your hydration is 50% and that your fresh yeast usage is 0.204%. That is a small amount of yeast, even for a short-term dough that you are making. Are you using very warm water in making the dough, maybe coupled with a fairly high room temperature? From the time the dough has been divided and balled, how many hours do you have before the dough balls can no longer be used?

Peter

Offline fersy

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Re: help with refrigerating dough
« Reply #4 on: September 24, 2013, 06:12:37 PM »
cheers pete, yes i have a pizza prep refrigerated unit where i can fit dough trays in no problem its more of a case of not exactly knowing how to get good pizzas from the dough after ive had it in there a few hours. oh wait are u actually suggesting forming the bases before i put them in the fridge yes?
no i dont use warm water for the dough in fact a few weeks back in midsummer i was using iced water with icecubes to keep the temp down. now im just using tap water but its certainly not warm. the daytime temps where i am are currently about 20c during the day (air temps not water lol)
 
as for how long i have basically if i want a 1 hour rise with the mixture i gave u i get about 4 hrs from the dough being ready for use till its past it. if i am making say a second batch i will half the yeast and i get a dough which takes about 3 hrs to be ready but the window of usability is longer probably 6 or 7 hours.

as the weather gets colder i will need to use a lot more yeast but thats just where im at atm

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: help with refrigerating dough
« Reply #5 on: September 24, 2013, 07:24:24 PM »
fersy,

I am just a home pizza hobbyist with no professional experience whatsoever but I do try to read and understand how pizza operators deal with the problems they encounter in the performance of their businesses on a day to day basis. And, in that vein, I would say that the dough preparation and management procedures that are recited in Reply 18 referenced earlier do appear to meld nicely with inventorying unused dough balls by preforming them into skins and putting them into the cooler for later use. There are various nuances to this latter step as you can see from the following items:

[url=http://thinktank.pmq.com/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=450&hilit=#p2203]http://thinktank.pmq.com/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=450&hilit=#p2203]
[url]http://thinktank.pmq.com/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=450&hilit=#p2203]http://thinktank.pmq.com/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=450&hilit=#p2203]http://thinktank.pmq.com/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=450&hilit=#p2203]
[url]http://thinktank.pmq.com/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=450&hilit=#p2203
[/url]

Reply 7 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,25231.msg256541/topicseen.html#msg256541

http://thinktank.pmq.com/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=7684&p=52308&hilit=#p52308

http://thinktank.pmq.com/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=7271&p=49012&hilit=#p49012

Reply 9 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,18052.msg183111/topicseen.html#msg183111

http://thinktank.pmq.com/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=7443&p=50308&hilit=#p50308

http://thinktank.pmq.com/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=6348&p=40485&hilit=#p40485

http://thinktank.pmq.com/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=6186&p=38737&hilit=#p38737

In your case, should you decide to stay with your present dough formulation and dough preparation and management, there may be some mix of regular dough balls and preformed refrigerated bases that will help reduce the dough losses you mentioned. There is also the opportunity to use leftover dough as recycle scrap for use in the next dough batch, although there are some limitations on the amount of dough that might be usable as scrap. I might also mention that some pizza operators with blown or overfermented dough will use that dough to make breadsticks or garlic knots and the like rather than throw the dough away. The breadsticks and garlic knots can even be par-baked and reheated later. It might even be possible to hold the overfermented dough in the cooler overnight for next day use. Some of these techniques are described at http://thinktank.pmq.com/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=10791&p=74712&hilit=#p74712. In your case, even with your normal dough, you might preform the unused dough balls into bases at the end of day and refrigerate them overnight for use the next day. However, from the Lehmann items referenced above, that may not be the best way to proceed since the bases might dry out with excessive cold storage. They might even rise some while in the cooler. This is an area where you may have to experiment a bit to see if it is a viable approach.

Peter
« Last Edit: September 24, 2013, 08:50:53 PM by Pete-zza »

Offline fersy

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Re: help with refrigerating dough
« Reply #6 on: September 26, 2013, 07:29:20 PM »
cheers pete i will get a look at those links now and then maybe try a few experiments to see what works best for me.

thank you

Offline pythonic

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Re: help with refrigerating dough
« Reply #7 on: September 28, 2013, 10:38:12 PM »
Definitely go for the fridge rise.  Your dough will be much more flavorful.
If you can dodge a wrench you can dodge a ball.


 

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