Author Topic: Generic Chicago Thin Crust  (Read 77888 times)

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Offline loowaters

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Re: Generic Chicago Thin Crust
« Reply #225 on: December 13, 2010, 11:46:26 AM »
This pizza turned out very crisp all the way across the diameter of the pie. The actually crunch life of a cracker type crust is pretty short but this sustained it's crunch until it was gone.  Very nice flavor but something this thin is a wonderful vehicle to let the toppings be the star.

I used the bottom of my biggest dd pan instead of using the perforated disk because I didn't want semolina falling thru.  I'm not going to prep and cook this on the disk, it just didn't come out real well when I tried that a few weeks back.  I'll continue to use the peel and semolina and transfer to the preheated surface as I've had no problems doing so.

Loo
Using pizza to expand my waistline since 1969!


Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Generic Chicago Thin Crust
« Reply #226 on: December 13, 2010, 11:48:42 AM »
Loo or BTB,

Do we know for sure that Vito & Nick's use metal baking surfaces in their deck ovens, as I believe someone postulated earlier?

Peter

Offline BTB

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Re: Generic Chicago Thin Crust
« Reply #227 on: December 13, 2010, 11:56:01 AM »
I don't know for absolute certain, but I do know they use a very old deck oven.  And I don't remember if it was a revolving one or not.  Some of those old non-revolving ones did have stones in them on top of the steel deck.  I'll look to see if I can find any photos of their ovens.  But my guess at this point is that they used a steel deck as most of the old ovens of that type that I've witnessed were that way.

Offline loowaters

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Re: Generic Chicago Thin Crust
« Reply #228 on: December 13, 2010, 09:36:08 PM »
I noticed on this and other recipes, you're not big on the use of just a little amount of sugar.  What's your thinking on that?

Sorry I didn't address this earlier, BTB.  With this recipe, browning is not a problem so I won't use it unless I try to turn it around faster than the 24 hr. rise, counter or fridge.  In other recipes, I'll use sugar when called for, like, Peter's Papa John's clone or my take on foodblogger's Gino's clone, they both require sugar.  We know that Malnati's doesn't use any and we're assuming that Vito & Nick's doesn't either. 

When I was a kid, I had Lego's and almost always built what was on the box only occasionally freewheeling a design.  With pizza, it's kind of the same way for me.  I'll take what they (whomever "they" may be) use, or what we know or believe what they use, and make the best replication of that type of pie.  Adding something extra to make it "seem" closer to the target or the original doesn't make sense to me.  That may help explain my absolute disdain for using cornmeal in a deep dish dough and also using semolina, which I didn't hate, just thought it was a costly added ingredient without increased benefits, in deep dish crusts.  Obviously, I have no issue with semolina on the peel. :)

Loo
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Offline BTB

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Re: Generic Chicago Thin Crust
« Reply #229 on: December 14, 2010, 10:25:13 AM »
It's funny how some can get the desired baked crust coloring and others can't.  I know you prefer a light colored crust (and your pizzas look absolutely beautiful), but I and some others like a little more browned crust and for those of us like that, a little bit of sugar (or whey or NFDM) might help in achieving that.  I'm sure you'd agree and there's no need to go further on that comment.

I am not big on "what was in the alleged original formula" as I am a Doubting Thomas on the creditability of most of those ingredient interpretations (I truly believe Malnati's uses "some" sugar except for the promotional photos because it looks "prettier") and am absolutely certain gov't requirements on ingredient requirements are total BS.  It seemed Norma and even Peter had "reduced crust coloration" with this or similar formulation and wondered about the use of some sugar to help in the coloration for home oven use.  But your unique technique (upside down deep dish pans) worked out well, and one cannot doubt that. But did you have to repeat that 3 times within a short period of time?

Speaking of our youth, when I was a kid back in the golden age of America, I had the Lincoln Logs, Metal Erector Sets, and the Building Blocks (forerunners the modern day Lego's) instead.  To me, they meant nothing about cornmeal or semolina . . . (lol and just joking). Just continue your great work on this website and ignore my poor attempt at sarcasism. 
                                                                                                     --BTB              :o

Offline dms

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Re: Generic Chicago Thin Crust
« Reply #230 on: December 14, 2010, 11:03:36 AM »
It's funny how some can get the desired baked crust coloring and others can't.  I know you prefer a light colored crust (and your pizzas look absolutely beautiful), but I and some others like a little more browned crust and for those of us like that, a little bit of sugar (or whey or NFDM) might help in achieving that.  I'm sure you'd agree and there's no need to go further on that comment.

I am not big on "what was in the alleged original formula" as I am a Doubting Thomas on the creditability of most of those ingredient interpretations (I truly believe Malnati's uses "some" sugar except for the promotional photos because it looks "prettier") and am absolutely certain gov't requirements on ingredient requirements are total BS.  It seemed Norma and even Peter had "reduced crust coloration" with this or similar formulation and wondered about the use of some sugar to help in the coloration for home oven use.  But your unique technique (upside down deep dish pans) worked out well, and one cannot doubt that. But did you have to repeat that 3 times within a short period of time?

Speaking of our youth, when I was a kid back in the golden age of America, I had the Lincoln Logs, Metal Erector Sets, and the Building Blocks (forerunners the modern day Lego's) instead.  To me, they meant nothing about cornmeal or semolina . . . (lol and just joking). Just continue your great work on this website and ignore my poor attempt at sarcasism. 
                                                                                                     --BTB              :o

My lou-inspired crust browns as well as the ones I've had from them, it contains no sugar, whey, malt, coloring.  flour, water, oil, yeast. 

I did one of these (using peter's first recipe.).  It browned acceptably.

There's no need to put sugar in something to get it to brown.  Long fermentation give amylase plenty of time to make sugars that brown.   

Offline CDNpielover

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Re: Generic Chicago Thin Crust
« Reply #231 on: April 01, 2011, 10:20:25 PM »
I finally got around to trying out the VN recipe.  WHAT A FANTASTIC SUCCESS!  I think this is the best pizza i've ever made.  i had been using Loo's generic thin recipe for some time, and while that was good, this is going to be my new chicago thin recipe.  i'll post up more info and some pics when i finish eating LOL!   :chef: :pizza: :pizza: :pizza:

Offline CDNpielover

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Re: Generic Chicago Thin Crust
« Reply #232 on: April 01, 2011, 10:51:33 PM »
OK, so as I mentioned above, I just made an EXCELLENT pie using the Vito and Nick's dough.  I grew up eating chicago-style thin crust pizza in the Midwest, but have since moved to western canada and thus really crave for this style of pizza.  I had been using Loo's generic thin crust recipe, and while that was good, this V&N recipe blows it out of the water (no offense Loo, hahah!).

Anyhow, I started with the 14" formulation Pete gives in Reply #120 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,6368.msg117150.html#msg117150.  I didn't read the whole thread, but I did watch the DDD video several times and so I didn't see that the recipe had been reformulated later.  anyhow, i used a bread machine to knead the dough until it "looked" like a dough - like they said in the video.  I let the dough ferment for about 24 hours on top of the refrigerator, and punched it down about 5 or 6 times.  Then, I noticed that Pete had reformulated the dough in Reply #285 http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,6368.msg117734.html#msg117734.  Pete increased the salt a bit, but the real difference was in the thickness factor, and so I just weighed my dough ball (it was about 339 g) and pinched off pieces until it was equal to the total weight given in Pete's reformulation (231.3 g).  I rolled this out using lots of bench flour to a diameter of 14" (I did not dock the dough).  I actually rolled on parchment paper and hoped to transfer that to a cutter pan, but it didn't quite work out so I ended just folding the dough and then restretching it on the pan.  I baked this for about 12 minutes in the cutter pan on a stone on the bottom rack of a 550 F oven.

The results were FANTASTIC - this is my new go-to thin crust recipe!  Thanks everyone for all of your work in helping to develop this BRILLIANT recipe!   :chef: :chef: :chef:

sorry for the picture links, but I have a terrible time dealing with photo uploads on this forum

http://img845.imageshack.us/img845/4299/s001u.jpg
http://img696.imageshack.us/img696/1243/s002xv.jpg
http://img191.imageshack.us/img191/9526/s003s.jpg
http://img534.imageshack.us/img534/1344/s004b.jpg
http://img714.imageshack.us/img714/19/s005g.jpg
http://img862.imageshack.us/img862/9655/s006p.jpg
http://img34.imageshack.us/img34/7614/s007g.jpg
http://img88.imageshack.us/img88/7092/s008vf.jpg

 
« Last Edit: April 01, 2011, 10:53:52 PM by CDNpielover »

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Generic Chicago Thin Crust
« Reply #233 on: April 01, 2011, 11:11:03 PM »
CDNpielover,

It looks like you aced it. Thanks for the feedback on the recipe, especially from someone who has had the Chicago thin style before. Did you ever have a V&N pizza when you were in the U.S.? And how did your V&N clone measure up against the thin Chicago style pizzas that you recall fom your U.S. days?

Out of curiosity, what kind and brand of flour did you use?

Peter


Offline CDNpielover

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Re: Generic Chicago Thin Crust
« Reply #234 on: April 01, 2011, 11:23:37 PM »
Hi Pete,

thanks for your comments on the pie.  i've never has a real V&N pizza before, but I have had chicago-style thin pies from dozens and dozens of different shops in minneapolis/st. paul, and this dough is IMO just as good as any of the best i've ever had.  Seriously, this is an excellent dough recipe.  I used November's #2 red sauce on this pie, and that worked very well.  In terms of taste, texture, and overall "quality," i honestly beleive that this pie is on par with something out of a real pizza shop.  The only thing I need to improve is the cheese... I can't find any of the "famous" brands that are recommended on these forums, so i'm just using a store brand "pizza mozzarella."  however, it just doesn't have that gooey, stringy texture that you get at pizza shops.  do you have any suggestions on how I can locate a good pizza cheese?

oh, and I used bread flour - i'm pretty sure it is King Arthur but i'm not 100% certain since I keep it in a big glass jar and threw out the package long ago.

Offline norma427

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Re: Generic Chicago Thin Crust
« Reply #235 on: April 02, 2011, 12:05:40 AM »
CDNpielover,

Your V&N clone sounds and looks great!   :)

Norma

Offline BTB

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Re: Generic Chicago Thin Crust
« Reply #236 on: April 02, 2011, 07:41:55 AM »
Good looking pizza.  I love especially that dark caramelized edge on the crust's rim.  Did you do anything special to get it that way?

                                                                                      --BTB

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Generic Chicago Thin Crust
« Reply #237 on: April 02, 2011, 08:59:03 AM »
do you have any suggestions on how I can locate a good pizza cheese?

CDNpielover,

I am not a good one to ask about pizza cheeses. Where I live outside of Dallas, I can't find the best brands of mozzarella cheeses. I have to go into Dallas to a particular food store (an Italian specialty food store) and even they don't always have the cheeses (mostly Polly-O and some Grande) in stock. As a result, I use whatever I can find at my local supermarket. Maybe one of our Canadian members can recommend a good mozzarella cheese sold in Canada that might be an improvement over what you are now using.

As a side note, I was intrigued by your use of the cutter pan to bake the pizza. There has been some speculation that V&Ns bakes their pizzas directly on metal surfaces rather than on stone. Maybe your use of the cutter pan on the stone simulates the V&N baking method.

You mentioned the King Arthur bread flour. Does King Arthur ship into Canada or do you have some other way of getting it?

Peter

Offline BTB

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Re: Generic Chicago Thin Crust
« Reply #238 on: April 02, 2011, 11:21:41 AM »
The dark, slightly burned (caramelized) edges is what makes this appear so appealing to me.  Just like many pizzerias that I used to visit in the midwest.  How to get that?

And I'm not certain if that's a cutter pan or a "serving tray" that it is displayed on.  V & N of course baked their pizzas on a metal surfaced deck oven, but for home oven purposes, use of a pan or good stone best gets close to the restaurant style bake.
« Last Edit: April 02, 2011, 11:26:32 AM by BTB »

Offline CDNpielover

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Re: Generic Chicago Thin Crust
« Reply #239 on: April 02, 2011, 01:04:32 PM »
The dark, slightly burned (caramelized) edges is what makes this appear so appealing to me.  Just like many pizzerias that I used to visit in the midwest.  How to get that?

And I'm not certain if that's a cutter pan or a "serving tray" that it is displayed on.  V & N of course baked their pizzas on a metal surfaced deck oven, but for home oven purposes, use of a pan or good stone best gets close to the restaurant style bake.


I actually don't know what kind of pan it is, I just called it a cutter pan since I assumed it's the same type that's used for cutting the edges off of pies, when people do that.   :-D  but i really have no idea, hahah.   here's a link to the exact pan i have, though http://www.shopworldkitchen.com/bakers-secret/air-insulated-large-pizza-crisper-115659505  I dress the pie on that, and then put the pan+pie on a stone at the bottom rack.

As for the caramelized crust - yes, i agree with you BTB - that was one of the main highlights of this pie.  I'm not completely sure, but I think the carmelization was from sauce/cheese/oils heating, drying, and caramelizing on the edge of the pie.  I think this all resulted from the use of an over sized pan, which did 3 things: 1) allowed me to apply sauce and toppings to the VERY outer edge of the pie, with almost no rim whatsoever, 2) some "spillage" of cheese and toppings to adjacent to the crust, which might have melted into the it, and 3) allowed the pie to have "flat" edges, so when the pie cooked the sauce, cheese, oils etc. could flow to the edge and burn on the pan, instead of being contained to the center as it would if the crust was the same size as the pan. As pete said, I think that the use of an oversized pan somewhat replicates the V&N method, assuming they are cooking on metal.
« Last Edit: April 02, 2011, 01:15:50 PM by CDNpielover »

Offline CDNpielover

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Re: Generic Chicago Thin Crust
« Reply #240 on: April 02, 2011, 01:09:49 PM »
also with regards to the edge, you'll see in the V&N video that when they cut the pizza edge, it results in an almost "pinched" edge, so that the camber is opposite what you find on most pies that have a rimmed edge...  i.e., things aren't contained to the center and might even have a tendency to slide off the edge during cooking.  this might play a big role in how the edges turn out.
« Last Edit: April 02, 2011, 01:11:42 PM by CDNpielover »

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Generic Chicago Thin Crust
« Reply #241 on: April 02, 2011, 03:10:19 PM »
CDNpielover,

You can see what a cutter pan looks like at http://www.pizzatools.com/Cutter_Pans/30870/subgrouping.htm (nonperforated) and http://www.pizzatools.com/Cutter_Pans_Perforated/30871/subgrouping.htm (perforated). With the cutter pan, you can also go right to the outer edge with sauce, cheese and toppings. My cutter pans are the dark, anodized (PSTK) ones.

Peter


Offline itsinthesauce

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Re: Generic Chicago Thin Crust
« Reply #242 on: April 02, 2011, 07:12:33 PM »
Hi Everyone! Well. I haven't been on the site for quite some time, because I've been launching Vito & Nicks II frozen line of pizzas. What a learning experience! We've got it nailed and you cannot tell the difference from the frozen product to the Restaurant product!

Still has the "Cracker Crust" and we use all natural ingredients. All USDA approved and sales are outstanding.

If anyone has questions, email me, if the powers at be agree. I'll do my best to answer them.

This site has and always will be a wealth of great information to all of us and I will do my brst to contribute to this habitual sickness...LOL!

Offline itsinthesauce

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Re: Generic Chicago Thin Crust
« Reply #243 on: April 02, 2011, 07:14:22 PM »
There is no milk in our dough!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Generic Chicago Thin Crust
« Reply #244 on: April 02, 2011, 08:08:21 PM »
itsinthesauce,

Is there a publicly available list of ingredients for the frozen Vito & Nick's pizzas?

Peter

Offline CDNpielover

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Re: Generic Chicago Thin Crust
« Reply #245 on: April 02, 2011, 10:06:20 PM »
You mentioned the King Arthur bread flour. Does King Arthur ship into Canada or do you have some other way of getting it?

Peter

hey pete, missed this for some reason.  i'm not *positive* that it's kind arthur, although i'm fairly certain.  i don't know if I bought it here, or when i was on a shopping trip in the states.  i'll see what they have at the store here next time i go - that might jog my memory.

Offline loowaters

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Re: Generic Chicago Thin Crust
« Reply #246 on: April 03, 2011, 12:15:09 AM »
I had been using Loo's generic thin crust recipe, and while that was good, this V&N recipe blows it out of the water (no offense Loo, hahah!).

None taken, I just hope that I've a played a small role in the development of this. ;D  It's now my go-to thin formulation, as well. 

Oh, and nice looking work on that!

Loo

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Offline BTB

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Re: Generic Chicago Thin Crust
« Reply #247 on: April 03, 2011, 10:08:52 AM »
itsinthesauce, is this the same great pizza that I reported my funny story about a couple of years ago? (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,6066.0.html) I thought then that their frozen pizzas were outstanding and always had the understanding that V & N II had the identical recipe as they were the same family that just split up over some dispute (typical in many families unfortunately).

From the many times that I've eaten at the original V & N on Pulaski, I did not think that there was milk in their recipe.  But then we saw the Diner's, Drive-ins and Dives episode and they showed use of milk.  So go figure . . . unless that was proprietary "disinformation."  Please keep us informed as many of us are great fans of V & N (either I or II).

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« Last Edit: April 03, 2011, 10:11:13 AM by BTB »

Offline mrmojo1

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Re: Generic Chicago Thin Crust
« Reply #248 on: April 08, 2011, 09:13:41 PM »
Hi BTB!!! i am noticing the orange color of the cheese on your v&n pizzas.  does it remind you of aurelios at all? color or taste? i had 3 aurelios shipped out here last xmas and after cooking they came out and had that orange color!  they were soooooooo good!!!!  i wanted xtra sauce though!!!!  thanks!

-=terry
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Re: Generic Chicago Thin Crust
« Reply #249 on: June 10, 2011, 10:47:36 PM »
Soon it will be to warm to be doing pies in the oven.  So I tried the V & N recipe, but in place of the commercial yeast I used a Ischia levain (20% of flour weight) and turns and stretches like the Tartine bread method.  Turned out pretty tasty but, as usual for me, didn't brown up as much as I would have liked on the bottom.