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Offline vitus

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NY attempt - please comment
« on: October 21, 2007, 07:57:26 AM »
Hi all

I brought my pizza stone to my brother's house and baked the pies in his home oven at about 500 F in 6-7 minutes.
Pictures below. I don't have any pictures of slices, but they had well developed air pockets in the crust and were foldable and a bit crispy.

I made the pizzas with my sourdough starter and the dough had a 24 hour rise.
The recipe was:
Flour 100%
Water 63%
Salt 2%
Canola Oil 1,5%
Sugar 1,5%
Poolish

Tomato sauce:
Fresh peeled plum tomatoes, a pinch of oregano, garlic and fennel seeds

Toppings:
Fresh basil, provolone cheese, porcini mushrooms, bresaola, fennel sausage

Any comments are welcome - I want to improve my pizza making  :)
« Last Edit: October 21, 2007, 09:52:17 AM by vitus »


Offline Pete-zza

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Re: NY attempt - please comment
« Reply #1 on: October 21, 2007, 11:06:17 AM »
vitus,

I think you did a terrific job. How did the pizzas taste and how were they received by those who ate your pizzas?

Can you elaborate a bit further on how much poolish you used and how you made and incorporated it into your dough formulation? Was it the classical poolish with 100% hydration (equal weights of flour and water), or some other variation? Knowing that you are outside of the U.S., I'd also be interested in what kind of flour you used. I take it that you used a cold ferment.

Peter


Offline vitus

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Re: NY attempt - please comment
« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2007, 01:05:09 PM »
Thanks for the comments, Peter.
The taste was very good, I think, and someone compared them to an excellent local Italian pizzaria. I personally think that it was the best tasting pizza I have ever made, but then again I am still a novice. I would have liked the sauce to have a bit stronger tomato taste, so I am considering adding a bit of tomato paste the next time.

Regarding the poolish:
Yes, I use a 50/50 type sourdough poolish, but I guess that you hit the weak point in my recipe here. I was very unsure of how much poolish to add, so I simply took one cup. My though was that I had no idea how "strong" it was, so I convinced myself that weighing the poolish very accurately didn't make sense. Don't know if that was a very wise decision...
I mixed in the poolish from the beginning and used a 30 minute autolyse period by the way.
I used a cold ferment and took the dough out of the fridge early in the afternoon because it hadn't rised as much as I wanted. Within a couple of hours at room temperature it began rising nicely however.

Regarding the flour:
I have had a real hard time finding good pizza flour. The stores all sell the same 3-4 different brands of flour and none are suitable for pizza making I think. The only real high gluten flours are Italian 00-flours but I have had some bad experiences with using them in my home oven. I guess that they work better in a really hot oven.
Therefore I have for a long time wanted to add a little vital wheat gluten to the flour, but they are simply not commercially available here. I know that a lot of bakeries use vital wheat gluten, but even specialty food stores haven't even heard of such wheat gluten products.
However recently I found an organic bread flour with a protein content of 14%. Since I first made a dough using that flour, things haven't been the same!  ;) There is a truly remarkable difference in the way the dough feels compared to other flours. High hydration doughs still feels wet, but they are not at all sticky the same way. When for example the dough sticks to my hands, I can just rub them gently and it falls right off. I don't know if it is this particular flour or if all good high protein flours acts like that. But there is a radical difference between this flour and every other flour I have ever used.

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: NY attempt - please comment
« Reply #3 on: October 21, 2007, 01:41:34 PM »
Regarding the poolish:
Yes, I use a 50/50 type sourdough poolish, but I guess that you hit the weak point in my recipe here. I was very unsure of how much poolish to add, so I simply took one cup. My though was that I had no idea how "strong" it was, so I convinced myself that weighing the poolish very accurately didn't make sense. Don't know if that was a very wise decision...
I mixed in the poolish from the beginning and used a 30 minute autolyse period by the way.
I used a cold ferment and took the dough out of the fridge early in the afternoon because it hadn't rised as much as I wanted. Within a couple of hours at room temperature it began rising nicely however.other flour I have ever used.

vitus,

Believe me, based on the photos you posted and your comments, you are not a novice. So, please stop referring to yourself as such.

According to Ed Wood in his book Classic Sourdoughs, one cup of a liquid starter weighs around 9 ounces (about 255 grams). I have played around with different starter hydrations and have concluded that Ed Wood's number is a good number to use if in doubt. You didn't specify the weights of ingredients you used, but if you divide 255 grams by the weight of your formula water, that will tell you how much poolish you used. In classical terms, in the bread world, that amount will be typically 20-80% of the formula water. When I experiment with natural starters, I use about 15-20% natural starter as a percent of the formula flour (not water) as a starting point. That number came from member bakerboy, who is a professional bread baker with a lot of experience using preferments in pizza doughs. When in doubt about the strength of my starter, I up the percent, for example, to 25%, until I get a better feel for a better amount to use.

With the bread flour you are now using, I think you will see very good results. Keep up the good work.

Peter



Offline vitus

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Re: NY attempt - please comment
« Reply #4 on: October 21, 2007, 03:50:19 PM »
Thanks for the kind comments, Peter! They are much appreciated.  :)

My recipe aimed for 4 dough balls of 300 g - 1200 grams in total.
But on top of that I added approximately one cup of poolish as mentioned.

So I guess that the totals were something like 710 g of flour, 447 g of flour and 225 g of poolish.
Does that sound about right?

One of the reasons I kind of "kept the poolish out of the recipe" was tha the calculus became very difficult, I thought.
The addition of a 100% hydrated poolish obviously makes the dough wetter than the 63% percent I went for.
But on the other hand I use some bench flour too, so I thought that the extra flour would more or less cancel out the extra amount of water from the poolish.
I guess that no matter how you do it, in the end you will always have to feel whether the dough is too dry or wet and then adjust the water or flour a little.

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: NY attempt - please comment
« Reply #5 on: October 21, 2007, 05:37:47 PM »
vitus,

The numbers I came up with were a bit different from yours. So, to get a complete picture of what you did, I ran all of the numbers through the preferment dough calculating tool at http://www.pizzamaking.com/preferment_calculator.html. To do this, I first had to add the poolish quantity, which I assumed to be 255 grams for one cup, to the original 1200 grams of dough, to yield a total of 1455 grams. I then adjusted the flour and water quantities to reflect the flour and water added by the poolish. Finally, because adding the poolish to the original dough weight of 1200 grams diluted the amounts of salt, oil and sugar that were originally part of your 1200 gram dough weight, I had to adjust the percents for those ingredients also. I also established that your poolish represents 44.16% of the formula water. So, it was within the range I previously mentioned. I did not attempt to compensate for changes due to the use of bench flour. Doing all of the above, and assuming my changes were correct, this is what I got for your dough formulation, including the poolish ("Preferment" in the tables below):

Total Formula:
Flour (100%):
Water (68.6042%):
Salt (1.69707%):
Oil (1.2728%):
Sugar (1.2728%):
Total (172.84687%):

Preferment:
Flour:
Water:
Total:

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

841.79 g  |  29.69 oz | 1.86 lbs
577.5 g  |  20.37 oz | 1.27 lbs
14.29 g | 0.5 oz | 0.03 lbs | 2.56 tsp | 0.85 tbsp
10.71 g | 0.38 oz | 0.02 lbs | 2.38 tsp | 0.79 tbsp
10.71 g | 0.38 oz | 0.02 lbs | 2.69 tsp | 0.9 tbsp
1455 g | 51.32 oz | 3.21 lbs | TF = N/A
 
 
127.49 g | 4.5 oz | 0.28 lbs
127.49 g | 4.5 oz | 0.28 lbs
254.98 g | 8.99 oz | 0.56 lbs

 
714.3 g | 25.2 oz | 1.57 lbs
450.01 g | 15.87 oz | 0.99 lbs
14.29 g | 0.5 oz | 0.03 lbs | 2.56 tsp | 0.85 tbsp
254.98 g | 8.99 oz | 0.56 lbs
10.71 g | 0.38 oz | 0.02 lbs | 2.38 tsp | 0.79 tbsp
10.71 g | 0.38 oz | 0.02 lbs | 2.69 tsp | 0.9 tbsp
1455 g | 51.32 oz | 3.21 lbs  | TF = N/A

Peter

Offline toddster63

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Re: NY attempt - please comment
« Reply #6 on: October 21, 2007, 06:09:57 PM »
That bresaola looks delicious...!  I have to try that...

Offline vitus

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Re: NY attempt - please comment
« Reply #7 on: October 22, 2007, 04:49:16 AM »
Thanks Toddster! And thanks, Peter. That was quite an amazing work of calculus. :D  Next time I'll try and use the exact amounts you calculated to see how it turns out.

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: NY attempt - please comment
« Reply #8 on: October 22, 2007, 01:35:52 PM »
Next time I'll try and use the exact amounts you calculated to see how it turns out.

vitus,

I do hope that you will have a chance to try the dough formulation as produced by the preferment dough calculating tool. I have yet to experience failure (or anything remotely close) using that tool and I would be surprised if you did either, even using the Ed Wood 9 ounces/cup benchmark. I think you would have to materially depart from the formulation to end up with unacceptable results, Also, I sense that you have reached the point where you can tell when something isn't quite right and take corrective measures to fix any problem.

Peter

Offline vitus

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Re: NY attempt - please comment
« Reply #9 on: October 22, 2007, 04:03:08 PM »
I do hope that you will have a chance to try the dough formulation as produced by the preferment dough calculating tool.

Ok, that's embarrassing: Somehow I totally missed the fact that we have a preferment calculating tool  :-[
I have been playing around with the Lehmann tool a couple of times, but this tool is my new favorite.  :)

If anyone else doesn't know it, the preferment dough calculating tool can be found here:
http://www.pizzamaking.com/preferment_calculator.html  :pizza:

And all the dough calculating tools can be reached through the main page here:
http://www.pizzamaking.com/dough_tools.html  :pizza:


Offline Pete-zza

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Re: NY attempt - please comment
« Reply #10 on: October 22, 2007, 04:13:13 PM »
Ok, that's embarrassing: Somehow I totally missed the fact that we have a preferment calculating tool.

vitus,

Thanks for reminding our members where the tools are. At some point, perhaps in a future forum upgrade, a button or tab may be provided on the forum pages to link users directly to the tools and perhaps other features that can now be accessed through the front door of the forum (pizzamaking.com).

Peter

Offline Garlic head

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Re: NY attempt - please comment
« Reply #11 on: October 22, 2007, 05:32:36 PM »
vitus,

Thanks for reminding our members where the tools are. At some point, perhaps in a future forum upgrade, a button or tab may be provided on the forum pages to link users directly to the tools and perhaps other features that can now be accessed through the front door of the forum (pizzamaking.com).

Peter
Excellent ideas. I think a lot of people miss out on the dough tools simply by not easily knowing where to go to find them.

Kevin

Offline HC123

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Re: NY attempt - please comment
« Reply #12 on: October 26, 2007, 09:29:08 AM »
Wow!  Your pies look great!  I am a novice trying to grasp every bit of helpful info in this forum so thank you so much for the Preferment calculator link!  I had no idea this existed!    ???

I will have my first attempt at the Pizza Raquel tonight but from what the dough (in the fridge) looks like my hopes aren't very high at this point.   :-\  . I used Peter's adaptation to make it a 14" pizza but my final dough weigh was completely different from his even I thought I followed the measurements exactly and it looks kind of "flat", undermixed maybe?  It was VERY sticky and I had to add what I think was a lot of flour when I took it out of the KA mixing bowl.

Anyway, I am trying to stick to recipes using a preferment since I recently saved my Camaldoli starter from contamination so now that it is "safe" I want to use it as much as I can.

One question though...

In what part of the oven did you bake your pizzas?  Middle, lower or upper part? 

Thanks!

Heather

Offline widespreadpizza

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Re: NY attempt - please comment
« Reply #13 on: October 26, 2007, 10:31:43 AM »
Heather,  just a thought , but it is sometimes advised to get your skills going with yeast alone and then incorporate a starter into your regimen.  I would have struggled far worse if I started with a starter.  I also had high hopes for my camoldi starter,  but never really got to where I wanted to with it although many have.  I have used other starters,  especially Carl's with great success as it is strong enough to use in the fridge,  where as the camoldi does best at room temp.  Also,  when you say measured do you mean weighed?  Using an inexpensive digital scale is in my opinion the most important step in dough making.  Just my thoughts,  good luck with your journey,  don't give up.  -marc

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: NY attempt - please comment
« Reply #14 on: October 26, 2007, 12:53:58 PM »
I used Peter's adaptation to make it a 14" pizza but my final dough weigh was completely different from his even I thought I followed the measurements exactly


Heather,

Can you tell me which Raquel recipe I posted that you followed, and if you weighed the flour and water? The Raquel pizza that I thought was my best effort and where the preferment tool would have come in real handy is the one at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,1258.msg20961.html#msg20961 (Reply 198). Since that time, I am pretty sure that pftaylor modified the basic Raquel recipe. Maybe sometime I can take a stab at using the preferment tool to set up the Raquel recipe.

Peter

Offline HC123

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Re: NY attempt - please comment
« Reply #15 on: October 26, 2007, 01:32:02 PM »
Heather,  just a thought , but it is sometimes advised to get your skills going with yeast alone and then incorporate a starter into your regimen.  I would have struggled far worse if I started with a starter.  I also had high hopes for my camoldi starter,  but never really got to where I wanted to with it although many have.  I have used other starters,  especially Carl's with great success as it is strong enough to use in the fridge,  where as the camoldi does best at room temp.  Also,  when you say measured do you mean weighed?  Using an inexpensive digital scale is in my opinion the most important step in dough making.  Just my thoughts,  good luck with your journey,  don't give up.  -marc

Marc,

You are right about fine tuning your skills first without a starter.  I just couldn't wait using one!  :D 

The only recipe from this forum I've tried (I've done many pizzas prior to discovering this forum which were pretty much "OK") is Canadave's Lehmann which was awesome, hence my intention to keep improving!  Pete's Raquel adaptation is today's project.

I will certainly follow your advice and work more using IDY but I have to tell you I'll keep trying to perfect my preferment skills as well!!

Thanks!!

Heather

Offline HC123

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Re: NY attempt - please comment
« Reply #16 on: October 26, 2007, 01:42:49 PM »
Heather,

Can you tell me which Raquel recipe I posted that you followed, and if you weighed the flour and water? The Raquel pizza that I thought was my best effort and where the preferment tool would have come in real handy is the one at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,1258.msg20961.html#msg20961 (Reply 198). Since that time, I am pretty sure that pftaylor modified the basic Raquel recipe. Maybe sometime I can take a stab at using the preferment tool to set up the Raquel recipe.

Peter



Hi Peter!  I was so hoping you replied!

To answer your questions:

The recipe I followed was this one except I used KABF instead of KASL. I  didn't know about the recipe you mentioned above

100%, Flour (KASL high-gluten), 6.13 oz. (about 1 1/4 c. + 2 T. + 1 t.)
60%, Water, 3.68 oz. (between 3/8 and 1/2 c., temp. adjusted to get a finished dough temp. of 80 degrees F)
0.0625%, IDY, 0.004 oz. (three very small pinches between the thumb and forefinger)
2%, Salt, 0.12 oz. (about 5/8 t.)
8%, Preferment, 0.49 oz. (about 1 T.)

And yes, I weighed the flour and water using a digital scale that I got at Linens and Things for about $50. I doubled the measurements to make 2 dough balls.  Dough was EXTREMELY wet and had to add lots of extra flour.
I'm afraid my final dough balls are too small (weighed around 8 something ounces each).  I will still try to make the pizzas tonight and see what happens!

I will definitely give the version you mentioned a try and will also work on a basic Lehmann.

Thanks for your help!

Heather


Offline Pete-zza

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Re: NY attempt - please comment
« Reply #17 on: October 26, 2007, 02:41:48 PM »
Heather,

I don't want to take this thread too far off-topic, but since a preferment is at issue here, as it is with the work that vitus has been doing, it may be appropriate to make a few comments about the preferment that you used and how it can affect final hydration.

In the Raquel recipe you used, 60% hydration (3.6/6.13 = 60%) would be a very workable number, even with the KABF instead of the KASL, since the rated absorption of the KABF is 62%. Where you can go awry is if the preferment itself contains a lot of water in relation to the amount of flour in the preferment. If your preferment was on the wet side, that could have made the final dough a bit more wet, but not excessively so. To give you a simple example, assume that the preferment in my recipe constituted equal weights of flour and water, which would be akin to a poolish with a soupy consistency (100% hydration). Adding the water and flour in the preferment to the formula water and flour would increase the total effective hydration to only 61.5%, which would be a perfectly workable number. You would need a lot more water to get the final dough to the point where it was extremely wet. Your preferment would have to be mostly water with little flour. Even with very fresh flour with a lot of its initial moisture content in tact, and even in a high-moisture environment, it would be unlikely for you to end up with a dough that is "EXTREMELY" wet using the amount and type of preferment recited in the recipe I posted. 

I hesitate to suggest the possibility of human error. However, on more than one occasion I have made taring errors when measuring out flour, only to discover when I added the flour to the water that I got soup. Since this has happened to me more than once, I know immediately when I have goofed. On rare occasion, I have even inadvertently reversed the quantities of flour and water.

Were I to use the Raquel recipe today, I would use the preferment dough calculating tool. At the time I posted the original Raquel recipe, the tool did not exist. One of the advantages of using the tool is that it teaches you to pay attention to the hydration of the preferment and to know its value, since the tool will ask for that value. As long as that number is correct, and the other inputs are correctly entered into the tool, it will be hard to go wrong using the tool. If I can find out how pftaylor is making his Raquel doughs these days, maybe I can run his latest numbers through the preferment tool, just as I did with vitus' recipe.

Peter




Offline vitus

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Re: NY attempt - please comment
« Reply #18 on: October 26, 2007, 06:18:55 PM »
One question though...

In what part of the oven did you bake your pizzas?  Middle, lower or upper part? 
Hi Heather!
I have been getting the best results by placing my stone really low in the oven.
For these particular pies, the stone rested on a grate 1 inch above the oven floor. I put the oven on top+bottom heat and let the stone preheat for 1 hour or so.  :)