Author Topic: My Neapolitan Pizza Adventure  (Read 12619 times)

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Offline crkoller

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Re: My Neapolitan Pizza Adventure
« Reply #25 on: January 04, 2014, 02:20:11 PM »
My parents are at least from Long Island so their concept of what pizza should be is at least something incredible, just not the same thing...glad I do not have to ween them off of Domino's  :o!


Offline dellavecchia

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Re: My Neapolitan Pizza Adventure
« Reply #26 on: January 05, 2014, 08:00:50 AM »
Remarkable improvements Chris, you are really getting used to the oven. You got great leoparding and had a perfect melt on the cheese.

I also love the thrill of trying new topping combinations. I like your addition of the meyer lemon to the spinach pie. You have a good eye/palette.

John

Offline fornographer

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Re: My Neapolitan Pizza Adventure
« Reply #27 on: January 05, 2014, 05:52:42 PM »
Congratulations, Chris. Fantastic pies. 

Offline crkoller

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Re: My Neapolitan Pizza Adventure
« Reply #28 on: January 05, 2014, 05:54:50 PM »
Thanks John and Fornographer - that means a lot coming from the two of you! Much appreciated.

John - I feel there is an eternal struggle raging inside my head of between the academic/cheffy/science geek and the child growing up in my grandmas kitchen/desire to nourish my friends & family. The academic side of me loves the VPN rules and the thought of 'breaking' them gets it very upset - constantly trying to perfect the classic that everyone tends to judge against. But the other side of me says Neapolitan pizza with kimchi, sesame seeds, scallions, and miso roasted shitakes  - that sounds like it could be delicious.

Who knows maybe thats why I am so drawn to pizza - it can be this academic and analytical food where hundreds of a percent matter while also being just damn good food that shouldn't be over thought
« Last Edit: January 05, 2014, 06:00:34 PM by crkoller »

Offline dhorst

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Re: My Neapolitan Pizza Adventure
« Reply #29 on: January 05, 2014, 06:20:44 PM »
Nice looking pies there!  Regarding the Rosa; I would suggest brushing the crust with olive oil pre-bake, and still finish with a light drizzle post bake.  Also, I like to soak my shaved onions in ice cold, salted water for 10 minutes or so and then give them a rinse and pat dry.  Why not add the pistachios to the onions for a quick soak at the same time?  Maybe that would help to alleviate the dryness/burning issues you may be encountering.  I always do the parm post bake, BTW.

Great pies, wish I had a WFO of my own.

Offline crkoller

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Re: My Neapolitan Pizza Adventure
« Reply #30 on: January 05, 2014, 08:20:27 PM »
Why not add the pistachios to the onions for a quick soak at the same time?  Maybe that would help to alleviate the dryness/burning issues you may be encountering.  I always do the parm post bake, BTW.

I like all of those ideas a lot, I'll update once I get a chance to try them out - hopefully this weekend if it warms up! Thanks

Online TXCraig1

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Re: My Neapolitan Pizza Adventure
« Reply #31 on: January 06, 2014, 11:58:09 AM »
The pies are really looking good Chris. I love the look of the cheese, sauce, and oil on the Margherita in the last picture.

Here is what Chris Bianco has to say about the Rosa: http://eater.com/archives/2013/08/28/eater-elements-the-rosa-at-pizzeria-bianco.php
"We make great pizza, with sourdough when we can, commercial yeast when we must, but always great pizza."
Craig's Neapolitan Garage

Offline crkoller

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Re: My Neapolitan Pizza Adventure
« Reply #32 on: January 06, 2014, 02:34:56 PM »
Thanks Craig, that was the last pie of the night so the oven had  poles down just enough to gently melt the cheese perfectly into the sauce. Reminds me a lot of Forngraphers recent pies...kind of my inspiration actually, he fuses his cheese so nicely into his sauce.

Offline crkoller

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Re: My Neapolitan Pizza Adventure
« Reply #33 on: January 13, 2014, 05:20:59 PM »
Yesterday's Bake:

These pies were a bit doomed from the beginning, but I went for anyway. So I was initially making dough for Saturday and plan on a 24 RT ferment (18 bulk and 6 balled [100% Caputo/2.9%NaCl/0.2%IDY/62% H2O]). The first issue was my scale must not have been sitting completely flush with my counter and instead of 750g of total flour it ended up being somewhere closer to 1600g...I am well aware of what 750g of flour looks like but my brain was in autopilot and it only became obvious after the dough was a shaggy mess instead of smooth mass. Lesson: use your brain Chris, if it looks like a ton of flour then it is probably a ton of flour.

This improper hydration also created a bunch of 'pills' in the dough, raw flour encapsulated in the dough itself. With this stellar start I still pushed forward. I bulk fermented at ~72F and decided to pick out the pills from the dough before I balled, no problem there - it was a huge pain in the ass, but overall not the end of the world. What felt more like the end of the world was the Tempest that rolled through NC about an hour after I heated my oven - 50mph winds, torrential rain, and loud thunder. Not ideal pizza conditions...so in the fridge the dough went.

So the next day we ended up having some family over and it was actually convenient to have the dough. A miscommunication I fired the oven about an hour to early so when they did arrive it was running extremely hot, like 1200+ dome hot and 1050 floor hot. This ultimately prompted another long wait and eventually we all decided we were hungry enough that we would weather the inevitable burnt parts of the pies. As my dad's mom put it: "This one is burnt" to which I responded "No, its charred"...to be honest it probably fell somewhere between those two.

To combat the brutally hot floor I was turning them quickly and often using the dome to my advantage. We did 2 Marinaras, 2 Filettes, 3 Margharitas, 1 Swiss Chard and Lemon, 1 TXCraig1 Cremini...

Overall grade for bake: C+/B-  they were over-fermented as noted by the poor rise on the cornicione and dark browing. If I would have been served them in a restaurant I would probably chalk it up to a bad day and give them one more shot because they weren't awful, just not to the level that I know I am capable of...



Offline Serpentelli

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Re: My Neapolitan Pizza Adventure
« Reply #34 on: January 14, 2014, 08:21:20 AM »
You are smart to have not posted pics of the bottom of those pies! I suspect momma may have been correct in her critique! ;)

Anyway, the tops of all of those pies look great and there's no better way to learn than to make mistakes. Lots and lots and lots of mistakes. Such as changing percents to decimals when you are hungover and trying to make dough. :-D

John K
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Offline crkoller

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Re: My Neapolitan Pizza Adventure
« Reply #35 on: January 14, 2014, 06:13:16 PM »
You are smart to have not posted pics of the bottom of those pies! I suspect momma may have been correct in her critique! ;)

Caught me red handed haha

Offline Chicago Bob

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Re: My Neapolitan Pizza Adventure
« Reply #36 on: January 14, 2014, 06:27:56 PM »
Caught me red handed haha
Chrissy,
I'm out here way East in Durham off 70 going towards the Airport....thought I smelled something in the air Sun. night.  ;D    J/K     Like John said, they sure are purdy on top and believe me...I would have been right over to chow those down if an experienced char eater was needed.  ;)

Bob
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Offline fornographer

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Re: My Neapolitan Pizza Adventure
« Reply #37 on: January 14, 2014, 07:06:44 PM »
Hi Chris,


Whenever I have problems with the floor overheating (getting distracted, etc), I cool it down using a tea kettle.  Fill up a tea kettle with a little water, carefully place it to the part of the floor where you bake the pies, and it will absorb the heat.  It typically just takes 5-10 minutes to cool down the floor back to the 900s or upper 800s.


A very easy way to control how fast your floor heats up is through the size of the firewood.   Once I get the oven to temp, I start using tiny sticks, 1 to 1.5 inch thick and typically 1 or two of them, of very dry firewood to bake the pies.   The fire is aggressive enough but only lasts to bake 1-3 pies if you are moving fast. 




Offline thezaman

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Re: My Neapolitan Pizza Adventure
« Reply #38 on: January 14, 2014, 08:17:47 PM »
 tops look great,especially that margherita !!! floor management is really hard and the above tip is one i'm going to try!

Offline crkoller

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Re: My Neapolitan Pizza Adventure
« Reply #39 on: January 15, 2014, 04:53:29 PM »
Chrissy,
I'm out here way East in Durham off 70 going towards the Airport....thought I smelled something in the air Sun. night.  ;D    J/K     Like John said, they sure are purdy on top and believe me...I would have been right over to chow those down if an experienced char eater was needed.  ;)

Bob

That was me for sure. Definitely a huge learning experience though. We will have to get together sometime for a slice

Offline crkoller

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Re: My Neapolitan Pizza Adventure
« Reply #40 on: January 15, 2014, 04:55:32 PM »
Whenever I have problems with the floor overheating (getting distracted, etc), I cool it down using a tea kettle.  Fill up a tea kettle with a little water, carefully place it to the part of the floor where you bake the pies, and it will absorb the heat.  It typically just takes 5-10 minutes to cool down the floor back to the 900s or upper 800s.

I am going to sound dumb for asking this, but a solid metal tea-kettle? That's a really smart idea that I like a lot - there was the suggestion from the crowd after I explained what happen to toss some water and/or ice in there to knock down that temp, but I think from the size my eyes got they quickly realized that that probably was not the greatest plan...

Offline fornographer

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Re: My Neapolitan Pizza Adventure
« Reply #41 on: January 15, 2014, 05:38:01 PM »
I am going to sound dumb for asking this, but a solid metal tea-kettle? That's a really smart idea that I like a lot - there was the suggestion from the crowd after I explained what happen to toss some water and/or ice in there to knock down that temp, but I think from the size my eyes got they quickly realized that that probably was not the greatest plan...


Hi Chris.  Yes a solid one.  Here is a link to to one I am using:  http://www.amazon.com/dp/B004N5WFII/?tag=pizzamaking-20


Its tiny size is perfect for the oven.  I also use it for an additional source of steam when baking bread.


Offline crkoller

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Re: My Neapolitan Pizza Adventure
« Reply #42 on: January 15, 2014, 10:04:56 PM »
Its tiny size is perfect for the oven.  I also use it for an additional source of steam when baking bread.

Sweet, thanks for the link

Offline crkoller

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Re: My Neapolitan Pizza Adventure
« Reply #43 on: January 19, 2014, 07:35:08 PM »
Tonights bake was a 24 hour ferment 61.5% hydrated dough. 0.2%IDY and 2.9% NaCl. Dome was up around 1150F at the start of the bake and the floor was much calmer today at 820F, none of the bottoms burned they were all nicely charred. The  outer crusts were light and fluffy with a glass-like crunch. Six pies total, 1 Marinara, 1 Rosa (Bianco), 1 Green and White w/ Lemon, 1 LM Mozzarella, 2 Margheritas (one of which was coated in Calabrian Chile Oil).

Offline dellavecchia

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Re: My Neapolitan Pizza Adventure
« Reply #44 on: January 19, 2014, 08:14:28 PM »
Straight out of Naples. Perfect bake.

John

Offline crkoller

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Re: My Neapolitan Pizza Adventure
« Reply #45 on: January 19, 2014, 09:15:24 PM »
Straight out of Naples. Perfect bake
Thanks John! They were really awesome, obviously the margheritas were great, I mean buffalo mozzarella, San Marzano tomato, basil is just a perfect combo, but the stand out tonight was the Marinara. It came out of the oven and there was this beautiful perfume of oregano and olive oil. That pie also lends itself nicely to really taste the wheat of the dough and the heat of the oven

Offline dylandylan

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Re: My Neapolitan Pizza Adventure
« Reply #46 on: January 19, 2014, 11:00:52 PM »
Very very nice! 

Offline crkoller

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Re: My Neapolitan Pizza Adventure
« Reply #47 on: January 24, 2014, 09:00:33 PM »
I made four pies on 21-JAN-2014. Went with 100% Caputo, 61.5% water, 3.0% salt, 0.2% IDY. Bulk for 12 and balled for 9 hours. It was snowing here in NC so I had to improvise and make the pizzas inside and shuttle them out, inconvenience but not the end of the world. 2 margheritas, 1 marinara with chiles, 1 spinach and lemon. Deck was around 800 and the dome was cruising at 1000. Crust was lighter and crispier, I think because how long they were balled.  Given the restrictions I would say it was an B+/A- bake

Offline stonecutter

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Re: My Neapolitan Pizza Adventure
« Reply #48 on: January 24, 2014, 09:14:04 PM »
Great color on that one!
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Offline Chicago Bob

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Re: My Neapolitan Pizza Adventure
« Reply #49 on: January 24, 2014, 09:22:11 PM »
 ^^^   Yes sir...that's a beauty.

Bob
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