Author Topic: Re: Hi, any tips and suggestions on pizza dough  (Read 1974 times)

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Offline calvin6969

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Re: Hi, any tips and suggestions on pizza dough
« on: September 09, 2006, 07:32:37 AM »
Hello all,

I grew up living overseas for 13 years (greece, africa and germany) and travel extensively overseas for work -- To say the least, I've been all around the world, and besides Maryland Blue Crabs with Old Bay seasonsing, Pizza is a close FIRST in my favorite food.

I've had pizza in most every country and just love the way Europeans make their pizzas -- thin, light, crisp, yet chewy with a perfect blend of sauce, cheese and toppings -- Not the over-loaded pizzas most places in the USA serve.

I've been dabbling in the pizza making world for about 5 years now, but not with the results I am hoping for, probably for a multitude of reasons.  I recently found this site and have been pouring through all the messages and found them to be very insightful in my quest to make a good, if not great, Neopolitan style pizza.

My wife and I just returned two days ago from a 12-day Italy trip with the final 4 days in Naples -- The pizza was AMAZING!!

I befriended one of the pizza chefs at a restaurant in Naples and he was going to show me how to make pizza our final night there, but he got swamped with a large tourist group and didn't have the time -- Though he actually gave me his restaurant and pizza making shirt, litteraly off his back as a show of friendship.

After reading through the messages on here, I've learned I need to switch flours, but I need some help with other questions -- I've been using the standard pizza dough recipes found anywhere, but can someone provide better guidance, ie... using U.S. measurements (cups, teaspoon, oz, etc...), length of time for proofing and so forth

I have a regular electric oven that heats to 500 degrees, hotter if you turn on the broil function providing heat from the top -- I also have a 16-inch pizza stone.  I also bought some pizza flour from a grocery store in Naples, so excited about trying that.

My question(s):

1)  pizza doug recipes to make two(2) 10-12 inch pies

2)  type of flour if I don't have "00" flour to use just yet -- Can I combine parts all-purpose and pastry flour to make "00"?

3)  using electric kneader, how long to knead (mixed with hand kneading of course) - 20 minutes, 25, 30, etc?

4)  proofing -- bowl with light olive oil and let rise for 1-2 hours?

5)  do i knead more, or separate into two balls and let rise again for 1-4 hours?

6)  i see posts about making dough 24 hours before using -- where to store for the 24 hours, how, etc..?

7)  cooking tips


I think I have the rest covered for now, but dough making suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

I'm going to post this message on a few threads, so apologize if you see this message a few times.

Picture of me and the pizza chef in Naples -- He made me wear the goofy hat

Thanks,

Mark


Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Hi, any tips and suggestions on pizza dough
« Reply #1 on: September 09, 2006, 10:06:33 AM »
Mark,

Until you locate some 00 flour, it is possible to combine different flours to simulate the 00 flour. You can combine all-purpose flour or bread flour with either cake flour or pastry flour. If you use the search feature on this forum, and especially the Advanced search feature (which is accessed by clicking the Search button on any page), you should be able to find several threads and posts directed to different possible flour combinations that you might be able to use. To give you a head start, you may want to take a look at these threads:

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,1278.msg11465.html#msg11465;

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,1104.msg9835.html#msg9835;

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,702.msg6358.html#msg6358 (see dough recipe in first post); and

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,3240.msg27390.html#msg27390.

In reading the various recipes, you may note knead times of around 20-30 minutes. Apparently such long knead times came about through a misconception of what is needed to get adequate gluten development. You should ignore those instructions and use much shorter knead times. The actual times will depend on your mixer and the dough batch size you make, but I would estimate knead times of 5-7 minutes as being typical.

Good luck.

Peter
(P.S., I deleted the redundant posts)

Offline varasano

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Re: Hi, any tips and suggestions on pizza dough
« Reply #2 on: September 09, 2006, 10:23:18 AM »
Hey Mark,

Click the little globe under my name and it will take you to a comprehensive recipe and technique with photos for making the kind of pie I think you want.

good luck,

Jeff

Offline calvin6969

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Re: Hi, any tips and suggestions on pizza dough
« Reply #3 on: September 09, 2006, 04:26:12 PM »
Jeff,

Thanks for the tip to read through your recipe and all the pictures, I'm completely and utterly engrossed and obessed with this today -- Not sure my wife is too happy, but hell, I just took her on her 2-week dream vacation to Italy, and once again, my planned final stop in Naples for pizza   :)

I know I have to master all the other steps, though I do have experience making pizza dough (not good yet), but gotten really good at bagels, but with my rambling mind, jumped forward to one of your 3 most important factors -- High Oven Heat.

I've been thinking all day how to muster enough heat in my oven and it's quite funny, because I've was thinking also about the cleaning cycle and how hot it gets, but hadn't yet figured out how to open the damn oven because it locks itself until it has cooled down below 500 degrees.

Can you elaborate more clearly on what to do?

1) turn cleaning cycle on and after about 40+ minutes it's probably close to full HIGH temperature
2) how do I get the oven open to utilize the high temp?
3) can i leave my 16" pizza stone in during the cleaning cycle so it's also heated?
4) when you say "cover glass," do you mean the glass window on the oven since a drip of the cooler sauce would shatter it?

Thanks again for the advice and sorry for moving ahead, I think backwards sometimes, more like figuring out what all the pieces to a puzzle mean before putting them all together

Mark

Offline calvin6969

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Re: Hi, any tips and suggestions on pizza dough
« Reply #4 on: September 09, 2006, 08:26:08 PM »
Jeff,

I made the dough following your instructions and shaped into two smaller balls and put in 3-cup containers, though the containers are more bowl shape instead of flatter like you depicted.

they've been in the refrigerator for 20 minutes and noticed the tops have popped off due to the dough rising and gases from the yeast/dough.....

....is this normal, or did I do something wrong?  Or as the dough cools in the refrigerator later on it will stem the rising and I can re-seal the lids properly?

Mark

Offline varasano

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Re: Hi, any tips and suggestions on pizza dough
« Reply #5 on: September 10, 2006, 09:21:34 AM »
Hey Calvin,

>1) turn cleaning cycle on and after about 40+ minutes it's probably close to full HIGH temperature
Mine takes 80 minutes. You really need an infrared digital thermometer. There's really no way around it. the thermometer will give you spot temperatures of different places within the oven, and this is essential to getting the temp right. Remember, you not only need high temp, but must get the distribution right or you'll burn the bottom before the top. You don't have the opportunity, like one does with a brick oven, to move the pie around in the middle to balance the heat distribution. You've got to get it right before the pie goes in. This will involve the steps with the crumpled foil and a lot of testing with the IR thermometer and practice. But now I can get it right 95% of the time.


>2) how do I get the oven open to utilize the high temp?
See separate message.

>3) can i leave my 16" pizza stone in during the cleaning cycle so it's also heated?
Yes, My stone has only left my oven once a year for the turkey. I make pizza once a week. I've hit 1000F with the stone in place without incident. I put foil below the stone, as I describe, so when I do remove the stone for something, I just pull out the rack, stone, foil and all, and put in another rack I have from my top oven.

>4) when you say "cover glass," do you mean the glass window on the oven since a drip of the cooler sauce would shatter it?
Yes, the glass window. I've shattered 2 glasses, and they cost $140 to replace, plus you have the glaring eye of the repair guy who can see you've been tinkering... To be super safe, cover the glass with a double layer of foil.  The foil should be loose and not tight against the glass. You are creating an insulation barrier.


>I made the dough following your instructions and shaped into two smaller balls and put in 3-cup containers, though the containers are more bowl shape instead of flatter like you depicted. they've been in the refrigerator for 20 minutes and noticed the tops have popped off due to the dough rising and gases from the yeast/dough.....

If you've shaped these into roughly 300g balls, they should never fill a 3 cup container more than half way, even after 3 days. So something is way off here. How big were the balls? How much yeast did you use? What temp was the final dough?  Something is off with one of these factors.  With a 16" stone, you ball should be between 270 & 350g. I do about 310-320.  For 2 pies this size, the amount of yeast should be very tiny, like 1/8tspn or even less. A packet of Flieshman's IDY is like 2 teaspoons, so it's enough for 30 pies.  I know that this tiny amount of yeast is not what you see in most recipes, but trust me, if you are looking for neopolitan style, you want a long slow rise. But if you are serious, and not just dabbling, you will have to get a natural starter and get past the yeast packets.

I see that you are excited. This will all take a lot of time to work out the details, though, so be patient and you will be rewarded.

Jeff


 

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