Author Topic: pizza crust way to hard and cruchy  (Read 2046 times)

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Offline mpiasec

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pizza crust way to hard and cruchy
« on: September 18, 2008, 07:16:39 PM »
I am new to pizza making and I would like to know what I did wrong with the dough.  I don't know what the exact formula is, as I have been experiencing with many.  I let my dough forment in the frig. for 2 days and on the counter for about 5 hrs. the dough was baked at 500 and the dough came out very hard without any pylabliliy....any response will be accepted.


Offline Pete-zza

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Re: pizza crust way to hard and cruchy
« Reply #1 on: September 18, 2008, 07:49:34 PM »
mpiasec,

It is difficult to address your problem without knowing what recipe you used but it is possible that your dough did not contain enough water, or that the crust was too thin, or you baked the pizza too long. If you rolled out the dough using a rolling pin, that could also produce a finished crust that is firm. If you tell us what type of pizza you are trying to make (e.g., NY style, cracker style, etc.) and what ingredients you used to make your dough, it may be possible to add a few more comments.

Peter

Offline anton-luigi

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Re: pizza crust way to hard and cruchy
« Reply #2 on: September 21, 2008, 03:40:08 PM »
5 hours on the counter seems like an awfully long time to let pizza dough rise doesnt it?  did it get over-risen? 

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: pizza crust way to hard and cruchy
« Reply #3 on: September 21, 2008, 05:06:21 PM »
5 hours on the counter seems like an awfully long time to let pizza dough rise doesnt it?  did it get over-risen? 


anton-luigi,

That is possible but, unfortunately, there is insufficient information to tell. Technically, a dough that has warmed up for a couple of hours after coming out of the refrigerator should last a few hours longer. See, for example, the end of Tom Lehmann's post at the PMQ Think Tank forum at http://thinktank.pmq.com/viewtopic.php?p=37686#37686. mpiasec did not mention any of the symptoms of the dough before baking but a crunchy and crispy crust does sometimes reflect a condition of overfermentation.

Peter

Offline anton-luigi

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Re: pizza crust way to hard and cruchy
« Reply #4 on: September 26, 2008, 10:13:24 AM »
I had similar issues with my last couple of pies,  I followed Dr Ed Wood's pizza crust recipe from his book "Classic Sourdoughs".  The activation process is quite involved with this recipe.  2 cups of "cold" liquid starter( I used the Camaldoli) versus sponge starter,  are incorporated with 1C flour and 1/4C water,  and proofed at 85 degrees for 6 hours,  then 1C of flour and another 1/4C of water are added after punching down(I did not physically punch it down,  but rather manipulated the bowl to knock it down,  then added the ingredients)  spoon kneading the dough til smooth,  then either proof in proofer at 85 for 4 hours,  or counter proof at room temp for 8hrs(which is what I did).  At this point add 1 3/4C of flour and 1/4C water until it is difficult to spoon knead and transfer to board with 1C of flour on it,  then knead into the dough the 1C from the board.  the directions at this point say to form into 4 individual balls and roll out into four 12-13 inch crusts  then proof for 1 1/2 hours on the counter.  I chose to refrigerate at this point as I wasnt able to assemble at that time.   The balls were refrigerated overnight,  and I used the first one that night,  and one the following night.  For sauce,  on the first pie I used a can of Dell Alpe whole peeled Italian plum tomatoes,  which were rinsed and de-seeded, and processed, simply seasoned with dried basil and dried oregano, garlic and a touch of honey,  lightly heated,  then applied cooled,  over fresh mozzarella and pepperoni.  I am baking in an electric home oven at 550 on a stone on the bottom rack,  cook time was approximately 8-10 minutes.  I did not get a lot of rise at the rim,  and in fact,  my sauce was a bit too thin,  which in combination with the pepperoni oil,  did run onto the rim in several places.   The sauce being thin,  the center crust was crispy on the bottom,  but too floppy under the toppings.  The crust was flavored well,  but the rim was VERY crunchy.  overall I was not pleased with the results in the least,  my wife thought it was the best pie I've made so far.   the 2nd pie was same basic ingredients,  but the sauce was DOP certified San Marzano's prepared in the same fashion but I did squeeze out the excess liquid from the rinsing this time,  the dough was a 2 day refrigerated ball,  countered for an hour prior to forming,  and then rested for about an hour prior to topping.  same basic results,  very crunchy rim, slightly floppy center,  but no liquid overrun of the rim from sauce or pepperoni oil. Overall crust flavor was better with the longer refrigeration,  but still very crunchy.  As far as hydration goes,  I have not figured that out,  and I followed a recipe measuring in cups,  not weights unfortunately.  I was using Gold Medal flour "better for bread".  I may have to try adding some bakers yeast to my dough as I dont seem to be getting enough rise from the starter alone.   I may be incorrect with the amounts of water,  I typed this from memory,   and I do not have the book with me so I cannot reference the recipe.
« Last Edit: September 26, 2008, 10:41:09 AM by anton-luigi »

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: pizza crust way to hard and cruchy
« Reply #5 on: September 26, 2008, 11:06:09 AM »
anton-luigi,

My standard advice, especially to newbies, is not to freelance when following a proven dough recipe, and especially one that is being practiced for the first time. The freelancing will only change the biochemistry of the dough and produce results that were not intended by the author of the recipe. Sometimes the results will be satisfying but in many cases they will not be. Trying to analyze what happened because of the changes is particularly difficult, especially when using sourdough starters that are subject to so many variables. I realize that in your case you perhaps had no alternative but to refrigerate the dough, but doing so increased the fermentation of the dough for another day or two. It is common for preferments to produce by-products of fermentation over long fermentation times that yield finished crusts that are crispy, which will often be most pronounced at the rims of the pizzas. That may be what happened in your case. Next time, you might try to practice the recipe as originally given and see if the results improve.

Peter

Offline anton-luigi

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Re: pizza crust way to hard and cruchy
« Reply #6 on: September 26, 2008, 11:23:49 AM »
Very good,  I think you are probably absolutely correct!!  Gotta love this place,  sooooo many of you guys know this stuff inside and out.  I wasnt really posting looking to get troubleshooting answers,  rather,  I wish to make mistakes and make changes,  and try and figure out why things happened and what to try next time.  I will try and follow the recipe explicitly next time and I expect that your advice will probably be spot on Pete,   Being a newbie,  this is just one of MANY issues that I need to work on.  Im sure my kneading is probably pretty crappy as well,  this particular batch of dough was completely hand kneaded,  and no temps were taken so I dont have that information either.  Like I said,  I have wayyyy too many other variables right now to even try and have someone figure out "what happened and why" 

I probably should qualify my name as well.  Anton-Luigi Miglierini was my grandfather,  my Mom's father.  He was full blooded Italian, making me only 1/4 Italian.  Butcher by trade,  not a baker.  Not that this is important to anyone.  I just dont want someone to think,  "who is this guy?  with a name like that,  he should already know how the hell to make Pizza!!!!!"  :)
« Last Edit: September 26, 2008, 11:47:41 AM by anton-luigi »

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: pizza crust way to hard and cruchy
« Reply #7 on: September 26, 2008, 12:04:05 PM »
anton-luigi,

Making pizza dough can be a very humbling experience, even for those of us who have been at it for a while. It takes patience to reach the point where you feel comfortable with your pizza making skills and results. As long as you have a willingness to learn and apply what you learn, you should be fine. It shouldn't matter whether you are a butcher, baker or candlestick maker ;D.

FYI, I discussed the effects of preferments on crispiness of crusts, especially at the rim, at Reply 1 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,7111.msg61198/topicseen.html#msg61198.

Peter
« Last Edit: September 26, 2008, 12:06:52 PM by Pete-zza »

Offline anton-luigi

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Re: pizza crust way to hard and cruchy
« Reply #8 on: September 26, 2008, 12:08:36 PM »
I should rephrase that,  MY GRANDFATHER was a butcher,  I myself am a Registered Nurse!  LOL

and yes,  extremely humbling experience!!

Offline Jackitup

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Re: pizza crust way to hard and cruchy
« Reply #9 on: September 26, 2008, 12:57:20 PM »
Hi Anton,
Nothing to do with your question, just wondering where you are a nurse at? I also work in critical care in a PICU as an RT at Children's in Mpls. Been off the last couple months due to ankle surgery and put on 10+ pounds eating too many pizzas. Back to work on 10/20, can't wait, I miss the kids.
Jon
Save A Cow, Eat A Vegan....Totally Organic And Hormone Free!!


Offline anton-luigi

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Re: pizza crust way to hard and cruchy
« Reply #10 on: September 26, 2008, 01:49:09 PM »
I currently am managing an Assisted Living program for Interim Healthcare in Duluth Mn,  but have mostly been working in geriatrics since graduating from Nursing school in 1998.

Offline Jackitup

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Re: pizza crust way to hard and cruchy
« Reply #11 on: September 26, 2008, 02:24:09 PM »
Been up to Duluth many times for our state respiratory conventions, fun times....as I remember, lots of drinkin. I worked adult/geriatric critcal care for about 8 years and now at Children's for the last 10+ years and like the kids alot. Tough little guys that's for sure. And to your question, Peter is, as are many others here, full of great info. I've had crusts like you describe and it was alot due to over fermenting like peter said and doesn't get a good oven bounce/spring when it hits the heat. Still fun playing in the kitchen and figuring it all out.
Jon
Save A Cow, Eat A Vegan....Totally Organic And Hormone Free!!