Author Topic: first lehman NY style attempt  (Read 2379 times)

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Offline jfrancesconi

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first lehman NY style attempt
« on: November 11, 2007, 06:24:09 PM »
Hi...

So last night I made my first attempts at a lehman NY style pizza.  I followed this modification of Pete-zza's lehman style using KA Bread flour.  All in all, I was NOT satisfied.  The taste (grande cheese, 6in1 tomatoes, etc etc) was fantastic, the dough TASTED great... BUT..

100%, Bread flour, 7.15 oz. (202.03 g.), (about 1 1/2 c. plus 2 T. plus 1 t.)
63%, Water (at around 100 degrees F), 4.50 oz. (127.65 g.), (a bit over 1/2 c.)
1%, Oil, 0.07 oz. (2.03 g.), (a bit less than 1/2 t.)
1.75%, Salt (table salt), 0.13 oz. (3.55 g.), (a bit over 5/8 t.)
0.40%, IDY (instant dry yeast), 0.03 oz. (0.81 g.), (a bit over 1/5 t.)
Total dough weight = 11.88 oz. (336.66 g.)
Thickness factor (TF) = 0.105

I had major issues forming the pie's.  The recipe was to produce (2) 12" pies (I just doubled it).... when all was said in done... i had (2) 8" or so pies, not quite round either.  The obvious problem I noticed was that the rim was HUGE... which was delicious, but obviously not right.  To me, this means there was a lot of dough left that should have produced a larger pie.  Now.. maybe it was my technique (probably), but it seemed that i could never get the pie to actually stay "large"... i could get it stretched out some, and then it would either tear or just go back to a tiny little pie.  I finally just gave up, got it as big as i could without holes, and went. 

Here's a few things that stand out in my mind that may produce answers:
-I didn't add ALL the flour... it seemed to me that before the last bit (i'd say 1/4 cup) of flour went in, the dough was already pretty solid. 
-I kneaded for probably 5-7 mins total by hand - no mixer available.  It was KIND OF shiny, but not perfectly smooth like some of the pictures i've seen here, but not really ROUGH either.  I formed them into discs and the discs easily doubled in size and kind of formed little bubble areas (the kind of bubbles that look more like tiny holes). 

So i guess my question is... do I just need to work on my technique or what?  I ripped the dough in the middle a couple times once it got to a decent size.  I started out by "pushing out" the dough on the board, then let it drape from my fingers moving it around in a circle, then tried to stretch with fists.  It just wouldn't STAY stretched!

Thanks for any advice!

Justin
(I can post a pic later of a finished pie, if it helps)


Offline grovemonkey

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Re: first lehman NY style attempt
« Reply #1 on: November 11, 2007, 07:40:45 PM »
If my dough gets tight and feels like it could tear.. I sometimes put it down and let it rest for 10 minutes then continue forming the dough.  Yesterday I made a 2 hour rise quick pie.  Those pies that are made fairly quickly sometimes take a bit of work to form out the dough because it is like a rubber band that wants to snap back into place.  I personally think the key is to be gentle but firm.  If you look around there are a few links and videos on people working the dough so you can see a few different techniques that are used to make the dough into a circle.    Some people use a rolling pin to roll it out and after the form is good, they let it rest for a bit then add toppings and bake. 


Offline Pete-zza

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Re: first lehman NY style attempt
« Reply #2 on: November 11, 2007, 08:04:45 PM »
Justin,

A couple of possibilities come to mind based on what you reported.

First, it is possible that you underkneaded the dough. With the doubling of the amount of dough, a total of 5-7 minutes of hand kneading may not have been enough. If a dough is underkneaded, the gluten structure is underdeveloped and the final dough will sometimes not handle well as a result. You didn't indicate how long you allowed the dough to ferment (I assume it was cold fermented) but if it was no longer than a day, it's possible that there was insufficient biochemical gluten development to overcome the initial underkneading (if that is what it was in your case). Did you follow any specific instructions on the forum directed to hand kneading of your dough?

A second possibility is that you re-worked or re-kneaded or re-rolled the dough at the time you used it to prepare the dough skin. If you did that, the gluten structure becomes disoriented and misaligned and the dough will become very elastic and difficult to shape and stretch without tears forming. The term that is sometimes used for this type of dough condition is "bucky". There is also a tendency for the dough in these cases to be heavy around the rim and much thinner in the middle, and trying to rebalance the thickness often results in holes or tears forming. One way to recover from this problem is to let the dough rest for a few hours until the gluten structure recovers again. The final results may still not be as good as a dough that was not re-kneaded but that is the best you can expect under the circumstances.

Peter

Offline jfrancesconi

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Re: first lehman NY style attempt
« Reply #3 on: November 11, 2007, 11:25:47 PM »
Hi Peter,

Thanks for the reply!

I let the dough ferment for about 24 hours (23.5 to be specific).  I doubt I kneaded for anymore than 5 minutes.  Thats good to know... so next time I will knead a lot longer.  I am actually planning on making a bit more dough as well, so I know it's hard to say a specific time because it really depends on how the dough looks and feels, but any guesses? 

When I took the dough out (after letting it come to room temp for about 2 hours), I took the discs that had basically doubled in size, BRIEFLY kneaded in my hands and formed into a ball again.  I then attempted to form.  Should I not be messing with the dough at all once it comes out? 

The rim WAS huge, however, I attribute this to my poor forming skills.  Everytime I tried to push more of the dough into the center, it seemed to tear or get irritated in some way.

Thanks again for any advice!

Here is a picture of the nightmare.

Justin

Offline grovemonkey

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Re: first lehman NY style attempt
« Reply #4 on: November 12, 2007, 08:28:28 AM »
I don't re-knead the dough after I take it out of the refrig.  I just shape, dress and bake.. If you re-knead a 23.5 hour cold rise dough it seems excessive, but your results looks good even if you think otherwise.

That pie looks good to me, depending on what you are trying to achieve.  Looks like a real nice mini-pizza. 

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: first lehman NY style attempt
« Reply #5 on: November 12, 2007, 09:15:16 AM »
Jason,

It is a no-no to re-knead the dough before working with it to form a skin. But it is one of the most common mistakes that a newbie makes and, fortunately, it is easily corrected by simply not re-shaping or re-kneading the dough after it has warmed up on the counter and is nice and soft. The way that I work with a dough ball to make a skin out of it is described starting at
http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,2223.msg19772.html#msg19772 (Reply 13). You will also find many other tips at the same thread, in posts before and after the abovementioned post, that reflect my personal experiences with making basic pizza doughs such as the Lehmann dough. If you can digest and execute what is described in that thread, I think you will be well on your way to making a very good NY style pizza.

As far as knead time is concerned, that will depend to a certain degree on individual knead technique, but for a dough batch weighing about a pound and a half, I would think that about 8-9 minutes of hand kneading should be sufficient. In light of the way you described your handling of the dough when you started to work with it to form a skin, I would rather that you err on the low side on the knead time and that the dough be somewhat underkneaded. You can always make adjustments in later efforts and as you gain more experience. I think that you will also find it helpful to let the dough rest for about 5-10 minutes during the course of kneading. This will soften the gluten structure and make it easier to knead the dough and possibly reduce the total knead time to get the dough in proper condition. This rest period is especially useful when you are hand kneading a dough using high-gluten flour that is one of the hardest doughs to knead by hand (even King Arthur says not to hand knead such doughs). With experience you will know by feel when the dough is ready. But, as with any new experience, it takes practice to get things just right. You also have to get a lot of practice shaping and stretching doughs to form them into skins.

If you continue to experience difficulties, please take good notes and report back to us.

Peter


Offline vitus

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Re: first lehman NY style attempt
« Reply #6 on: November 12, 2007, 05:42:39 PM »
the rim was HUGE... which was delicious, but obviously not right
I always say: If it is delicious, It's right:D

But I know what you mean.  ;)
I have had similar problems. In my case the solution was to use another brand of flour. There are tremendous differences between different brands, and if the flour is bad, you're off to a bad start.
As far as I understood, you were using King Arthur flour? If that is the case, then you are probably fine; a lot of the forum members prefer that brand.
However if you were using another brand of bread flour - or if the flour is too old - I would try changing the flour.

Offline ny_piza

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Re: first lehman NY style attempt
« Reply #7 on: January 12, 2008, 02:44:22 PM »
I am new here so I could be way off base but I think your conversions are wrong. 63% of 1.5 cups is .945 cups. You used 1.5 c + 2 T + 1 tsp or 79 tsps. This means you should use 49.77 tsps water or 1.03 cups. It seems that your dough was not wet enough which would explain the results.

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: first lehman NY style attempt
« Reply #8 on: January 12, 2008, 03:14:28 PM »
ny_pizza,

The 63% figure is a bakerís percent that is measured with respect to the weight of flour, not its volume. Member jfrancesconi was using an old dough formulation that I came up with in which I tried to convert the weight of flour (7.14 oz.) to volume measurements as a convenience to those members who, at the time, did not have scales. I did the weight-to-volume conversion by stirring the flour, lifting it into my measuring cups and spoons to just overflowing, and then leveling off the tops of the measuring cups and spoons. Subsequently, another member, November, devised a tool for doing this, but more accurately since it was based on literally hundreds of weighings of flour using different sizes of measuring cups and spoons. That tool is on the left hand side of the page at http://foodsim.unclesalmon.com/.

Assuming that the bread flour in the dough formulation is King Arthur bread flour, the tool says that 7.14 oz. of that flour is 1 Ĺ cups, plus 2 T., plus 0.035 t. So, my number was off by about one teaspoon (too high). Using the same tool, the 4.50 oz. of water would be Ĺ c. plus 1.883 t. I was using the eyeball method at eye level to measure out the water, not the more technically correct conversion data that November used in his tool. In my own experience, a cup of water in my Pyrex one-cup glass measuring cup tends to weigh less than the technically more correct number. It is closer to 8.1-8.2 oz.

Because of discrepancies like described above when dealing with volume measurements, I no longer convert weight measurements to volume measurements. Rather, I try to have serious pizza makers invest in a good scale. For those who choose not to use scales, I suggest that they use Novemberís tool. I use the same tool when I try to convert recipes recited in volume measurements to weight measurements. Itís still imperfect but only because there are so many ways of measuring out ingredients by volume. Weight doesnít vary.

Peter
« Last Edit: March 14, 2013, 06:27:06 PM by Pete-zza »

Offline ny_piza

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Re: first lehman NY style attempt
« Reply #9 on: January 12, 2008, 03:19:27 PM »
Pete-zza,

Thanks! I am here to learn and I have already learned a lot today. I am going to have to find a good scale. Any recommendations?


Offline Pete-zza

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Re: first lehman NY style attempt
« Reply #10 on: January 12, 2008, 03:48:56 PM »
I am going to have to find a good scale. Any recommendations?


nc_pza,

That's a question that comes up quite a bit, especially from new members. Since peoples' needs and pocketbooks can vary quite widely, I try whenever possible to lead people to enough information to allow them to make their own decisions. On the matter of digital scales, you may want to take a look at this post and the links embedded therein: http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5626.msg47736/topicseen.html#msg47736. Remember that a quality scale will last you for several years and have uses beyond weighing dough ingredients (such as a postal scale, for example). So, paying a few bucks more for a good scale will mean almost nothing over the life of the scale.

Peter

Offline Jackitup

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Re: first lehman NY style attempt
« Reply #11 on: January 12, 2008, 04:07:59 PM »
I have 2 Ohaus scales. The cs-2000 that has a 2000 gram capacity in 1 gram increments and the Ohaus Scout Pro with a 400 gram capacity that weighs in .1 gram increments. Love them both. Search the net and see who has them the cheapest. Here are the two I have pictured on Amazon in items 1 and 2. http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_ss_k/105-1867487-1376410?url=search-alias%3Dgarden&field-keywords=ohaus+scales&tag=pizzamaking-20
Jon
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