Author Topic: Pete-zza's formula for dough thickness  (Read 3197 times)

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Offline PizzaBrewer

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Pete-zza's formula for dough thickness
« on: May 12, 2005, 10:04:04 AM »
Can anyone point me to Pete's formula that relates pizza size and thickness to dough weight?  I just got an accurate scale and found that the standard dough ball that I make is 13 ounces.  How large can I make a pizza with a "New York"-style-pizza thickness?

Thanks!

---Guy
Man does not live by bread alone.  There's also tomato, cheese and pepperoni.


Offline Madmax

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Re: Pete-zza's formula for dough thickness
« Reply #1 on: May 12, 2005, 12:50:38 PM »
Pizzabrewer,

The formula, I believe is

Pi X Radius X Radius X .10 = Ounces per pie.  Where Pi = 3.14 and the .10 is the average thickness of a typical NY Pie (One tenth of an inch thick).  For example, if I wanted to make a 12" pie the formula would be

3.14 X 6 X 6 X .10 = 11.304 ounces of dough per pie.

Hope this helps.

Offline Madmax

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Re: Pete-zza's formula for dough thickness
« Reply #2 on: May 12, 2005, 12:56:18 PM »
I guess I should have read all of your post!!!

For a 13 oz dough ball:

13 / 3.14 / .1 = 41.4

Take the square root of 41.4 which is a 6.43 radius.  A 6.43 radius is a 12.86 diameter pie.  Obviously if you adjust the thickness down or up, your diameter changes.

I'm 99.9% sure this is how Pete calculated it.

Madmax

Online Pete-zza

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Re: Pete-zza's formula for dough thickness
« Reply #3 on: May 12, 2005, 01:05:24 PM »
Madmax,

You got it exactly right :).

Peter

Offline Madmax

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Re: Pete-zza's formula for dough thickness
« Reply #4 on: May 12, 2005, 01:09:09 PM »
I had a good teacher  ;D

Offline PizzaBrewer

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Re: Pete-zza's formula for dough thickness
« Reply #5 on: May 12, 2005, 05:18:30 PM »
Madmax, thanks for the calculations!

So here's the pizza I made with the 13 ounce dough, diameter 13 inches.   It seems too thin to me, I'll have to increase the dough ball weight next time.

Of course I'm also still not happy with my dough stretching prowess.  I still haven't figured out the trick to stretching the dough so the thickness is uniform throughout the pie.  Maybe I'll have to take Bubba's class on pizza spinning...

---Guy

« Last Edit: May 12, 2005, 05:20:06 PM by PizzaBrewer »
Man does not live by bread alone.  There's also tomato, cheese and pepperoni.

Offline Madmax

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Re: Pete-zza's formula for dough thickness
« Reply #6 on: May 12, 2005, 05:46:20 PM »
That pie looks great to me.

I have the same problem with hand technique.  I cannot get consistent thickness accross the skin....too thin in some spots, too thick in others.  I think my problem is not necessarily my hand technique, so much, as it may be the dough (yeah thats it...its the doughs fault!).  The last 2 times I've made pizza, I had to resort to a rolling pin to get it thin.  I know, I know, a rolling pin (Boo...Hiss).  I can spin the dough fairly well, however the dough is not elastic enough to stretch properly.  Hey I'm still learning!  I just can't get the dough light and airy enough.  I don't have a scale yet, I work strictly off of the feel of the dough.  Basically my recipe is this (not sure of %'s either)

2 7/8 C KA Bread Flour
1 1/3 C water
3/4 t  ADY
1/2 t  salt
1  t    sugar

Proof yeast in water & sugar, mix with 1C flour until batter like, add remaining water, then gradually add 1 1/2 C flour and mix for 5 minutes, rest for 20, add salt, mix for 10-13 minutes.  24 hours in fridge.

Offline dinks

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Re: Pete-zza's formula for dough thickness
« Reply #7 on: May 16, 2005, 02:53:37 PM »
PIZZABREWER:
  Good afternoon Guy. I have read your post inquiring the size pizza you can make with a 13, oz dough ball. I will assume a .100 thickness.

  TRY this Formula:

13, oz hit sq. root button.=3.605  multiply by 3.14 =11.32  muliply by 1.10 =12.45 inch in diameter pie.
 Good luck & have a nice day my friend.
   ~DINKS.

Online Pete-zza

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Re: Pete-zza's formula for dough thickness
« Reply #8 on: May 16, 2005, 03:37:19 PM »
DINKS,

You never cease to amaze me.

If you will permit me to paraphrase what you have said, the expression for calculating the diameter (D)  for a particular dough ball weight would be:

              D = Square root of the dough ball weight x 3.14 x (1 + TF),

where TF is the thickness factor (0.10, in our example).

Since your expression yields a slightly different diameter for a 13-oz. dough ball weight (even though the difference is too small to make a real difference), can you tell me the origins of your particular expression? The expression I use--which I can better grasp intuitively--originates with Tom Lehmann and Big Dave Ostrander--the one they recommend to pizza operators.

Peter

Offline dinks

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Re: Pete-zza's formula for dough thickness
« Reply #9 on: May 16, 2005, 04:12:43 PM »
PETER:
   Good Afternoon & How have you been???. I always enjoy hearing from you & reading your very learned posts.
  Now then, If the truth were told I just followed your example & Madmaxs examples. Then I began to experiment in such a manner ie, If 4+2 =6... Then what is 2 from 6??? type of reasoning. And I came up with this formula. I am not able to prove this equation simply because when I attended college my 2 weakest subjects were English & Algerbriac expressions. I am hoping that perhaps you may have a contact at your local university that you can pose this question to the Mathematics dep't to solve once & for all. That  is if the truth be told & it just has been. Good luck my friend & have a nice day.
  ~DINKS.


Online Pete-zza

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Re: Pete-zza's formula for dough thickness
« Reply #10 on: May 16, 2005, 05:04:29 PM »
DINKS,

I have been well. Thank you for asking.

Even the Lehmann-Big Dave expression is somewhat a fiction, since taking the surface area of something like a pizza (Pi X R x R) and multiplying that by another dimension, like the thickness factor (e.g., 0.10), may provide a volume number, but the result doesn't tell you what something contained by that volume will weigh. In other words, a box holding feathers, for example, will weigh considerably less than the same box holding lead. So, someone somewhere along the way must have made a bunch of pizzas with different diameters and crust thicknesses and, after weighing the doughs, came up with a number to convert the "volumes" of the pizzas into weights. I believe fellow member Canadave once described the thickness factor for doing this as a "cosmological constant".  It's as good an explanation as I have heard :).

Peter

Offline Aaron

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Re: Pete-zza's formula for dough thickness
« Reply #11 on: May 17, 2005, 09:18:15 AM »
I like Canadaves answer,a truely Canadian insight.
Aaron

Offline timza

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Re: Pete-zza's formula for dough thickness
« Reply #12 on: February 25, 2007, 09:46:43 AM »
Math and algebra removed...
« Last Edit: February 25, 2007, 01:43:38 PM by timza »
Eratosthenes calculated the Earth's circumference around 240 B.C.

Offline timza

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Re: Pete-zza's formula for dough thickness
« Reply #13 on: February 25, 2007, 10:06:44 AM »
Math and algebra removed...
« Last Edit: February 25, 2007, 01:47:21 PM by timza »
Eratosthenes calculated the Earth's circumference around 240 B.C.

Online Pete-zza

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Re: Pete-zza's formula for dough thickness
« Reply #14 on: February 25, 2007, 11:16:24 AM »
timza,

I have read a lot of the writings by Tom Lehmann and Dave Ostrander, where I originally found the topic of thickness factors, and I doubt they went through the rigorous analysis you have attempted. I use thickness factor as a rough guide, as do Tom and Dave, to differentiate different styles that have different crust thicknesses. It's not perfect but I find that it is useful. The current Lehmann dough calculating tool is based on the use of thickness factors but the yet-to-be-posted upgraded Lehmann tool allows users to use dough weight as a starting point (along with baker's percents). For many, that is likely to be the preferred approach, particularly for those who already have a dough weight in mind in relation to whatever pizza size and crust thickness they are striving for. In your analysis, you might want to keep in mind that pizza crusts have rims that are usually, but not always, thicker than the rest of the crust.

FYI, the topic of thickness factor has been discussed here by Tom Lehmann: http://www.pmq.com/mag/2004november_december/lehmann.php.

Peter

EDIT (3/22/13): For the Wayback Machine link to the article on thickness factor, see http://web.archive.org/web/20110820052532/http://pmq.com/mag/2004november_december/lehmann.php
« Last Edit: March 22, 2013, 08:08:09 AM by Pete-zza »

Offline timza

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Re: Pete-zza's formula for dough thickness
« Reply #15 on: February 25, 2007, 01:41:41 PM »
I removed my math and algebra.
« Last Edit: February 25, 2007, 01:47:02 PM by timza »
Eratosthenes calculated the Earth's circumference around 240 B.C.