Author Topic: Best Yet  (Read 13350 times)

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Offline scpizza

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Re: Best Yet
« Reply #50 on: March 14, 2007, 12:41:30 PM »
I've been questioning the "wetter is better" philosophy myself, also experimenting in the 60%-68% range.

I haven't noticed any outer vs. inner cooking problems with my wet doughs.  Instead my beef is with the dough handling which is such an enormous burden with the wet doughs.  I've been doing batches at 60% and not noticing much difference in crust texture compared to 68%.  Perhaps some A/B testing and pictures are in order here.


Offline Bill/SFNM

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Re: Best Yet
« Reply #51 on: March 14, 2007, 03:10:42 PM »

I haven't noticed any outer vs. inner cooking problems with my wet doughs. 


scpizza,

Do you have voids in your dough in the center portion of your wettest doughs? I am trying to achieve voids throughout the crust - of course not nearly as big as you approach the center.

Bill/SFNM

Offline scpizza

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Re: Best Yet
« Reply #52 on: March 14, 2007, 03:37:59 PM »
Oh, interesting point.  I have far fewer voids in the middle of the dough than I would like.  I had been thinking that this was a problem with my dough stretching technique.  Had not thought hydration might be playing a role in that. 

Offline Bill/SFNM

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Re: Best Yet
« Reply #53 on: March 14, 2007, 07:22:02 PM »
scpizza,

Certainly dough handling including shaping has something to do with this, but I'm suspecting that there is another factor at work. The low dome of a proper Neapolitan oven may be radiating down enough heat to create steam/voids in the dough beneath the toppings. One of the tricks I sometimes use to ensure the toppings are adequately cooked at the same time as the crust is to raise the pie to the ceiling before removing the pie. By this time the structure of the dough is set preventing voids from being formed.

If I place a piece of formed dough in the oven without toppings, the entire pie puffs up.

I have a solution to this I will try one of these days and will report back here.

Bill/SFNM

Offline zandonatti

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Re: Best Yet
« Reply #54 on: March 14, 2007, 08:29:41 PM »
My experience, where a hyperactive starter caused VERY different results, even though following all aspects of the recipe, makes me wonder whether so many of the variations and so much of the unpredictability has to do with the vigor of the starter.

After all, it seems we can precisely control every aspect of the recipe: hydration, flour, salt, etc.  But the starter seems to be this "black box" that could be having much more effect than anyone can fathom.

I may be showing my rookie status here, but  using a starter that causes over-risen dough while a similarly-composed starter does not, makes me think there may be something to this.

Offline Bill/SFNM

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Re: Best Yet
« Reply #55 on: March 15, 2007, 08:47:05 AM »

After all, it seems we can precisely control every aspect of the recipe: hydration, flour, salt, etc.  But the starter seems to be this "black box" that could be having much more effect than anyone can fathom.


My recent experience with my starters is entirely predictable. I now know when they are at their maximum activity and can pretty much predict how much time a given starter % will take to ferment and proof at room temperature. For me, at this point, the heat distribution in the oven is the hardest to control. The pizza is being briefly blasted by intense heat from the deck, the surrounding air, the coals, flames, and the ceiling. The trick is to get all of these in balance so that all parts of the pie - bottom, edge, center, toppings - are done to perfection. At these high temps, the time window for each of these is very small. I am getting better at controlling my Non-Neapolitan oven to achieve this, but still have a long way to go.

Bill/SFNM


Offline 2112

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Re: Best Yet
« Reply #56 on: March 15, 2007, 01:33:28 PM »

Folks,

Please bear with me on this, I know it may be a little long winded and may not have been the need too but I would like to fully understand this relationship between hydration and the starter. In particular, I will reference a few quotes from this thread.

Quote
-   You need to be mindful of your starter hydration and factor that in so your overall hydration is correct.  If you don't your final dough could be much wetter than 62-64 and you wouldn't know it.

Quote
A 50/50 mix by weight is 100% hydration. Like Bill, I prefer to use the percent water because it is easier for me (and, I suspect for most people) to grasp conceptually. For example, Bill often uses a 46/54 mix, meaning that his mix is 46% water and 54% flour. He also uses an amount of starter expressed in relation to total dough weight. I usually express my preferment as a percent of total formula flour. It doesn't really matter whether one uses volume or weight measurements in starting and refreshing starters or how one expresses the preferment so long as one is consistent and knows the quantities used. Otherwise it will be difficult to achieve consistency and reproducibility of dough under any method.

So let's say we have a formula like this:

500 gr. KABF
310 gr. H20 @ 62% hydration
10 gr. Of Salt = 2%
15 gr. Starter = 5% of total flour but from a 46/54 starter as mentioned above.
This starter is then 85% hydration.

We then follow Bill's procedure:
1. Put water in bowl of mixer
2. Dissolve salt in water
3. Dump in 75% of flour
4. Mix until combined
5. Rest for 5 minutes
6. Mix in starter
7. Slowly sprinkle in remaining 25% of flour
8. Knead for about 7 minutes until desired texture is reached
9. Rest of 20 minutes
10. Mix for 2 turns

I have already defined the 62% hydration as 310 gr. of H20
If I am adding an additional 5% of starter @ 46/54 (85%) what is the new total hydration %?

Maybe I'm making this too complicated but for some reason it's not sinking in.   :-[

Thanks in advance……Vince

I started out with nothing and still have most of it left!

Offline 2112

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Re: Best Yet
« Reply #57 on: March 15, 2007, 02:16:04 PM »

I forgot to add that Marco says he uses a starter of 1-5% of the total amount of water.  :o   ???

That would be a considerably smaller % of starter compared to my last post! In weight of course!!  ;D



I started out with nothing and still have most of it left!

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Best Yet
« Reply #58 on: March 15, 2007, 02:51:58 PM »
Vince,

Maybe this will help you. Assume that you want to use a total formula that includes 500 grams of flour, 310 grams of water (62% hydration), and 10 grams of salt (2%). The total weight is 820 grams (500 + 310 + 10 = 820). Also, assume that you want to use an amount of starter that represents 5% of the weight of the formula flour, and that the starter is made up of 46% water and 54% flour. This is what the pieces of the formulation would look like:

Total Formula:
Flour (100%):
Water (62%):
Salt (2%):
Total (164%):

Preferment:
Flour:
Water:
Total:

Final Dough:
Flour:
Water:
Salt:
Preferment:
Total:

500 g  |  17.64 oz | 1.1 lbs
310 g  |  10.93 oz | 0.68 lbs
10 g | 0.35 oz | 0.02 lbs | 1.79 tsp | 0.6 tbsp
820 g | 28.92 oz | 1.81 lbs | TF = N/A
 
 
13.5 g | 0.48 oz | 0.03 lbs
11.5 g | 0.41 oz | 0.03 lbs
25 g | 0.88 oz | 0.06 lbs

 
486.5 g | 17.16 oz | 1.07 lbs
298.5 g | 10.53 oz | 0.66 lbs
10 g | 0.35 oz | 0.02 lbs | 1.79 tsp | 0.6 tbsp
25 g | 0.88 oz | 0.06 lbs
820 g | 28.92 oz | 1.81 lbs  | TF = N/A

As you can see, the starter (preferment) is carved out of the Total Formula as shown in the above tabulation. To complete the dough, you would add the starter (Preferment) in the amount designated (25 grams) to the quantities of ingredients specified in the Final Dough as shown in the above tabulation.

If you would like to use more or less starter, it is possible to re-do the tabulation. At your option, the starter can be specified as a percent of the total formula flour (which is a common approach used by bakers), the total formula water (as Marco specifies), or as a percent of the total amount of dough (which is Bill’s common technique). It is also possible to change the Total Formula, that is, to increase the quantities of ingredients or decrease them. Most people generally have a total dough weight or an individual dough ball weight in mind from which they work. If you’d like to give me some numbers, I will see what I can do to give you a new formulation breakdown.

Peter


Offline Bill/SFNM

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Re: Best Yet
« Reply #59 on: March 15, 2007, 07:43:05 PM »
My experience, where a hyperactive starter caused VERY different results, even though following all aspects of the recipe, makes me wonder whether so many of the variations and so much of the unpredictability has to do with the vigor of the starter.

zandonatti:

Is there a possibility that your starter is contaminated? I used to capture my own wild cultures before discovering sourdo.com. I recall once or twice capturing a culture that wasn't noxious, respond great to feedings, but gave a relatively small rise once mixed into the dough. As I recall, my conclusion at the time was that the wild culture thrived in a relatively narrow temperature range and was not suitable for baking. Just a thought.

Bill/SFNM

Offline zandonatti

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Re: Best Yet
« Reply #60 on: March 16, 2007, 04:58:16 AM »
Bill,

  I would not rule out a contaminated starter.  Even though it looks great, smells great, the fact that it causes the dough to rise so much may  mean contamination.  In fact, a couple of months ago when I was just getting it going it did get contaminated and I followed sourdo.com's directions for washing, and it revived.

   Before I toss it, though, I am going to experiment with using a few different (smaller) percentages of starter, and see what happens.


Offline scpizza

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Re: Best Yet
« Reply #61 on: March 16, 2007, 11:55:57 AM »
I would like to fully understand this relationship between hydration and the starter.

You can do a quick calculation to figure out the final hydration factoring in the starter hydration.  If you are using a low starter approach, it doesn't make a big difference.  For example, with a 68% hydration recipe using 5% of water starter of 50% hydration the final dough hydration is 68.5%, only a 0.5% difference.

Offline 2112

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Re: Best Yet
« Reply #62 on: March 16, 2007, 01:01:27 PM »


Peter and scpizza,

Thank you for the input. The fog is beginning to clear.

I wish I could post some pictures of the pies I have made to date but the size of my pictures seem to exceed the 128k limit
Hmmmmm........I will try to do something about that.

Vince
I started out with nothing and still have most of it left!

Offline Bill/SFNM

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Re: Best Yet
« Reply #63 on: March 17, 2007, 02:22:48 PM »
Not sure where to post this, but I discovered an unused  dough ball in the back of the refrigerator from the batch I made on Monday. I formed it into 3 x 100g rolls and baked them at 550F. As with other Caputo 00 trials at this temp, the color was very bland, but the flavor was just awesome. Made some gnocchi in a brown butter sauce with shrimp for lunch and this was perfect for sopping up the sauce - just the right balance of flavors. Lesson learned - always make extra dough balls.

Bill/SFNM 


 

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