Author Topic: Repeatable Pizza recipe for practice, preferably NY style  (Read 2684 times)

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Online Pete-zza

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Re: Repeatable Pizza recipe for practice, preferably NY style
« Reply #20 on: August 07, 2009, 06:47:29 PM »
Dave,

It just dawned on me that you may be using a measuring cup intended for measuring liquids to measure dry ingredients, based on the photo in Reply 11 in this thread. If so, you should be aware that you should not use measuring cups specifically designed for measuring liquids for measuring dry ingredients. Several years ago, Cook's Illustrated discussed this topic. I have copied and pasted their report on this subject below:

Published September 1, 1994.

Can wet and dry measuring cups be used interchangeably?

Do you really need to use both dry and wet measuring cups? Yes.

We first tested sugar and flour, measuring them into dry cups (made from metal and plastic and capable of being leveled off) and then dumping them into wet measures glass and clear plastic containers marked with ounces and cups. The dry ingredients came up short in the wet measures, and it was impossible to level off and accurately gauge how much sugar or flour was in a wet measure. Essentially, when you pour a liquid into a container it flows down into every crevice, leaving no spaces, not even microscopic ones. But granulated solids can settle unpredictably, depending on the shape and size of the grains and of the container into which they are poured. When poured into a wide container, the grains can spread out and settle down more tightly than when they are stacked up in a narrow container. When settled more densely, they occupy less volume, so that the same amount of sugar will actually occupy less volume in a wide container than in a narrow one.

The bottom line? Dry ingredients must be measured in cups specifically designed for dry measures.

We then measured varying amounts of water in wet measures and then transferred the water to the appropriate dry measures. Here, the amounts were the same. However, we generally find wet measures easier to work with since they need not be filled to the rim. Liquids filled to the rim are easy to spill while being carried to a bowl or pot.

And what about "half-way" ingredients like yogurt and sour cream? We weighed out eight ounces of yogurt and found that it fit perfectly into a one-cup dry measure. However, in a wet measure it fell below the one-cup line. It also was harder to gauge how much yogurt was actually in the glass measuring cup, so we recommend measuring yogurt, sour cream, and other semi-solid ingredients in dry measures.


Peter


Offline thetaalpha970

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Re: Repeatable Pizza recipe for practice, preferably NY style
« Reply #21 on: August 07, 2009, 07:45:15 PM »
Wow Peter. I had no idea. I guess that's why there was so much left...and yet the article says that dry things came up short. Yet another item on my list get along with that digital scale.

Thank you.

Dave

On a further note, I tried making some more dough today using the Varasano hand knead recipe. This is my first time making more than one pizza at a time. Also, I intend to go back to the Lehmann recipe you gave me and try that again after I finish this batch. You have been really helpful, and I appreciate your input. Looking forward to more pizza making.

Online Pete-zza

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Re: Repeatable Pizza recipe for practice, preferably NY style
« Reply #22 on: August 07, 2009, 08:03:50 PM »
Dave,

The flour and water volume measurements for the Lehmann dough recipe came from the Mass-Volume Conversion Calculator at http://foodsim.unclesalmon.com/. When I collected data for the algorithm for that calculator, which member November devised, I used a set of metal measuring cups from Williams-Sonoma. They are much shallower than a typical glass Pyrex measuring cup, so the compaction dynamics will be different. Also, part of the Textbook flour Measurement Method calls for leveling the flour in the measuring cup(s), which you cannot do with a measuring cup used to measure liquids.

I feel better that I found the reason why your flour measurement was off ;D. It perhaps is also useful to remind people that there are dry and liquid measuring cups and that they can't be used interchangeably in all cases.

Peter
« Last Edit: March 14, 2013, 07:04:57 PM by Pete-zza »

Offline thetaalpha970

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Day 3
« Reply #23 on: August 08, 2009, 05:57:26 PM »
Tried to take out some dough today with bad results. It stuck to the "peel" (cookie sheet) because I took too long to top the pie. My question is, if you dip the skin in flour and you mess up, can you throw it back in the fridge and use it again. After a while, the dough becomes too inelastic and you have to let it rest again...but is the extra flour on the outside a bad thing? I can't imagine how it would be good.   

Angry and upset...but I'm sure it's all a part of the process.>:(

Online Pete-zza

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Re: Repeatable Pizza recipe for practice, preferably NY style
« Reply #24 on: August 08, 2009, 06:54:53 PM »
Dave,

Unless you are making fairly small pizzas with few toppings, metal is not the best choice as a makeshift peel because the dough will have a greater tendency to stick to metal than to other materials. Ultimately, you will want to get a wooden peel but until then you are perhaps better off using a piece of cardboard (dusted with flour or other release agent). Most professionals have both wooden and metal peels. The wooden peels are used to load the pizzas into the oven and the metal peels are used to remove the pizzas from the oven.

From your brief description, I am not certain what happened specifically to your dough skin, but if if you dipped it in flour and you messed up somehow, I would be inclined to leave the skin as is and return it (covered) to the refrigerator, or leave it on your work surface (covered) to allow the gluten to soften again. If the dough was re-kneaded, re-balled or re-shaped to the point where it became overly elastic, with a lot of springback, it may take a few hours for the dough to recover enough to allow you to work with it again. If the skin was dusted with flour, I would not re-knead the dough skin to incorporate the flour. Unless the dough skin is quite wet, the bench flour may not incorporate well into the dough skin.

Peter
« Last Edit: August 08, 2009, 08:59:26 PM by Pete-zza »

Offline thetaalpha970

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Re: Repeatable Pizza recipe for practice, preferably NY style
« Reply #25 on: August 08, 2009, 07:40:26 PM »
Update: more failure.  :'(
You are right about the cookie sheet being a bad makeshift peel. It stuck and stuck...result: all 3 doughs misshapen at best, tossed at worst.
I need a peel.
Lots of smallish bubbles this time when trying to shape the dough, and I re-dipped the skin in flour. Difficult to stretch (evenly in a circle) and nearly impossible to get onto the stone in one piece.
Practice makes perfect.  :-\
Any tips on stretching evenly? I'm doing the edges first, and stretching the sides out with my knuckles.

Online Pete-zza

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Re: Repeatable Pizza recipe for practice, preferably NY style
« Reply #26 on: August 08, 2009, 09:31:31 PM »
Any tips on stretching evenly? I'm doing the edges first, and stretching the sides out with my knuckles.

Dave,

It takes mainly practice to be able to get more proficient in shaping dough skins. Some people lower the hydration for practice purposes so that the dough is easier to work with. For example, instead of using 63% hydration, you might try using 58%. Once you get better at shaping and stretching dough balls into skins, you can gradually increase the hydration.

Another method is to use a rolling pin and roll the dough out to about a couple inches short of the final desired size and then stretch the dough skin out the rest of the way to the final desired size by hand. Tom Lehmann discusses this method in a PMQ Think Tank post at http://thinktank.pmq.com/viewtopic.php?p=41080#41080. I believe that that method is also shown in a video (with Jeff Zeak) at http://www.pmq.com/tt2/videos/id_181/title_How-to-Make-Pizza-Dough/. Another good video is the one by the pizza dough impressario Tony Gemignani, at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SjYqw1CLZsA. If you don't have a rolling pin, you might try using a wine or large soda bottle--and add a rolling pin to your growing list of purchases along with the digital scale, dry measuring cups, and wooden peel ;D.

Peter

EDIT (8/23/13): For an operative link for the PMQ video, see
« Last Edit: August 23, 2013, 08:59:08 AM by Pete-zza »