Author Topic: CRISPY BOTTOM  (Read 5030 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline ERASMO

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 278
  • Location: Springfield, PA
    • Wood Fired Ovens PA
CRISPY BOTTOM
« on: February 13, 2009, 11:26:28 AM »
Hello

I have been using some of the New York style High Gluten flour with EVOO recipes listed on the site and was trying to find a recipe or technique that would give me a crispy bottom. I cook my new york style pizza in my electric oven at 550 degrees with a pizza stone.

Any input would be great!

Thanks


Offline gfgman

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 150
Re: CRISPY BOTTOM
« Reply #1 on: February 13, 2009, 12:38:07 PM »
I'm sure others here can enlighten you further.  If you're not doing it already, you definitely want to preheat your stone along with the oven.  Some have suggested waiting as much as 45 minutes to allow your stone to reach the same temperature as the oven. I don't wait that long, but I do lower my oven rack to get the stone closer to the heat source. 
The one time I forgot to preheat the stone, I was not getting a crispy bottom.  I pulled the pizza out before it was done and waited awhile for the stone to get hot.  I threw it back in and the end result was actually quite nice.  It had a crisp to it and a nice color, but was also foldable without breaking.

GMan

Offline tdeane

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 486
  • Age: 42
  • Location: British Columbia, Canada
    • Pizzeria Barbarella
Re: CRISPY BOTTOM
« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2009, 04:47:43 PM »
Leaving out the oil would be a start. Fat is a softener.

Online Pete-zza

  • Lifetime Member
  • Global Moderator
  • *
  • Posts: 21911
  • Location: Texas
  • Always learning
Re: CRISPY BOTTOM
« Reply #3 on: February 13, 2009, 04:52:51 PM »
Leaving out the oil would be a start. Fat is a softener.

That's it. And no sugar. I haven't tried it but some pizza operators let the tops of their dough balls dry out and make the skins with the dry parts on the bottom, to help get a more crispy bottom.

Peter

Offline scott r

  • Supporting Member
  • *
  • Posts: 3061
  • Age: 43
  • Location: boston
  • I Love Pizzafreaks!
Re: CRISPY BOTTOM
« Reply #4 on: February 13, 2009, 05:00:13 PM »
Yes, but leaving out the oil at that low of a temperature can cause the dough to become too tough unless the pizza is underbaked, and honestly I don't find it to increase crispiness much.  Erasmo, try lowering your oven temperature. All the best NY style pizzas I have had that are on the crispier side of the style are baking  at 450 and use small amounts of both oil and sugar.

Online Pete-zza

  • Lifetime Member
  • Global Moderator
  • *
  • Posts: 21911
  • Location: Texas
  • Always learning
Re: CRISPY BOTTOM
« Reply #5 on: February 13, 2009, 05:07:46 PM »
Yes, but leaving out the oil at that low of a temperature can cause the dough to become too tough unless the pizza is underbaked, and honestly I don't find it to increase crispiness much.  Erasmo, try lowering your oven temperature. All the best NY style pizzas I have had that are on the crispier side of the style are baking  at 450 and use small amounts of both oil and sugar.

That is typical of advice from Tom Lehmann, but, as scott notes, some oil may be needed--to keep the crust from becoming cracker like because of the loss of too much moisture from the dough because of the longer bake time.

Peter

Offline sourdough girl

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 664
  • Location: Marysville, WA
  • First the bread, NOW the pizza dough!
Re: CRISPY BOTTOM
« Reply #6 on: February 13, 2009, 07:39:05 PM »
I haven't tried it but some pizza operators let the tops of their dough balls dry out and make the skins with the dry parts on the bottom, to help get a more crispy bottom.

Peter

I have tried it and find it works quite well, not only to crisp up the bottom, but also to help keep the pizza from sticking to the peel.

~sd
Never trust a skinny cook!

Offline tdeane

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 486
  • Age: 42
  • Location: British Columbia, Canada
    • Pizzeria Barbarella
Re: CRISPY BOTTOM
« Reply #7 on: February 13, 2009, 09:43:02 PM »
Yes, but leaving out the oil at that low of a temperature can cause the dough to become too tough unless the pizza is underbaked, and honestly I don't find it to increase crispiness much.  Erasmo, try lowering your oven temperature. All the best NY style pizzas I have had that are on the crispier side of the style are baking  at 450 and use small amounts of both oil and sugar.
I would strongly disagree.

Offline tdeane

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 486
  • Age: 42
  • Location: British Columbia, Canada
    • Pizzeria Barbarella
Re: CRISPY BOTTOM
« Reply #8 on: February 13, 2009, 09:44:09 PM »
Another thing is to make sure you don't overload your pizzas.

Offline JConk007

  • Vendor
  • *
  • Posts: 3656
  • Location: New Jersey
  • Lovin my Oven!
    • Flirting with Fire
Re: CRISPY BOTTOM
« Reply #9 on: February 13, 2009, 09:57:46 PM »
Terry, I  love that you disagree (strongly or lightly) it just makes for more info and analysis. A Pepperoni is lighter than pineapple and ham  as far as loading right? but thats just a guess?
Just kidding Terry! I know you mentioned you are 40% pinapple  so I am just busting here, and I agree less is better! especially on the New York style. However a Stuffed pie or Chicago deep dish may be a different animal. Will you ever offer or try that type of recipe? You may have tried and posted your other styles elsewhere already somewhere, but I did not see them? Probably sticking with what works and for good reason. Your  pics all look fabulous do you use the same dough for everything?
Thanks John
« Last Edit: February 13, 2009, 10:10:49 PM by JConk007 »
I Love to Flirt with Fire! www.flirtingwithfirepizza.com


Offline gfgman

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 150
Re: CRISPY BOTTOM
« Reply #10 on: February 13, 2009, 10:04:58 PM »
I like the place I go to now, but they go a little too far with 'don't overload your pizza'.  I ordered one with sausage and the sausage was sliced real thin like pepperoni, but the pieces were small than pepperoni, and there were maybe 3 pieces per slice.  C'mon now, don't be stingy. >:D

Offline tdeane

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 486
  • Age: 42
  • Location: British Columbia, Canada
    • Pizzeria Barbarella
Re: CRISPY BOTTOM
« Reply #11 on: February 13, 2009, 10:37:01 PM »
Terry, I  love that you disagree (strongly or lightly) it just makes for more info and analysis. A Pepperoni is lighter than pineapple and ham  as far as loading right? but thats just a guess?
Just kidding Terry! I know you mentioned you are 40% pinapple  so I am just busting here, and I agree less is better! especially on the New York style. However a Stuffed pie or Chicago deep dish may be a different animal. Will you ever offer or try that type of recipe? You may have tried and posted your other styles elsewhere already somewhere, but I did not see them? Probably sticking with what works and for good reason. Your  pics all look fabulous do you use the same dough for everything?
Thanks John
I only make one style of pizza. I'm not a fan of deep dish pizza, I just don't get it. Fortunately, I am slowly getting people to order something other than ham and pineapple. I have to admit, i am not opposed to eating a slice of it once and a while, but a whole pie? Not for me.

Offline tdeane

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 486
  • Age: 42
  • Location: British Columbia, Canada
    • Pizzeria Barbarella
Re: CRISPY BOTTOM
« Reply #12 on: February 13, 2009, 10:39:30 PM »
I like the place I go to now, but they go a little too far with 'don't overload your pizza'.  I ordered one with sausage and the sausage was sliced real thin like pepperoni, but the pieces were small than pepperoni, and there were maybe 3 pieces per slice.  C'mon now, don't be stingy. >:D
Yeah, there is a fine line between overloading and being stingy. I would lean err on the side of overloading because I would hate to think my customers feel cheated.

Offline scott r

  • Supporting Member
  • *
  • Posts: 3061
  • Age: 43
  • Location: boston
  • I Love Pizzafreaks!
Re: CRISPY BOTTOM
« Reply #13 on: February 13, 2009, 11:13:05 PM »
Yes, but leaving out the oil at that low of a temperature can cause the dough to become too tough unless the pizza is underbaked, and honestly I don't find it to increase crispiness much.  Erasmo, try lowering your oven temperature. All the best NY style pizzas I have had that are on the crispier side of the style are baking  at 450 and use small amounts of both oil and sugar.

I would strongly disagree.

Tdeane, I am interested in furthering this discussion.  There are a number of things in my statement you could be disagreeing with, and I want to talk about it.  I have recently gotten back into doing oil and sugar experiments after a few years of basically doing everything I can to avoid them.  I know that my assessment that my favorite NY style pizzerias that are going for a crispy crust tend to bake at 450 is definitely subjective, but I am curious what your stance is on the oil/sugar subject.  Have you really found that leaving oil out of your formulation makes your pizza that much crispier? 
« Last Edit: February 14, 2009, 12:06:25 AM by scott r »

Offline sourdough girl

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 664
  • Location: Marysville, WA
  • First the bread, NOW the pizza dough!
Re: CRISPY BOTTOM
« Reply #14 on: February 14, 2009, 12:21:43 AM »
Compared to you two, scott r and tdeane, I am a total newb wannabe pizza maker.... but I am CERTAINLY interested in the discussion which I hope will follow.....

~sd
Never trust a skinny cook!

Offline tdeane

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 486
  • Age: 42
  • Location: British Columbia, Canada
    • Pizzeria Barbarella
Re: CRISPY BOTTOM
« Reply #15 on: February 14, 2009, 12:22:00 AM »
Tdeane, I am interested in furthering  this discussion.  There are a number of things you could be disagreeing with, and I want to talk about it.    I know that my assessment that most of my favorite NY style pizzerias going for a crispy crust are baking at 450 is definitely subjective, but I am curious what your stance is on the oil.  Have you really found leaving it out of your formulation to make your pizza much crispier?  I want to get on the topic at hand and bounce some ideas around.   
I guess what I disagree with is that there are good NY pies baked at 450 and that any good places would use sugar. I could be wrong, but I don't think so. I realize I chose my words a little strongly and that you every right to like a 450 degree baked pie more than say a 650 baked one. As far as oil goes, I can't say for sure as I have never used oil in my dough as imo, it violates the Neapolitan tradition. I'm a little ocd so I get a little caught up in what I believe to be right, so I apologize if sometimes I come off as an opinionated ass, I am sometimes. But, being a little ocd is why I make good pizza,imo. I have thought of nothing else for the past year and even dream about pizza at night. I know, that's a little sad. I do know that fat is a softener so it stands to reason that it would make a dough less crispy. It's the same mistake people make when they add egg yolks to a batter and still expect it to fry up crispy. Maybe fish and chips should have it's own website! Back to pizza, I would say if you want to make a very crispy NY style pizza, start baking it on a stone preheated to a high temp(but not too high)and give it a nice char on the bottom. Then transfer it to a screen and continue to bake. It will get nice and crispy that way. I guess I feel that it is impossible to make a very crispy NY style pie without sacrificing a little.

Offline scott r

  • Supporting Member
  • *
  • Posts: 3061
  • Age: 43
  • Location: boston
  • I Love Pizzafreaks!
Re: CRISPY BOTTOM
« Reply #16 on: February 14, 2009, 01:39:52 AM »
Ok, well first off, I have to say that my job involves traveling, and I do much of my work in NY city and Brooklyn.  I often have to spend two or three months there at a time away from my friends and family with lots of time to kill, so of course being the pizza obsessed idiot that I am, I do lots of pizza research while I am there.  I can definitely say that 90% of the pizzerias in the area are baking between 400-500 degrees, with 450 being about what I would call standard.  When I first got my laser thermometer I even took it with me on one trip and went around the city shooting the insides of ovens, as I am well aware that commercial oven temperature gauges are often out of calibration.  Every now and then I found someone baking at 550, and I can only think of one example of a place making normal street style pizza that bakes above that and it is Difara's.  Unfortunately commercial gas ovens, especially the older ones that are most popular around NY, are very poorly insulated and cost quite a bit to run when turned up all the way to 600-650.  Most older commercial ovens actually max out at 550 anyhow. 

I am not able to coax information out of all of the places that I have visited, but I do try, and I have been able to talk to many of the owners or pizza makers.   Honestly, out of the 20 or 30 people who have been kind enough to share their recipe and methods with me EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM has told me that they use both oil and sugar in their dough, and they all use bromated flour.  Now, realize that I am talking normal NY style pizzerias here, not the select few who have wood burning or coal ovens who are making high temperature pizzas.  I am not telling you this because I think that it produces the best pizza, or that it is my favorite pizza, that its wrong, or that its right, but only so that you can realize that this is the norm in the NY area.  I know that there are probably a select few places that are not using oil, or not using sugar.  Every now and then I find a place where I can taste that the sugar is not in there, so I know they do exist.  Personally, I do prefer a 650 degree pie to a 450 degree pie, and I agree that when you get up to those temps and higher sugar and oil are definitely not a necessity to make an amazing pizza.  While I agree that any fat in a dough will tend to make it softer thanks to the ability of the dough to retain more moisture throughout the bake, I have never noticed that including it in a formulation takes away anything but a miniscule amount from the crisp on the outside of the crust.  In a NY style dough we are only talking about 3% max in there, and I believe most places use less than that. I suppose that if you got up above that 3% mark an effect on crisping might get noticeable, but I have never found the need to go that high. Like you, the one type of pizza that I have no interest is deep dish.   At these NY style fat levels it is still quite easy to obtain a crispy crust and a softer interior, which to me is the definition of a NY style dough. 
« Last Edit: February 14, 2009, 01:45:15 AM by scott r »

Offline tdeane

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 486
  • Age: 42
  • Location: British Columbia, Canada
    • Pizzeria Barbarella
Re: CRISPY BOTTOM
« Reply #17 on: February 14, 2009, 02:41:09 AM »
Ok, well first off, I have to say that my job involves traveling, and I do much of my work in NY city and Brooklyn.  I often have to spend two or three months there at a time away from my friends and family with lots of time to kill, so of course being the pizza obsessed idiot that I am, I do lots of pizza research while I am there.  I can definitely say that 90% of the pizzerias in the area are baking between 400-500 degrees, with 450 being about what I would call standard.  When I first got my laser thermometer I even took it with me on one trip and went around the city shooting the insides of ovens, as I am well aware that commercial oven temperature gauges are often out of calibration.  Every now and then I found someone baking at 550, and I can only think of one example of a place making normal street style pizza that bakes above that and it is Difara's.  Unfortunately commercial gas ovens, especially the older ones that are most popular around NY, are very poorly insulated and cost quite a bit to run when turned up all the way to 600-650.  Most older commercial ovens actually max out at 550 anyhow. 

I am not able to coax information out of all of the places that I have visited, but I do try, and I have been able to talk to many of the owners or pizza makers.   Honestly, out of the 20 or 30 people who have been kind enough to share their recipe and methods with me EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM has told me that they use both oil and sugar in their dough, and they all use bromated flour.  Now, realize that I am talking normal NY style pizzerias here, not the select few who have wood burning or coal ovens who are making high temperature pizzas.  I am not telling you this because I think that it produces the best pizza, or that it is my favorite pizza, that its wrong, or that its right, but only so that you can realize that this is the norm in the NY area.  I know that there are probably a select few places that are not using oil, or not using sugar.  Every now and then I find a place where I can taste that the sugar is not in there, so I know they do exist.  Personally, I do prefer a 650 degree pie to a 450 degree pie, and I agree that when you get up to those temps and higher sugar and oil are definitely not a necessity to make an amazing pizza.  While I agree that any fat in a dough will tend to make it softer thanks to the ability of the dough to retain more moisture throughout the bake, I have never noticed that including it in a formulation takes away anything but a miniscule amount from the crisp on the outside of the crust.  In a NY style dough we are only talking about 3% max in there, and I believe most places use less than that. I suppose that if you got up above that 3% mark an effect on crisping might get noticeable, but I have never found the need to go that high. Like you, the one type of pizza that I have no interest is deep dish.   At these NY style fat levels it is still quite easy to obtain a crispy crust and a softer interior, which to me is the definition of a NY style dough. 
Well, I lived in Brooklyn for seven years and worked in Manhattan for a few of those. I also make pizza commercially, in a gas fuelled deck oven that is 20 years old and know what pizza is like cooked in that type of oven at various temperatures. All that said, I disagree with you. If you read your post you said the "best" NY pizzas you have ever had that were crispy were baked at 450 with oil and sugar in the dough. That is what you said and I strongly disagree with that. It seems now that you want to revise your previous statement? I said I don't think that any of the good NY places bake at 450 and use sugar in their dough and you haven't said anything to disprove that. Unless, you consider a 450 degree baked pie to be among the best in NY.

Offline Matthew

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 2229
Re: CRISPY BOTTOM
« Reply #18 on: February 14, 2009, 05:46:59 AM »
I would say if you want to make a very crispy NY style pizza, start baking it on a stone preheated to a high temp(but not too high)and give it a nice char on the bottom. Then transfer it to a screen and continue to bake. It will get nice and crispy that way.

T,
Is this what you do?  How long & at what stone temp do you typically bake your pies?

Matt

Offline scott r

  • Supporting Member
  • *
  • Posts: 3061
  • Age: 43
  • Location: boston
  • I Love Pizzafreaks!
Re: CRISPY BOTTOM
« Reply #19 on: February 14, 2009, 06:19:27 AM »
It seems now that you want to revise your previous statement?

I remember reading from another thread that you once lived in the NY area, and now have just started your own pizzeria.  I really think you are going to have a successful business up there because I have seen the quality of your pies. After spending years traveling to just about every destination pizzeria in the country, I can assure you that there are not many people making pizza of that caliber. This is why I want to understand where you are coming from.  Its fine if we disagree, that's what this forum is all about, but from your comments I have a feeling that you are misunderstanding something that I am saying.  I could have worded this much better, but I definitely still stand by my statement.  I don't want to revise it.  What I said was:

All the best NY style pizzas I have had that are on the crispier side of the style are baking  at 450 and use small amounts of both oil and sugar.


In my opinion NY has three different sub styles of pizza that are all considered NY style.  One type is the lower temperature type of pizza made by the largest portion of the city's pizzerias and it can be found everywhere.  I have a feeling this pizza was invented by Rays, and I am sure you are familiar with it.  This pizza is fairly crispy and sturdy because it's designed to hold lots of crazy toppings like penne pasta (I never understood that one).  I really think that a big part of the reason why the crispiness is there is because it is baked at a lower temperature for close to 10 minutes.  Everyone willing to talk that was making this style of pizza told me that they use oil and sugar.  I am certainly not saying that this is the best pizza in New york.   After walking around over the course of a few months with my laser thermometer, the majority of the places doing the best job with that generic NY style pizza had an oven that was registering 450.   I even found a few places that registered 400 and one at 375, and the pizza wasn't as good, but it was really crispy!

The original poster was asking how to get his pizza crispier, and told us that he was baking at 550 degrees.  From walking around NY, and from experimenting myself I have come to the conclusion that bringing down the temperature of an oven gives you a crispier pizza as long as all else remains equal, such as fully baking out the gum layer of the pie.  This is because the pizza has had so much more time to sit in the oven and dry out.  As Pete-zza has pointed out above, and numerous times on other forums, Tom Lehmann and I are in agreement on this.

My favorite NY style pizza is not not on the crispier side, and it is baked in hotter ovens for a much shorter period of time.  An example of this style of pizza would be Patsy's (but only the original harlem location), who's oven registers up in the 700 range.  Because of the extra fast bake this dough is soft light and fluffy, closer to its incredibly soft neapolitan brother which is baked in the 900 degree range.

I said I don't think that any of the good NY places bake at 450 and use sugar in their dough and you haven't said anything to disprove that. Unless, you consider a 450 degree baked pie to be among the best in NY.

We totally agree here.  I also don't think that any of the best NY places bake at 450, or use sugar.  I am not trying to disprove that. 
« Last Edit: February 14, 2009, 06:51:22 AM by scott r »


 

pizzapan