Author Topic: Suggestions for New Year's Eve Pizza Making (for kids and adults)  (Read 2130 times)

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Offline bec

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I am visiting family in Denver, CO.  On New Year's Eve there will be a gathering of friends and family.  I plan to make pizza dough and let the kids stretch their individual pizza skin and add toppings of there choice.  I picked up various sized screens for the pizzas and my brother-in-law plans to cook them on his gas grill.  I would like the dough to be easy for the kids to work with, so suggestions for a dough formulation (particularly hydration and percentages for oil, salt, and sugar would be appreciated), altitude and humidity adjustment, and fermentation time.  Also any other recommendations for the party are welcome.  Thanks, Bruce


Offline Jackitup

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Re: Suggestions for New Year's Eve Pizza Making (for kids and adults)
« Reply #1 on: December 29, 2007, 04:13:17 PM »
Just a thought. Save the dough for the adult pies and get some flour tortillas for personal pan pies for the kids. I don't know how old the kids are but when mine were little I would get the flour tortillas, set out a variety of toppings and cheese and they can do their own individual pizzas. They take about 4-5 minutes on a hot stone and don't have to fight over who wants what on them. And actually they are very good, I still make them once in awhile for a quick fix. Kind of like an Italian version of quesadillas without a top piece.
Jon
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Offline bec

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Re: Suggestions for New Year's Eve Pizza Making (for kids and adults)
« Reply #2 on: December 29, 2007, 04:49:57 PM »
Sounds like a good idea.  I think I will set out the sauce and bunch of toppings.  Most of the kids are older and I can shape the skin for the younger ones.  Thanks, Bruce

Offline Jackitup

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Re: Suggestions for New Year's Eve Pizza Making (for kids and adults)
« Reply #3 on: December 29, 2007, 05:01:00 PM »
Yep, set it up like a little mini pizzeria assembly line, can be lots of fun and everyones pizza is the better one!
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Offline Bryan S

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Re: Suggestions for New Year's Eve Pizza Making (for kids and adults)
« Reply #4 on: December 30, 2007, 01:28:34 AM »
Sounds like a good idea.  I think I will set out the sauce and bunch of toppings.  Most of the kids are older and I can shape the skin for the younger ones.  Thanks, Bruce
I myself would love to see all the different sizes and shapes the kids would come up with by shaping their own dough. Bet they would love doing it themselves also. Really, how many kids out there ever get the chance to truly make their own pizza? And who knows how many pizza seeds you would plant? JMO  ;D
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Offline bec

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Re: Suggestions for New Year's Eve Pizza Making (for kids and adults)
« Reply #5 on: December 30, 2007, 10:10:08 AM »
I think they will have fun creating their own masterpieces.  Any suggestions for the dough, I am not used to cooking at altitude and would like the dough to be easy to work with.  I am thinking about 65% hydration (it is dry as a bone here).  They have a five quart kitchen aid and this is the dough formulation I am considering.  I will be using King Arthur All Purpose Flour.  Any suggestions regarding the dough would be appreciated.  Also, any thoughts of when to start the process.  I can store the dough balls either room temp or in the garage which stays just above freezing.  Don't think there is enough room in the fridge for storing them over.  Thanks for everyone's comments.  Bruce

Flour (100%):    702.7 g  |  24.79 oz | 1.55 lbs
Water (65%):    456.75 g  |  16.11 oz | 1.01 lbs
IDY (.17%):    1.19 g | 0.04 oz | 0 lbs | 0.4 tsp | 0.13 tbsp
Salt (2.1%):    14.76 g | 0.52 oz | 0.03 lbs | 3.07 tsp | 1.02 tbsp
Oil (2%):    14.05 g | 0.5 oz | 0.03 lbs | 3.12 tsp | 1.04 tbsp
Sugar (1.5%):    10.54 g | 0.37 oz | 0.02 lbs | 2.64 tsp | 0.88 tbsp
Total (170.77%):   1200 g | 42.33 oz | 2.65 lbs | TF = N/A
« Last Edit: December 30, 2007, 10:27:26 AM by bec »

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Suggestions for New Year's Eve Pizza Making (for kids and adults)
« Reply #6 on: December 30, 2007, 11:36:12 AM »
bec,

As you will see from this thread, http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,3066.0.html, there are many challenges to making pizza dough at high elevations, as one of our (inactive) members, Tim Wurtz, discovered when he tried to make dough for his pizzeria at a high elevation in Idaho. If you look at Reply 24, you will see his final dough recipe after many tries, including a few failed efforts that were more related to dough management than the recipe itself, although there were some needed changes to that also.

In your case, I don't think I would recommend a room temperature fermentation. On the other hand, you don't want the dough balls to freeze, which will seriously affect dough performance (plus require a long time to defrost). You might have to come up with a mechanism for keeping the dough balls in a 35-40 degrees F range. If the dough balls are too cold, you will also want to give them more time (maybe 3-4 hours or a bit longer) at room temperature to warm up so that they can be more readily and easily shaped. In situations like this, you have to use your best instincts based on what you observe in the way of dough behavior at the different stages of preparation and management.

Peter

Offline bec

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Re: Suggestions for New Year's Eve Pizza Making (for kids and adults)
« Reply #7 on: December 30, 2007, 01:21:38 PM »
Pete, this is Tim Wurtz's high altitude recipe that you linked to:

Flour   100.00%
Water   58.00%
Sugar   1.20%
Oil   5.00%
Reg. salt   1.00%
Kosher   0.00%
ADY   0.000%
IDY   0.950%

How would it sound if I modified it as follows:

Flour   100.00%
Water   60%
Sugar   1.20%
Oil   5.00%
Reg. salt   2.1%
IDY   0.950%

I usually like more salt in the dough and it seems like a little more hydration would be called for here.  The percent of oil seems high.  What is the effect on the dough?  I think I will make the dough this afternoon and maybe put in in an ice chest in the garage.  Thanks for your help.  Bruce

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Suggestions for New Year's Eve Pizza Making (for kids and adults)
« Reply #8 on: December 30, 2007, 01:41:28 PM »
Bruce,

I think you should be OK with the changes you propose. It takes a fair amount of oil to notice its presence but at the level used by Tim, along with the sugar, you will get a bit more tenderness in the finished crust/crumb and the oil will make the dough somewhat easier to shape and stretch (it coats the gluten strands). Depending on the type of oil used (e.g., olive oil vs. vegetable oil), you may also get a flavor contribution.

Good luck. Please let us know how the dough and pizzas turn out. That way we can maybe learn a bit more about making dough at high elevation.

Peter

Offline bec

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Re: Suggestions for New Year's Eve Pizza Making (for kids and adults)
« Reply #9 on: December 31, 2007, 11:38:16 AM »
I put the dough together last evening. I made 4 1200 gram balls and put them in zip lock bags sprayed with oil which went into the fridge. I ended up using 62% hydration (the dough was very dry at 60%) and cut the yeast back to .63%(1 1/2 tsp).  Looks like the dough has about doubled in size.  We will likely be making the pizzas about 7 pm.  About when should the dough balls come out of the fridge and should they be punched down or kneaded during the cold fermentation.  Thanks, Bruce


Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Suggestions for New Year's Eve Pizza Making (for kids and adults)
« Reply #10 on: December 31, 2007, 12:12:27 PM »
Bruce,

I don't usually get much volume expansion in my cold fermented dough balls and while it may not harm them if punched down far in advance of using them (so the gluten structure has enough time to recover), I would try to avoid punching them down if possible. I would also avoid reshaping or re-balling the dough balls since that might make them overly elastic and difficult to open up. Depending on the temperature of the room where you will be making the pizzas, I would let the dough balls warm up for about a couple of hours in advance of their use. If the room is on the cool side, it may take longer, and vice versa. You want the dough balls to be soft to the touch and somewhat pillowy. You will usually find that the last dough balls in the batch most closely exhibit these characteristics because they have sat around the longest. When ready to use a warmed-up dough ball, my practice is to gently flatten the dough ball with my fingers, starting from the center, and after pressing the dough outwardly several inches using my fingers and palms, use my fists to finish opening up the dough to its final size. I like a decent sized rim, so I try to avoid pressing the dough at the edges as I am shaping and stretching it. For the style of pizza we are talking about, I do not use a rolling pin.

Peter

Offline bec

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Re: Suggestions for New Year's Eve Pizza Making (for kids and adults)
« Reply #11 on: December 31, 2007, 12:40:32 PM »
Thanks Pete, one more question.  At what point should I divide the dough for the individual pizzas?  It sounds like you divide yours before you start the fermentation.  Bruce

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Suggestions for New Year's Eve Pizza Making (for kids and adults)
« Reply #12 on: December 31, 2007, 01:11:01 PM »
Bruce,

I always divide and weigh the dough balls up front for a cold fermented dough so that the dough balls are about the same size (weight) and shape (round). Doing it later and you are likely to get out-of-round shapes and weights that may vary from one dough ball to the next. And if you try to re-ball them at that point to get them rounder, if you are not careful the risk of getting elastic dough balls increases. If you haven't done the division thus far, you may want to take the larger dough balls and divide them as carefully as you can (there will be some inevitable deflation), try to round the edges as best you can without re-balling the dough pieces, oil the surfaces, and put them back into the refrigerator or other cooler for several hours if possible. When you take them out later and let them warm up a bit, I think that you should be able to gently re-round them to get a better shape.

You might also be able to do the division and reshaping after the bulk dough has warmed up (if you elect that option), but it can take longer for the bulk dough to warm up as compared with several smaller dough balls. If you divide at that point, you are likely to again end up with irregular shaped dough pieces and different weights. That may make getting perfectly round skins, or something reasonably close, more difficult. You may end up with a more "rustic" appearance, which isn't necessarily bad.

I wish I could tell you which method is better, but I have never used either method before with a cold fermented dough. However, if you have a lot of time to spare, or unless someone else jumps in with better advice based on personal experience, I think I would try the first method mentioned above.

Peter
« Last Edit: December 31, 2007, 01:13:35 PM by Pete-zza »

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Suggestions for New Year's Eve Pizza Making (for kids and adults)
« Reply #13 on: December 31, 2007, 01:46:39 PM »
Bruce,

After posting my last reply, I thought I had read something at the PMQ Think Tank on the subject of when to divide the bulk dough. So, I did a search and found the following thread: http://thinktank.pmq.com/viewtopic.php?p=14180#14180. The thread doesn't provide a solution to your problem but it does discuss the merits of dividing and weighing up front for a cold fermented dough.

Peter

Offline bec

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Re: Suggestions for New Year's Eve Pizza Making (for kids and adults)
« Reply #14 on: January 01, 2008, 11:27:25 PM »
Thanks everyone for the suggestions and feedback.  I made 4 batches of the following recipe.

Flour (100%):    701.96 g  |  24.76 oz | 1.55 lbs
Water (62%):    435.21 g  |  15.35 oz | 0.96 lbs
IDY (.65%):    4.56 g | 0.16 oz | 0.01 lbs | 1.51 tsp | 0.5 tbsp
Salt (2.1%):    14.74 g | 0.52 oz | 0.03 lbs | 3.07 tsp | 1.02 tbsp
Oil (5%):    35.1 g | 1.24 oz | 0.08 lbs | 7.8 tsp | 2.6 tbsp
Sugar (1.2%):    8.42 g | 0.3 oz | 0.02 lbs | 2.11 tsp | 0.7 tbsp
Total (170.95%):   1200 g | 42.33 oz | 2.65 lbs | TF = N/A

I divided the dough the following day.  Unfortunately I put it back in the zip locks and the dough balls had merged together when I got them out.  The dough was fairly wet and a bit difficult to work (probably should have stuck with the original hydration).  I ended up shaping the crusts and letting people dress them the way they wanted.  I put the screens with the finished pizzas on a stone with the oven at 500 degrees (averaged about 12 minutes).  The crusts opened up nicely and browned pretty well.  Kids really enjoying making their own pizzas and the adults thought the pizza was  fantastic.  We went through three of the batches of dough and still have one in the fridge.  Looks like this may be an annual event. 

Thanks again, Bruce

Offline Bryan S

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Re: Suggestions for New Year's Eve Pizza Making (for kids and adults)
« Reply #15 on: January 02, 2008, 12:05:46 AM »
Bruce, Glad it turned out well for you. I like to use the disposable round Glad containers for my dough. I just wash and reuse. They stack up nice and keeps the dough balls separate. 
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Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Suggestions for New Year's Eve Pizza Making (for kids and adults)
« Reply #16 on: January 02, 2008, 08:33:48 AM »
Bruce,

It sounds like you did the division of the bulk dough some time before using the divided dough balls. Did you have any problems doing the division and getting the dough balls fairly round (even though they merged later)?

It's always a problem in a home environment storing lots of dough balls, either because of not having the best storage containers or storage trays, or because of insufficient refrigerator space. Storage bags work pretty well in that environment because they are not space hogs but the dough balls can stick to the bags if they are too wet, plus there is trapped moisture, making it difficult to extract them from the storage bags. I like trays the best for large numbers of dough balls (I cover them with plastic wrap) but even then it is sometimes a struggle to find space for them in the refrigerator. Having a spare working refrigerator like Bryan has is a big help.

How did you personally like the dough and the pizzas made from the dough? The good news is that you have plenty of time to perfect the dough formulation and your technique and to try new recipes before your next bash. FYI, when I last had an exchange with Tim Wurtz (over a year ago), he said that his pizza business was going gangbusters using the dough recipe (the one you modified) and that his pizzas were getting rave reviews from his cutomers. I hope that is still the case.

Peter

Offline bec

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Re: Suggestions for New Year's Eve Pizza Making (for kids and adults)
« Reply #17 on: January 02, 2008, 12:29:41 PM »
Pete,
I thought the pizzas were very good, nice texture and taste.  As you noted, storage space was a problem (they were setting up for a big party on New Year's Day).  The dough was a bit difficult to work with which may have been due to my poor dough management.  What is your standard dough weight and what size container do you use?  Thanks again, Bruce

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Suggestions for New Year's Eve Pizza Making (for kids and adults)
« Reply #18 on: January 02, 2008, 02:23:35 PM »
What is your standard dough weight and what size container do you use?


Bruce,

I don’t have a fixed dough ball weight for a particular size pizza. It will vary depending on the style of pizza. However, the dough recipe that Tim Wurtz started with, and which later became the recipe you used, was based on a famous dough recipe of Big Dave Ostrander, a former independent pizza operator who is now a consultant to the pizza industry. Over time, I established that Dave Ostrander had several versions of the recipe (all called “Old Faithful”) but the recommended dough weights and corresponding pizza sizes were the same for all the versions. For example, for a 10” pizza, 9 ounces of dough would be used; for a 12” pizza, 12 ounces of dough would be used; for a 14” pizza, 18 ounces of dough would be used; and for a 16” pizza, 22 ounces of dough would be used. From that information, I calculated that the thickness factor for the pizzas was around 0.11, which corresponds to a “medium” thickness pizza. Tim made a crust than I believe was even thicker, using a thickness factor of about 0.13. So, for example, if he wanted to make a 16” pizza, he would use around 26 ounces of dough (3.14159 x 8 x 8 x 0.13 = 26).

In case you are interested, there is a lot of information on the Old Faithful dough recipe (all of the versions I am aware of) at this thread: http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,660.0.html. You might specifically want to take a look at a later version of the Old Faithful dough recipe (which I dubbed “New Faithful”), at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,660.msg26116.html#msg26116 (Reply 33). The New Faithful dough recipe was used to prepare pizza dough for instructing attendees at a NAPICS event on how to make pizza. I think the ingredients used and their quantities were selected to make a virtually indestructible dough that could be worked with by just about anyone at the event--amateurs and professionals alike. As it so happens, the dough is quite good. It is also easier to work with than the earlier Ostrander doughs because of the higher hydration of the NAPICS dough.

As far as dough storage containers is concerned, I have used many kinds. For cold fermented doughs that are to last for several days (more than a week), I typically use a lidded metal container (old cookie tin) because it helps cool the dough down faster, which is am important aspect of making long-lived doughs.

When I have had to make several cold fermented dough balls in the past where refrigerator space was limited, I used plastic zip-type storage bags. I would press the dough balls down into the shape of flat disks, brush them with oil, and place them into the storage bags, which could then be stacked in the refrigerator. Since I was using little yeast, I was not expecting significant volume expansion of the dough disks. Where refrigerator space is at a premium, I have on occasion also used an empty bread bag into which I would place an oiled dough ball, twist the open end shut so that there is little space between the inside of the bread bag and the dough ball, and fold the twisted end under. I could then tuck it into any number of small empty spaces in the refrigerator. This is a low-budget solution.

I have also used glass containers (e.g. lidded Pyrex glass bowls) and plastic containers (e.g, Rubbermaid, Glad, etc.), both for normal cold fermented doughs and room-temperature fermented doughs. I will sometimes use a lightweight, transparent, thin-walled snap-fit plastic carry-out container, such as shown in the first photo at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5173.msg48113/topicseen.html#msg48113 (Reply 17), when I want to either cool down or heat up dough quickly. In most cases, I want the storage container to be round so that the dough ball is also round when it comes out of the container and doesn’t have to be reshaped. In all cases, I try to match the size of the container to the anticipated final size of the dough that will go into the container. A rising dough might pop the lid because of all the gases, but I don't want it to pop the lid because the container was too small. I usually have a pretty good idea of what the dough is going to do and select the right size container for the circumstances.

Peter


 

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