Author Topic: Spotty dough, how can I make it smooth?  (Read 2881 times)

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Online kdaq

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Spotty dough, how can I make it smooth?
« on: September 28, 2013, 10:59:57 PM »
Hey all,

I'm aiming for NY-style dough, and keep getting little "spots". It's driving me a bit batty, so any help is greatly appreciated!

This has happened with a couple different sets of ingredient ratios. Listed below is what I used today. My process is always the same -- food processor-based. I use King Arthur bread flour, Fleischman active dry yeast, Morton's kosher salt, EVOO, and spring water.

Ingredients
Flour (100%):     684.7 g | 24.15 oz | 1 lb 8.15 oz
Water (63%):     431.36 g | 15.22 oz | microwave < 1 minute
IDY (1%):          6.85 g |  0.24 oz | ~ 1 packet
Salt (1.5%):      10.27 g |  0.36 oz | 2 heaping tsp
Oil (1%):          6.85 g |  0.24 oz | ~ 0.5 tbsp
----------------------------------------------------------
Total (166.5%): 1140.02 g | 40.21 oz | 2.51 lbs | TF = 0.1
Single Ball:     570.01 g | 20.11 oz | 1.26 lbs


Procedures
  • Combine flour, salt, and yeast in bowl of food processor. Pulse 3 to 4 times until incorporated.
  • Heat water to lukewarm. Add olive oil and water to dry ingredients. Run food processor until mixture forms ball that rides around the bowl above the blade, about 15 seconds. Continue processing 15 seconds longer.
  • Transfer dough ball to lightly floured surface and knead once or twice by hand. Divide dough into 2 even parts, form balls.

At this point I put the balls into gallon zip-top bags and put 'em in the fridge overnight. I see the spots before and after the cold ferment.

I guess this isn't a big deal, since it's still plenty tasty :) but I can't help but wonder what's going on here. Any thoughts?

Thanks!

-Kevin

p.s. This picture shows what today's batch looks like before bagging. Higher-res available via Flickr: Spotty Dough


Offline TXCraig1

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Re: Spotty dough, how can I make it smooth?
« Reply #1 on: September 29, 2013, 12:58:22 AM »
My guess is that the spots are yeast that is not getting fully hydrated. 1% is a LOT of IDY.
Pizza is not bread.

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Spotty dough, how can I make it smooth?
« Reply #2 on: September 29, 2013, 08:03:54 AM »
Kevin,

I think the answer may turn on the capacity of your food processor and whether you have been using the metal blade or the plastic dough blade. For example, many 14-cup food processors have a maximum capacity of 2 1/2 pounds of dough made using all-purpose flour, not bread flour as you are using. I have a geriatric 14-cup Cuisinart food processor but I have never made 2 1/2 pounds of pizza dough in it in a single batch but I think it would not be easy to do. Craig is right that 1% IDY is a lot of yeast. Possibly your food processor with whatever blade you are using isn't doing a good enough job incorporating all of that yeast throughout the large dough batch in a uniform manner in a total of 30 seconds.

Years ago I experimented with using yeast in doughs in dry form, both IDY and ADY, and where the yeast was added to the dough late in the dough making process to extend the fermentation period, and my recollection is that I could see the specks of yeast in the dough. Maybe that is what you are getting if your dough has not been kneaded long enough.

Peter

Online kdaq

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Re: Spotty dough, how can I make it smooth?
« Reply #3 on: September 29, 2013, 12:02:23 PM »
Thanks for the quick replies!

To put the 1% IDY and food processor load into perspective: I started with Peter Reinhart's NY-Style recipe. From there, I jumped on the Kenji bandwagon and tried the food processor. Here's Kenji's recipe, which he did in a 10 cup food processor:

22.5  oz KABF  | 100.00%
15    oz water |  66.67%
.5    oz sugar |   2.22%
.35   oz salt  |   1.56%
.35   oz IDY   |   1.56%
1.125 oz EVOO  |   5.00%


From there, I decided that I wanted to remove sugar and reduce oil. So after some searching, I found that Essen1's KABF recipe appealed to me. I took this and up'd the IDY based on some comments in that thread. Using the Kenji recipe as a point of reference for IDY % and food processor load, I figured I was OK on both counts.


But what you say makes sense! I have a 14-cup Cuisinart that I bought specifically because it was the most powerful consumer thing I could get my hands on. It claims a 3 lb bread dough capacity. I've done batches both with metal blade and plastic dough hook, and actually got better results with the metal blade -- so I've stuck with that.

I think next up I'll change just one thing, and cut the IDY in half. If that doesn't do the trick I'll move to two batches.

Thanks!

-Kevin

p.s. Please pardon the brain dump! I like to document my thought process to give context to changes. Holy cow are there lots of variables here, I love it! :)

Online kdaq

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Re: Spotty dough, how can I make it smooth?
« Reply #4 on: September 30, 2013, 09:56:38 AM »
I just realized...I'm actually using ADY, not IDY. And not blooming it. WHOOPS!  :-D

Fleishmann's confused me, as the two packet types I tend to see are "Active Dry Yeast" and "RapidRise Highly Active Yeast", which I took to mean IDY + additive to make it work faster (in this case, ascorbic acid). Apparently they also sell the RapidRise labeled as IDY.


Can Fleishmann's RapidRise be considered typical IDY?

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Spotty dough, how can I make it smooth?
« Reply #5 on: September 30, 2013, 10:09:00 AM »
Kevin,

If you were using ADY instead of IDY, I think the difference would have been more pronounced visually with the ADY because its geometry is different than for the IDY and it has a larger particle size.

The Fleischmann's RapidRise yeast is Fleischmann's version of IDY. All of the major yeast producers have their own proprietary strains of IDY, and they usually produce comparable results. But, even then, users say that they can tell the difference and proclaim the advantages and merits of their favorite product. Fleischmann's also sells what is really IDY (but maybe not identified as such) in bottles that are promoted for use in bread machines. If you are into baking big time, you perhaps should buy your yeast, ADY or IDY, in one-pound packages. You will save a lot of money going that route.

Peter

Online kdaq

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Re: Spotty dough, how can I make it smooth?
« Reply #6 on: September 30, 2013, 03:12:12 PM »
Good advice Peter, thanks.

I'll admit it -- most of my reason for packet use was laziness! The recipes I had been using for the past few years just happened to use about one packet per batch.

Now I'd like to cut down the dose, so it's the perfect time to ditch packets.

Offline JD

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Re: Spotty dough, how can I make it smooth?
« Reply #7 on: September 30, 2013, 04:01:33 PM »
Are you using a coarse grain salt?
Josh

Online kdaq

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Re: Spotty dough, how can I make it smooth?
« Reply #8 on: September 30, 2013, 05:12:30 PM »
Yes -- Morton's kosher salt. I wondered if this could be a factor in the spotty appearance...though others seem to use it to no ill effect, right?

Offline JD

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Re: Spotty dough, how can I make it smooth?
« Reply #9 on: September 30, 2013, 05:24:07 PM »
That would be my guess. Can you pick one of those spots off and taste it?
Josh


Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Spotty dough, how can I make it smooth?
« Reply #10 on: September 30, 2013, 05:37:33 PM »
Kevin,

Josh raises a good point. I don't use Kosher salt myself but were I to do so I would first dissolve it in the water. You indicated that you added the salt to the flour and yeast and pulsed the mixture to combine. If Josh is right, that might not have been enough, and the large dough batch size might not have helped either.

Peter

Online kdaq

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Re: Spotty dough, how can I make it smooth?
« Reply #11 on: September 30, 2013, 06:16:09 PM »
Gentlemen, I can think of no other context in which "can you pick one of those spots off and taste it?" would be taken as welcome and helpful advice.  :P Gotta love this place!  :-D

It seems I'll have to save said advice for next time though -- the spots disappeared after cold ferment in this batch!


I have a lot of variables to try:
  • IDY instead of ADY
  • Less yeast
  • Less dough in food processor
  • Switch salt or dissolve in water

Guess I'll have to keep making more pizza. Tough life, this.  ;D

Thanks,

-Kevin

Online kdaq

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Re: Spotty dough, how can I make it smooth?
« Reply #12 on: September 30, 2013, 07:52:38 PM »
Gather 'round folks -- it's time for an installment of LEARN FROM MY FAIL!   :-[

Ever have a batch of dough that just doesn't come together right? That tears instead of stretches? Unsurprisingly, my sad spotty batch of dough did just that.

Actually, I managed not to tear the dough -- I just had a really thin membrane in the middle. Of course, this part practically disintegrated off the rest of the pizza, leaving a charred mess on my steel.


Ah well. All in the name of progress!   8)

Offline JD

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Re: Spotty dough, how can I make it smooth?
« Reply #13 on: September 30, 2013, 08:46:27 PM »
Aside from the hole, that pizza looks great.
Josh

Online kdaq

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Re: Spotty dough, how can I make it smooth?
« Reply #14 on: October 01, 2013, 10:33:16 AM »
Thanks Josh.

Offline apizza

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Re: Spotty dough, how can I make it smooth?
« Reply #15 on: October 01, 2013, 10:59:12 AM »
Don't know if this can effect your spots. I always use cool water. I think if your dough is too warm it will not benefit from the processor action. I wouldn't let the finished dough temperature exceed 80 deg. More than that may over activate the yeast.
Marty

Online kdaq

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Re: Spotty dough, how can I make it smooth?
« Reply #16 on: October 01, 2013, 12:11:28 PM »
Good point Marty. The dough definitely warms-up a bit in the processor...I'll have to check it next time.

Offline The Dough Doctor

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Re: Spotty dough, how can I make it smooth?
« Reply #17 on: October 03, 2013, 08:08:49 AM »
KDAQ;
You say you are using ADY but your formula shows IDY. There is a significant difference between the way the two different types of yeast are handled. ADY must be hydrated in 100F water prior to addition to the dough or you will get lumps/spots of yeast throughout the dough. IDY can be added as you have indicated BUT the dough must be mixed for more than 4-minutes. It does not appear that you are mixing the dough this long so again, the problem has a high probability of being due to yeast agglomerates (pieces of yeast) not suspended throughout the dough. We have a similar problem in pizzerias when a VCM (vertical cutter mixer) is used and the mixing times are very short (about 70 to 90-seconds). The solution to the problem, if this is the root of the problem, is to suspend the yeast prior to addition to the dough. This is easily accomplished by putting the IDY into 95F water or ADY into 100F water and allowing it to hydrate for 10-minutes, then stir well and add along with the rest of the dough water. Note: The yeast should only go into a small portion of the total water. The remainder of the water should be at whatever temperature your dough management process calls for (typically around 85F).
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Spotty dough, how can I make it smooth?
« Reply #18 on: October 03, 2013, 08:16:21 AM »
Tom,

Since Kevin is using a food processor, albeit with a large amount of dough, how would 60 seconds at food processor speed compare with a stand mixer from the standpoint of time?

Peter

Online kdaq

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Re: Spotty dough, how can I make it smooth?
« Reply #19 on: October 07, 2013, 10:18:03 PM »
Hey Tom,

Thank you for taking the time to reply!

Yup, I did say I was using IDY. I honestly thought I was at the time. Stupid mistake on my part! I'm sure this is a clear factor.

And yup, thanks for the clarification Pete. I am using a food processor, based on Kenji's findings.



Unfortunately, I learned today that I won't be able to continue experimenting. My doc had me tested for food allergies, and the results came in today showing that I'm intolerant to gluten, yeast, and dairy / casein. There's a possibility that this may improve down the road, but I'm benched for now.

I appreciate everyone's help in this thread -- thanks!

-Kevin