Author Topic: Tracking my batches  (Read 936 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline villosil

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 13
  • Age: 32
  • Location: Valencia
  • Pi*z*z*a
Tracking my batches
« on: December 12, 2008, 01:22:55 PM »
Hello everybody,

I've been making doughs and pizzas for 3/4 months now. I have achieved better results lately with my doughs. My pizzas look now better than my first one, and they taste quite well. But I still want to improve my results. My problem is that after using so many formulations, procedures, flours, etc now I feel a little bit lost when I think what has helped to improve my dough. I would like to track every batch I do, to later check how was it, and compare it with other batches.

I saw once a post in this forum where one guy made some batches and he used a table to write the results and compare the different batches. I don't remember the post but I think that would be a good method for me so I have made some tables to help writing down my results.

http://docs.google.com/View?docid=dg6gkh2n_6gh6xs6jx

I put a first batch as an example.

The document shows a first table where general variables and results of the batch are indicated. I like to make doughs but I don't want to cook every dough I do, so I made the table thinking that I could not cook that dough so I have to rate the dough before going to the oven.

The second tables are for Formulations and Procedures. I separated these tables to simplify the first one.

Also I added a list of pictures to take everytime. Visual feeling would help to compare later on batches.

Have any of you made something similar to track your experiments?

Well, that's just my first version. I'm just a beginner so any suggestion would be great to improve the method for tracking batches. :)
« Last Edit: December 12, 2008, 01:24:26 PM by villosil »


Offline Bill/SFNM

  • Lifetime Member
  • *
  • Posts: 4040
  • Location: Santa Fe, NM
Re: Tracking my batches
« Reply #1 on: December 12, 2008, 01:53:30 PM »

Have any of you made something similar to track your experiments?



I've been using Notebook, a software product for the Mac that I describe in this post:

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,7341.msg63422.html#msg63422

Anything is better than nothing - scraps of paper, spreadsheets, etc. Keeping a history has been particularly important for me. Sometimes, an "improvement" has been an illusion and I needed to backtrack to an older version. It often takes me a 5 or 6 tries with a mod before I really its effect becomes visible. Probably I'm just slow and my memory is getting weaker in my dotage and that's why I depend on good notes.

Bill/SFNM



Online Pete-zza

  • Lifetime Member
  • Global Moderator
  • *
  • Posts: 21869
  • Location: Texas
  • Always learning
Re: Tracking my batches
« Reply #2 on: December 12, 2008, 02:29:19 PM »
villosil,

I fully understand your dilemma.

What I use to do much the same thing as you are proposing is a printout of the data sheets for my different dough formulations using one of the dough calculating tools, such as the one at http://www.pizzamaking.com/expanded_calculator.html. I put basic, standard information on each such sheet, usually near the dough formulation itself, including water temperature/type, type/brand of flour used, room temperature, finished dough weight and finished dough temperature. The printout has space on the right hand side for me to put a title and to write notes on the steps I take to make the dough and pizza from beginning to end. I am very meticulous is doing this and include as much information as possible, including sequences of ingredients, mixer speeds, times, dates, method of fermentation, temperatures, and so on. To be as accurate as possible, I usually write things as I am doing them or shortly after each task has been performed. I also make notes on the condition of the dough/pizza at various stages so that I don't have to rely on memory later on if I end up posting my results on the forum.

At the bottom of the printout, there is space for me to put information on the photos I take that I might end up posting on the forum. If I run out of space on the front side of the data sheet, I use the back side. If I decide to post my results on the forum, I use the printout to prepare the text of my posts. Because of the completeness of the data sheet, I save a lot of time in composing my posts and not having to reconstruct things from memory. When I am all done with the exercise, I put the data sheet in a three-ring binder, in chronological order. For some dough formulations where I have made several versions, as I have done with the Papa John's clone doughs, for example, I use a separate three-ring binder.

My method isn't as elegant and as professional looking as yours, but I have found that it works well for me.

Peter


 

pizzapan