Author Topic: Need to refine my NY Style crust?  (Read 1964 times)

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Offline PizzaEater

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Need to refine my NY Style crust?
« on: March 03, 2006, 05:42:01 PM »
I just made the NY style crust, http://www.pizzamaking.com/newyorkstyle.php , very tasty - the new family favorite.  I would have like to get the crust a bit thinner though.  I found the dough to be very elastic and hard to form into a large thin crust.  Having said this I know the NY Style is thin in the middle and thicker toward the edge, however I want it thin all the way to the edge.  If I want this is it just a matter of working the dough, letting it relax, work, relax, work, relax until I get it like I want it?


Online Pete-zza

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Re: Need to refine my NY Style crust?
« Reply #1 on: March 03, 2006, 07:45:12 PM »
PizzaEater,

The dough you made is one that I would characterize as a "thicker" NY style, with a total weight of almost 26 ounces for a 16-inch pizza. By contrast, the NY style dough that I most often make, based on a formulation by Tom Lehmann, weighs around 21 ounces for the 16-inch size. It also has a higher hydration (58-65%) than the recipe you used (around 56%), so the dough will have a greater tendency to be stretchy. Increasing the amount of water in the recipe you used might make the dough less elastic, but it won't address the thickness issue.

If you'd like to use a scaled-down version of the dough you made so as to produce a thinner dough and crust, I'd be happy to help you with the numbers.

Peter

Offline PizzaEater

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Re: Need to refine my NY Style crust?
« Reply #2 on: March 04, 2006, 11:15:44 AM »
Thanks for the responce.  Any help you could provide would be great.  I'm willing to try any dough recipe as long as it achieves my desired results.  Lehmmans recipe sounds great, but have yet to quite understand how to scale the recipe, or customize it might be a better word.  I generally shoot for 14" pies with NY Style crusts that are thin even toward the edges that still retain the nice crispy charred bottom.  In addition I would like to understand how to customize/scale the recipe to include the ability to make "x" number of pies ... i.e. - one day I may want to make 2 pies, next week I may need 3 pies, next month 1 pie, etc.

Thanks


Online Pete-zza

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Re: Need to refine my NY Style crust?
« Reply #3 on: March 04, 2006, 04:30:13 PM »
PizzaEater,

What you are asking for in the way of a rim is the opposite of what most people look for in a NY style crust. Most people want a fairly large rim that has a lot of openness and airiness, with a crumb that has a lot of irregular sized and shaped holes, or voids.

Before getting to some dough formulations, I'd like to toss out a few ideas as to how you might get a flat rim in a NY style crust. I think the easiest way, without having to change the dough formulation itself, may be to bake the pizza on a pan. Since the pan going into the oven is cold, the dough will have a lot less oven spring than if it were to make direct and immediate physical contact with a very hot surface, such as a preheated pizza stone/tiles. The negative of this approach is that unless you liberally oil the pan to in effect cause the bottom crust to "fry", you may get a soft crust with little bottom color and crispiness. What some professionals do is to bake the pizza on the pan and then "deck" it, that is, slip the pizza off of the pan onto a hot deck surface to provide the bottom crust browning.

If you do not have a pan, you can try using a pizza screen or disk, in conjunction with a pizza stone/tiles. Using either a screen or disk provides a physical barrier between the pizza and the stone/tiles so that the rim of the pizza doesn't rise as much because of the reduced oven spring. Again, it is possible to "deck" the pizza by slipping it off of the screen or disk directly onto the stone/tiles to get bottom browning.

If you also don't have a screen or disk, then the only other options that I can think of all have to do with modifying the dough formulation itself and the shaping procedures. By using a relatively low hydration level, that is, a low ratio of water to flour (by weight), the dough will be stiff and won't rise as much during baking. So the rim may be on the small, flat side. Using a longer knead time can produce a similar effect by creating a crumb in the finished rim that is dense and with small holes or voids that are similarly shaped and sized. In that sense, it will have a bread-like character, as will the rest of the crust.

In terms of some approaches you might consider for shaping and stretching the dough into a skin, you can start by "flattening" the edge of your skin with your fingers or palm so that there is, in effect, no rim. Since a pizza crust bakes first at the edges, you will get some rise in the rim but it may not be as large as usual. You could also try rolling out the dough with a rolling pin, similar to what some pizza operators do (but using specialized equipment) to make thin crust doughs, but you will also force gases out of the rest of the dough and limit its rise too. You could try a combination of rolling the skin out to, say, 10 inches, and then stretch it out the rest of the way (to 14") but keeping the rim flat.

As you requested, I have set forth below two formulations: 1) a downsized version of the formulation you have been using--to give you a 14" dough but with a "thinner" crust that is typical of a "thin" NY style, and 2) a 14" dough based on the Lehmann NY formulation, with a similar thickness. I did not change the hydration levels for either formulation, pending the results of the approach you decide to use to make and bake your pizzas. I have given the baker's percents in the event you would like to make other sizes of pizzas.

Modified NY Dough Formulation for 14" Pizza
100%, Flour (high-gluten), 10.05 oz. (284.75 g.)
56.3%, Water, 5.65 oz. (160.17 g.)
3.1%, Oil (Classico), 0.31 oz. (8.80 g.), between 1 7/8 and 2 t.
0.66%, Instant dry yeast (IDY), 0.07 oz. (1.88 g.), 5/8 t.
0.92%, Salt, 0.09 oz. (2.63 g.), a bit less than 1/2 t.
Total dough weight = 16.16 oz. (458.23 g.)
Thickness factor (TF) = 0.105

Lehmann NY Style Dough Formulation for 14" Pizza
100%, Flour (high-gluten), 9.75 oz. (276.04 g.)
63%, Water, 6.13 oz. (173.91 g.)
1%, Oil, 0.10 oz. (2.76 g.), between 1/2 and 5/8 t.
0.25%, Instant dry yeast (IDY), 0.02 oz. (0.69 g.), a bit less than 1/4 t.
1.75%, Salt, 0.17 oz. (4.83 g.), 7/8 t.
Total dough weight = 16.16 oz. (458.23 g.)
Thickness factor (TF) = 0.105

To make multiples of any of the above formulations, all that is necessary is to multiple the weights or volumes of the ingredients by the number of pizzas you want to make. If you want to change the pizza sizes, then you will have to use the baker's percents, along with the corresponding dough weights, to calculate the amounts of ingredients needed for the other sizes. There are several places on the forum where members have described how to do this.

When I re-read you original post, I was puzzled by why you experienced a high degree of elasticity. From a formulation standpoint, the dough is not overly hydrated but there is over 3% oil and, with a 24-hour fermentation period, the dough should have been fairly easy to handle. Did you by any chance reshape or re-ball or re-knead the dough when it came out of the refrigerator as you were getting ready to work with the dough?

Feel free to ask any questions before proceeding further.

Peter


Offline PizzaEater

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Re: Need to refine my NY Style crust?
« Reply #4 on: March 04, 2006, 08:09:14 PM »
Thanks for the detailed responce!

I did re-ball/re-knead t he dough, but only slightly.  In addition I used bread flour vs. high gluten flour, I also added 2 teaspoons of sugar.

The only other questions I have at this point are:

1.  I see when measuring liquids like water and oil that you use ounces and  grams, are we talking fluid onces and  grams as in weight?

2. For a single dough can a food processor be used vs. a standing mixer?

For the time being I'm going to try Lehmann's recipe and see how it goes using high gluten flour.  Remember it was my first time.

Online Pete-zza

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Re: Need to refine my NY Style crust?
« Reply #5 on: March 04, 2006, 09:04:21 PM »
PizzaEater,

You shouldn't re-knead a dough when it comes out of the refrigerator because it disorients and misaligns the gluten strands. It isn't fatal but it can take quite a while for the gluten to relax again to allow you to work with the dough.

It shouldn't have mattered that you used bread flour instead of high gluten flour. Both should have worked in the recipe you used. They should both work with the Lehmann formulation also although you might have to use slightly less water because bread flour doesn't have quite the same absorption rate as high-gluten flour. You can use sugar with the Lehmann formulation if you would like. Tom Lehmann recommends it only if the dough is to be held in the refrigerator for over 2 days, to be sure that there is adequate food for the yeast. Otherwise he doesn’t recommend it because it can lead to excessive or premature browning when the dough is baked on a hearth-like surface, like a deck oven or stone/tiles.

You can use a food processor to make small quantities of dough but I would recommend that you use cold water because a food processor produces a lot of frictional heat that can elevate the dough temperature to the point where the dough starts to ferment too quickly. I would also use the pulse feature to make the dough in the processor, although you can finish at normal speed for about 10-15 seconds at the end. If you would like additional information on using a food processor to knead a NY style dough (or any other, for that matter), you might take a look at this thread: http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,2189.msg19291.html#msg19291.

When I use ounces and grams, I mean weight. I usually give gram numbers when I post formulations for the benefit of those members who might want to try out the formulation and use the standard metric system of measurement rather than the US. standard of measurement.

Peter
« Last Edit: March 04, 2006, 09:08:15 PM by Pete-zza »

Offline PizzaEater

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Re: Need to refine my NY Style crust?
« Reply #6 on: March 05, 2006, 08:01:05 AM »
Thanks, I'll post results next time I make pizza.

Offline PizzaEater

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Re: Need to refine my NY Style crust?
« Reply #7 on: March 05, 2006, 09:20:30 PM »
I have one further question regarding your bakers percentages, generally it all makes sense except for the flour weights in one recipe vs. the other.  How does one choose the amount of flour to begin with?  I've done a few searches but have yet to find what I need. 
« Last Edit: March 05, 2006, 09:22:03 PM by PizzaEater »

Online Pete-zza

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Re: Need to refine my NY Style crust?
« Reply #8 on: March 05, 2006, 09:51:08 PM »
PizzaEater,

The easiest way to determine the amount of flour to use is to start with the pizza size you want to use. Let's say it is 14 inches. The amount of dough you will need to make that size pizza is determined by this simple equation:

                            DW (dough weight) = 3.14 x R x R x TF,

where R is the radius of the pizza and TF is the thickness factor. In your case, R = 7 and TF = 0.105 for a typical thickness factor for a Lehmann NY style pizza. If you plug these values into the above expression, DW = 3.14 x 7 x 7 x 0.105, or 16.16 ounces. To now determine the amount of flour in that amount of dough, you add together all the baker's percents for the Lehmann formulation, divide that sum by 100, and divide the result into the dough weight DW (16.16 ounces). If you add the baker's percents number 100 + 63 + 1 + 0.25 + 1.75, the total comes to 166. Divide that number by 100, and we get 1.66. Divide 1.66 into 16.165, and you get 9.73 ounces. That's the amount of flour you will need. The amount is a little bit different from the amount specified in my earlier reply but only because my spreadsheet is more precise.

The quantities for each of the remaining ingredients is determined by multiplying the weight of flour we just calculated (9.73 oz.) by the respective baker's percents for those remaining ingredients. For example, water is 63% of the 9.73, oil is 1% of 9.73, salt is 1.75% of 9.73, and the yeast is 0.25% of 9.73.  As you can see, once you understand the baker's percent system, the math is quite straightforward.

Peter