A D V E R T I S E M E N T


Author Topic: The Perfect Pizza Dough by Fabrizio Casucci  (Read 1996 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline DoouBall

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1296
The Perfect Pizza Dough by Fabrizio Casucci
« on: January 01, 2021, 03:35:07 PM »
The Perfect Pizza Dough by Fabrizio Casucci is a really interesting book!

I read it, couldn't fall asleep thinking about everything I learned and then re-read it from start to finish the next day. It's a pretty short book at only 139 pages, and pretty expensive too, around $40 on Amazon, but it was well worth it. The ideas that Fabrizio discusses are one of the best explanations I have read about how Italian pizza professionals think about flour choices, leavening, maturation and the use of direct and indirect dough mixtures. He covers multiple options for direct method and focuses on autolyse and biga as the primary preferment choices. If you've been making pizza for a while, there will be many things in here you already know, but I bet there will be plenty of new information. He also gives a very nice explanation for order of ingredients when using a spiral mixer and how to tell if the dough is ready. It may or may not transform your pizza game but you will probably really enjoy the book. Some of the dough recipes are very unique such as a multicereal dough with biga. I tried it and was blown away by the texture and flavor. Results posted here:

https://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=58510.msg652312#msg652312

Only thing I found unusual is that many of the recipes use low hydrations such as 54-56% hydration plus oil. I believe these recipes are more designed for Pizza Classica or Tonda Romana. Other recipes feature 63-65% hydration, and there is a Pizza in Pala recipe using 80% biga at the end of the book. Can't wait to try some of these other recipes.
« Last Edit: January 01, 2021, 08:26:54 PM by DoouBall »
Alex

Outdoor Oven: Blackstone. Indoor Oven: Gaggenau.

Offline goldmax

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 6
  • Location: Lincolnshire, UK
  • I Love Pizza!
Re: The Perfect Pizza Dough by Fabrizio Casucci
« Reply #1 on: January 01, 2021, 05:07:15 PM »
Thanks for the heads up

Offline Sapp

  • Lifetime Member
  • *
  • Posts: 148
  • Location: Ocean City NJ
  • I Love Pizza!
Re: The Perfect Pizza Dough by Fabrizio Casucci
« Reply #2 on: January 30, 2021, 12:06:02 PM »
Thanks for the tip. Iíve read it twice and now remember why I switched to Business in college. Science aside, I was struck by the low hydration recommendations by flour type and recipe but maybe that is why all the pictures of dough balls look so high and round. Not even a slight flattening dough ball amongst the bunch. I also appreciate his use of specialty flours. The main benefit was for me to understand maturation which seems to get discussed only informally in the Forum or other books. If there was a gap in the learning portion of the book it was yeast quantities to go along with the maturation and fermentation decisions. Interesting that there was no discussion of natural starter as an important option

Thanks for the find and recommendation

Offline DoouBall

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1296
Re: The Perfect Pizza Dough by Fabrizio Casucci
« Reply #3 on: January 31, 2021, 10:06:54 PM »
Thanks for the tip. Iíve read it twice and now remember why I switched to Business in college. Science aside, I was struck by the low hydration recommendations by flour type and recipe but maybe that is why all the pictures of dough balls look so high and round. Not even a slight flattening dough ball amongst the bunch. I also appreciate his use of specialty flours. The main benefit was for me to understand maturation which seems to get discussed only informally in the Forum or other books. If there was a gap in the learning portion of the book it was yeast quantities to go along with the maturation and fermentation decisions. Interesting that there was no discussion of natural starter as an important option

Thanks for the find and recommendation

I completely agree with everything you said.
Alex

Outdoor Oven: Blackstone. Indoor Oven: Gaggenau.

Offline ARenko

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 585
  • Location: The Woodlands, TX
Re: The Perfect Pizza Dough by Fabrizio Casucci
« Reply #4 on: February 12, 2021, 09:10:29 PM »
Thanks for this book reccomendation.  I'm just to the chapter on salt, but so far I find it very interesting/ informative.  I agree with what Sapp says as well. 

A D V E R T I S E M E N T


Offline Sapp

  • Lifetime Member
  • *
  • Posts: 148
  • Location: Ocean City NJ
  • I Love Pizza!
Re: The Perfect Pizza Dough by Fabrizio Casucci
« Reply #5 on: February 13, 2021, 07:49:26 AM »
I tried using his yeast formulas for pizza last week and got numbers that were much higher than the Forum table but I really like the other concepts he brings home.

Iím going to diligently follow one of his direct dough recipes as soon as my Saputo stones arrive from Italy to retrofit my WFO. Iíve never done a Biga preparation because I like the natural starter approach. The question is will I make Fabrizioís recipe my first effort or is there a more idiot proof set of instructions to follow for a Biga novice?

Whatís interesting is that I have left the book out to read a third time!

Offline ARenko

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 585
  • Location: The Woodlands, TX
Re: The Perfect Pizza Dough by Fabrizio Casucci
« Reply #6 on: February 13, 2021, 08:46:23 AM »
The question is will I make Fabrizioís recipe my first effort or is there a more idiot proof set of instructions to follow for a Biga novice?
He's obviously put a lot of thought into his recipes and processes, and his recipes seem straightforward.  I'd probably just start with one of his simpler Biga recipes, but then I've never made a Biga dough.

One thing I wish he did in the recipes is give some guidance on dough form and cooking time/ temp.  He only addresses temp for the Neapolitan and Roman pizza peel recipes.  I guess he leaves it for you to play with based on your preference for soft or crispy (which also somewhat decides how you form the dough), but I wonder if some recipes aren't suited more for one or the other.
« Last Edit: February 13, 2021, 07:53:23 PM by ARenko »

Offline john_k

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 113
  • Location: SW lower Michigan
  • I Love Pizza!
Re: The Perfect Pizza Dough by Fabrizio Casucci
« Reply #7 on: February 13, 2021, 10:27:48 PM »
Can you say a little about how the form of the dough affects soft vs crispy? That really caught my attention, and it is something that matters to me.

Offline ARenko

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 585
  • Location: The Woodlands, TX
Re: The Perfect Pizza Dough by Fabrizio Casucci
« Reply #8 on: February 13, 2021, 11:35:07 PM »
Can you say a little about how the form of the dough affects soft vs crispy? That really caught my attention, and it is something that matters to me.
In the book he says for crispy pizza it needs to be very thin and flat to the edge. Not sure I totally buy that, but that's what I was referring to. Just wish he'd give some guidance on forming and cooking in case it may matter for the particular recipe.
« Last Edit: February 14, 2021, 01:38:06 PM by ARenko »

Offline Sapp

  • Lifetime Member
  • *
  • Posts: 148
  • Location: Ocean City NJ
  • I Love Pizza!
Re: The Perfect Pizza Dough by Fabrizio Casucci
« Reply #9 on: February 14, 2021, 08:47:03 AM »
Once my Saputo tiles come in to retrofit my oven, I will do a side by side between my current favorite NP recipe with natural starter and one of his similarly matured direct doughs. He also had a30% whole grain NP dough. I use a lot of whole grains and can get them to work well in NY style but not NP other than my starter being whole wheat.

Eventually, Iím going to have to do my first Biga dough. Maybe follow his book but there are You Tube videos, other books and Alexís advanced class too.

A D V E R T I S E M E N T


Offline Sapp

  • Lifetime Member
  • *
  • Posts: 148
  • Location: Ocean City NJ
  • I Love Pizza!
Re: The Perfect Pizza Dough by Fabrizio Casucci
« Reply #10 on: February 14, 2021, 08:54:23 AM »
Alex,

I also tried to contact Marco Fuso to investigate a 1:1 pizza consultancy based on the positive feedback you posted your Biga Canotto thread. His organized classes donít quite fit... designed for people in or want to be in the business OR beginners. The exception seemed to be the Biga class which Iím interested in but it is not my familyís favorite styles or NP. Too many young grandchildren, nieces and nephews that will just leave the beautiful poofy crust.

Someone returned my email and asked additional questions. I overshared and then never heard back. Obviously Iím not in London but hoped for maybe a 1:1 Zoom instruction to tighten up my methods, management and handling for al taglio and NP.

Anyway, it seemed like a very interesting lead


Offline DoouBall

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1296
Re: The Perfect Pizza Dough by Fabrizio Casucci
« Reply #11 on: February 14, 2021, 03:38:49 PM »
Alex,

I also tried to contact Marco Fuso to investigate a 1:1 pizza consultancy based on the positive feedback you posted your Biga Canotto thread. His organized classes donít quite fit... designed for people in or want to be in the business OR beginners. The exception seemed to be the Biga class which Iím interested in but it is not my familyís favorite styles or NP. Too many young grandchildren, nieces and nephews that will just leave the beautiful poofy crust.

Someone returned my email and asked additional questions. I overshared and then never heard back. Obviously Iím not in London but hoped for maybe a 1:1 Zoom instruction to tighten up my methods, management and handling for al taglio and NP.

Anyway, it seemed like a very interesting lead

Yeah I get it. It's not for everyone. Marco specializes in Italian styles including Neapolitan, Canotto with Biga, Thin and Crispy and Teglia/Pala. His classes are geared towards pros or begginers, just like you said. He normally only teaches pros but due to the pandemic he is doing some online classes. I'm guesssing that those will disappear once the pandemic is over and he will be teaching pros full time again.
Alex

Outdoor Oven: Blackstone. Indoor Oven: Gaggenau.

Offline Sapp

  • Lifetime Member
  • *
  • Posts: 148
  • Location: Ocean City NJ
  • I Love Pizza!
Re: The Perfect Pizza Dough by Fabrizio Casucci
« Reply #12 on: August 06, 2021, 09:51:16 AM »
Time to try some recipes. I finally received the Saputo stones to retrofit my oven. Despite having the specs, the stones didnít really fit and I had to have my Mason do further cutting. I plan on trying out a side by side comparison of my go to standard NP formulation using whole grain natural starter and Super Nuvola or Saccorossa against one the bookís Biga/multi grain recipes to test the recipe and the oven. Iím curious to see if it solves my slight overcharging problem at high temperatures. Also my deck is now two inches closer to the dome due to thickness  of the Saputo and I wonder what effect that will have on cooking the top.

Itís all fun

Offline DoouBall

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1296
Re: The Perfect Pizza Dough by Fabrizio Casucci
« Reply #13 on: August 06, 2021, 10:06:21 PM »
Time to try some recipes. I finally received the Saputo stones to retrofit my oven. Despite having the specs, the stones didnít really fit and I had to have my Mason do further cutting. I plan on trying out a side by side comparison of my go to standard NP formulation using whole grain natural starter and Super Nuvola or Saccorossa against one the bookís Biga/multi grain recipes to test the recipe and the oven. Iím curious to see if it solves my slight overcharging problem at high temperatures. Also my deck is now two inches closer to the dome due to thickness  of the Saputo and I wonder what effect that will have on cooking the top.

Itís all fun

It'll probably cook the top and cheese faster. Let us know how it goes.
Alex

Outdoor Oven: Blackstone. Indoor Oven: Gaggenau.

Offline Sapp

  • Lifetime Member
  • *
  • Posts: 148
  • Location: Ocean City NJ
  • I Love Pizza!
Re: The Perfect Pizza Dough by Fabrizio Casucci
« Reply #14 on: August 09, 2021, 06:01:21 PM »
Alex,

I started to organize my recipes for my next pizza night with the intent of comparing my current go to NP style dough versus a recipe from the book. What I am struggling with is making sense of the yeast levels in his recipes. Take a look at the 40% Biga recipe on page 123 or the 30% Biga/30% whole-wheat recipe. Am I being dense?

I might not be the brightest bulb in the box anymore but I canít figure out the yeast levels between his total dough %, the Biga yeast level and then the refreshment level. I must be missing something easy.

Sapp

A D V E R T I S E M E N T


Offline DoouBall

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1296
Re: The Perfect Pizza Dough by Fabrizio Casucci
« Reply #15 on: August 09, 2021, 10:41:42 PM »
Alex,

I started to organize my recipes for my next pizza night with the intent of comparing my current go to NP style dough versus a recipe from the book. What I am struggling with is making sense of the yeast levels in his recipes. Take a look at the 40% Biga recipe on page 123 or the 30% Biga/30% whole-wheat recipe. Am I being dense?

I might not be the brightest bulb in the box anymore but I canít figure out the yeast levels between his total dough %, the Biga yeast level and then the refreshment level. I must be missing something easy.

Sapp

I see what you're saying. It seems he doesn't factor in the yeast that goes into the biga into the "Example of dough" section of the recipe. The "Example of dough" and the "Refreshment" sections contain the same amount of yeast which makes me think that's the yeast that goes into the refreshment.

Fabrizio makes his biga with the traditional 1% yeast relative to flour. Generally speaking, adding yeast to the refreshment is optional. I often don't add any yeast to 30%+ biga and it comes out fine. It just takes longer for the dough balls to double.

However, if you want to follow Fabrizio's recipe and achieve the specific timings of his dough at each stage, then you just make the biga with 1% yeast relative to flour in the biga, and then you add the exact amount of yeast he specifies in the refreshment, and then his timings for the time in bulk/balls will work for you. Hope that makes sense.
Alex

Outdoor Oven: Blackstone. Indoor Oven: Gaggenau.

Offline Sapp

  • Lifetime Member
  • *
  • Posts: 148
  • Location: Ocean City NJ
  • I Love Pizza!
Re: The Perfect Pizza Dough by Fabrizio Casucci
« Reply #16 on: August 20, 2021, 08:04:10 PM »
Alex,

Posting some pics of Casucciís dough recipe. He did respond to my email and even provided his mobile. He has been quite gracious with his time commenting on different phases of my process. Bottom line is that the newly modified valoriani oven with a Saputo deck overlay performed very well for me but it took time to dial in the optimum temperature. The stones also create  mini seams that make it easy to rip a thin or over fermented dough. Once I got it right the cook and the texture was superior.

Fabrizioís dough was very flavorful and you could taste the impact of the Biga preparation the same way as in  bread. There is no mistaking the 30% whole grain which is fine by me but it will make the cornicione a bit heavier. My guests were split on whether they liked my standard 15% whole wheat natural starter 2 day dough versus the Casucci recipe in side by side margaritas. I want to try his 50% Biga/50% autolyse recipe next.

The pizzas attached are margarita with Buffalo mozzarella, speck with aged red cow parmigiana, caramelized onion-dolce Gorgonzola-fresh fig on the SD dough.

Offline DoouBall

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1296
Re: The Perfect Pizza Dough by Fabrizio Casucci
« Reply #17 on: August 24, 2021, 08:39:03 PM »
Looks great! I bet it was tasty.
Alex

Outdoor Oven: Blackstone. Indoor Oven: Gaggenau.

A D V E R T I S E M E N T