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Offline 5thElement

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My first pizza..pictures and couple of questions
« on: June 05, 2009, 04:29:46 PM »
It's not technically my first pizza, i've been using this dough recipe for a couple months now but i've not really altered it much, it's far superior to any frozen pizza and we no longer buy frozen pizza since making this.

Dough recipe is

500g strong white bread flour
1/2 tblsp salt
1/2 tblsp sugar
7g sachet of instant yeast
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp milk
300ml warm water

Is there any fundamental errors in the above? lol i've basically taken a recipe found online (sure it was a jamie oliver one which i've halfed) and im sure i added the milk, cant remember why now! this recipe makes two 12 inch pizzas for us, doughball for each weighing roughly 400g.

Here's some photos, half just mozzarella, other half has some jalapeno and spanish chorizo,  it's cooked on a basic oven tray with holes in it, at about 425F for around 10-15 minutes...i realise this isn't ideal...it produces a nice crisp base, with a soft inside, nothing much in the way of charring, but it does brown fairly well on the underside.

Anyways, just thought i'd share my beginners experience in making our own pizza!

Any comments on improving it would be much appreciated!
« Last Edit: June 05, 2009, 04:31:31 PM by 5thElement »


Offline Essen1

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Re: My first pizza..pictures and couple of questions
« Reply #1 on: June 05, 2009, 04:34:07 PM »
It's not technically my first pizza, i've been using this dough recipe for a couple months now but i've not really altered it much, it's far superior to any frozen pizza and we no longer buy frozen pizza since making this.

Dough recipe is

500g strong white bread flour
1/2 tblsp salt
1/2 tblsp sugar
7g sachet of instant yeast
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp milk
300ml warm water

Is there any fundamental errors in the above? lol i've basically taken a recipe found online (sure it was a jamie oliver one which i've halfed) and im sure i added the milk, cant remember why now! this recipe makes two 12 inch pizzas for us, doughball for each weighing roughly 400g.

Here's some photos, half just mozzarella, other half has some jalapeno and spanish chorizo,  it's cooked on a basic oven tray with holes in it, at about 425F for around 10-15 minutes...i realise this isn't ideal...it produces a nice crisp base, with a soft inside, nothing much in the way of charring, but it does brown fairly well on the underside.

Anyways, just thought i'd share my beginners experience in making our own pizza!

Any comments on improving it would be much appreciated!


5th E,

I guess it all depends on what style of pizza you're after? Thin crust, NY-style, Neapolitan, Cracker, etc. If you can let us know, we can narrow it down.
Mike

"Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new."  - Albert Einstein

http://thehobbycook.blogspot.com/

Online Pete-zza

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Re: My first pizza..pictures and couple of questions
« Reply #2 on: June 05, 2009, 04:43:08 PM »
Any comments on improving it would be much appreciated!


How long after you made the dough did you make the pizzas?

Peter

Offline 5thElement

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Re: My first pizza..pictures and couple of questions
« Reply #3 on: June 05, 2009, 04:53:45 PM »
Essen1 - To be honest thats a question i've always found hard to answer, after lurking around this site every style appeals to me lol

My other half loves dominos regular base pizzas if that helps? i guess thats a fairly thin-ish/medium crust.

I suppose american would probably describe my ideal pizza, i dont want a crust paper thin, but dont want too much bread either, so somewhere inbetween..medium crust i guess?

Pete-zza - I let the dough rise once, doubled in size, then punched it down and worked it a little more and let it rise again to more or less double, then shaped the skin (rolling pin unfortunately!) and it was baked maybe hmm, an hour after topping it? left at room temperature.

I know im going slightly off topic and probably opening a can of worms now, i usually make this batch enough for two and before the second rise, cut the dough in half and shape and freeze one, topping it with the tomato sauce (homemade), but the frozen one is never as good as the fresh one when it's fully defrosted and baked, it doesn't seem to rise as much and has a more hard/chewy texture, i've allready read a bit on this forum about part baking before freezing etc, so im not sure which method is the best, i guess making it fresh each time is the obvious option lol

Thanks for the replies!
« Last Edit: June 05, 2009, 04:56:07 PM by 5thElement »

Online Pete-zza

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Re: My first pizza..pictures and couple of questions
« Reply #4 on: June 05, 2009, 05:50:51 PM »
5thElement,

I used the expanded dough calculating tool at http://www.pizzamaking.com/expanded_calculator.html to convert your dough recipe to baker's percent format and got the following:

Flour (100%):
Water (60%):
IDY (1.4%):
Salt (1.67442%):
Olive Oil (5.39999%):
Sugar (1.19601%):
Milk (fresh) (5.99999%):
Total (175.67041%):
500 g  |  17.64 oz | 1.1 lbs
300 g  |  10.58 oz | 0.66 lbs
7 g | 0.25 oz | 0.02 lbs | 2.32 tsp | 0.77 tbsp
8.37 g | 0.3 oz | 0.02 lbs | 1.5 tsp | 0.5 tbsp
27 g | 0.95 oz | 0.06 lbs | 6 tsp | 2 tbsp
5.98 g | 0.21 oz | 0.01 lbs | 1.5 tsp | 0.5 tbsp
30 g | 1.06 oz | 0.07 lbs | 6 tsp | 2 tbsp
878.35 g | 30.98 oz | 1.94 lbs | TF = N/A

From the above table, a single dough ball would weigh 439.17629 grams, assuming that there are no minor dough losses during the preparation of the dough. That amount of dough used to make a 12" pizza translates into a thickness factor of 0.1258454. That thickness factor represents a "medium" to "thick" crust. The hydration of the recipe is actually higher than the 60% figure shown in the above table because milk contains about 89% water. On that basis, the "real" hydration of the dough comes to a bit over 65%. That's a bit high for a strong white bread flour (is it the Allinson's flour by any chance?).

In terms of improvement of the results you got, you could consider changing the recipe to make dough that is fermented in the refrigerator for a couple of days before using. That should produce better crust flavors, texture and color. To make the dough for this application, you would use cold or cool water rather than warm water and you would significantly reduce the amount of yeast. For example, a typical amount of yeast (IDY) for a cold fermented version of the recipe would be around 1.5 grams (0.30% of the weight of the flour). That would be about a half teaspoon of IDY. The dough would be divided into two pieces after it comes out of the mixer bowl and then be lightly coated with oil, placed into lidded storage containers, and then refrigerated. The dough balls should be usable after about two days, after allowing the dough balls to warm up at room temperature for about an hour and a half. You don't want to re-knead or re-ball the dough balls at that point. That will only make the dough elastic and difficult to shape and stretch out to the desired size.

If you plan to use milk, you perhaps want to reduce the amount of water in the recipe by about 27 grams. Or you can just omit the milk. At two tablespoons, it doesn't really add much to the recipe--just some calcium, a bit of fat and lactose sugar, and a few minerals. You have plenty of sugar and fat in the recipe already and any dairy note from using the milk will be overwhelmed by the cheeses. If you want a thinner crust, you can make 14" pizzas instead of 12" pizzas, if you have a 14" pan, or you can just use less dough. For example, for a thinner 12" pizza, you could use about 320-335 grams of dough.

During baking, you might want to move the pizza from the oven rack position you use to a higher oven rack position. That should give you more top crust browning.

Good luck.

Peter


Offline 5thElement

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Re: My first pizza..pictures and couple of questions
« Reply #5 on: June 06, 2009, 09:02:47 AM »
Hi Peter,

Thanks for the detailed reply, it's appreciated.

Looks like i might just omit the milk in future, as you said it doesn't really add much to the end result.

I'll try the cold fermented version next time and see how i get on with that, hopefully there will be some noticeable difference from the method i use now, i'll also make sure it's cooked on the top shelf of the oven.

Thanks again

Online Pete-zza

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Re: My first pizza..pictures and couple of questions
« Reply #6 on: June 06, 2009, 09:36:03 AM »
i'll also make sure it's cooked on the top shelf of the oven.

5thElement,

I should have been clearer on the above point. What I meant to say is that the pan with the pizza on it should be moved from the initial oven rack position to a higher oven rack position toward the end of the bake. In my oven (electric), I normally move the pizza from the lowest oven rack position to the topmost oven rack position for about a minute or so of final baking. I typically make the move when the bottom of the crust is of the desired color.

Peter

Offline NY pizzastriver

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Re: My first pizza..pictures and couple of questions
« Reply #7 on: June 06, 2009, 10:12:01 AM »
Nice reply above Peter, you're like a genius, posts like this explain the threads of appreciation.

A 439 gram ball for a 12 inch pie sounds pretty heavy, my average is 230g, so that's a thick pie!

My advice to 5th would be get away from the double in size, punch, heavy yeast pizzas. Even just a one day cold ferment Lehmann dough is going to taste better, but that's more NY style not American. My pick for a one day American-ish style would be this one. (I'll give you Pete's link as he has %s and protocol listed in first post) http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,6515.0.html What makes it special in flavor and consistency is the 5 hour poolish. If you need a fast one day dough it's worth it to start this 9 hrs before bake time, best 1 day I've found. Then, for general purposes, watch and practice this to get away from rolling pin issue.


Also, as you said, the tray at 425 is not ideal. Think about adding a good stone that's preheated for an hour at 550. I also don't think topping it with sauce and letting it sit for another hour can be helping. Seems that would have weird affects. I top mine on the peel and put it in within 30 seconds, coldish to room temp sauce, never warm. Hats off on making homemade sauce though!
 :chef:

There's my 2 cents,
J
« Last Edit: June 06, 2009, 10:18:07 AM by NY pizzastriver »
"If God said you can come to heaven now, but you have to stop eating my pizza, you'd stay and finish instead, right?" - Essen1

Online Pete-zza

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Re: My first pizza..pictures and couple of questions
« Reply #8 on: June 06, 2009, 11:28:50 AM »
I also don't think topping it with sauce and letting it sit for another hour can be helping. Seems that would have weird affects.

J,

That's a good point. There are some pizza operators who pre-sauce skins in preparation for peak times, but usually the skins sit around for less than an hour. It also depends on the sauce. If it is watery, letting the sauce sit on the skin too long can result in the water in the sauce seeping into the dough and possibly causing a gum line. However, letting the skin alone proof for about an hour before saucing and dressing is fine. It might even result in better oven spring and a more open and airy crust if that is desired.

On the matter of the oven and temperatures, I believe 5thElement is in the U.K. Often ovens in the U.K. don't get up to the temperatures we are used to in the U.S. If that is the case with 5thElement, a pizza stone might not be a big improvement over his pan.

Peter

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Re: My first pizza..pictures and couple of questions
« Reply #9 on: June 06, 2009, 12:11:48 PM »
I know im going slightly off topic and probably opening a can of worms now, i usually make this batch enough for two and before the second rise, cut the dough in half and shape and freeze one, topping it with the tomato sauce (homemade), but the frozen one is never as good as the fresh one when it's fully defrosted and baked, it doesn't seem to rise as much and has a more hard/chewy texture, i've allready read a bit on this forum about part baking before freezing etc, so im not sure which method is the best, i guess making it fresh each time is the obvious option lol

5thElement,

I wasn't sure you were inviting comments on frozen dough but I thought that you should know that the physics and chemistry of frozen dough are significantly different than for fresh dough. There are also some doughs that freeze better than others and there are better times than others to freeze the dough. The time that the dough is frozen will also be a factor, especially in a home freezer compartment that cycles many times as part of the defrosting sequence. I suspect that your dough formulation, because of the very high amount of yeast and the use of warm water, which can produce an overly gassy dough, is not the best dough formulation for freezing purposes. Also, if there is a good time to freeze the dough using your dough formulation, I suspect that it would be right after the dough is made. That is the way that commercial dough ball producers do it except that they use extremely low, flash-freezing temperatures. One of the biggest problems with frozen dough--one that applies to all frozen doughs--is that there is no fermentation of the dough while it is frozen. Without fermentation, there can be no by-products of fermentation that contribute to the flavor, texture, color and aroma of the finished crust. About the only fermentation that takes place is during the defrosting of the dough and during the relatively short time that the dough warms up on the bench before using. In many cases, those fermentation by-products can be limited. Even commercial prepared dough balls have short useful windows of usability, typically about a day, or maybe two, after defrosting.

To get an idea of some of the principles of physics and chemistry that come into play when making frozen dough, and which commercial frozen dough companies have to contend with all the time, you might take a look at Reply 721 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,576.msg62457.html#msg62457 where I described my most recent efforts to intentionally make a frozen pizza dough--that is, not just as an afterthought to freeze an existing dough. As you will see from the photos, the finished crust looked fine but there were still deficiencies in the finished crust characteristics. I perhaps would not have noticed those deficiencies, or even cared, had I not made so many fresh doughs against which to compare the results using the frozen dough.

Peter


Offline 5thElement

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Re: My first pizza..pictures and couple of questions
« Reply #10 on: June 06, 2009, 05:36:27 PM »
Where do i start, alot of fantastic info to take in!

NY pizzastriver - good point on topping it an hour before actually baking it, i usually do this while my other half puts our son to sleep, so i can sit down and have a few beers knowing that when she comes downstairs i can just pop it into the oven lol in future i'll top it just before it goes into the oven! i'll also consider cutting down the amount of dough used to make a 12" pizza, as it could do with being slightly thinner!

Pete-zza - Going back to an earlier question i forgot to answer, the flour i used this time was "Hovis", which in the UK is a pretty well known brand. I typically use the stores own brand stuff, but maybe i'd be better sticking to the likes of what i've used this time.

The homemade sauce i use consists of garlic lightly fried in splash of olive oil, with a can of chopped tomatoes, some salt and pepper, i then blend it in a food processor and add oregano (or fresh basil when i have it) and let it reduce to a fairly thick consistancy.

As you guessed im based in the UK and our oven at home only goes up to gas mark 8, which seems to be around 450 according to conversions i've seen online, although im sure my oven thermometer was reading 425 when it was on gas mark 5 when i baked this pizza...so i'll need to test it really, im sure it will go higher than 450.

Thanks for clarifying what you meant about moving it to the top shelf towards the end of the baking.

I'm about to start a seperate thread about acquiring some unglazed quarry tiles in the UK, was looking around today but was unsure what to buy as nothing was advertised specifically as "quarry tiles" so i'll see if any UK members can advise me.

Thanks for the information on freezing dough, i'm now about to have a good read through the thread you've linked me to.

Thanks for making me feel welcome here as well, this forum has got to be the ultimate resource of info on making pizza.

« Last Edit: June 06, 2009, 05:39:35 PM by 5thElement »

Offline 5thElement

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Re: My first pizza..pictures and couple of questions
« Reply #11 on: June 09, 2009, 03:14:18 PM »
I'm going to try the cold fermented version of this tomorrow and just wanted to confirm a couple things.

Once the dough is kneaded, put into a ball and lightly coated in olive oil, after 2 days, should i expect it to have risen/expanded as much as it usually does? or less?

Is it suitable to place the doughball in a sandwich/food bag, or am i best with a plastic box with open space around the dough.

Thanks!

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Re: My first pizza..pictures and couple of questions
« Reply #12 on: June 10, 2009, 07:22:14 AM »
5thElement,

Under normal conditions, you shouldn't see a great deal of expansion if you use the much lower amount of yeast. The dough should be expanding but because it may slump and flatten, you may not be able to tell visually. There should be no reason for alarm.

You should be able to use a plastic storage bag/food bag of the proper size to hold the amount of dough involved while allowing space for expansion.

Peter

Offline 5thElement

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Re: My first pizza..pictures and couple of questions
« Reply #13 on: June 10, 2009, 11:05:40 AM »
Thanks Peter

I've just finished doing a ball of dough for one pizza (halfing the recipe and omitting the milk)

So i ended up using

250g Strong White Bread Flour
1/4 Tsp yeast (roughly 0.7/0.8g)
1/4 Tbsp Salt
1/4 Tbsp Sugar
150ml Water
1 Tbsp Olive Oil

Doughball weighed roughly 410g and it's now lightly oiled and sitting in a small sandwich bag in the fridge.

I'll take it out Friday, let it sit for an hour and a half, shape it, top it, bake it and post some photos of the result!

I reckon i'll also follow your tip and use 335g of dough for a 12" pizza.

With the leftover i'll probably make up a quick garlic olive oil and spread it with that.

Can't wait to see how this turns out!

Thanks

p.s

How do i use the expanded dough calculator? is there no way to enter my ingredients above and have it calculate, or do i need to work out the percentages of what i've used first?
« Last Edit: June 10, 2009, 11:13:06 AM by 5thElement »

Offline BurntEdges

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Re: My first pizza..pictures and couple of questions
« Reply #14 on: June 10, 2009, 11:49:30 AM »
5th,

You might want to consider dividing the dough now (335g & 75g) so as to reduce handling & reshaping of the ball shortly before using it.

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Re: My first pizza..pictures and couple of questions
« Reply #15 on: June 10, 2009, 01:19:11 PM »
How do i use the expanded dough calculator? is there no way to enter my ingredients above and have it calculate, or do i need to work out the percentages of what i've used first?

5thElement,

To use the expanded dough calculating tool, you have to first convert all of the ingredients to weight measurements and then calculate the baker's percents based on those values. The tool was not designed to do that. Once you are done making the pizzas and are satisfied with the results, I can help you with the conversions.

I agree with BurntEdges about doing the division of the dough into two pieces up front rather than after the fermentation period.

Peter

Offline 5thElement

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Re: My first pizza..pictures and couple of questions
« Reply #16 on: June 12, 2009, 01:45:23 PM »
I've just taken the dough out of the fridge and my initial observations are that it seems alot more moist and soft (no idea if thats good or not lol) and it's no longer a ball, it's flattened out.

So..an hour to half to wait now..i'll post some photos of the pizza once it's done!

Offline ThunderStik

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Re: My first pizza..pictures and couple of questions
« Reply #17 on: June 12, 2009, 01:50:00 PM »
Please do, im at work and need some pizza porn. :-D
I KNOW MORE ABOUT PIZZA THAN ANYBODY!!!!!!!

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Offline 5thElement

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Re: My first pizza..pictures and couple of questions
« Reply #18 on: June 12, 2009, 04:45:43 PM »
Well the result was a bit of a disaster :( maybe a slight exageration, as it was perfectly edible and tasted fine lol but...

First off, i went with around 330g for a 12" pizza, dough was taken out the fridge for about 1hr30m and i then shaped the dough (tried to do it by hand but had to resort to a rolling pin because it kept contracting/shrinking back as usual...or maybe my technique just sucks)

Topped it just before it went into the oven this time and basically it didn't seem to rise much at all and the base didn't crisp up as much either, i was using a new tray, same type though, basic pizza tray with holes in it, so that was the only difference.

It tasted fine, but it was pretty thin in the middle and the crust was fairly chewy and didn't have much in the way of air bubbles/bread like texture.

I dunno what went wrong? i obviously expected it to be slightly thinner than usual as i used less dough, but this was alot thinner.

Any ideas?

Here's a couple of pictures

It wasn't as floppy after a couple minutes cooling down, but hopefully these give some idea of how it compared with my original recipe.
« Last Edit: June 12, 2009, 04:48:00 PM by 5thElement »

Offline ThunderStik

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Re: My first pizza..pictures and couple of questions
« Reply #19 on: June 12, 2009, 05:13:50 PM »
5th,

Thats not bad at all. What oven temp?

Also, I have started doing something as of late that has drastically helped in the area of forming and the rise. I have been use a room warm-up time of no less than 3 hrs and up to 5.

At this point the ball will be rising and become very easy to work and form. Plus at least for me I have had much better rise/oven spring with this method also.

Dont be discouraged, at least for me it was and still is baby steps and I learned to be prepaired to be dissapointed. Until recently that was somewhat the case. My last few batches have been outstanding with zero dissapointments.

 It just takes pie-time (experience).
I KNOW MORE ABOUT PIZZA THAN ANYBODY!!!!!!!

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