Author Topic: Overwhelmed Novice Needs First Dough Procedure  (Read 8450 times)

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Offline duegatti

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Re: Overwhelmed Novice Needs First Dough Procedure
« Reply #50 on: May 18, 2009, 11:28:00 PM »
Of greatest concern to me, perhaps unnecessarily - why was the dough so difficult to stretch out?  The burned bottom, and destroyed gaskets - those are Egg problems that I need to work out. 


Online Pete-zza

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Re: Overwhelmed Novice Needs First Dough Procedure
« Reply #51 on: May 19, 2009, 07:53:23 AM »
Joe,

From your earlier photos, the dough shouldn't have been elastic in my opinion. By any chance, did you re-knead, re-shape or re-ball the dough ball before shaping and stretching it out to size? That is a very common (maybe even the most common) rookie mistake and will almost always result in an overly elastic and "bucky" dough that resists shaping and stretching without tearing. It is possible to let the dough warm up again, but it can sometimes take a few to several hours for the gluten to relax again so that the dough can be handled again in a more or less normal manner. If you look at Reply 13 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,2223.msg19772.html#msg19772, which is the "newbie" thread that I referenced earlier, you will see a discussion on this point. There are also many other points and tips for newbies in the above thread.

Peter

Offline duegatti

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Re: Overwhelmed Novice Needs First Dough Procedure
« Reply #52 on: May 19, 2009, 09:25:44 AM »
I just dropped the dough out of the container onto some flour, and it was very difficult to extend and flatten.  I did note in reply #43 that after a bit, I rolled the dough back up.  This was because it was so non-circular, and had a couple of holes in it.  It did anecdotally seem a little easier to work with from that point on.  Perhaps it was not adequately warm the first time?  Lehmann says 2-3 hours; I began work at 2.5 hr, and the dough warmed in the closed containers, which would probably insulate it somewhat.  In reply #13 of the thread you reference - does that plastic wrap go underneath the ball, or just over the top of it?

Conclusions:

1) use cold water to control final dough temperature; note temperature

2) trust the forumlation by weight; don't make adjustments; understand that dough will climb hook over a wide range of hydrations; work dough off the hook manually; note dough temperature

3) warm dought to 55-60 F; stretch it out without working it


Offline duegatti

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Re: Overwhelmed Novice Needs First Dough Procedure
« Reply #53 on: May 19, 2009, 09:27:32 AM »
However, I am a bit surprised at how your dough was wetter than what I am used to.
Peter

Recall that I had dumped in a small, unmeasured aliquot of water, thinking that this would "thin" the dough and allow better mixing.

Online Pete-zza

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Re: Overwhelmed Novice Needs First Dough Procedure
« Reply #54 on: May 19, 2009, 10:18:47 AM »
I just dropped the dough out of the container onto some flour, and it was very difficult to extend and flatten.  I did note in reply #43 that after a bit, I rolled the dough back up.  This was because it was so non-circular, and had a couple of holes in it.  It did anecdotally seem a little easier to work with from that point on.  Perhaps it was not adequately warm the first time?  Lehmann says 2-3 hours; I began work at 2.5 hr, and the dough warmed in the closed containers, which would probably insulate it somewhat.  In reply #13 of the thread you reference - does that plastic wrap go underneath the ball, or just over the top of it?

Joe,

What do the two remaining dough balls look like? If they are as gassy as your first dough ball, you can punch them down and re-ball them provided there will be enough time for them to rise again before using. That should strengthen the gluten structure in those dough balls. For dough handling and shaping techniques, you might also look at the Gemignani video referenced in Reply 8 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,2223.msg19563.html#msg19563.

When I cover dough balls with plastic wrap, it is only the top of the dough ball, not the bottom. Many people just leave the dough balls uncovered but that can result in a thin "crust" forming on the top surface. If that happens, you can use the dry top surface as the bottom of the skin, which can yield a more crispy bottom crust.

Peter

Offline duegatti

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Re: Overwhelmed Novice Needs First Dough Procedure
« Reply #55 on: May 19, 2009, 11:23:03 AM »
The others are similar - lots of bubbles on the bottom; smooth top.  Temperature is 40 - 41 F.  The one that I pushed on yesterday is lower than the one that I didn't touch.  My schedule will limit me with respect to the disposition of these balls.  I may simply be cooking one late tonight, monitoring its temperature. 

Offline NY pizzastriver

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Re: Overwhelmed Novice Needs First Dough Procedure
« Reply #56 on: May 19, 2009, 02:14:46 PM »
D,
Well I am no green egg pro, but I believe I clearly see a high temp at the bottom stone, and perhaps no top stone? Your pie looks like it should have been taken out earlier, but the top never browned and the cheese didn't really melt. Seemingly these top stones are key when using like ovens, and the gaskets blow and need to be replaced with something else, also common from what I've read. Here's my pal RS's thread on this, he mentions replacing the stock gasket on page 2, and you might find some good pointers overall.
http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,8334.0.html

You're good having the mixer, it was not $300 poorly spent. You can knead more effectively, make higher hydration doughs, make bigger batches, all sorts of good things that I can't do easily if at all hand kneading. What it comes down to, aside from learning to use mixer right, is getting a feel for the dough. This dough looked to me like it needed more kneading and better forming in early stage pics. As it climbed the hook and all I'd guess it didn't knead well, or for long, in mixer. (The great Jeff Varasano makes a point to always start with wet ingredients and add flour slowly to avoid this climbing, for what it's worth.) Once you then re-balled it after warm rise, as it tore, that was it. Hard to get a good result after that. Trying to repair the tear is the best you can do. I'm surprised you got it to re-stretch right away, frankly, so hats off.

A tight ball, of properly kneaded dough, going into container is key.
Here's a couple useful vids on that, as I think some hand kneading at the end is always a good idea, even for mixer users. I stretch a bit before folding over as well, but here's the kneading method.


How to make a good ball, and I also slap the top down every few turns. Not hard, but enough to really make it tight.


Also when you take it out of fridge put ball on flour dusted board to rest. Use this same rolling method in video 2, no slaps on top though, to ensure roundness. Dust top and saran wrap it loosely, as Peter said. It's best.

Hope it helped, just keep at it, it all comes into place.  :chef:
J.





.

« Last Edit: May 19, 2009, 02:52:18 PM by NY pizzastriver »
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Online Pete-zza

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Re: Overwhelmed Novice Needs First Dough Procedure
« Reply #57 on: May 19, 2009, 05:09:37 PM »
Joe,

Since I have a stand mixer, albeit one that is not particularly good at making a high-quality, robust dough, I try to use it as much as possible to make the dough. Usually, I try to limit the hand kneading of the dough once it comes out of the mixer bowl to about 30 seconds to a minute, mainly to be sure that the dough has the right "feel" and to shape it into a round ball. I personally am an advocate of slightly underkneading the dough and letting the biochemical activity do the bulk of the development of the gluten. I do not attempt to work the dough to the point where it will pass the windowpane or gluten window test. I would do that if I were making bread dough but not pizza dough. The notion of slightly underkneading the dough is the basic philosophy of pizza dough preparation that is advocated by Tom Lehmann and Evelyne Slomon and others whose professional grounding is mainly in pizza dough rather than bread dough. You can get further elaboration on this point at Reply 6 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5083.msg43133.html#msg43133 and the links referenced in that post.

The other point I would like to make is that if the hydration of the dough is too low, no amount of hand kneading is likely to help. You will still end up with a tight and stiff dough, and one that is likely to be made worse by the additional kneading, including developing tears and other irregularities in the skin of the dough. I would rather leave the dough as is and take my chances with the biochemical gluten development rather than knead it further. Of course, if I detect that the dough is too dry and stiff while in the mixer bowl, I try to make the adjustments there as much as possible to get the desired final condition of the dough before doing the final 30 seconds to a minute of hand kneading/shaping. This is something you will get a better feel for as you gain experience through practice.

Peter

Offline duegatti

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Re: Overwhelmed Novice Needs First Dough Procedure
« Reply #58 on: May 19, 2009, 06:41:58 PM »
Unbelievable; huge difference in spreadability.  Almost round; nearly 14".  Pix to follow.  Have to juggle impaired Egg and dough with multiple personality.  Will just be able to equilibrate stone for 15 -20 minutes.  Egg was very hot a minute ago.

Have also conducted simple Egg configuration mod to cut down on bottom burning.  Pie has not stuck to wooden peel yet.
« Last Edit: May 19, 2009, 06:48:39 PM by duegatti »


Offline duegatti

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Re: Overwhelmed Novice Needs First Dough Procedure
« Reply #59 on: May 19, 2009, 09:37:14 PM »
Aiming for a warmed dough temperature of 55 - 60, here it is at about an hour.  When Lehmann says 2 - 3 hours, perhaps he is talking about the 25 lb dough recipe.   The egg is lit; now it will be the bottleneck. 

Offline duegatti

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Re: Overwhelmed Novice Needs First Dough Procedure
« Reply #60 on: May 19, 2009, 09:40:46 PM »
This spreads out much, much more easily.  Almost perfect, but I still get that one area where it's dimpled in toward the center of the circle.  You can actually see the same phenomenon on the first pie.  I'm thinking that I can overcome it, but at one point, it's almost as though something sets up elasticity in the dough, and it almost feels like it's going to shrink itself back up.  I'm afraid of this, happy for the huge improvements, and quit while I'm ahead:

Offline duegatti

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Re: Overwhelmed Novice Needs First Dough Procedure
« Reply #61 on: May 19, 2009, 09:45:28 PM »
It sits on the counter while the Egg equilibrates.  I've read that a pie will stick to a wooden peel if you leave it there.  I shake it periodically, and it stays loose.  I'm trying to give the Egg as much equilibration as possible without getting into trouble.  After almost 0.5 hr at over 650 degrees, the pie goes in.  Pictures are at about 2 and three minutes.  At three, toppings are beginning to brown.  I'm confident about the configuration change preventing the bottom burning, but if the top is browning, I'll take a look.  And get bad news again; the pie has to come off:



Offline duegatti

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Re: Overwhelmed Novice Needs First Dough Procedure
« Reply #62 on: May 19, 2009, 09:48:59 PM »
So - what accounts for the dramatic improvement in the stretchability of the dough?  Had I kneaded the first dough after it was warm - and forgot that I did - rendering it too elastic?  Was the first dough substantially over 60 F, since it warmed for 2.5 hr, and would that even account for the difference?  Did the extra day of cold rise have this effect (even though the dough did not change much in physical appearance)?

Online Pete-zza

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Re: Overwhelmed Novice Needs First Dough Procedure
« Reply #63 on: May 19, 2009, 10:11:47 PM »
Joe,

No doubt the longer fermentation time of the second dough ball gave the enzymes more time to work on the gluten and soften it, but your first dough ball was also farther along in the fermentation process than normal, most likely because the finished dough temperature was on the high side. With the small amount of yeast you used, it would have taken a really warm dough to ferment as quickly as your photos of the first dough ball showed.

A warm dough will also be easier to work with than a colder dough. I don't know where you live, but if it is a part of the country where temperatures have been rising, it would be normal for the dough to warm up fairly quickly over a period of 2 1/2 hours. That would also make the dough handle more easily. The only explanation that I can adduce from what you reported on the first dough ball is that you reworked the first dough ball in some fashion and that is what led to the elasticity. A really warm gassy dough will usually be more prone to extensibility than elasticity.

Peter

Offline ThunderStik

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Re: Overwhelmed Novice Needs First Dough Procedure
« Reply #64 on: May 21, 2009, 04:57:07 PM »
So - what accounts for the dramatic improvement in the stretchability of the dough?  Had I kneaded the first dough after it was warm - and forgot that I did - rendering it too elastic?  Was the first dough substantially over 60 F, since it warmed for 2.5 hr, and would that even account for the difference?  Did the extra day of cold rise have this effect (even though the dough did not change much in physical appearance)?

+1 with what Pete said.

My last few batches I have been really paying attention to the warm up times and doing a few experiments. Without a doubt the long warm up time is a huge key to the dough becoming very easily workable.  I usually make 4 pies at a time so i can learn more in one cooking session than just one, especially since doughs can take a few days before they are ready to use.

Remember the dough is alive, and as it warms up those little yeast in there that have mostly asleep are now starting to warm up and munch away creating alot of little bubbles and starting the stretching for you already as you can see in a 1 hour dough as compared to a 3 hour dough.

I have also noticed the difference in the final texture between the finished pies. I much prefer the longer warm up/rise time pies. They are much easier to work, and to me have a better texture.

P.S.   I will take that last pieoff your hands, I like'em a bit on the done side. ;D
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Offline duegatti

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Re: Overwhelmed Novice Needs First Dough Procedure
« Reply #65 on: May 29, 2009, 11:32:01 AM »
So - are we saying that 55-60 degrees is a minimum threshold, and longer warming toward (common) ambient temperatures is in fact desirable, or is 55-60 a target window that one tries not to go outside of?

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Re: Overwhelmed Novice Needs First Dough Procedure
« Reply #66 on: May 29, 2009, 11:51:29 AM »
So - are we saying that 55-60 degrees is a minimum threshold, and longer warming toward (common) ambient temperatures is in fact desirable, or is 55-60 a target window that one tries not to go outside of?

Joe,

I couldn't find a reference to the 55-60 degree range in this thread, but if you are talking about the temperature at which a dough can be used to form a skin and minimize bubbling in the finished crust, the 55-60 degree range is really only a threshhold below which you normally don't want to go. Once a dough ball gets above about 55-60 degrees F, it can just sit there for about another few hours and still be usable (a dough ball using high-gluten flour will hold out a bit longer than one using a lower protein flour). Many members who make several dough balls to be used at a single event and bake the pizzas one at a time will often note that the last dough ball in the series was the best one. Sometimes the time between using the first dough ball and the last dough ball can be four hours, sometimes a bit more.

Peter


Offline duegatti

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Re: Overwhelmed Novice Needs First Dough Procedure
« Reply #67 on: May 29, 2009, 12:17:26 PM »
Ah ha.  So the fact that my dough on day one was elastic, with a 2.5 hr warm up (albeit it inside the tupperware) to an unknown temperature, and my dough on day two, with a 1 hr warm up to 59 degree, was extensible, further implicates that the elasticity on day one was due to me working the dough out of the refridgerator.

Online Pete-zza

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Re: Overwhelmed Novice Needs First Dough Procedure
« Reply #68 on: May 29, 2009, 12:53:45 PM »
Joe,

Generally speaking, if you make several dough balls from the same dough batch, the older dough balls from a fermentation standpoint will normally be more extensible than younger ones, mainly because of the degradation or softening of the gluten with the passage of time. This assumes that you do not re-knead or re-ball any of the dough balls just before using. Also, different dough formulations can perform differently. Some doughs can be used cold out of the refrigerator without incident but others need a warm-up time. About the only way to know what kind of dough ball you have is to run some tests.

It also helps to watch and monitor temperatures, especially finished dough temperatures. If they are out of whack, the chemistry and performance of the doughs will be different, making it difficult to do meaningful comparisons from one batch to another. Of all the temperatures, I think the finished dough temperature is the most important. Since the most effective way to control finished dough temperature is through the water temperature, that makes water temperature vitally important. Room temperatures will always vary, at least in a non-laboratory setting such as in a home, so warm-up times will vary quite considerably over the course of a year. If you were Papa John's making dough balls for twice-a-week delivery to a few thousand stores, you would have a temperature and humidity controlled facility to make the dough balls. And, I can assure you, they measure everything they do, with manuals and charts and everything else. If they don't do that, dough balls will vary all over the place. Of course, in a home setting, the worst that will happen is that you lose a few dough balls or the pizzas aren't as good as you'd like. But that would be intolerable at a place like Papa John's. In my own case, I try to think like the professionals. Once you internalize the procedures, it becomes a habit.

Peter

Offline austinstrickland

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Re: Overwhelmed Novice Needs First Dough Procedure
« Reply #69 on: July 29, 2009, 07:17:24 PM »
Thanks for the pictures dueggatti

Offline austinstrickland

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Re: Overwhelmed Novice Needs First Dough Procedure
« Reply #70 on: July 29, 2009, 07:18:57 PM »
They seem really good..


 

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