Today, the final dough calculating tool—at least for the time being—has been added to the suite of dough calculating tools developed by Peter and I. This tool is called the Expanded Dough Calculating Tool
, and is available at http://www.pizzamaking.com/dough_tools.html
(Hit refresh if you don't see it listed).
It is most like the Lehmann dough calculating tool but with a much broader and diverse selection of ingredients to chose from. Whereas the Lehmann tool has a total of six possible ingredients--flour, water, yeast, salt, oil and sugar (optional)--the Expanded Dough Calculating Tool has a total of around 35 other ingredients to choose from. Obviously, no single dough formulation is likely to use many of those ingredients and, in fact, in most cases, it will be unlikely that one will use more than two or three ingredients beyond the basic six ingredients mentioned above. But, by offering such a diversity of ingredients, users will be able to use the tool with a very wide range of existing and new dough formulations.
Notably, the tool is not intended to be used for preferment or deep-dish dough formulations. For those applications, users should see the Preferment and Deep-Dish dough calculating tools that were developed for those specific applications. But apart from these two exceptions, the tool should work with all other styles, including New York, American, Sicilian, Neapolitan (commercial yeast versions), cracker, thick, California, etc.
As with the prior tools, it is intended that the new tool be used with proven dough formulations with workable sets of baker’s percents. But, because of the diversity of choices available to use, there is a great opportunity to experiment and come up with new and improved dough formulations. The risk is that users may try to use too many ingredients beyond the basic five or six, or use incorrect quantities, and, in the process, create what may appear to be a workable dough formulation on paper, but be unworkable in practice. The tool can’t tell the difference. It will produce outputs based on the inputs provided, whether correct or incorrect.
The following are the features of the new tool, many of which will already be familiar to our members based on the tools that preceded the new Expanded Dough Calculating Tool.Thickness Factor and Dough Weight Options.
As with earlier tools, the new tool gives users two options by which the ingredients and their quantities can be specified—the Thickness Factor option and the Dough Weight option. To use the Thickness Factor option, the user enters a known thickness factor (TF), a set of baker’s percents, the pizza size (diameter), and the desired number of pizzas (up to 999). With this option, the user can also choose the pizza shape, from either round or rectangular. The rectangular selection will be particularly useful to those who want to make Sicilian or “grandma” style pizzas, or even the Buddy’s rectangular/square deep-dish style as is popular in the Detroit area. In selecting the rectangular option, the user will be prompted to enter the dimensions (length and width) of the pizza (or the rectangular pan to be used).
For those who are interested, for a round pizza with a radius R, the TF equals the weight of the desired dough ball divided by Pi (3.14159) x R2
; for a rectangular/square pizza with length and width dimensions L x W, the TF equals the weight of the dough ball divided by L x W.
To use the Dough Weight option, the user enters a starting dough weight, a set of baker’s percents, and the desired number of dough balls (up to 999). The dough ball weight can be specified in either grams or ounces. There is no need with this option to enter a thickness factor.
In each case, the user selects specific ingredients from the ingredients list that are used in addition to the standard ingredients of flour, water, yeast and salt, and the Expanded Dough Calculating tool produces a set of data (ingredients and quantities) corresponding to all of the data entered into the tool.Bowl Residue Feature.
As with prior tools, the Expanded Dough Calculating Tool allows users to increase the quantities of the dough ingredients to compensate for minor losses of dough that can occur during preparation (due to flour, water and dough sticking to bowls, implements, fingers, work surfaces, etc.). This is done by specifying a particular percent increase. That percent will vary from case to case, but unless one is making a very wet and sticky dough it will usually be less than 4%. It is anticipated that users will determine the best percent to use in any given situation based on experience. If the finished dough exceeds the desired final dough weight, those with scales can always trim the final finished dough of the excess.
It will be noted that when the Thickness Factor method is used, the “final” thickness factor reflecting the bowl residue amount will appear in the data section, and also in a printout of the results produced by the Expanded Dough Calculating Tool tool. To preserve all of the data, including the initial thickness factor before compensation, it is strongly recommended that users print out a copy of the completed page, using the “Print” button provided for this purpose.Expanded Data Fields.
Also as with prior tools, the Expanded Dough Calculating tool has expanded data fields for several of the boxes into which values are entered so that users can enter numbers with several decimal places. This should allow for increased precision and fine-tuning of the results produced by the tool, particularly for those who convert existing recipes to baker’s percents and calculate thickness factors and the like and end up with numbers with several decimal places. It will be noted that if a user fails to enter a number into a box as required, that is, the entry box is left completely blank, the failure to enter a number (even a 0) will cause the error expression “NaN” to appear in the data section.Copy Feature.
A Copy “button” included in the tool allows allow users to copy information from the textual data section into posts or some other document, such as a Word document that might be used to compose replies to be posted on the forum. The information copied can be entered directly into the posts or other documents, by using a menu “paste” command or a “Control + V” keyboard command. Using the Copy button ensures that all of the data line up, thereby eliminating the need to do corrective “realignment” work when previewing replies to be posted on the forum.Ingredients.
As indicated above, the new tool has an extensive listing of ingredients that are commonly used in dough formulations. As will be noted, there are several groupings of ingredients, including oils, sugars (dry and liquid), solid fats, milk-based and other dairy products, chemical leavening systems and ingredients (including WRISE), grain-based products, and specialty ingredients like diastatic malt**
(Bob’s Red Mill brand) and PZ-44 (a dough relaxer). In a few cases, percentage ranges have been given to deter users from using excessive amounts which could result in unworkable or poor performing formulations. (** See edit below for correction)
An important consideration to bear in mind is that if the tool is used for dough design purposes, as by modifying an existing dough formulation by adding or substituting ingredients, it may be necessary or desirable to alter the hydration percentage to reflect those changes. For example, if wet ingredients are added, or substituted for dry ingredients, it will usually be necessary to decrease the formula hydration percent in the original formulation to compensate for the water content of the wet ingredients. Conversely, if dry ingredients are added, or substituted for wet ingredients, it will usually be necessary to increase the formula hydration percent to make up for the loss of water in the original formulation. To achieve accurate results, it will be necessary to calculate the amount of water added or taken away from a formulation by each change and adjust the hydration percent accordingly.Baker's Percents Usage.
This tool is intended to work with normal baker's percents, and entries should be made as such in the tool. There should be no leading 0s. For example, if the hydration percent is 62%, it should be entered into the applicable field in the tool as the number 62, not 062. Otherwise, the results will be incorrect.
I hope the tool proves useful and, as usual, I welcome feedback and comments from our members.
EDIT: The weight to volume conversion value for diastatic malt in the expanded dough calculating tool is in error by a factor of ten; therefore, the volume measurements produced by the tool should be multiplied by 10.