Pizza Making Forum

Pizza Making => Chicago Style => Topic started by: jkolassa on June 12, 2013, 11:43:59 PM

Title: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: jkolassa on June 12, 2013, 11:43:59 PM
So I posted a while back about wanting to make a giordano's pizza at home.  Things got busy and money was tight (I needed to buy a pan) so that got put on the back burner.  I finally have the opportunity to do it now and am very motivated to try this.  There are tons of threads on this subject with a bunch of different recipes.  I was hoping to get a good thread dedicated of the truest Giordano's Clone.  I'm hoping to have a definitive answer from someone who has

1.Actually had Giordano's from the pizzeria
2. Tried multiple clone recipes
3. Looked like this  :drool: after eating the recipe they post.

1 and 3 are requirements and 2 isn't required but  the most important part is that obviously I want it be as close to Giordano's as possible.  You may have come across a great recipe for pizza but if it is good for other reasons than tasting like Giordano's I'm not interested. I know there are a bunch of threads on this subject but they are more about figuring it out.  I want this to be more like just a list of the recipes with maybe a little bit about how close it is to Giordano's.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on June 13, 2013, 09:17:59 PM
Giordano's is my favorite too.  The link below has a post by "Chicago Rules" and his pic is the closest that I've seen.  But without a sheeter you are gonna miss a crucial part in replicating Giordano's flakiness.  There is also a very distinct flavor in their crust that I am unable to pinpoint. I'm sure u know what I'm talking about.
I know they use Stella mozzarella, 6-1 tomatoes and they bake at 465F in a rotary type oven that looks expensive as hell.

I really feel Giordanos needs to be revisited on here because it truly is one of the best pizzas in the country.

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,2314.0.html (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,2314.0.html)

Nate
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on June 13, 2013, 09:21:29 PM
Here is another that looks very close but that top layer is too thick.

http://johnsonville.org/index.php?ndx=101 (http://johnsonville.org/index.php?ndx=101)
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on June 13, 2013, 09:22:47 PM
And here is one more.  Not sure if it's the same as the first link because it mentions Chicago Rules.

http://www.kitchenmonki.com/m/recipe/Giordanos_Famous_Stuffed_Crust_Recipe (http://www.kitchenmonki.com/m/recipe/Giordanos_Famous_Stuffed_Crust_Recipe)
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Chicago Bob on June 13, 2013, 11:35:24 PM
So I posted a while back about wanting to make a giordano's pizza at home.  Things got busy and money was tight (I needed to buy a pan) so that got put on the back burner.  I finally have the opportunity to do it now and am very motivated to try this.  There are tons of threads on this subject with a bunch of different recipes.  I was hoping to get a good thread dedicated of the truest Giordano's Clone.  I'm hoping to have a definitive answer from someone who has

1.Actually had Giordano's from the pizzeria
2. Tried multiple clone recipes
3. Looked like this  :drool: after eating the recipe they post.

1 and 3 are requirements and 2 isn't required but  the most important part is that obviously I want it be as close to Giordano's as possible.  You may have come across a great recipe for pizza but if it is good for other reasons than tasting like Giordano's I'm not interested. I know there are a bunch of threads on this subject but they are more about figuring it out.  I want this to be more like just a list of the recipes with maybe a little bit about how close it is to Giordano's.
Sure thing man...here ya go!  :drool:   I hope it meets your "requirements" dude!!!   8)

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?action=search2 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?action=search2)
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on June 21, 2013, 11:28:23 PM
Anyone gonna try one of the above recipes?
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: jkolassa on July 02, 2013, 05:15:48 PM
Hey chicago Bob the one you posted just brought me to a page that said "Did you forget to put something to search for?" Could you repost the link?  Also, all of the recipes posted have been for a 9" pizza.  The pan I bought is 12".  Does it work to just multiply all ingredients by 4/3?
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Chicago Bob on July 02, 2013, 05:42:26 PM
Hey chicago Bob the one you posted just brought me to a page that said "Did you forget to put something to search for?" Could you repost the link?  Also, all of the recipes posted have been for a 9" pizza.  The pan I bought is 12".  Does it work to just multiply all ingredients by 4/3?
Sorry, the link was sardonic.
You have to do a little math to convert pan sizes...here is how it's done.  http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,1662.msg14990.html#msg14990 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,1662.msg14990.html#msg14990)
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Pete-zza on July 02, 2013, 05:46:21 PM
Joe,

I believe that Bob meant to refer you to the search page at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?action=search (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?action=search). To get to that page, you only need to click on the Search button at the top of each page.

If the dough formulation you plan to use is in baker's percent format, it is perhaps best to use the applicable dough calculating tool and modify it for the 12" size. But, in general, the multiplier factor you want to use is the ratio of the squares of the radii of the two size pizzas. In this case, it would be 62/4.52 = 1.78. If you multiply the values of the quantities of ingredients used for the 9" pizza by 1.78, that will give you the values of those ingredients to use for the 12" size.

Peter
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Chicago Bob on July 02, 2013, 06:06:26 PM
Oh that's right joe...I forgot about the dough calculators. You can enter any size pizza/pan you want on there and then just plug in your ingredient amounts.
Come back here if you have a problem.

Bob
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: jkolassa on July 02, 2013, 11:13:50 PM
Yeah I knew about the Dough calculators. But none of these recipes have been in bakers percentages have they?  As for the method Pete-zza outlined, using the area of the pizza, that will work for non-bakers percentage recipes?
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Chicago Bob on July 02, 2013, 11:25:34 PM
Yeah I knew about the Dough calculators. But none of these recipes have been in bakers percentages have they?  As for the method Pete-zza outlined, using the area of the pizza, that will work for non-bakers percentage recipes?
Yes sir.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Pete-zza on July 03, 2013, 10:08:30 AM
As for the method Pete-zza outlined, using the area of the pizza, that will work for non-bakers percentage recipes?
Joe,

As Bob noted, yes, but the extrapolation may not be exact when volume measurements are used, especially for the flour and water, because measuring out ingredients volumetrically is far less accurate and inconsistent than using weights. If you have a particular recipe in mind perhaps I can take a look at it and tell you how best to proceed to convert it to the pan size you want to use.

Peter
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on July 06, 2013, 08:18:44 PM
I want to see some attempts dammit.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 18, 2013, 06:18:36 PM
I am gonna be trying each of these different recipes soon.  I just need to figure out which pan I'm gonna use.  Giordanos stuffed pizzas are the best in Chicago and they really do need some love around here.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 18, 2013, 09:54:35 PM
I was just about to start a new thread with pics of the stuffed pizzas I've made in recent days (particularly the one I made yesterday), but my computer won't let me upload pics. So anyway, here's a blog post (http://ryanspizzablog.blogspot.com/2013/08/my-first-stuffed-pizza.html) I published the other day (and have updated a couple times). It's not a very thorough post because I originally published it just to share the pics with Facebook friends (because my computer won't let me upload pics to Facebook, either). Anyway, I think you'll like it.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 19, 2013, 01:58:38 AM
OK, so I've never had Giordano's or any other stuffed pizza, which means I don't know how it's supposed to taste. All I know is what it looks like. But y'know, sometimes looks can tell you a lot. And I feel like I've pretty well interpreted the look of Giordano's and translated it into a near-clone.

I started my quest to clone Giordano's by reading everything I could find about Giordano's on these boards, as well as elsewhere on the internet. It was difficult to make any sense of it, though, because the most active contributors didn't use bakers' percents and because the posts with the best pictures didn't include any kind of formula or recipe. After reading almost everything I could find, I got the impression that a couple members seemed pretty confident in their recipes, so I did my best to translate their volumetric measurements to weight measurements. After entering some of these weight estimates into my spreadsheet that converts weight-based recipes to formulas, it told me these guys are probably doing something like:

100% Flour
50% Water
1% ADY
1% Salt
18% Oil
4.5% Sugar

Once I established this formula, the first thing I did was say to myself, "4.5% sugar? No way. We'll change that to 2% (which is probably still pretty ridiculously high)." And then I said to myself, "18% oil? No way." Someone's apparently confusing this stuff with Malnati's style deep dish.

Even though I've never had Giordano's, I know their dough is nothing like Malnati's dough. I can tell just by looking at the Giordano's dough in this video (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5yOtvj6_5GY) that their dough is more like Pizza Hut thin than Malnati's. And I'm pretty sure Pizza Hut thin has little or no fat. So right away I cut the 18% oil figure in half. Even after cutting the oil percentage in half, I knew 50% hydration was probably too high. So I decreased the hydration to 45%.

Here's the dough formula I used for my very first attempt at cloning Giordano's:

100% Gold Medal all-purpose flour
45% Water
1% ADY
1.08% Salt
9.38% Oil
2% Sugar

I used this formula to make some dough last Tuesday morning, knowing I'd turn it into a pizza that afternoon or evening. I was very pleased with my results. However, 2% sugar was obviously too much. I don't know if the crust tasted anything like Giordano's crust because I've never had Giordano's. I know it looked a lot like Giordano's, though, aside from the excessive browning.

In one post I read, someone (probably Peter) speculated that the fat percentage in Giordano's dough may be as low as 6%. Based on the look of their dough, I thought that was a very reasonable estimate. So with my next batch, I wanted to be closer to 6%, but I didn't want to make a huge change because my first batch of dough was pretty good and because my next batch would be used to feed guests.

Also, I read on Slice that Giordano's dough is a 3 or 4-day dough, which told me I need to decrease the yeast. So I decreased the ADY from 1% to 0.6%, for a dough I'd be using about 2-1/2 days later.

But the most important (and biggest) change I made was with the sugar. I was originally so blinded by everyone's sugar-heavy recipes that I totally overlooked a post in which Peter transcribed Giordano's official dough ingredient list. (I don't know the proper terminology to use here.) Anyway, Peter's list did not include sugar. So you know what I did? Yup, I eliminated sugar from my formula.

Here's the formula of my second dough batch:

100% Pillsbury AP flour
46% Water
0.6% ADY
1.5% Salt
8% Oil

Again, I don't know if this dough or crust was anything like Giordano's because I've never had Giordano's. But just look at it (http://ryanspizzablog.blogspot.com/2013/08/my-first-stuffed-pizza.html). And then look at pictures of actual Giordano's pizzas (https://www.google.com/search?q=giordano's&bav=on.2,or.r_qf.&bvm=bv.50768961,d.aWc,pv.xjs.s.en_US.E_1kRF_UP4s.O&biw=1350&bih=677&wrapid=tlif137689179108110&um=1&ie=UTF-8&hl=en&tbm=isch&source=og&sa=N&tab=wi&ei=lLMRUuDlHIS72wXl34G4Dw). It looks just like Giordano's to me.

And that's my entire experience in this department so far. My next batch of dough will be:

100% Pillsbury or Gold Medal AP flour
49% Water
0.8% ADY (but I may switch to IDY for this batch)
1.5% Salt
6% Oil

In case you're wondering, there's no real reason why I used different flours for the two batches. I simply used what I had. My go-to AP flour is Pillsbury bleached, but I've been trying Gold Medal lately, and it seems to work pretty well, too. I don't like KAAP.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: norma427 on August 19, 2013, 07:52:54 AM
I made a few stuffed deep dish pizzas.   

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,10018.0.html (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,10018.0.html)

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,20222.0.html (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,20222.0.html)

and at Reply 239 http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,6480.msg90089.html#msg90089 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,6480.msg90089.html#msg90089)

I never had a stuffed deep dish from any pizzerias so I am not sure how my attempts were compared to a real pizzaeria.

Norma
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 19, 2013, 12:36:22 PM
I had to put my computer in Safe Mode to do this, but it looks like that will allow me to upload pictures. Hope you enjoy. And again, here's a blog post (http://ryanspizzablog.blogspot.com/2013/08/my-first-stuffed-pizza.html) that may reveal some details I didn't include in Reply #16 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,25774.msg274048.html#msg274048).
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 20, 2013, 12:15:57 AM
Ryan,

Your stuffed pizza looks really good but until you actually have it you'll know a few things are missing.  They use a sheeter so their dough has layers.  There is also a very different taste and almost a dry texture to the rim of their dough (dry biscuit like)  Their sauce makes the pizza too.

Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 20, 2013, 11:30:11 AM
I've been looking through Norma's first thread (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,10018.msg87298.html#msg87298 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,10018.msg87298.html#msg87298)), and I like it. I'm surprised that thread didn't get more attention. I didn't see the thread when I was reading everything I could find about stuffed pizza last week. I think Norma's dough formula is much closer to the real thing than any of the recipes I've seen elsewhere, except I have a pretty strong feeling the oil percentage is excessively high. (Maybe I'm wrong, but right now I feel pretty sure Giordano's dough contains a lot less fat.)

I think BTB's post in that thread (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,10018.msg87338.html#msg87338 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,10018.msg87338.html#msg87338)) is a very important piece of the Giordano's puzzle. What he said confirms some suspicions I had about Giordano's crust--mainly that the top and bottom crusts are the same thickness--and it has also given me some other ideas, which I intend to share later in a response on that thread.

Here's a post I think is very important. It's the information Peter received from Giordano's about dough ingredients: http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5674.msg51855.html#msg51855 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5674.msg51855.html#msg51855). It lists the ingredients as "Flour, water, vegetable oil, yeast, salt, spices." Take note that sugar is not listed as an ingredient. (That's a huge piece of the puzzle right there.) Also, yeast is listed before salt, which suggests that Giordano's may use ADY or that there is a very low salt percentage in their dough. In fact, it suggests that the salt percentage is likely very low regardless of which kind of yeast they use, because if they use the dough 3-4 days after mixing, it seems very unlikely that they use more than 1% yeast. Which means the salt percentage is probably well under 1%. To me, the big question is this: What are "spices"?

In this post (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5674.msg56707.html#msg56707 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5674.msg56707.html#msg56707)), Peter says he estimates that Giordano's uses 13 oz of cheese for 10" pizzas. Interestingly, 13 oz of cheese is exactly what I've used for the 10" pizzas I've made. (Also, 13 oz is a figure I decided to use before seeing Peter's post.) Having made three of these pizzas so far, I feel like 13 oz is about right, but I think a little more cheese would be fine, too. (Did I just say that?)

Also, Peter says in this post (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5674.msg69605.html#msg69605 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5674.msg69605.html#msg69605)) that the weight of a baked 10" Giordano's stuffed spinach pizza is 42 oz. With the portions and thicknesses I've used so far, my unbaked 10" stuffed cheese pizza target weight has been 46.38 oz (13.35 oz for bottom dough, 13.04 oz of cheese, 4.96 oz for top dough, and 15.03 oz of sauce). Keep in mind, every pizza loses a little weight while it bakes. Again, I arrived at this weight totally independent of Peter's input. And I only mention that because to me it helps confirm that Peter and I are both on the right track. (I haven't remembered to weigh a baked pizza yet.)

Judging by the color of the dough in this video (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5yOtvj6_5GY), I suspect Giordano's may use unbleached flour.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 20, 2013, 01:30:36 PM
Yours looks much closer than Norma's in my opinion.  Sorry Norma.

The top crust at Giordanos isn't fully cooked (its doughy and actually melds with the cheese.  It appears thinner everytime I have eaten it (about 50 times) but perhaps not cooking it changes the texture.

I agree there is very little salt in the dough.  Their sauce goes perfectly with their crust though.  It is a key element.   Giordanos coats there pans with butter too just before they form the bottom crust.  I don't know if it's the butter that gives there dough a distinct flavor or what.   The outer rim is flaky like a crossaint but with less fat and its drier.  I know they bake at 465F too.  Supposedly they use Stella mozzarella and 6-1 tomatoes.

Nate
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 20, 2013, 02:37:19 PM
I made some dough last night for Thursday, using this formulation:

100% Pillsbury bleached AP flour
49% Water
0.4% IDY
1.5% Salt
6% Corn oil

However, I'm not sure if my IDY is any good, so I'm about to make another batch, just to be sure I have usable dough Thursday, since I'm mostly doing it for a friend. Only this time, I'm gonna use unbleached flour and ADY, as well as less salt and a tad bit more water. This batch will be:

100% Pillsbury unbleached AP flour
50% Water
1% ADY
0.9% Salt
6% Corn oil

I've been using shortening to grease the pan. Not really for any clear reason other than because Giordano's obviously uses some kind of solid fat in the pan. I've read that it's butter and I've read that it's margarine, and I may have also read that it's shortening. Since I haven't given a lot of thought to what it may be, I'm using shortening. Also, I'll probably put a piece of aluminum foil on the top rack of the oven when I bake the next one because I feel like I've been getting a little more influence than I want from the top burner.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Pete-zza on August 20, 2013, 05:29:56 PM
Ryan,

For a list of spices that are generally regarded as safe by the FDA, see http://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/cfdocs/cfcfr/CFRSearch.cfm?fr=182.10 (http://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/cfdocs/cfcfr/CFRSearch.cfm?fr=182.10)

Giordano's is not particularly forthcoming publicly about the ingredients it uses for its pizzas and it does not disclose nutrition information for the products sold in its stores. Since it sells frozen pizzas, the FDA requires Nutrition Facts but, as best I can tell, it does not provide that information at its website even though it is public information. That information should, however, be on the packaging materials for its frozen pizzas. But, even then, that doesn't mean that the frozen pizzas are the same or as good as the pizzas sold in their stores. Companies like Giordano's that sell frozen pizza versions of their freshly baked pizzas like the public to believe this but this is rarely the case. The ingredients can be different (but not too different) and the pizza weights can be different, and certainly making frozen pizzas is not the same as making fresh pizzas.

In Giordano's case, things may also have changed because of their bankruptcy filing a few years ago. Those changes can include the formulations for their products although that has to be handled carefully and perhaps gradually so that their customers don't rebel and abandon Giordano's because the changes did not meet with their satisfaction.

Peter
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 20, 2013, 08:05:40 PM
I believe their bankruptcy wasnt a true one.  They made some bad investments and were freeing up cash.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Pete-zza on August 20, 2013, 09:20:42 PM
I believe their bankruptcy wasnt a true one.  They made some bad investments and were freeing up cash.
Nate,

The main reason for going into bankruptcy is to stiff unsecured creditors and free up cash. However, according to the article at http://www.chicagobusiness.com/article/20120303/ISSUE01/303039973/more-dough-new-ceo-for-giordanos (http://www.chicagobusiness.com/article/20120303/ISSUE01/303039973/more-dough-new-ceo-for-giordanos), it looks like the new owners have a lot of product changes in mind. From a recent report at http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2013-07-09/business/ct-biz-0709-giordanos-20130709_1_phil-martino-giordano-victory-park-capital (http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2013-07-09/business/ct-biz-0709-giordanos-20130709_1_phil-martino-giordano-victory-park-capital), it looks like the new owners are keeping hands off the pizza part of the business for now but that could change at some point.
 
Peter
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 20, 2013, 09:57:28 PM
I'm currently watching a DVR recording of a Travel Channel show called "Pizza Paradises," which the info screen says first aired on 7/25/2004. I believe they originally aired two different episodes of "Pizza Paradises" within a short time frame, or possibly back-to-back, as well as a third "Pizza Paradises" episode maybe six months ago (which was horrible, by the way). Right now I have it paused on a shot showing that Giordano's bottom skin is clearly a good bit thinner than the bottom skins on my attempted Giordano's clones, the first of which is pictured in my stuffed pizza blog post (http://ryanspizzablog.blogspot.com/2013/08/my-first-stuffed-pizza.html) (fourth pic from the top). I can't say for sure what my thickness has been, but I've been shooting for TF=0.100 oz per square inch for the bottom skin and TF=0.60 for the top, which means I should have used 13.35 oz of dough for the bottom skin and 4.96 oz for the top skin. In total, I should have used 18.31 oz of dough for each of my stuffed pizzas (10" x 2").

Good news. I happen to have Saturday's scrap dough in the fridge, and I just weighed it. The scrap dough from one of my 10" pizzas weighs 8.8 oz, and the scrap dough from my other 10" pizza weighs 9.4 oz. Since each of Saturday's two stuffed pizzas began with a hair under 30 oz of dough, that means the total dough weight of each pizza was about 21 oz. So since I rolled the top skins noticeably thinner than the bottom skins, I estimate that my bottom skins were about TF=0.110 and my top skins were about 0.08 (which would require a little over 21 oz of dough). I'd say that's probably a very good estimate (and it did involve some pretty intricate math, which fortunately a spreadsheet calculated for me).

Recap: Based on the specs I entered in my spreadsheet, I should have used 18.31 oz of dough, but it looks like I used about 21 oz. So if my estimate for the TF I ended up using for my bottom skin is accurate (TF=0.110), I'd say I want well under TF=0.100 for each of the skins. Probably in the neighborhood of TF=0.09, which calls for a total of 19.46 oz of dough. Or maybe even a little thinner than that.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 21, 2013, 11:40:16 AM
Here's a post I consider potentially another important source of valuable information: http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,8361.msg85140.html#msg85140 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,8361.msg85140.html#msg85140).

In this post BTB says "the pans were 'greased' with real unsalted butter (no oil or crisco)." I'm curious to find out the source of that information. Did someone tell him it was unsalted butter, or did he just assume it was unsalted butter? Because it doesn't look like butter to me. Anytime I've ever looked at butter, it's been white (or nearly white).

To me it seems pretty clear that the substance in BTB's pic is either margarine or butter-flavored shortening. I'm not trying to pick a fight or anything; just trying to figure things out.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 21, 2013, 01:47:06 PM
I just made another batch of dough, for Saturday. (For future reference, today is Wednesday.) I was worried yesterday that 1% ADY might make the dough ferment too fast (especially with only 0.9% salt in the dough), but yesterday's dough seems to be doing just fine. (I guess it's because the dough is just stiff enough to slow down fermentation, compared to the fermentation rate I would expect from a NY style dough at 60% hydration.) As a result, I felt comfortable sticking with 1% ADY for today's batch, and I suspect I could even increase the ADY percentage a good bit and still have a dough that makes it to day 3 or day 4.

Instead of using corn oil for this dough, I used shortening. That's the only change I made from yesterday's dough.

I now have three different versions of this dough in the fridge.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 21, 2013, 08:33:38 PM
There is a vid on YouTube where a regional manager is making it while doing an interview and the guy says its butter.  It looks like margarine too me also though because it has a yellow tint.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 21, 2013, 08:35:08 PM
I just made another batch of dough, for Saturday. (For future reference, today is Wednesday.) I was worried yesterday that 1% ADY might make the dough ferment too fast (especially with only 0.9% salt in the dough), but yesterday's dough seems to be doing just fine. (I guess it's because the dough is just stiff enough to slow down fermentation, compared to the fermentation rate I would expect from a NY style dough at 60% hydration.) As a result, I felt comfortable sticking with 1% ADY for today's batch, and I suspect I could even increase the ADY percentage a good bit and still have a dough that makes it to day 3 or day 4.

Instead of using corn oil for this dough, I used shortening. That's the only change I made from yesterday's dough.

I now have three different versions of this dough in the fridge.

Until you have the real thing it's gonna be hard to know what you've made.  You should take a road trip or order a frozen one perhaps.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 21, 2013, 08:41:29 PM
Nate,

The main reason for going into bankruptcy is to stiff unsecured creditors and free up cash. However, according to the article at http://www.chicagobusiness.com/article/20120303/ISSUE01/303039973/more-dough-new-ceo-for-giordanos (http://www.chicagobusiness.com/article/20120303/ISSUE01/303039973/more-dough-new-ceo-for-giordanos), it looks like the new owners have a lot of product changes in mind. From a recent report at http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2013-07-09/business/ct-biz-0709-giordanos-20130709_1_phil-martino-giordano-victory-park-capital (http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2013-07-09/business/ct-biz-0709-giordanos-20130709_1_phil-martino-giordano-victory-park-capital), it looks like the new owners are keeping hands off the pizza part of the business for now but that could change at some point.
 
Peter

Yea I guess I meant it wasn't because of lack of pizza sales.  It was strictly to get bad land or building investments off their books.  Giordanos is huge in IL.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 21, 2013, 11:24:37 PM
There is a vid on YouTube where a regional manager is making it while doing an interview and the guy says its butter.  It looks like margarine too me also though because it has a yellow tint.

I've noticed a lot in my lifetime that people often say "butter" when they mean margarine. Or they bring you margarine after you ask for butter. Not a few times, but hundreds of times, if not thousands of times. So it's gonna take a lot to convince me the orange stuff in that picture is butter.

If you know how to quickly find the video, will you post a link to it?
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 22, 2013, 02:08:44 AM
Here is the vid.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WohsBbRcxd0&feature=youtube_gdata (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WohsBbRcxd0&feature=youtube_gdata)
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 22, 2013, 10:37:21 AM
Thanks! That video provides a lot of good hints.

Here's an answer to something people have wondered about for years (judging by the many years' worth of Giordano's threads I've read lately): At 2:40, the district manager says, "All our dough is made [pause] where it's all fresh and shipped to us daily." So now we know their dough comes from a commissary (which I doubt is true of the Florida units, since there are only a handful of them). I'm inclined to think this rules out bulk fermentation.

Here are some other things that stood out to me in this video:

2:15 - Looks like he uses something akin to a plastic dough scraper to scoop and spread the "butter."

2:35 - Bottom skin is clearly made from one dough ball and is not laminated. However, from BTB's pics, it seems pretty clear to me that scrap dough gets recycled. Recycled scrap dough as stiff as theirs is bound to end up creating a bit of a laminated effect. When I worked at Pizza Hut in the early 90s, thin & crispy dough scraps would be put back in the main (bulk-fermented) dough container after sheeting. Consequently, as each day progressed, the thin pizzas would contain more scrap dough and probably had more of a laminated effect than pizzas made earlier in the day. (I never thought about all this stuff back then, but we definitely did it that way.)

3:00 - The "butter" does look a little more like butter here than the "butter" in BTB's pic. Also, it seems like Giordano's dough and "butter" may sometimes pick up a bit of an orange hue in videos, perhaps from the lighting or something (similar to a lot of AimlessRyan's unleavened pizza experiment pics from last year, when one of his kitchen lights needed replaced). I'm now a little more willing to believe it really is butter.

3:24 - He uses two dough balls for the top skin. There's some of the lamination you've been looking for. But how much lamination effect does a laminated top crust add to the final pizza?

3:40 - "How long does it generally take to cook a stuffed pizza?" Answer: About 35 minutes.

4:20 - Sauce is "made by our commissary." (I'm just pointing out that he actually uses the word "commissary" here.)
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 22, 2013, 11:25:44 AM
Watching the video again, I picked up on something else at 4:20: He uses three ladles of sauce for the 14" pizza, with what appears to be an 8 oz ladle. If it is an 8 oz ladle, this suggests Giordano's uses about 24 oz of sauce on 14" pizzas. Also, it appears that the amount of sauce he fits into the ladle is a little more than the ladle's intended capacity. So he may actually have used more than 24 oz of sauce.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 22, 2013, 04:00:11 PM
Awesome theory on the scraps creating the laminated effect. 

The layers are coveted on the outer rim of the pizza. It adds nothing to the bottom of the pizza and isn't noticable.   The top dough is raw, it melds with the cheese.

Even though dough is made fresh it doesn't mean it is shipped same day.  It could just mean they receive shipments daily of 2-3 day old dough.

What's interesting too is the dough can actually be spun around like a NY pie.

They bake at 465F in a massive rotary oven that has a front sliding door.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 22, 2013, 04:56:43 PM
Even though dough is made fresh it doesn't mean it is shipped same day.  It could just mean they receive shipments daily of 2-3 day old dough.

I didn't mean to imply that I think they're using same-day dough or anything like that. I was just quoting what he said because the quote made it clear that their dough comes from a commissary, rather than being made on-site. I assume they really are using 3-4 day dough, as was stated in the Slice article.

In an hour or two I'm gonna make a stuffed pizza with the IDY dough I made three days ago. (Yes, the IDY works.) Yesterday (Wednesday) I made a kind of rolled deep dish pizza out of scraps from Saturday's dough (which was mixed last Wednesday or Thursday). Since I had two wads of scrap dough, I rolled the two layers individually, then rolled them together to become a single skin. It was pretty awesome. Tasted like an Uno cheese pizza built on a reasonably thick two-layered Pizza Hut T&C crust. Skin weighed about 12 oz (it had a full 1-1/2" tall outer crust), and it had 9 oz of cheese and 10 oz of 7/11. Took some pictures, which I may share.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 22, 2013, 08:52:55 PM
Tonight's pizza was good (my friend Lisa loved it), but the dough was too soft (49% hydration + 6% oil, with Pillsbury bleached AP). Since the two batches I already have in the fridge are 50% hydration, I just made a semi-emergency batch for Saturday with 47% hydration and 6% shortening.

Also, I put a little more cheese in tonight's pizza than usual (14 oz, rather than 13 oz), and it didn't quite ooze out the sides of the slices like normal. So I'll go back to 13 oz for Saturday's pizzas.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Pete-zza on August 23, 2013, 06:27:20 AM
Ryan,

You might find this of interest:

Reply 9 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,23085.msg234317/topicseen.html#msg234317 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,23085.msg234317/topicseen.html#msg234317)

Peter
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 23, 2013, 07:02:22 AM
I wanted to give you some real good shots of the crust so you can see how different it is vs the other Chicago places.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 23, 2013, 07:03:17 AM
Few more
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 23, 2013, 09:56:08 AM
Nate, I feel like most of your pics show a crust that looks very similar to my crust on this pizza (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=25774.0;attach=132075;image). Especially this pic (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=25774.0;attach=132604). Are you seeing something different?

(I'm sure there must be a way for me to repost those pictures in this reply, rather than making people have to follow a link to see them, but I can't figure out how to do it. Can anyone give me a clue how to do that?)
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: norma427 on August 23, 2013, 10:46:48 AM

(I'm sure there must be a way for me to repost those pictures in this reply, rather than making people have to follow a link to see them, but I can't figure out how to do it. Can anyone give me a clue how to do that?)

Ryan,

One way to post a photo that has been posted is to right click on the photo (save image as) and save it to your downloaded images on your computer and then just attach it in your post.  The next way is to click on the Reply where the photo was right up at the top of where it would says the reply number and then copy the URL at the top of your browser to a word processor, or a note pad.  That will take you right to that reply.  Just make sure you don't have a period at the end of the URL.  That is what works for me, but maybe other members have other ideas.

Norma
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Chicago Bob on August 23, 2013, 10:56:31 AM
At the bottom of a pic click on the paper clip....a window comes up to file it....repost from file.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: norma427 on August 23, 2013, 11:14:34 AM
At the bottom of a pic click on the paper clip....a window comes up to file it....repost from file.

Thanks Bob, I didn't know that trick before.   ;D

Norma
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 23, 2013, 11:30:53 AM
....a window comes up to file it....repost from file.

Not sure what that means, unless by "file it" you're saying it asks you if you want to save it. I know how to save a pic that's already here, then upload it. I'm trying to avoid saving and uploading copies of pics that already exist here. Seems like it should be pretty easy. Am I missing something?
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 23, 2013, 12:25:22 PM
Nate, I feel like most of your pics show a crust that looks very similar to my crust on this pizza (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=25774.0;attach=132075;image). Especially this pic (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=25774.0;attach=132604). Are you seeing something different?

(I'm sure there must be a way for me to repost those pictures in this reply, rather than making people have to follow a link to see them, but I can't figure out how to do it. Can anyone give me a clue how to do that?)

Like I said their crust is totally original.  Nothing else tastes and feels like it.  You will have to try it for yourself and compare to your own.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: norma427 on August 23, 2013, 12:50:32 PM
Not sure what that means, unless by "file it" you're saying it asks you if you want to save it. I know how to save a pic that's already here, then upload it. I'm trying to avoid saving and uploading copies of pics that already exist here. Seems like it should be pretty easy. Am I missing something?

Ryan,

I don't know how your computer works, but when I used Bob's advice to click on the paper clip thing it automatically downloaded the photo to my downloads on my computer.  Like Bob says it was easy peasy.  Maybe your computer doesn't work like mine does though. 

Norma
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Chicago Bob on August 23, 2013, 01:36:49 PM
test for pic transferring...

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,25774.msg274829.html#msg274829 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,25774.msg274829.html#msg274829)


     Nope...that doesn't do it. Sorry Ryan, but I believe this has been recently discussed(along with not being able to insert text in between pics) and as you've noted, it can't be easily done.

I wonder why if you right click on an image and hit the "copy image" nothing happens when you go to "paste" that image? I'm sure that is what you(and others) are wanting to do Ryan.


   

Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 23, 2013, 01:40:36 PM
What I'm hoping to find out is if there is a way to do it without downloading the picture and then uploading a picture that already exists somewhere on this web site. With HTML, it's very easy to do that because you just enter code that basically says "show this picture, which already exists in this specific place." I assume you can do that on these boards, too. But since the boards don't use HTML, I have no idea how to do it.

I already know where the picture files exist on this web site, which is why you can see the pictures when you follow my links a few posts back. I just don't know how to tell the reply form to show the particular picture files in my reply. There's gotta be an easy way to do that.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 23, 2013, 02:09:12 PM
What I'm hoping to find out is if there is a way to do it without downloading the picture and then uploading a picture that already exists somewhere on this web site. With HTML, it's very easy to do that because you just enter code that basically says "show this picture, which already exists in this specific place." I assume you can do that on these boards, too. But since the boards don't use HTML, I have no idea how to do it.

I already know where the picture files exist on this web site, which is why you can see the pictures when you follow my links a few posts back. I just don't know how to tell the reply form to show the particular picture files in my reply. There's gotta be an easy way to do that.

Smartphone works now for uploading images.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: mrmojo1 on August 24, 2013, 02:06:59 AM
Like I said their crust is totally original.  Nothing else tastes and feels like it.  You will have to try it for yourself and compare to your own.
pythonic you Gotta try his recipe and tell us/him Where he needs to go!
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 24, 2013, 09:57:37 AM
pythonic you Gotta try his recipe and tell us/him Where he needs to go!

Totally. As I've learned from my Tommy's (cracker) experiment (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,12446.msg274991.html#msg274991), it gets lonely when you try to clone a specific pizzeria's pizza and no one else is trying it with you. In the case of Tommy's, it's mostly because very few members have had Tommy's, but it's surely also because it takes a ton of really hard work to roll the stiff dough into 8 laminates. It takes half an hour for me to roll each Tommy's skin (which I'm about to do twice).

Of the four stuffed pizzas I've made so far, the second one was by far the best. (That's the one that's pictured near the bottom of page 1 of this thread, in Reply #18 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,25774.msg274100.html#msg274100).) The formula for that dough was:

100% Pillsbury AP flour (bleached, I think)
46% Water
0.6% ADY
1.5% Salt
8% Oil

I believe that was a 2-1/2 day dough. After that batch, I decreased the fat by 2% but increased the hydration by 3%, then another 1% with the next batch, which means functionally I ended up increasing the hydration by 1%, then another 1%, which I now know was not the right thing to do. I'm not sure if I already listed the formula for my most recent dough, which I made Thursday night for later today (Saturday), but here it is:

100% Pillsbury bleached AP
47% Water
0.6% IDY
0.9% Salt
6% Shortening

Note that the sum of the hydration and fat for this formula is 53% (47% water + 6% shortening), rather than 54% (46% water + 8% oil), as in the top formula. As soon as I went above 54%, I ended up with dough that I thought was too soft. Also, in my experience, Pillsbury AP requires a higher hydration figure than other AP flours (particularly KAAP and Meijer brand); possibly as much as 4% or 5% higher. Gold Medal seems about the same as Pillsbury. So if you try this with some other AP flour, you might consider dropping the hydration by a few percent.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: mrmojo1 on August 24, 2013, 11:22:17 AM
shoot! I would do it but ive only had like 1 frozen one in the last 10yrs!  from the looks of it, I think your pizzas look awesome!
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 24, 2013, 01:09:51 PM
Thank you, man. I appreciate it.

I'm getting ready to roll the "emergency" stuffed dough I made Thursday night. No guests have shown up yet for my party, and I'm only expecting one person from my entire Facebook friends list (172 "friends"), plus her two guests. (My mom said some of her people are coming, too.) I've done a lot of work the last two days to make four different kinds of dough (and other stuff), so I hope some people show up eventually; neighbors and stuff. But since I live in a rural area, "neighbors" is a very small quantity of people.

Hopefully I'll end up with some good pics to share later.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 24, 2013, 05:58:16 PM
pythonic you Gotta try his recipe and tell us/him Where he needs to go!

Yes but how is this gonna help him know what it's supposed to taste and be like texture wise?

Nate
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 24, 2013, 09:12:02 PM
I don't know if the Giordano's style pizzas I've made taste anything like Giordano's, but one thing I do know is that I've received an overwhelmingly positive response from the people who have eaten these pizzas. I made a couple really good NY style pizzas today, in addition to a Tommy's style pizza (laminated cracker) that may have had the best crust I've ever made for that style, but there seemed to be a buzz about the stuffed pizza. A guest I'd never met before today said it was the best pizza he's ever had. I'm sure we've all heard that more than a few times, but sometimes it seems more genuine than other times. I'm not sure how genuine it was this time, but it's always nice to hear.

In my opinion, today's stuffed pizza was nothing special; probably even overfermented, judging by the texture of the outer crust as I look at a picture. So to get that kind of response is a pretty cool feeling.

I'll try to get some more pics up here soon, of all the stuffed pizzas I've photographed.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 24, 2013, 09:35:03 PM
Ryan,

Please do post those pics.
I am gonna attempt your recipe in a week or two.  What type of pan are you using?

Nate
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 24, 2013, 09:49:10 PM
I'm using a 10" x 2" seasoned aluminum pan. Even though it's not a true deep dish pan, it's not a bad pan. I have four tin-plated steel deep dish pans, but the three smallest ones (6", 9", and 12") don't really work for stuffed pizza because they're only 1.5" deep. The 14" deep dish pan is 2" deep, but I haven't used it yet because I've had no need to make a 14" stuffed pizza so far. That would make almost a 6 lb pizza!
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 24, 2013, 10:13:55 PM
I'm using a 10" x 2" seasoned aluminum pan. Even though it's not a true deep dish pan, it's not a bad pan. I have four tin-plated steel deep dish pans, but the three smallest ones (6", 9", and 12") don't really work for stuffed pizza because they're only 1.5" deep. The 14" deep dish pan is 2" deep, but I haven't used it yet because I've had no need to make a 14" stuffed pizza so far. That would make almost a 6 lb pizza!


Yep, that is why a 2 topping pizza is a whopping $28!
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 24, 2013, 10:42:50 PM
Here are some pics of my first stuffed pizza ever, on 8/13/13. The formula for this dough was:

100% Gold Medal all-purpose flour
45% Water
1% ADY
1.08% Salt
9.38% Oil
2% Sugar

I didn't really plan to make this pizza. Sometime that morning, I decided I wanted to make a pizza that evening; a style of pizza I'd never had before that day. I gave the dough a 6-hour bulk ferment, then made the pizza. Baked at 450 for 35 minutes. Aside from the excess browning, this pizza turned out very nice.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 24, 2013, 10:51:41 PM
Here are some pics of my second stuffed pizza ever, from 8/17/13. The formula for this dough was:

100% Pillsbury AP flour
46% Water
0.6% ADY
1.5% Salt
8% Oil

I believe I made this dough on a Thursday Wednesday night, for Saturday. This pizza is by far the best stuffed pizza I've made so far. Note that I 86ed sugar for this batch, after using 2% sugar for the first batch.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 24, 2013, 11:08:35 PM
This one is also from 8/17/13. It was made from the same dough that I used for the other pizza on 8/17/13. I kinda screwed up with this one, though. 13 minutes into baking this pizza, I realized the oven was set to 500 (because I had previously made a Tommy's style pizza, which I bake at 500). I immediately turned the oven down to 450 and hoped my mistake wouldn't screw the pizza up too bad. However, the pizza didn't turn out right.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 24, 2013, 11:27:34 PM
This is my fourth stuffed pizza, from 8/22/13. The formula for the dough was:

100% Pillsbury bleached AP flour
49% Water
0.4% IDY
1.5% Salt
6% Corn oil

I think I made the dough three days before I made this pizza. This one was for my friend Lisa, whose birthday was a couple days ago. She ate two slices of the pizza, which were half a pound each. (I ate three.) I was a little disappointed with this one, first of all because this is the pizza that made me realize I was doing the wrong thing by increasing the hydration, but also because the cheese wasn't as gooey as the other stuffed pizzas I'd made. I think I used 14 oz of cheese in this one, instead of 13 oz, as I had done with the previous pizzas, which is why I suspect the cheese wasn't as gooey as usual.

In contrast to my disappointment, Lisa loved this pizza.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 24, 2013, 11:56:21 PM
This is my fifth (and most recent) stuffed pizza, from today. The formula for the dough was:

100% Pillsbury bleached AP flour
47% Water
0.6% IDY
0.9% Salt
6% Shortening

Even though I already had two batches of dough in the fridge Thursday night, I made this dough for today (Saturday) because Thursday's pizza made me realize the hydration figures of the other two batches were too high. Even with the drop in hydration, this dough ended up feeling too soft. But the softness of this dough may have been a result of overfermentation, which I think is evident in the visible texture of the crust. The pizza was still very good, though, and my guests seemed to love it.

I had never used IDY until the last few days, and it's giving me a little trouble. Even though the yeast is working, it's not working as fast as I expected. In fact, it doesn't seem to be working any faster than ADY. Consequently, I've had to mess with my dough management procedures because I've been worried about ending up with underfermented dough. Then I end up with overfermented dough. Not a huge problem, but it's kinda frustrating. I'm not sure if it's bad yeast or if it's just me having trouble figuring out the conversion from ADY to IDY.

OK, I'm done posting all my pics tonight.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 25, 2013, 08:41:56 PM
I made another one of these today, using one of the two batches of dough I thought I might end up throwing out after I realized I was starting to go too high with the hydration percentage. The dough I used for this pizza was the dough I made 5 days ago, using this formula:

100% Pillsbury unbleached AP flour
50% Water
1% ADY
0.9% Salt
6% Corn oil

This dough had been bulk fermenting in a covered bowl in the fridge ever since I mixed it five days ago. I hadn't punched it down or anything, and I was worried that it would be overfermented and end up making a less-than-desirable pizza.

The pizza turned out very good.

I divided and rolled the dough (using as little bench flour as possible) almost immediately after pulling it from the fridge, then I assembled the pizza and baked at 450 for 40 minutes. All my other stuffed pizzas have baked for 35 minutes (excluding the pizza that baked at 500 for the first 13 minutes). I hoped the extra five minutes of bake-time would make the cheese a little gooier than the cheese has been with my previous couple pizzas, but I don't think I achieved the result I was hoping for.

I invited a neighbor and his son over to munch on this pizza (in addition to a Tommy's style pizza), along with myself and my parents. The neighbors really liked this pizza, and I'm pretty sure my mom said this was my best stuffed pizza yet. (I'm more inclined to say it was a close second best.)

I’m noticing some trends with my stuffed pizzas:

The best pizzas so far (which were also the best-looking pizzas) contained both ADY and corn oil in the dough, rather than IDY and shortening. I can't say for sure, though, that either of these things is what caused the pizzas to be either good or not so good. I think the main reason why the IDY pizzas have not turned out as good is because the dough for these pizzas has been overfermented. Not because I used IDY, but because I had to alter my dough management with the IDY dough. I had never used IDY before the last week or so, and I've made some mistakes because of it.

I'm not so sure about the corn oil vs. shortening.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 26, 2013, 12:23:42 AM
Nice pies Ryan.  I think you are still too thick on that top layer though.  Needs to be 2-3 times thinner than bottom.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 26, 2013, 10:53:12 AM
Nate, I've been rolling the top layer much thinner than the bottom layer. Since I divide the dough into a 20 oz piece and a 10 oz piece, I don't have much choice but to end up with a considerably thinner top skin unless I roll the bottom skin way too thin (like I did with the most recent pizza). I end up trimming approximately half of the dough from the top skin, which means the top skin ends up using maybe 5 oz of dough (which is very thin). The top layer may look kinda thick in some of these pics, but it's actually very thin.

Having said that, I must admit that videos make it appear as if Giordano's sheets both skins to the same thickness.

Even though the video evidence suggests that the bottom and top skins are sheeted to the same thickness, I agree with you that it seems like the top skin should be much thinner than the bottom skin. If they do sheet each dough layer to the same thickness, one way I think they may end up with a thinner top layer is by placing the top layer flat on top of the pan, with a lot of air under it, rather than by making any effort to remove the air beneath the dough and shape the skin to the surface area inside the pan (as they do with the bottom skin). This way, when they crimp the two skins together around the outside, then add the sauce, the weight of the sauce ends up stretching the top skin, making the top layer thinner.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 26, 2013, 08:17:01 PM
Here are a couple pizzas I've made out of scrap dough left over from pizzas pictured above. The first two pics are of a pizza I baked on 8/21/13, using scraps from the stuffed pizzas I baked on 8/17/13. The last two pics are of a pizza I baked earlier tonight using dough I think was scraps from yesterday's stuffed pizza. (There are so many scraps in the fridge right now, it's hard to say which scraps are which.)

As you can probably tell, these pizzas were constructed similar to how deep dish pizza are built, excluding the rolled skins. I rolled the dough and draped it over a deep dish pan, then formed it to fit snugly in the pan and trimmed the excess dough. I added cheese first, then sausage (on tonight's), then sauce.

The first pizza is the one I mentioned and described earlier in this thread, which was made by rolling two pieces of scrap dough separately, then rolling them together before shaping, trimming, and topping.

These were very good pizzas; some of my favorite ever. Take note of the outside of the crust. To me the crust looks a lot more like Giordano's crust than the original pizzas did. I feel like maybe there's a lesson hidden in these crusts.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 26, 2013, 09:03:33 PM
Yep.  That key is the sheeter and the lamination.  I count 8-10 layers every time I get a pie.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 26, 2013, 09:09:12 PM
If Giordano's pizzas were laminated, the skins in the videos would be square.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 27, 2013, 10:26:27 AM
Here are some pictures I picked out of the Google image search results for Giordano's (https://www.google.com/search?q=giordano's&bav=on.2,or.r_qf.&bvm=bv.51156542,d.b2I,pv.xjs.s.en_US._-554IbEZc0.O&biw=800&bih=518&wrapid=tlif137761210439610&um=1&ie=UTF-8&hl=en&tbm=isch&source=og&sa=N&tab=wi&ei=TrEcUvOpNaiB2gWs9YCIAw). I can't say for sure that all the pics are from Giordano's, but I feel pretty confident that they are all from Giordano's. I'm attempting to show that there's one obvious common characteristic with each of these pizzas; a characteristic that has been said many times in Giordano's threads not to be a characteristic of Giordano's pizza, including earlier on this page. Anyone care to guess what characteristic I'm attempting to highlight here?
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 27, 2013, 10:28:29 AM
And here are a few more pictures showing the same characteristic.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 27, 2013, 10:38:44 AM
This picture is interesting because it lends support to what Nate has been saying about lamination, but it also suggests some other things, which I won't discuss until after I've given everyone some time to think about what I was trying to show in the previous two posts.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Pete-zza on August 27, 2013, 10:51:49 AM
Ryan,

Is it that the fillings between the two skins, including the cheese, do not rush out onto the plate but rather pretty much stay between the two skins? Also, some of the top skins seem fairly thick, with maybe some gum line.

Peter
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Chicago Bob on August 27, 2013, 12:21:01 PM
Here are some pictures I picked out of the Google image search results for Giordano's (https://www.google.com/search?q=giordano's&bav=on.2,or.r_qf.&bvm=bv.51156542,d.b2I,pv.xjs.s.en_US._-554IbEZc0.O&biw=800&bih=518&wrapid=tlif137761210439610&um=1&ie=UTF-8&hl=en&tbm=isch&source=og&sa=N&tab=wi&ei=TrEcUvOpNaiB2gWs9YCIAw). I can't say for sure that all the pics are from Giordano's, but I feel pretty confident that they are all from Giordano's. I'm attempting to show that there's one obvious common characteristic with each of these pizzas; a characteristic that has been said many times in Giordano's threads not to be a characteristic of Giordano's pizza, including earlier on this page. Anyone care to guess what characteristic I'm attempting to highlight here?
Thick top crust.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 27, 2013, 12:25:40 PM
Peter, your second guess is what I was trying to show. Good call, Bob.

The top crust in each pic is clearly pretty thick; thicker than I'd feel comfortable serving. Especially the first pic. And this is very representative of the pictures that come up in the google search. I'm not saying you can see a thick top crust in most of the pics that come up in the search; I'm just saying that, of the pics that were taken from the proper angle to reveal a top crust (and are in focus), almost all of them show a pretty thick top crust. With at least a few of these pics, you can see in a couple different ways that the top and bottom crusts are about the same thickness.

Gum line never even consciously occurred to me because I just wasn't thinking in that direction. But that was definitely worth pointing out. Glad you noticed it.

With the last pic (in Reply #74), I think it pretty clearly shows that the bottom crust was two layers and that the top crust was probably one layer. As someone who has surely made at least a hundred more laminated skins than probably every member except DNA Dan, I feel pretty comfortable speculating that to achieve lamination like that, the dough has to be stiff enough that it cannot be the slightest bit sticky (unless it's way overfermented); or stiff enough to put through a sheeter without any bench flour. For example, if you look at the second picture in this post (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,25774.msg275396.html#msg275396 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,25774.msg275396.html#msg275396)), you can see that my top and bottom dough layers kind of merged together into one crust. With 50% hydration and 6% oil, that dough was just soft enough to be considered soft for this style. If only the hydration had been 48%, the dough would have been stiff enough to keep the skins from merging into a single crust like that.

Nate, I'm pretty convinced that the quality of hand-rolled laminated dough/crust is essentially identical to that of laminated dough/crust from a sheeter. Yes, it takes at least 15 times longer to do it by hand, and yes, I would prefer to have a sheeter for my laminated cracker dough. It even seems logical that all the extra rolling (by hand) should toughen dough, but it just doesn't happen. I mean, just look at my latest Tommy's pics (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,12446.msg275304.html#msg275304 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,12446.msg275304.html#msg275304)), compared to actual Tommy's pics (a few posts later). I can tell you, with all honesty, that my Tommy's clones are almost identical to actual Tommy's pizzas.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 27, 2013, 12:43:01 PM
Actually, I should have linked to this reply in the Tommy's thread (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,12446.msg274991.html#msg274991, (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,12446.msg274991.html#msg274991,) and the following reply). These four pics don't show the lamination, but they do show pizzas that look like they came from Tommy's. Especially the blistered ones, although I realize it's a slightly different blister pattern than the Tommy's blisters. (I'm gonna have to try the barley malt tip, from Reply #284.)
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 27, 2013, 07:30:41 PM
I just made another batch of dough. I was almost ready to use my standard flour (Pillsbury bleached AP) when it occurred to me that I have some other flours that might be worth trying for this style. Even though I've read in a couple places that Giordano's uses high gluten flour, I remain skeptical. So I want to try some high-protein flour for this style and find out if it works better than AP.

I have several different kinds of high protein flour available right now because someone far, far away (where flour options are very limited) sent me these different kinds of flour and asked me to try them out for NY style and let him know what I think. I have Morbread, Mondako, Power Flour, and All Trumps unbromated (as well as All Trumps bromated, which has long been my go-to flour for NY style).

I decided after one pizza that Morbread is nasty; the one pizza I made with this flour tasted like canned biscuits. All Trumps unbromated seems to have a weird taste, too, so I don't really want to try it, either. (Also, it's nothing like AT bromated.) Power Flour has been my favorite of all the flours I was sent, at least for NY style, but Mondako hasn't offended me yet. So I decided to try Mondako with this batch of dough. I might also make a batch with Power Flour sometime tonight, using the same formula.

Here's the formula for this evening's dough, which I don't intend to use for at least two days (or preferably 3 days minimum):

100% Mondako flour
48% Ice cold water (with unmelted ice cubes still in it)
0.86% IDY
0.9% Salt
6% Shortening

This dough was very cold after mixing for 4-5 minutes in a KitchenAid with a spiral dough hook. In fact, a couple of the ice cubes didn't melt until the last minute or two of mixing. (I don't have any kind of thermometer that can read dough temperature, but the dough felt like it was about 60 degrees after mixing.) I immediately bagged the dough and put it in a fridge to bulk ferment until shortly before I use it.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 27, 2013, 07:54:13 PM
Perhaps the top skin thickness is as simple as who as making the pizza.  I'd bet that the locations in FL are not making them the same as Chicago.  As for the lamination, Giordanos crust has 6-10 layers on the rim of their crust.   Those aren't close enough pics to see and some are blurry as well.  I will try to find a few.  The sheeter is one key, another may be butter or shortening in the dough. 
This dough is completely different then all the rest. 

Ryan:  Are you able to spin your dough like this?
The guy also clearly is using multiple doughballs through the sheeter as well. 

We're you aware that this pizza was adapted from their mother's Easter Pie recipe.  That may be a big clue as well.  Until you actually have the real thing it's gonna be impossible to see what I'm talking about.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aesUvFAuSVI&sns=em (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aesUvFAuSVI&sns=em)
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 27, 2013, 08:11:49 PM
This one isnt close enough either and a little blurry but u can clearly see lines every in that dough and too crust is at least 1/2 thin as bottom.  Now the top crust will be thicker near the edge of the pizza because it goes vertical in the pan.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 27, 2013, 08:20:59 PM
And a few more.  First pic shows it the best.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 27, 2013, 08:22:40 PM
Can u even see the top crust here?  Melded with the cheese because of its thinness.  This is how most of them look in Chicago.  The ones that pop up are the ones that have green peppers beneath it.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 27, 2013, 10:33:20 PM
Man, I hate to be what you probably see as obstinate, but something the video shows very clearly is that Giordano's does not use any procedures that could possibly create 6-10 laminates. Yes, this guy does use more than one piece of dough (almost certainly two pieces because more than two pieces wouldn't make it through the sheeter), which does create some lamination, but I haven't seen anything yet that shows any evidence of more than two laminates. Neither in video nor pictures. In fact, all the evidence I've seen says Giordano's dough (bottom skin) never has more than two laminates.

What you see as lamination is what I see as lots of little elongated gas pockets, which is what happens when you sheet relatively stiff, bready dough to medium thickness. Except in the cases where there is obviously two laminates, such as the pic in Reply #74 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,25774.msg275723.html#msg275723 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,25774.msg275723.html#msg275723)). But in those cases, the obvious lamination looks completely different than the look of the slice in Reply #81.

Another thing that's very clear in the video is that he never changes the thickness setting on the sheeter, nor could he possibly have time to constantly change the thickness setting. He clearly sheets top skins and bottom skins, yet he never changes the sheeter's thickness setting, nor does he ever fold the dough and re-sheet it (which is how lamination is created).

The dough spinning is all for show.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Chicago Bob on August 27, 2013, 10:41:27 PM
Man, I hate to be what you probably see as obstinate, but something the video shows very clearly is that Giordano's does not use any procedures that could possibly create 6-10 laminates. Yes, this guy does use more than one piece of dough (almost certainly two pieces because more than two pieces wouldn't make it through the sheeter), which does create some lamination, but I haven't seen anything yet that shows any evidence of more than two laminates. Neither in video nor pictures. In fact, all the evidence I've seen says Giordano's dough (bottom skin) never has more than two laminates.

What you see as lamination is what I see as lots of little elongated gas pockets, which is what happens when you sheet relatively stiff, bready dough to medium thickness. Except in the cases where there is obviously two laminates, such as the pic in Reply #74 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,25774.msg275723.html#msg275723 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,25774.msg275723.html#msg275723)). But in those cases, the obvious lamination looks completely different than the look of the slice in Reply #81.

Another thing that's very clear in the video is that he never changes the thickness setting on the sheeter, nor could he possibly have time to constantly change the thickness setting. He clearly sheets top skins and bottom skins, yet he never changes the sheeter's thickness setting, nor does he ever fold the dough and re-sheet it (which is how lamination is created).

The dough spinning is all for show.
I was just going to say the same thing....it takes some imagination, make that, if you stare at the crust long enough you can sort of imagine that there might be 6-10 layers of lamination. But all these crusts simply look like what one always hears about what is so great about Chicago DD...."a flaky pastry like crust". All the oil and under mixing is the classic crust I'm seeing.....YMMV.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Jdurg on August 28, 2013, 12:02:53 AM
I just made another batch of dough. I was almost ready to use my standard flour (Pillsbury bleached AP) when it occurred to me that I have some other flours that might be worth trying for this style. Even though I've read in a couple places that Giordano's uses high gluten flour, I remain skeptical. So I want to try some high-protein flour for this style and find out if it works better than AP.

I have several different kinds of high protein flour available right now because someone far, far away (where flour options are very limited) sent me these different kinds of flour and asked me to try them out for NY style and let him know what I think. I have Morbread, Mondako, Power Flour, and All Trumps unbromated (as well as All Trumps bromated, which has long been my go-to flour for NY style).

I decided after one pizza that Morbread is nasty; the one pizza I made with this flour tasted like canned biscuits. All Trumps unbromated seems to have a weird taste, too, so I don't really want to try it, either. (Also, it's nothing like AT bromated.) Power Flour has been my favorite of all the flours I was sent, at least for NY style, but Mondako hasn't offended me yet. So I decided to try Mondako with this batch of dough. I might also make a batch with Power Flour sometime tonight, using the same formula.

Here's the formula for this evening's dough, which I don't intend to use for at least two days (or preferably 3 days minimum):

100% Mondako flour
48% Ice cold water (with unmelted ice cubes still in it)
0.86% IDY
0.9% Salt
6% Shortening

This dough was very cold after mixing for 4-5 minutes in a KitchenAid with a spiral dough hook. In fact, a couple of the ice cubes didn't melt until the last minute or two of mixing. (I don't have any kind of thermometer that can read dough temperature, but the dough felt like it was about 60 degrees after mixing.) I immediately bagged the dough and put it in a fridge to bulk ferment until shortly before I use it.

With regards to the high gluten flour, have you tried to make a few batches with different proportions of AP and Bread flour combined?  This way you won't have a very huge amount of gluten in there, but the presence of the small proportion of bread flour in place of 100% AP flour could provide exactly what you are looking for.

I've only had Giordano's pizza once, during a business trip to Chicago a few years back, so I can't really provide too much input here.  (I just remember loving that pizza, along with the Lou Malnati's pizzas which I've only had of the frozen variety). 

I'm also pretty certain that they use unbleached flour as I have a batch of deep-dish dough sitting in the fridge for use tomorrow which has that "goldeny" color to it that all the videos show the dough to have.  (Sorry I don't have any photos right now or the recipe I used).
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 28, 2013, 07:32:40 AM
Man, I hate to be what you probably see as obstinate, but something the video shows very clearly is that Giordano's does not use any procedures that could possibly create 6-10 laminates. Yes, this guy does use more than one piece of dough (almost certainly two pieces because more than two pieces wouldn't make it through the sheeter), which does create some lamination, but I haven't seen anything yet that shows any evidence of more than two laminates. Neither in video nor pictures. In fact, all the evidence I've seen says Giordano's dough (bottom skin) never has more than two laminates.

What you see as lamination is what I see as lots of little elongated gas pockets, which is what happens when you sheet relatively stiff, bready dough to medium thickness. Except in the cases where there is obviously two laminates, such as the pic in Reply #74 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,25774.msg275723.html#msg275723 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,25774.msg275723.html#msg275723)). But in those cases, the obvious lamination looks completely different than the look of the slice in Reply #81.

Another thing that's very clear in the video is that he never changes the thickness setting on the sheeter, nor could he possibly have time to constantly change the thickness setting. He clearly sheets top skins and bottom skins, yet he never changes the sheeter's thickness setting, nor does he ever fold the dough and re-sheet it (which is how lamination is created).

The dough spinning is all for show.

Have you ever achieved layers like these in any of your attempts?  I never have.  The crust isn't bready at all.  The best way I can describe it is like a croissant but drier and less airy.  I think the layers come from all the scraps they sheet together like you previously said.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Garvey on August 28, 2013, 08:04:30 AM
sheet relatively stiff, bready dough to medium thickness.

Yeah, and Giordano's is very much on the stiff, bready style.  No bench flour needed during sheeting is telling, too.  Low oil, stiff dough.  The end crust alone is much more of a bread bomb than DD. 

The crust isn't bready at all.  The best way I can describe it is like a croissant but drier and less airy.

Haha--maybe it's a semantic difference.  I think of it as bready because it is just a crapload of bread.  When you get to the last bite of pizza and are left holding the end crust, you've got a 14-oz loaf in your hand.  Sure, it's not soft like bread, per se, so I hear what Nate is getting at...but it's still a fistful of baked dough...
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 28, 2013, 11:26:26 AM
No bench flour needed during sheeting is telling, too.  Low oil, stiff dough.
Exactly. That's a huge point, which needs to be remembered by everyone who ever hopes to clone Giordano's. When I used 49-50% hydration (plus 6% fat), I needed to use a little bench flour to roll the dough. Not a lot, but some. Just by watching them handle the dough in the Pizza Paradises video, I knew I shouldn't have to use bench flour. Now that I've seen video of them sheeting dough at Giordano's (at the top of this page), no bench flour is pretty well confirmed.

So everyone: If you have to use bench flour to roll what you hope will become a Giordano's clone, your dough is too wet/soft.

Thanks for backing me up on the low oil, too (at least low compared to deep dish dough). My best-yet Giordano's clone (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,25774.msg275258.html#msg275258) dough contained 8% oil, and I've been trying to make 6% oil/shortening work. So I feel pretty confident that I'm in the ballpark with 6-8% fat. Looking at the older Giordano's threads, everyone seems to want to make deep dish dough for stuffed pizza. But Giordano's dough is obviously nothing like Malnati's or Uno. I know it's tempting to think stuffed dough should be similar to deep dish dough, considering these pizzas all come from the same city, they're baked in very similar pans, they have basically the same shape, and they have a ton of cheese below a ton of sauce. But that's where the similarities end.

Giordano's dough is obviously different than Malnati's dough in about every possible way. It's much stiffer, much more lean, uses much more yeast, contains salt, is sheeted, etc. That much was easy to figure out, thanks to Peter's detective work and every video that shows more than a few seconds of Giordano's kitchen footage.

Haha--maybe it's a semantic difference. ... Sure, it's not soft like bread, per se, so I hear what Nate is getting at...but it's still a fistful of baked dough...
Good point. When I say 'bready,' I'm thinking of something more like a baguette than white bread.

Even though I was originally very skeptical about using high gluten flour for this kind of pizza, I'm starting to think it might be the right thing to do. When I look at the picture in Reply #81 (and similar pics), the pizza just seems more bready than any of the pics of my pizzas (on the previous page). The crumb in Reply #81 does not come from AP flour. In fact, it reminds me of the crumb in one of my NY style pics (the third pic in this post (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,20591.msg205766.html#msg205766)). I'm not saying my crumb looks just like the Giordano's crumb; just saying it reminds me of it. I'm saying if my dough had been a little stiffer, then sheeted to a medium thickness, I can envision those bubbles becoming elongated, thus resembling layers in a way.

The crust in my pic was made of All Trumps flour. I'm pretty sure it was 58% hydration and 1.58% oil.

Nate, I don't put much stock in the Easter pie story. It's a nice story, but the information I remember reading in the other thread says the Easter pie is nothing like pizza. My guess is that the Easter pie story is all about marketing (or at least 90% about marketing). Because when you're in the pizza business, you know what's almost as important as the quality of your pizza? The quality of your backstory; even if your backstory is made up or altered to appeal more to prospective customers, which is probably the case with most companies' backstories.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 29, 2013, 07:33:41 AM
I whipped up a batch of 48% hydration/6% oil dough last night.  This is only my 2nd Giordano's attempt.  My first try came 2 years ago when I was very amateurish in my pie making so I expect much better results this time around. 

Nate
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 29, 2013, 12:10:05 PM
When are you gonna make the pizza(s), Nate?

I made another batch of dough yesterday, with Power flour, using the same formula I used the previous day (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,25774.msg275821.html#msg275821) with Mondako. Both of those doughs are in the fridge. I don't intend to use the Mondako dough until at least tomorrow (3 days), and I don't intend to use the Power flour dough until at least the following day. I'm really curious to find out how the Power flour dough turns out. They're both fermenting in a bag, in the same condition as when I took the dough out of the mixer bowl. Even though neither batch of dough has noticeably risen so far, I'm debating whether I should punch down the dough and agitate it a little before I scale it into dough balls, in an effort to create a more complex gluten structure (or to kinda simulate scrap dough). Even though I now know I was off on my ADY-to-IDY conversions the first few times I used IDY, and even though my latest conversion should be accurate, I'm still not real confident that my IDY is in the best condition. At least I know it works, though.

I made a pseudo deep dish pizza last night, using four different pieces of scrap dough for lamination. I think two of the pieces of dough were scraps of scraps of Giordano's style dough (yes, scraps of scraps), and I think the other two pieces of dough were Tommy's scraps (which I thought were Giordano's style scraps when I took them out of the fridge). I flattened each piece of dough by hand and dipped one side of each piece into a bowl of flour, then stacked the pieces in this order: Tommy's/Giordano's/Tommy's/Giordano's (or possibly the opposite order). Rolled without bench flour until the dough was about TF=0.105, then formed it to fit the pan and trimmed. Cheese, pepperoni, sauce. Baked 25 minutes at 450.

I took some pictures, but I haven't processed them yet. Not sure if the pics show anything relevant, but I'm sure Nate will probably want to see them, since I used four laminates.

Also, I received a little gift from someone yesterday. It was a message that contained some information about Giordano's dough and sauce from the mid-70s. I have every reason to believe it's real/reliable. The information suggests that the hydration for their dough, at least in that era, was around 58%, rather than the 48% I've found seems to work well (which is based entirely on contemporary Giordano's videos). Also, the cake yeast percentage was very low (like 0.22%), which translates to about 0.07% IDY. That's tiny, and it suggests to me that, if correct, they probably used to make dough in the evening and let it ferment at room temperature all night for use all day the next day.

Aside from those two things, the formula is very similar to what I've been using. One notable exception: The info I received suggests there was about 1.25% sugar in the dough. And even though the list of ingredients Peter received from Giordano's a few years ago doesn't list sugar, it's not hard for me to believe that there is sugar in their dough. All you have to do is compare the color of my crust to the color of their crust. Excluding my first one (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,25774.msg275257.html#msg275257) (which contained 2% sugar), my attempted clones have been much whiter than most pictures of Giordano's pizzas.

The fat percentage in this new information was almost identical to what I've been using (though in a different form), as was the salt percentage. Also, it mentioned Ceresota flour.

So there appears to be three main differences between my dough and Giordano's dough from the mid-70s: Giordano's apparently used considerably more water, considerably less yeast, and some sugar. I feel very confident speculating that their dough's yeast percentage has increased significantly since then, for many reasons. I also feel pretty confident speculating that their dough's hydration percentage has decreased considerably since then. I don't think the sugar discrepancy is a big deal, so I will add maybe 1% sugar to my next batch of dough.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 29, 2013, 01:58:58 PM
Making the pizza tomorrow night.  58%?  wow that is high.  What tips did u receive about the sauce?
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 29, 2013, 05:10:23 PM
One thing I forgot to mention: It says unsalted butter was used to grease the pans. There's no point in me continuing to be obstinate about that, so I guess I'll use unsalted butter next time.

I haven't really looked over the sauce stuff yet, and I'm about to head out for a while (for a AAA baseball game). I'll try to respond to your question as soon as I can.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 29, 2013, 06:23:59 PM
I'd be interested in hearing about your source since supposedly only 2-3 people in the country supposedly know these secret recipes.  The sauce is just as important as the dough imo since again nobody's tastes like it.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Garvey on August 29, 2013, 08:33:07 PM
It's hard enough to clone pizzas as they exist now, let alone some mythical formulation from 40 years ago that is currently made in exactly zero restaurants.  Yowza.  Good luck with that!

58% is silly high.  I'm guessing that this was when they were a single location, and all pizzas were made by hand by Old Man Giordano himself?

Nate, what's different about the sauce?  Has anyone come close in reverse engineering it?
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Pete-zza on August 29, 2013, 09:09:19 PM
Garvey,

I hear you and appreciate that things change with the passage of time but who is to say that the old Giordano's recipes aren't better than the recipes used today? Over the years I have seen a decline in the quality of pizzas produced by chains and independents alike. I think it would be interesting for Ryan to try the old Giordano's recipes to see what they produce. They apparently were the recipes that gave birth to the Giordano's enterprise.

I'm not sure that a hydration of 58% is necessarily a barrier to success, especially if the fat content is on the low side as Ryan has reported.  Also, the Ceresota flour, with a protein content of 12% (according to Hecker's/Ceresota), should be able to handle that combination. I don't know if dough rollers/sheeters were used by Giordano's back in the '70s, but that equipment has been around since the 1920s. I have spoken to sales people at Anets (now part of Middleby-Marshall) and Somerset and they told me that their machines can handle high-hydration and high-oil doughs if the dough balls are dusted with bench flour and the machines are cleaned on a regular basis.

Peter
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 29, 2013, 10:18:38 PM
It's hard enough to clone pizzas as they exist now, let alone some mythical formulation from 40 years ago that is currently made in exactly zero restaurants.  Yowza.  Good luck with that!

58% is silly high.  I'm guessing that this was when they were a single location, and all pizzas were made by hand by Old Man Giordano himself?

Nate, what's different about the sauce?  Has anyone come close in reverse engineering it?


To me and many others Giordano's has the best sauce of all the Chicago deep dish/stuffed pies.  It also ties together their pizza perfectly.  I swear there is green pepper flavor in there but I guess I'll never know.  Definitely basil and garlic too.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 29, 2013, 10:21:51 PM
Garvey,

I hear you and appreciate that things change with the passage of time but who is to say that the old Giordano's recipes aren't better than the recipes used today? Over the years I have seen a decline in the quality of pizzas produced by chains and independents alike. I think it would be interesting for Ryan to try the old Giordano's recipes to see what they produce. They apparently were the recipes that gave birth to the Giordano's enterprise.

I'm not sure that a hydration of 58% is necessarily a barrier to success, especially if the fat content is on the low side as Ryan has reported.  Also, the Ceresota flour, with a protein content of 12% (according to Hecker's/Ceresota), should be able to handle that combination. I don't know if dough rollers/sheeters were used by Giordano's back in the '70s, but that equipment has been around since the 1920s. I have spoken to sales people at Anets (now part of Middleby-Marshall) and Somerset and they told me that their machines can handle high-hydration and high-oil doughs if the dough balls are dusted with bench flour and the machines are cleaned on a regular basis.

Peter

The dough is spinnable.  Can u do that with a low hydration dough?  That was my reasoning for pointing that out.  I wanted people to think about the hydration level more.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Chicago Bob on August 29, 2013, 10:51:29 PM
The dough is spinnable.  Can u do that with a low hydration dough?  That was my reasoning for pointing that out.  I wanted people to think about the hydration level more.
???
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 29, 2013, 11:14:38 PM
However I don't believe a 58% dough can be flaky either so I think it's somewhere in the middle.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 30, 2013, 01:36:24 AM
Below is the sauce recipe I was given. Keep in mind that I have never had Giordano's pizza, so I have no idea how their sauce tastes (or how it tasted in 1975). I kinda feel like this information may have been shared with an understanding that I would keep it to myself, at least for a while, so I could use it to guide me in my own quest to make this kind of pizza, then perhaps reveal it more discretely in time. If so, I may have screwed up by even mentioning it on the boards. But since I did mention it, I feel like I now have to share it exactly as it was shared with me.

For those of you who are familiar with my participation on these boards, you have surely noticed that I share all my secrets. Some secrets I've learned by working at Pizza Hut and Donatos, but a lot more secrets I've acquired by obsessively trying to understand the best ways to make various styles of pizza. In fact, if I ever own a pizzeria, I will continue to share my secrets. So I guess when someone hands me a gift like this, it's just not in my nature to hold on to it.

Like I said earlier, this information comes from a very reliable source. Also, as I think I've already indicated, this recipe is almost certainly at least a little different than the sauce you'd get if you went to Giordano's today.

So here it is. Even if it's not quite the same as their sauce today, it stands to reason that it may still be very similar. I have not tried to scale this down to a home-sized recipe yet.

5 #10 cans Lisanti plum tomatoes
2 #10 cans 7/11 crushed tomatoes
8 T salt
4 T garlic salt
3 T ground pepper
5 T sweet basil
2 T sugar
2 T marjoram
3 T oregano
1 T parsley
32 oz. olive oil
Combine and refrigerate overnight
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 30, 2013, 08:12:51 AM
Thank you for sharing this recipe Ryan.  I will try this on my attempt tonight.  See below for 28oz can conversion.

.90 tsp - salt
.45 tsp - garlic salt
.34 tsp - black pepper
.57 tsp - sweet basil
.23 tsp - sugar
.23 tsp - majoram
.34 tsp - oregano
.11 tsp - parsley

34.56g - olive oil (anyone else think this is really high?)
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Pete-zza on August 30, 2013, 09:02:15 AM
Nate,

I think it is quite probable that Giordano's used a dough roller or its equivalent in the '70s. I say this because dough rollers existed in the '70s and they would have made it much easier and faster and more labor effective to make the two skins required by each pizza. Moreover, if scrap dough were used, there might have been some layering effects in the finished crust, especially if bench flour was used between the layers. Clearly, the Giordano's store in the video you referenced in Reply 80 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,25774.msg275830.html#msg275830 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,25774.msg275830.html#msg275830) uses scrap along with fresh dough balls to make their skins. Specifically, you will notice that the fellow making the skins reaches over to the center table and takes a really scruffy looking piece of dough--presumably scrap placed there by one of the workers at the end of the make line where the skins are trimmed of any excess dough--and combines it with a new dough ball to run through the dough roller. There also does not appear to be two different skin thicknesses, although I was once told by an Anets sales person that Giordano's, who was a big user of their dough rollers, used a much thinner skin for the top skin. At one point in the video, the fellow working the dough roller tosses a skin across the room onto a shelf, presumably to be used as the top skin by the workers in that area. That skin appears to have been made just like the bottom skin. And since scrap is recycled repeatedly in real time, the final skin might have some layering, possibly through multiple generations of skins. What I don't know is if it is possible to fold round skins several times to form many layers (maybe with flour between the layers) and run the skins so folded through the dough roller to end up with a more flaky crust. Clearly, that is not done today if the video you referenced is representative of how pizzas are made in the Giordano's stores.

On the matter of the high hydration called for in the recipe that Ryan mentioned, as I previously mentioned that does not appear to me to be an impediment. In this vein, see the Vito & Nick's video at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Ob1tLx5wiM (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Ob1tLx5wiM)
I came up with a clone of the V&N dough shown in that video and its hydration, including the water content of the milk used in the dough, was around 65%. You will note that Rose, the woman with Guy Fieri in the video, has no problem running the flattened and dusted dough ball through the dough roller. With a dough roller, there is little reason to toss and spin the skin. So, as Ryan noted in respect of the video you referenced, spinning the dough is mainly for show, although it might imply a dough with modest hydration and/or low fat/oil levels. There is, however, one exception to the no-spin notion. If someone wants to make a skin with a semi-hand tossed character, it is possible to run a dough ball through a dough roller to create a skin that is of a size that is a few inches less than the desired final size. After letting the skin rest for a while, it can be opened the rest of the way to the final desired size by hand, including spinning and tossing the dough if the hydration value of the dough makes that possible. Clearly, a semi hand shaped characteristic is not something that Giordano's wants or needs for its skins. The dough roller is plenty good enough to form the skins, with no need for tossing and spinning.

Peter
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 30, 2013, 09:43:22 AM
Wow 65% seems insanely high for Chicago thin.  Where did u get your water measurements from?  (Already saw the 1/2 gallon milk measurement)
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Pete-zza on August 30, 2013, 09:59:56 AM
Wow 65% seems insanely high for Chicago thin.  Where did u get your water measurements from?  (Already saw the 1/2 gallon milk measurement)
Nate,

You can see everything I did by way or research at Reply 119 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,6368.msg117149.html#msg117149 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,6368.msg117149.html#msg117149). As I noted, a lot of bench flour is used to make the final skins. Also, with experience, which I relied upon, you get to learn what different doughs with different hydrations look and feel like.

I forgot to mention in my last post that V&N uses the Ceresota flour, just like the old Giordano's dough recipe. So, with V&N, we have Ceresota flour, a high nominal hydration (but no fat/oil), room temperature overnight ferment, and use of a dough roller. Sound familiar? ;D

Peter
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 30, 2013, 10:31:07 AM
Thank you for sharing this recipe Ryan.  I will try this on my attempt tonight.  See below for 28oz can conversion.

.90 tsp - salt
.45 tsp - garlic salt
.34 tsp - black pepper
.57 tsp - sweet basil
.23 tsp - sugar
.23 tsp - majoram
.34 tsp - oregano
.11 tsp - parsley

34.56g - olive oil (anyone else think this is really high?)

Nate, I just did a conversion to scale the sauce recipe down to a recipe based on 28 oz of tomatoes, and I got essentially the same measurements you got. My teaspoon measurements are all within 0.01 or 0.02 of what you listed, and I got 34.89 grams (1.23 oz) for the olive oil.

28 oz Crushed/Ground tomatoes
.92 tsp Salt
.46 tsp Garlic salt
.35 tsp Ground pepper
.58 tsp Sweet basil
.23 tsp Sugar
.23 tsp Marjoram
.35 tsp Oregano
.12 tsp Parsley
1.23 oz Olive oil (34.89 g)

I really can't say if I would consider the olive oil content high because I almost never add any kind of oil to my sauce. In fact, I've always been more inclined to use tomato product straight out of the can, and I don't even know what a couple of these spices taste like.

It seems like I've read at least a few posts in the old threads in which people mentioned crushed red pepper being present in Giordano's sauce. Also, a friend on Facebook mentioned crushed red pepper, as well. Consequently, I've used a hint of crushed red pepper to the simple sauce I've used for this style of pizza. I have no idea if it belongs there, but I like it.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 30, 2013, 10:41:42 AM
I mixed up a batch of just the ingredients and the majoram seems really out of place.  I will add to a 28oz can of crushed tomatos and see how it goes.

Yes I believe there is a hint of crushed red pepper in their current sauce.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 30, 2013, 11:28:31 AM
I'm pretty sure there sauce recipe has stayed the same since the 70s because they said it did in a vid I saw.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 30, 2013, 11:59:58 AM
Confirmed.  That olive oil amount is WAY too high.  I would use 1/2 tbsp max for 28oz can
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 30, 2013, 12:18:04 PM
How bout none?
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Pete-zza on August 30, 2013, 12:48:54 PM
How bout none?
Ryan,

According to the information in Reply 85 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5674.msg53610.html#msg53610 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5674.msg53610.html#msg53610), as of around 2008 there was no oil in the sauce. The calcium chloride most likely comes from the canned plum tomatoes (Lisanti).

Peter
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 30, 2013, 01:29:05 PM
How bout none?

Yea it doesn't need it.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 30, 2013, 02:11:48 PM
Ok so this sauce has hints of the current Giordanos sauce.  That is a pleasant surprise.  I used crushed tomatoes with citric acid though by mistake which altered it a little.  I have to make a new batch of dough though because my yeast died.  In gonna go with 55% hydration for this attempt.

Nate
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Pete-zza on August 30, 2013, 02:56:57 PM
I found this article that discusses various aspects of the Giordano's pizzas as of October, 2008 with the executive chef at Giordano's at the time, including these excerpts:

[Chicago Pizza Interview] Leo Spizzirri
Giordano's, probably the best known purveyor of stuffed pizza in the world, has been using largely the same recipe since it was started by the Boglio brothers in the mid-1970s. The man currently responsible for making sure Giordano's stays on top of its game is Leo Spizzirri, Executive Chef

A little over a year ago, he came to Giordano's as Executive Chef. He filled me in on some of what makes Giordano's pizza so good. The crust features high gluten flower and is allowed to rise for 3-5 days (4 being ideal) before it is made into pizza. The cheese, toppings and sauce are all fresh. Giordano's gets its whole milk mozzarella in large chunks and shreds it themselves, ensuring the cheese has the proper moisture when cooked. The toppings are all fresh, as are the tomatoes that are used to make the sauce.

http://www.chicagopizzaclub.com/2008/10/chicago-pizza-interview-leo-spizzirri.html (http://www.chicagopizzaclub.com/2008/10/chicago-pizza-interview-leo-spizzirri.html)

Peter
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 30, 2013, 03:22:56 PM
That's some good info right there Peter.  So hi gluten flour and not AP.  I didn't think it was AP because that is biscuity.  In all the vids the dough still looks stiff though so what % hydration would you say about?

Nate
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Pete-zza on August 30, 2013, 04:45:30 PM
That's some good info right there Peter.  So hi gluten flour and not AP.  I didn't think it was AP because that is biscuity.  In all the vids the dough still looks stiff though so what % hydration would you say about?
Nate,

I tend to be a suspicious sort so I don't believe everything that people say or write about pizza, including insiders who should be in the know but often aren't. I am most suspicious of writers who are not intimately familiar with a given topic and are just parroting back something that someone told them. And because someone is an executive chef doesn't mean that what they say is accurate or correct either.

To give you an example, the Slice article at http://chicago.seriouseats.com/2008/06/giordanos-stuffed-pizza-classic-chicago-illinois.html (http://chicago.seriouseats.com/2008/06/giordanos-stuffed-pizza-classic-chicago-illinois.html) reported that there was shortening used in the Giordano's dough. That turned out not to be correct. The article I cited in the last post and also another Slice article at http://chicago.seriouseats.com/2011/07/chicago-essential-giordanos.html (http://chicago.seriouseats.com/2011/07/chicago-essential-giordanos.html) reported that the flour used to make the Giordano's dough was a high gluten flour and also that the sauce was made from fresh tomatoes. As for the flour, since there is no industry standard or definition of what make a given flour a high gluten flour, what protein level are we talking about? King Arthur describes its bread flour, which has a protein content of 12.7%, as a high gluten flour. Most people tend to think that a protein content of around 13-14.2% makes a flour a high gluten flour. I tend to doubt that Giordano's is using a flour with a protein content in the latter range. If Giordano's is not using the Ceresota flour, with a protein content of 12%, or it is not using what most of us consider an all-purpose flour, I would guess a flour with a protein content of say, 12.7% to 13%. Of course, that is just an educated guess.

With respect to the Giordano's sauce, what pizza company are you aware of with over forty stores that uses fresh tomatoes to make their pizza sauce? Even small operators don't do that. I think what was meant was "fresh pack" tomatoes since Giordano's uses canned fresh pack tomatoes, such as sold by Escalon or Stanislaus, to make their sauce.

Peter
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 30, 2013, 06:30:31 PM
Ok so this sauce has hints of the current Giordanos sauce.  That is a pleasant surprise.  I used crushed tomatoes with citric acid though by mistake which altered it a little.  I have to make a new batch of dough though because my yeast died.  In gonna go with 55% hydration for this attempt.

Nate

Here's something I think is a very good tip, based on what little I know about Giordano's: There is no such thing as too much sauce.

On my first one, I used like 12 oz of sauce for a 10" pizza. That wasn't enough, and it really brought out the flavor of the spices (mainly oregano, but I also used basil and crushed red pepper). Also, it tasted a lot like a cooked sauce (not good), because that's what it became. The sauce you just made will probably taste considerably different after it's been in an oven for 35 minutes; especially if you don't use enough of it. I'll be more inclined to use 15 or 16 oz of sauce on my next 10" stuffed pizza (which may be tomorrow, if I can find someone to help me eat it).

I'm about to make a trip to the grocery store to get a few of the spices listed in the sauce recipe. Can't wait to find out how the sauce tastes. Also, I think my Mondako dough batch is currently at 72+ hours. It's gonna be at least another day before I use it. Looks like I got the IDY percentage right this time.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Garvey on August 30, 2013, 10:51:48 PM
Garvey,

I hear you and appreciate that things change with the passage of time but who is to say that the old Giordano's recipes aren't better than the recipes used today? Over the years I have seen a decline in the quality of pizzas produced by chains and independents alike. I think it would be interesting for Ryan to try the old Giordano's recipes to see what they produce. They apparently were the recipes that gave birth to the Giordano's enterprise.

Peter:

I completely understand what you're saying, but this thread/quest is the "Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone," not the "Best Stuffed Pizza Recipe." I'm not being argumentative or curmudgeonly: of course, anyone can go ahead and move the goalposts. 

But if we are talking Giordano's, what is the measuring stick?  An objective standard that exists today and can be readily measured against by many tasters, or a historical (apocryphal?) recipe that cannot be verified by anyone, except maybe BTB or someone else who dined there regularly 40 years ago?

So you're right: the old recipes may be *better*.  That is absolutely true.  But that would also mean qualitatively and factually *different*.  That's all.  No judgment passed...just reiterating facts.

Cheers,
Garvey
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 31, 2013, 10:27:54 AM
Ok so this sauce has hints of the current Giordanos sauce.  That is a pleasant surprise.  I used crushed tomatoes with citric acid though by mistake which altered it a little.  I have to make a new batch of dough though because my yeast died.  In gonna go with 55% hydration for this attempt.

Nate

I made some of this sauce last night, using 28 oz of 7/11. I expected to end up with something pretty interesting, particularly because of what Nate said above. However, I don't seem to taste much of anything but salt (and I taste a lot of salt). I'm curious to find out how it tastes after baking. With the Mondako dough having been in the fridge for 4 days now, I want to make one of these today, but I may wait until tomorrow.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Pete-zza on August 31, 2013, 12:14:09 PM
But if we are talking Giordano's, what is the measuring stick?  An objective standard that exists today and can be readily measured against by many tasters, or a historical (apocryphal?) recipe that cannot be verified by anyone, except maybe BTB or someone else who dined there regularly 40 years ago?
Garvey,

You are a straight talker so I always respect what you have to say. If I had my druthers, I would have preferred to come up with a more recent clone of the Giordano's deep dish pizza. The best data and numbers that I had on the Giordano's pizza was back in early 2008, or thereabouts. A lot of the relevant information is reflected in Reply 85 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5674.msg53610/topicseen.html#msg53610 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5674.msg53610/topicseen.html#msg53610). My participation in that thread persisted for about another year but ended in a whimper when I ran out of facts and numbers to be able to continue to reverse engineer and clone the Giordano's deep-dish pizza as it existed at that time. Also, at that time, I did not have as much experience as I now have with how to handle the Nutrition Facts as they were set forth in the abovementioned reply, although it was not for the lack of trying. At one point, I had nineteen pages of notes and calculations.

About three or four years later, as Giordano's went through the travails of bankruptcy, I wondered whether the new owners and managers would change the Giordano's dough formulation and pizza. I thought that that was a distinct possibility but, according to a late 2012 interview I found at http://www.chicagomag.com/Radar/Dish/October-2012/Jack-of-Jacks-on-Halsted-Opens-Wrigley-BBQ-in-Lake-View/ (http://www.chicagomag.com/Radar/Dish/October-2012/Jack-of-Jacks-on-Halsted-Opens-Wrigley-BBQ-in-Lake-View/), when the new executive chef at Giordano's, Russell Bry, was asked point blank "You didn't change the pizza?", he replied as follows:

No. We embellished the pizza but have not changed the recipe at all. You’d have to be a damned fool to do something like that. We’ve added some new toppings: pesto chicken, barbecue chicken, balsamic onions, bacon, artichokes.

I often hear executives of food-related companies say at critical points in their existence where there were major changes that they did not change any of their recipes. I believe that they say that to soothe and comfort their customers who might be fearful that their beloved foods might be changed, possibly for the worse. But, I have never quite understood what executives mean when they say that they have not changed their recipes. For example, let us say that a given original dough recipe calls for flour, water, salt, yeast and maybe oil and/or sugar. If a later recipe also has the same ingredients but one of the ingredients, such as the flour, is changed from all-purpose to high gluten, has the recipe been changed? What if the brand of one of the ingredients is changed, such as going from a Ceresota flour to a General Mills flour with comparable specs, or if the quantities of one or more of the ingredients is changed, such as lowering the hydration value while increasing the amount of oil, or a decision has been made to drop the sugar, has the original recipe been changed in any of these instances? If a solid fat is replaced with a liquid oil because of trans fats, has the recipe been changed? I suppose if asked it is possible that Russell Bry might have drawn the line at the Giordano's pizza as it existed as of 2012 as far as changes were concerned, but usually executives like to keep a clear lineage that can be traced back to its roots and original founders and recipes. That is why I found Ryan's revelation of the original Giordano's recipes of interest. I was looking for a possible nexus that linked those recipes to future versions. So someone trying the original recipes might see connections to the current Giordano's products.

In due course, when I have more time, I hope to revisit the 2008 Giordano's data to see if I can find clues in it that I missed the last time I was in the weeds trying to make heads or tails out of the facts and numbers I had before me at that time.

Peter
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 31, 2013, 12:16:57 PM
Nate,

I tend to be a suspicious sort so I don't believe everything that people say or write about pizza, including insiders who should be in the know but often aren't. I am most suspicious of writers who are not intimately familiar with a given topic and are just parroting back something that someone told them. And because someone is an executive chef doesn't mean that what they say is accurate or correct either.

To give you an example, the Slice article at http://chicago.seriouseats.com/2008/06/giordanos-stuffed-pizza-classic-chicago-illinois.html (http://chicago.seriouseats.com/2008/06/giordanos-stuffed-pizza-classic-chicago-illinois.html) reported that there was shortening used in the Giordano's dough. That turned out not to be correct. The article I cited in the last post and also another Slice article at http://chicago.seriouseats.com/2011/07/chicago-essential-giordanos.html (http://chicago.seriouseats.com/2011/07/chicago-essential-giordanos.html) reported that the flour used to make the Giordano's dough was a high gluten flour and also that the sauce was made from fresh tomatoes. As for the flour, since there is no industry standard or definition of what make a given flour a high gluten flour, what protein level are we talking about? King Arthur describes its bread flour, which has a protein content of 12.7%, as a high gluten flour. Most people tend to think that a protein content of around 13-14.2% makes a flour a high gluten flour. I tend to doubt that Giordano's is using a flour with a protein content in the latter range. If Giordano's is not using the Ceresota flour, with a protein content of 12%, or it is not using what most of us consider an all-purpose flour, I would guess a flour with a protein content of say, 12.7% to 13%. Of course, that is just an educated guess.

With respect to the Giordano's sauce, what pizza company are you aware of with over forty stores that uses fresh tomatoes to make their pizza sauce? Even small operators don't do that. I think what was meant was "fresh pack" tomatoes since Giordano's uses canned fresh pack tomatoes, such as sold by Escalon or Stanislaus, to make their sauce.

Peter

I dunno but their sauce is legendary.  Without it the pizza would only be average.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Pete-zza on August 31, 2013, 12:20:43 PM
Ryan,

Can you tell me what weight of dough you used to make your 10" (small) Giordano's clones and how you arrived at that weight?

Peter
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Pete-zza on August 31, 2013, 12:24:45 PM
Ryan or Nate,

Do we know what brand of mozzarella cheese Giordano's is now using? As best I can tell, the mozzarella cheese is reported to be whole milk mozzarella that is shredded from block. Stella was mentioned as a brand that was once used by Giordano's but that may no longer be the case.

Peter
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 31, 2013, 12:47:12 PM
Ryan,

How many grams of flour are you using for your 14in pizzas?
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 31, 2013, 12:51:23 PM
Ryan or Nate,

Do we know what brand of mozzarella cheese Giordano's is now using? As best I can tell, the mozzarella cheese is reported to be whole milk mozzarella that is shredded from block. Stella was mentioned as a brand that was once used by Giordano's but that may no longer be the case.

Peter

The cheese hasn't changed.  Stella WM but I don't think you can buy it.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 31, 2013, 12:56:59 PM
But if we are talking Giordano's, what is the measuring stick?  An objective standard that exists today and can be readily measured against by many tasters, or a historical (apocryphal?) recipe that cannot be verified by anyone, except maybe BTB or someone else who dined there regularly 40 years ago?
The measuring stick is the fact that there are no pictures on the internet, either here or elsewhere, of pizzas that look remotely like Giordano's, except these (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5674.msg48048.html#msg48048) and a few of the pics I've shared lately. Chicago Rules!!!'s pizzas look great--probably better than mine--but he (or she?) didn't share much about them, other than the fact that the dough "was very similar to Buzz's (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5674.msg48092.html#msg48092)." So the way I see it, there isn't a measuring stick. First of all because Buzz measures everything by volume, but also because I think his recipe is pretty far off the mark in at least one area. I'm not even sure if anyone has expressed a prospective Giordano's recipe in bakers' percents prior to the dough formulations I've shared lately.

All I know is that if the "inside information" I've shared recently is legit, even though it is almost 40 years old and has surely been changed more than once, then that information is probably still more accurate than any other information that has been shared either here or anywhere else on the internet. And I consider that very relevant information.

I'm not trying to pretend I'm any kind of expert when it comes to this kind of pizza, because I'm not. I've never even had Giordano's. But there's just no reliable information out there, and I knew after one try that I was probably closer to replicating this pizza than anyone else has been so far, at least with the dough/crust. Yeah, I'm impressed with my results so far, although I know there's a lot of room for improvement. You would be, too, if you had just accomplished what I feel like I've accomplished. And I may sound full of myself for a while. If I do, then shoot me down. But also realize that if I sound full of myself, it may just be that I'm simply trying to share what I think is some pretty valuable information (and that you're misinterpreting my intentions).

Just look at it this way, Garvey: After I speculated that the fat percentage in Giordano's dough is much less than half of what everyone else has tried, before any of this "inside information" came out, YOU seconded my low-fat interpretation. As far as I know, that had not happened prior to the other day. I think someone (probably Peter) may have speculated that the fat percentage should be lower than what everyone has tried prior to my participation, but I don't think anyone ever seconded that idea. Then the other day, you did. Which means you and I may have just permanently changed the direction of how most people approach their view of how to clone a style of pizza that previously had no direction.

Regardless of what the "inside information" says, I feel pretty sure that the fat percentage for this dough needs to be in the neighborhood of 6-8%. That's how I felt before this information was even shared with me. But to have such information available to perhaps confirm what I already thought I'd figured out on my own, I think that's big. Having said that, I think it's very unlikely that the hydration of Giordano's dough is a drop over 50%, even though the "inside information" says 58%. I like 48%, and I'm gonna stick with it for a while.

So you're right: the old recipes may be *better*.  That is absolutely true.  But that would also mean qualitatively and factually *different*.  That's all.  No judgment passed...just reiterating facts.
Yes, the "inside information" I've shared is different. We know that. Even the person who shared it with me acknowledged that it's not the same thing they're making today. I wasn't trying to say "this is the answer." It's not the answer, but it seems to be a useful tool that will ultimately help us figure out the answer.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 31, 2013, 01:22:52 PM
Ryan,

Do you have final dough weight for 10 inch?
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 31, 2013, 01:23:29 PM
Ryan,

How many grams of flour are you using for your 14in pizzas?

For 33 oz of dough (936 g), I'm using 21.19 oz (601 g) of flour. This amount of dough works really well for a 10" pan that's 2" deep (because it is enough dough to comfortably account for what will become scrap dough). If you're using a pan with different dimensions, let me know the dimensions so I can enter everything into my spreadsheet and tell you what the spreadsheet suggests. [EDIT: I've decided to make 33 oz dough batches for future 10" stuffed pizzas, rather than 30 oz of dough. With this change, I will divide the dough into a 17.67 oz (501 g) dough ball for the bottom skin and a 14.84 oz (421 g) dough ball for the top skin, with a target weight of 12.02 oz (341 g) for the bottom skin after trimming, and a target weight of 7.44 oz (211 g) for the top skin after trimming. That's a total weight of 19.46 oz (552 g) of dough after trimming. But in your case, you'll probably want to roll the top crust at least a little thinner (because you seem to have indicated a strong preference for thinner top crusts).]

Oh, wait. I just re-read your post, and you asked about 14".

Spreadsheet says to make 53.44 oz (1515 g) of dough for 14". Flour is 34.31 oz (973 g). Since you're using a higher hydration than me, your dough batch will probably end up weighing a little more than mine. Divide the dough into a dough ball of 28.7 oz (814 g) for the bottom skin and a dough ball of 24.74 oz (701 g) for the top skin. Your goal is to end up with a bottom skin of 20.78 oz (589 g) after trimming and a top skin of 14.23 oz (403 g) after trimming. But in your case, you'll probably want to roll the top crust at least a little thinner (because you seem to have indicated a strong preference for thinner top crusts).

EDIT: I deleted a lot of confusing rhetoric and added some stuff that I think is more accurate than what I originally said (as well as more confusing rhetoric).
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Pete-zza on August 31, 2013, 01:55:47 PM
The cheese hasn't changed.  Stella WM but I don't think you can buy it.
Nate,

For some reason, Saputo, the parent of Stella, seems to be deemphasizing the sale of mozzarella cheese by Stella itself, since mozzarella cheese does not appear among the cheeses shown at the Stella website at http://www.stellacheese.com/ (http://www.stellacheese.com/). However, it appears that some Sam's Clubs are carrying 5-lb blocks of the Stella whole milk mozzarella cheese:

http://www.samsclub.com/sams/stella-whole-milk-mozzarella-cheese-5-lbs/160954.ip (http://www.samsclub.com/sams/stella-whole-milk-mozzarella-cheese-5-lbs/160954.ip)

Peter
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 31, 2013, 02:01:20 PM
Ryan,

Can you tell me what weight of dough you used to make your 10" (small) Giordano's clones and how you arrived at that weight?

Peter

I have different numbers plugged into my spreadsheet now, but I think I remember the numbers I've used previously. (Yeah, I did remember correctly.)

All right, I have the bottom crust defined as TF=0.100. It occupies a 10" straight-sided pan and goes 1.75" up the side of the pan. (Can't remember why I entered 1.75" instead of 2".) Trimmed dough target weight for the bottom skin is 13.35 oz (379 g).

[EDIT: I remember why I entered 1.75" instead of 2". It's because my spreadsheet interprets my bottom dough skin as two pieces of dough (even though it's actually only one piece of dough). The spreadsheet sees my bottom skin as one flat skin that occupies the full 10" diameter of the pan, in addition to a hoop of dough that sits atop the flat skin. The hoop of dough occupies the remaider of the pan's depth. Since the pan is 2" deep and the hoop of dough sits on top of the other skin, the ring cannot possibly go a full 2" up the side of the pan; it can only go about 1/4" less than the full depth of the pan (because the flat part of the skin is about 1/4" thick). Which is why I enter 1.75" instead of 2". (If that confuses anyone, feel free to ask me about it.)]

I defined the top crust as TF=0.060. It occupies a 10" diameter and goes 0.75" up the side of the pan. Trimmed dough target weight for the top skin is 4.96 oz (141 g).

The only change I made is that I now have it set as TF=0.090 for both crusts. With this info plugged in, it says to use 12.02 oz (341 g) of dough for the bottom crust and 7.44 oz (211 g) of dough for the top crust.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 31, 2013, 02:14:18 PM
Peter,

I want to make a Giordano's pizza using hi gluten flour (55-56% hydration, 8-10% oil) and want a 4 day cold ferment.  I will obviously need some sugar right for that long ferment right?   How much yeast should I use as well?  I've decided to use my 12inch cast iron pan to bake this also. 
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 31, 2013, 02:15:57 PM
Nate,

For some reason, Saputo, the parent of Stella, seems to be deemphasizing the sale of mozzarella cheese by Stella itself, since mozzarella cheese does not appear among the cheeses shown at the Stella website at http://www.stellacheese.com/ (http://www.stellacheese.com/). However, it appears that some Sam's Clubs are carrying 5-lb blocks of the Stella whole milk mozzarella cheese:

http://www.samsclub.com/sams/stella-whole-milk-mozzarella-cheese-5-lbs/160954.ip (http://www.samsclub.com/sams/stella-whole-milk-mozzarella-cheese-5-lbs/160954.ip)

Peter

Good find Peter.  Too bad I only have Costco.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on August 31, 2013, 02:17:34 PM
For 30 oz of dough (850 g), I'm using 19.26 oz (546 g) of flour. This amount of dough works really well for a 10" pan that's 2" deep (because it is enough dough to comfortably account for what will become scrap dough). If you're using a pan with different dimensions, let me know the dimensions so I can enter everything into my spreadsheet and tell you what the spreadsheet suggests. Like others have said, divide the dough into two pieces that account for 1/3 and 2/3 of the total dough.

Oh, wait. I just re-read your post, and you asked about 14".

Spreadsheet says to make 53.44 oz (1515 g). Flour is 34.31 oz (973 g).

Since you're using a higher hydration than me, your dough batch should weigh a little more than mine. Also, right now I'm questioning the math I used in my spreadsheet because it's telling me to divide the dough into 28.7 oz (814 g) and 24.74 oz (701 g), which is not even close to thirds. However, the difference in pan size may account for this disparity (because it's not linear, or something like that).

Just to be safe, you might want to base it on 1092 g of flour.

Thanks Ryan.  I've decided to use my 12in cast iron pan for my hi gluten experiment and will use 27oz of flour based off your calculations.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 31, 2013, 02:57:17 PM
Thanks Ryan.  I've decided to use my 12in cast iron pan for my hi gluten experiment and will use 27oz of flour based off your calculations.

In case you're interested, for top and bottom skins of TF=0.090 and a depth of 1.75", here's what my spreadsheet says for 12" (assuming straight sides, although I'm sure the cast iron has sloped sides):

Total dough: 42.41 oz (1202 g)
Bottom crust dough ball: 22.9 oz (649 g)
Top crust dough ball: 19.51 oz (553 g)

After trimming:

Bottom crust: 16.12 oz (457 g)
Top crust: 10.55 oz (299 g)
Cheese: 19.11 oz (542 g)
Sauce: 22.02 oz (624 g)

Unbaked pizza weight=67.8 oz (1922 g)

I mentioned many posts ago that I think my sauce weight is probably a little higher than Giordano's (but I also said a day or two ago that I don't think there's such thing as too much sauce for this kind of pizza).
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Chicago Bob on August 31, 2013, 03:15:33 PM
Nate,

For some reason, Saputo, the parent of Stella, seems to be deemphasizing the sale of mozzarella cheese by Stella itself, since mozzarella cheese does not appear among the cheeses shown at the Stella website at http://www.stellacheese.com/ (http://www.stellacheese.com/). However, it appears that some Sam's Clubs are carrying 5-lb blocks of the Stella whole milk mozzarella cheese:

http://www.samsclub.com/sams/stella-whole-milk-mozzarella-cheese-5-lbs/160954.ip (http://www.samsclub.com/sams/stella-whole-milk-mozzarella-cheese-5-lbs/160954.ip)

Peter
That's correct. I've mentioned this several times over the past year to others looking for a good, inexpensive mozz cheese and as of last Sunday my Sam's still carried the Stella brand.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Garvey on August 31, 2013, 05:07:34 PM
Ryan:

I think we're agreeing here, on everything. 

And if you come up with the Nixon era clone, awesome!  No one will know, though, whether it is 1974 Giordano's or not.  It'll just be good pizza.  But maybe it'll somehow taste like the contemporary offering, and that's cool.  But if it's nothing like what is offered now...you've got a "tree falling in the forest" phenomenon, more or less...


Peter:

I also think we're agreeing here.  And nothing but love and respect for your work. 

I also think that when companies start franchising, formulations may change to achieve similar results but with different equipment.  So it's actually possible that the 1974 recipe gets us much closer in the home oven than the 2013 commissary formulation would.  (I am reminded of the HRI travails here.)

Peace to all,
Garvey
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Chicago Bob on August 31, 2013, 05:23:18 PM


And if you come up with the Nixon era clone, awesome!  No one will know, though, whether it is 1974 Giordano's or not.  It'll just be good pizza.  But maybe it'll somehow taste like the contemporary offering, and that's cool.  But if it's nothing like what is offered now...you've got a "tree falling in the forest" phenomenon, more or less...





Maybe it will be something that is even better.  8)
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 31, 2013, 06:13:46 PM
The Mondako dough (which I mixed four days ago) is in the oven. I'm baking this one at 460 for around 35 minutes. For this 10" pizza, the total dough was about 19 oz. 13 oz of cheese. Pepperoni by feel. 16 oz of sauce (from the recipe). 21 minutes left on the timer.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Pete-zza on August 31, 2013, 07:16:27 PM
I want to make a Giordano's pizza using hi gluten flour (55-56% hydration, 8-10% oil) and want a 4 day cold ferment.  I will obviously need some sugar right for that long ferment right?   How much yeast should I use as well?  I've decided to use my 12inch cast iron pan to bake this also.
Nate,

Yes, I would use about 1-2% sugar to be sure that there is enough food for the yeast and for crust coloration purposes. As for the amount of yeast (I assume IDY) to use, that can be tricky since it depends on things like finished dough temperature, the stability of your refrigerator temperatures, temper temperatures and duration, etc. However, having worked with high oil content doughs, namely, the Papa John's clone doughs, I found that oil quantity at the levels I was using did not impede the yeast performance that I could tell. So, for your purposes, you might use something like 0.20-0.25% IDY. Maybe I would err on the high side (0.25% IDY) but monitor the rise of the dough since you will be working at higher oil levels than I have used.

Peter
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 31, 2013, 07:39:07 PM
OK, so here's a teaser pic for y'all to enjoy while I compose what will probably be a pretty long post about tonight's pizza (with more pics, which hopefully will have turned out a little better than this one).
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Pete-zza on August 31, 2013, 07:51:04 PM
Good find Peter.  Too bad I only have Costco.
Nate,

I was also able to find the Nutrition Facts for the Stella whole milk mozzarella cheese, at http://www.fitclick.com/how_many_calories_in_Stella_Mozzarella_Cheese_Whole_Milk?fd=995 (http://www.fitclick.com/how_many_calories_in_Stella_Mozzarella_Cheese_Whole_Milk?fd=995). For some reason, back in 2008, I could not find that information. Even today, I had to do a lot of searching to find the data.

In any event, one ounce of the Stella whole milk mozzarella cheese has 7 grams of Total Fat, 4.5 grams of Sat Fat, and 20 mg of Cholesterol. The key nutrient is the Cholesterol because that ingredient is found only in the mozzarella cheese, the grated Parmesan cheese and the butter used to butter the pan in which the pizza is baked. Based on the Nutrition Facts given at Reply 85 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5674.msg53610.html#msg53610 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5674.msg53610.html#msg53610), and assuming that all three of those ingredients are reflected in the Nutrition Facts (I assumed one tablespoon each of the grated Parmesan cheese and the butter), the amount of the Stella whole milk mozzarella cheese used in a small (10") Giordano's cheese deep dish pizza comes to about 12 ounces by my calculation. Previously, I came up with 13 ounces but I didn't have the Stella Nutrition Facts at that time.

Keep in mind also that back in 2008, the Giordano's ingredients list said that the mozzarella cheese was a "whole and skim milk" blend. The Stella part-skim milk is lower in fats than the whole milk form (http://www.foodfacts.com/NutritionFacts/Milk-and-milk-products/Stella-Special-Low-Moisture-Part-Skim-Mozzarella-Cheese--lb/70787 (http://www.foodfacts.com/NutritionFacts/Milk-and-milk-products/Stella-Special-Low-Moisture-Part-Skim-Mozzarella-Cheese--lb/70787)) so maybe a 50/50 blend of those cheeses would have come to 13 ounces or something close to it. With rounding factors it can be difficult to be precise.

Peter
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Jackie Tran on August 31, 2013, 08:20:43 PM
Just wanted to say nice work Ryan.   Thanks for sharing and keep it up!

Chau
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 31, 2013, 08:33:31 PM
The first thing you'll probably notice about this pizza is that the crust had a really nice color. My first thought was that this must have resulted from using a different flour than I used with my previous stuffed pizzas. But then I remembered that I greased the pan with butter (salted) this time (for the first time), so that may have had something to do with the color. One thing I can say for sure is that the color didn't come from sugar, because there wasn't any sugar. Here's the formula for today's dough:

100% Mondako flour
48% Ice water
0.86% IDY
0.9% Salt
6% Shortening

I made this dough four days ago and refrigerated it immediately after mixing. When I removed the dough from the fridge today, I divided it into a 20 oz dough ball and a 10 oz dough ball, then allowed the dough balls to warm up on the counter, uncovered, for about an hour before rolling them.

In my opinion, the hydration percentage for this dough was a little too high; I had to use some bench flour to roll the dough. Also, I didn't like the sauce. It seemed too salty, and I really couldn't detect any other flavors or spices. I'm curious to find out what Nate has to say about the sauce after he makes his pizza. I'm also curious to find out how tomorrow's Power flour dough will turn out.

I'm not sure of the protein percentage for Mondako, but I'm guessing it's in the 12-13% range. I wasn't expecting anything great out of this flour because it hasn't really impressed me the 2 or 3 times I've used it for NY style, but I'd say it performed pretty well here.

Now that I've thought about it (while composing this post), I think the flour was probably responsible for the nice color of the crust, because I noticed very early during the bake that the top of the crust was getting dark (and I was worried that it would end up getting too dark). The top of the crust never came into contact with butter, so it must be the flour.

The first two pics show that this crust had a very nice color. The other three pics hopefully provide a good look at the crumb.

Thanks Chau.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: PizzaNJ on August 31, 2013, 08:52:41 PM
Really awesome pizza. And outstanding thread -- all the sleuthing and conjecturing is really cool.  :)
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Pete-zza on August 31, 2013, 09:00:03 PM
Ryan,

Very nice job.

If I had to guess, I would say that the browning of the crust was due to the caramelizing of the milk solids and lactose in butter during baking, with associated Maillard reactions. It's much like how butter melted in a pan turns brown.

The Mondako flour has a protein content of 11.9%. That is in bread flour territory. The Power flour has a protein content of 13.5%. That should make for a good test of how a high gluten flour performs in a Giordano's clone. A further test with that flour is how leftovers fare after a day or so, especially the texture of the crust. Does it become hard or overly chewy, or does it retain some softness?

For future reference on the Pendleton flours, you might take note of this document, where the protein numbers are on numbered page 5:

http://www.pfmills.com/filebin/pdf/technical_informational_booklet_v1-opt.pdf (http://www.pfmills.com/filebin/pdf/technical_informational_booklet_v1-opt.pdf)

Peter
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on August 31, 2013, 10:43:22 PM
First, I want to say thanks for the nice comments.

Also, a few things that are becoming clear to me as I look at the pictures I posted earlier:

1. If I was overly concerned with aesthetics, I'd say I used too much sauce on this pizza (16 oz). 14 or 15 oz is probably more appropriate.
2. Judging by many of the pics of actual Giordano's pizzas, I've determined that the top skin really should be thicker than I've been making them.
3. If you want a gooey cheese effect, don't remove the first slice until several minutes after cutting the pizza. I think the reason why my first slice never oozes cheese is because I always remove it right after I've cut through the cheese. I didn't take the pic at the top of this page until after I'd already eaten my first slice; after the cheese had a chance to become one again with the neighboring slice's cheese.

Whenever I make another batch of dough for this style, I will make a 33 oz batch instead of a 30 oz batch, scaling the dough into an 18 oz dough ball for the bottom skin and a 15 oz dough ball for the top skin. Unfortunately, tomorrow's pizza will probably be my last stuffed pizza for at least a couple weeks, because I need to eat better for a little while. (However, I still have another 5 lbs of Grande mozzarella in the freezer, which means I'll have no choice but to go on another pizza binge before long.)
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Chicago Bob on August 31, 2013, 10:46:34 PM
There is a lot of sauce on the top of that pie and I think it works perfectly with the balance of the crust and generous cheese amounts.... skillful work on a really delicious looking pizza Ryan, congratulations!  :chef:
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on September 01, 2013, 12:40:50 AM
Great looking pie Ryan.  Your crumb is getting very close to the real deal.  I definitely feel the change to high gluten was a step in the right direction.  Can you describe the crumb texture?
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on September 01, 2013, 01:34:41 AM
Thanks. This wasn't high gluten flour. It was what I guess you'd call bread flour; maybe even borderline AP. Even though I assume this flour is a higher protein flour than I'd been using (Pillsbury AP and Gold Medal AP), the crust seemed like it was made of a lower protein flour. Tomorrow's crust will be made of high gluten flour (Power flour).

It's been cool being able to try all these different flours lately (especially since I didn't have to buy any of it). It really helps you see the bigger picture, which you can't see when you're locked in to just one or two different flours, like I had been for a long time. Especially with all the different styles of pizza I've been making lately.

Funny that you ask about the crumb because I was just looking at the last picture, trying to figure out if the crumb had that elongated bubble thing I was talking about earlier. I don't know if I can describe the crumb any better than the last picture does. When I ate the last slice, after it had been sitting out for a couple hours, I noticed that the crust was reasonably soft and easy to bite through, if that helps.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on September 01, 2013, 12:01:31 PM
Ryan:

I think we're agreeing here, on everything. 

And if you come up with the Nixon era clone, awesome!  No one will know, though, whether it is 1974 Giordano's or not.  It'll just be good pizza.  But maybe it'll somehow taste like the contemporary offering, and that's cool.  But if it's nothing like what is offered now...you've got a "tree falling in the forest" phenomenon, more or less...

Cool. I think the post you're responding to may have sounded a little hostile and defensive, but I didn't mean for it to sound that way. I think you already figured that out, though.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on September 02, 2013, 12:17:23 PM
After having just re-read the first 100+ posts in this thread, it occurred to me that the following sauce recipe, which is alleged to be the actual recipe for Giordano's sauce from the mid-1970s, might have a typo.

5 #10 cans Lisanti plum tomatoes
2 #10 cans 7/11 crushed tomatoes
8 T salt
4 T garlic salt
3 T ground pepper
5 T sweet basil
2 T sugar
2 T marjoram
3 T oregano
1 T parsley
32 oz. olive oil
Combine and refrigerate overnight

My hypothesis is that maybe "garlic salt" is actually supposed to be "garlic powder." Here's why I say this:

1) Why use garlic salt when salt is already the most heavily used flavor in the sauce?
2) Nate mentioned that garlic is very present in Giordano's sauce. (I can't taste garlic in the sauce I made, which contained garlic salt, not garlic powder.)
3) As I've already mentioned, I found this sauce to be too salty.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Pete-zza on September 02, 2013, 01:06:47 PM
Ryan,

Your analysis sounds correct to me.

Peter
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on September 02, 2013, 01:20:21 PM
Yeah, well I just want everyone to know that Peter's first post after he eclipsed the 20,000-post mark was in response to me!
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on September 02, 2013, 07:20:26 PM
Here's the Power flour stuffed pizza with 20 minutes to go. Made the dough five days ago.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on September 02, 2013, 09:28:47 PM
Before I get to the good stuff, here are a couple seemingly boring pics that actually helped me learn quite a bit tonight. In the first pic, you can see that there is an extra bit of dough attached to one of the dough balls. That little piece of dough was part of the scraps trimmed from Saturday's Mondako pizza. I put it there mostly to find out if it would brown differently than the Power flour, since Saturday's dough browned so much more than every other stuffed pizza I'd made previously. I rolled the dough so the little piece of Mondako dough would be on the outside of the crust.

The second pic shows that I buttered (unsalted) about 2/3 of the pan and left the rest of the pan ungreased and unbuttered. I did this in an effort to find out if the butter causes any browning of the crust.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on September 02, 2013, 09:45:45 PM
Here are some pics of the baked pizza. I wanna say something about them, but the neighbors brought some beer to share with me, and consequently I ain't thinkin' real straight right now. By the way, the neighbors loved this pizza. One of them has actually eaten at Giordano's before, and she loved this pizza. These neighbors have had my NY style and my deep dish, which I think are both pretty good, but this pizza made them very happy.

Oh yeah, I thought the Power flour (high gluten) made by far the best crust of all the stuffed pizzas I've made so far.

A few more pics on the way.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on September 02, 2013, 09:48:19 PM
And a few crumb pics.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Pete-zza on September 03, 2013, 10:07:00 AM
Ryan

A flour with a protein content of the Power flour you used is sometimes called a medium high-gluten flour, to distinguish it from the really high-gluten flour, such as the All Trumps, Kyrol, etc. See, for example, the King Arthur article on flour at http://web.archive.org/web/20060208023504/http://www.kingarthurflour.com/stuff/contentmgr/files/15ec5c94af1251cdac2d7a25848f0e27/miscdocs/Flour%20Guide.pdf (http://web.archive.org/web/20060208023504/http://www.kingarthurflour.com/stuff/contentmgr/files/15ec5c94af1251cdac2d7a25848f0e27/miscdocs/Flour%20Guide.pdf) and the Gibralter flour described at http://www.progressivebaker.com/products/spring_wheat_flours/gibraltar_medium_high_gluten.html (http://www.progressivebaker.com/products/spring_wheat_flours/gibraltar_medium_high_gluten.html).

Peter
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on September 03, 2013, 10:48:09 AM
Peter,

Thanks to the very good results from the Power flour, I'm willing to try All Trumps (bromated), which I have on the premises. However, it's gonna have to wait probably a few weeks because last night's pizza used all but the last few ounces of my cheese. I still have another bag of Grande whole milk mozzarella, but it's in the freezer (mostly because I want to find out how Grande responds to being frozen). As much as I love pizza, my body needs me to take a break from pizza and eat mostly smoothies for a while. I hope to see some others try what I've been doing lately.

Ryan
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Pete-zza on September 03, 2013, 11:34:08 AM
Ryan,

I'm curious to know how your side tests with the Mondako dough and the partial butterering of the pan turned out.

Peter
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on September 03, 2013, 02:13:15 PM
Ryan,

I'm curious to know how your side tests with the Mondako dough and the partial butterering of the pan turned out.

Peter

Peter,

Y'know, I thought I had some clear results regarding that stuff when I posted last night. But as I indicated, I did have a nice beer buzz while I updated. So what I have to say now is a little different than what I would have said when I posted the pics last night.

As you can see in the first picture below, the near part of the crust is noticeably darker than most of the rest of the crust. Originally I thought the dark area showed that the Mondako dough came out a little darker than the Power flour dough. However, after looking some more, I'm more inclined to say it appears that about 2/3 of the crust is pretty dark, which may suggest that the darker color is a result of greasing the pan with butter. If you look at the pic of the buttered pan, the butter seems to occupy about the same space as the dark crust. So I'd say the results of my butter and dough experiment last night are kind of inconclusive at this point.

However, because there was no part of the crust that browned considerably less than any other part of the crust, I feel pretty comfortable saying a buttered pan does not contribute much browning of the crust (but that it probably does contribute some browning). This also indicates to me that both the Power flour and the Mondako flour brown a lot more than the AP flours I've used for this style of pizza. And since this kind of dough/crust easily comes out of an unbuttered/unoiled pan after baking for 35 minutes at 460, I'm inclined to say buttering the pan is mostly wasted energy, as well as wasted money.

One thing worth noting is that the small piece of Mondako dough ended up occupying considerably more area of the bottom crust than you might assume by looking at the dough picture. So most of the darker brown area of crust might have resulted entirely from the Mondako dough's influence, rather than the butter's influence.

Summary: I'm not sure if the darker area of crust resulted from buttering the pan or if it resulted from the partial inclusion of Mondako dough scraps. I'm almost certain the darker area resulted from one of those things, but I'm not sure which. I'm leaning toward saying it was the butter.

Ryan
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Chicago Bob on September 04, 2013, 12:11:46 AM
Peter,


Summary: I'm not sure if the darker area of crust resulted from buttering the pan or if it resulted from the partial inclusion of Mondako dough scraps. I'm almost certain the darker area resulted from one of those things, but I'm not sure which. I'm leaning toward saying it was the butter.

Ryan
Did you compare the undersides?
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on September 04, 2013, 01:04:18 AM
Did you compare the undersides?

It seems like that should have happened by now, but you hardly ever see the bottom of these things. It's not exactly the kind of pizza you turn upside down, or sideways, or even slightly tilted. Also, there’s just something about these pizzas that’s kinda mesmerizing. Not sure if I can pinpoint exactly what it is, though.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Chicago Bob on September 04, 2013, 02:07:22 PM
It seems like that should have happened by now, but you hardly ever see the bottom of these things. It's not exactly the kind of pizza you turn upside down, or sideways, or even slightly tilted. Also, there’s just something about these pizzas that’s kinda mesmerizing. Not sure if I can pinpoint exactly what it is, though.
Nice pics Ryan; I think you duly captured your "mesmerizing factor"....CHEESE MONSTER!!  :drool:
The "bite" on/into these things is a pretty phenomenal experience thing too though.  ;)
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: MontsterTX on October 02, 2013, 10:41:38 AM
Hey Ryan,

I really want to try making a couple of 9" Giordano's clones this weekend and I could use your advice. Can you break down the amounts of all of the ingredients and instructions for making the top and bottom crusts? I have two 9"x2" straight-sided pans. Hope I'm not asking too much, but you've been very generous with your knowledge thus far and your posts have given me confidence after years of wanting to try.

Thanks!
Monte
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on October 02, 2013, 06:41:24 PM
No problem, Monte. Here's what I think should be an adequate dough formula, followed by a recipe for 56 oz (1,588 g) of dough, which should be just right for two 9" pizzas.

100% Flour
47% Water
1% ADY
0.9% Salt
6% Fat (shortening or oil)

36.15 oz Flour
16.99 oz Water
0.36 oz ADY (3.62 tsp)
0.33 oz Salt (1.89 tsp)
2.17 oz Fat

or

1025 g Flour
482 g Water
10 g ADY
9 g Salt
61 g Fat

Try to make the dough as soon as you see this. I'd say you should use bread flour, rather than AP flour. Refrigerate (bulk ferment) immediately after mixing, covered.

A few hours before you intend to bake, pull the dough from the fridge and scale into four dough balls. Two dough balls (for main crust) should be 16.12 oz (457 g) and the other two (for top crust) should be 11.79 oz (334 g). Leave them at room temperature, covered (or not covered, if you want them to get a little crusty).

A few hours later: For the main crust, roll one of the larger dough balls so it's just big enough to fit snugly inside the pan, going all the way up the sides and hanging over the top of the pan about an inch all the way around. Fill with 10.44 oz (296 g) of mozzarella, plus toppings of your choice, before adding the top crust.

For the top crust, roll one of the smaller dough balls so it's big enough to cover the whole pan, with the dough hanging over the top of the pan about an inch all the way around. This may be thicker than you think you want it to be. If it is, just roll it a little thinner.

After putting the top dough skin in place, pinch several holes in the top skin and crimp the two skins together all the way around the side of the pan. Use a sharp knife or a pastry roller to trim the excess dough around the top of the pan. Add about 11.06 oz (314 g) of sauce on top of the top skin and use gravity to distribute the sauce. Sprinkle parmesan cheese and bake on a preheated stone at 460 for about 35 minutes.

You'll be left with enough scrap dough to make another pizza, but you'll probably have to make it a little thinner or a little smaller, or make it the same size with a very thin top skin or no top skin.

I think everything I've said here should be good information. If you have any questions, or if anything doesn't seem right to you, just say something.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: MontsterTX on October 03, 2013, 03:45:29 PM
Thanks much for the reply, Ryan. Appreciate the instructions. Probably won't be able to make the dough until Thursday night, so maybe Sunday is too soon to make the pizzas? What's the optimum cold ferment time on the dough?
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on October 03, 2013, 08:26:23 PM
Optimum: I'd like to give it five days, but you should be fine.

That's a tough question, for at least a couple reasons: 1) I've only made 7 or 8 of these; 2) I've never had Giordano's or any other stuffed pizza except the ones I've made; 3) With half of the batches of Giordano's style dough I've made, I've been trying to get the feel for IDY, which may not be in the most usable condition.

1% ADY (or 0.75% IDY, with cooler water) should still work fine. I think you can get away with a big yeast percentage range with this kind of dough. One thing is certain: Even though it might be best to give this dough a little longer cold fermentation, 2.5 or 3 days of fermentation is still adequate. Maybe you should save the scraps for another pizza at least a couple days later. That way you can get a feel for how a single dough changes with a couple extra days of fermentation.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: MontsterTX on October 06, 2013, 12:23:07 AM
Dough has been in the fridge since Thursday night, sauce is mixed and in the fridge, so I'm going to try this tomorrow afternoon. One last concern – I don't have a stone. Does this change things considerably, or do I follow the same baking time/temp and put the pan on the middle rack?
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on October 06, 2013, 01:45:41 AM
You'll probably be fine without a stone. My guess is that it'll just take a little longer for the bottom of the pan to get up to baking temperature. Might not make any difference at all, for all I know. 35-minute bake time has worked well for me, but I think I baked one of them for 40 minutes and it came out fine. The only time I've had any problem was when I forgot I had the oven set at 500 until the pizza had already been baking for 12 or 13 minutes. That one (my third one) came out a little overdone and tough on the bottom, but I think mostly it was all right.

Even though most of the stuffed pizzas I've made so far have been in the direction of phenomenal, I don't have enough experience with this style yet to really know much about it. Not to mention I have never had Giordano's, which makes it harder for me to know if I'm doing it right, even if I am doing it right. So just realize that some things I say may be wrong, even though I think what I'm telling you is good information.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on October 06, 2013, 01:57:38 AM
If the previous post wasn't clear, I guess I'm saying you probably want to give it 40 minutes, just to be safe. At this point I have no idea how to judge visually when the pizza is done. I made an educated guess with my first one, and it worked, so I haven't really changed the bake time.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?q
Post by: MontsterTX on October 07, 2013, 09:49:31 PM
Well, my first attempt was unsuccessful for many reasons, not the least of which was the oven getting shut off at some unknown point. Tried again tonight with the scrap dough and can confirm that Ryan's dough is as close to Giordano's as I've ever had. Was really surprised how close it comes to the real thing.

Everything wrong with the first two pizzas mostly had to do with technique - mainly rolled too thick - and I fixed it with tonight's pizza. An extra day in the fridge helped, too. The only bread flour at my grocery store was King Arthur, but it turned out well. Thanks again Ryan!
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on October 07, 2013, 11:49:04 PM
Awesome! Glad it turned out well, and glad to hear some feedback from someone who's actually had Giordano's. Now go mix up some more dough and try it again in about five days, now that you have a better feel for it.

What kind of tomato product did you use? It looks like a puree or something. If you can get any, try Stanislaus Tomato Magic, Escalon 6 IN 1 (without peels), or Stanislaus 7/11. Also, did you try the sauce recipe from earlier in this thread?
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: MontsterTX on October 08, 2013, 04:32:13 PM
I worked from the recipe you posted earlier in the thread, taking some suggestions from later posts (swapping garlic powder for garlic salt, adding red pepper flakes) and modifying some things to taste.

I used a combination of Carmelina's San Marzanos whole peeled tomatoes and Glen Muir crushed tomatoes. I've been looking for the 6-in1 tomatoes with no luck for a while now, as they were the most frequently mentioned on previous threads. I might order some online for my next try, if I can't find them here in San Antonio. The tomatoes weren't bad, though, and I think the sauce would be better if I strained them a bit and used less of the puree they were packaged in.

I'll definitely use more cheese next time, too; closer to 13 oz., but that's more of a personal preference.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: MightyMouth on October 13, 2013, 07:31:20 AM
My first go at making a Giordano's style pizza, I have never had one so I have nothing to compare it to but it was fantastic. Used Aimless Ryan's Dough and Sauce recipe's.

Dough for one 10" pizza

570 g Flour 100%
268 g Water 47%
5.5g ADY 1%
5g salt .9%
34g oil 6%

Sauce

1 400g Crushed/Ground tomatoes
1/2 Tsp Salt
1/2 Tsp Garlic powder
a Pinch Ground pepper
1/4 tsp Sweet basil
1/8 tsp Sugar
1/8 tsp Marjoram
1/8 tsp Oregano
1/8 tsp Parsley
1 Tbsp Olive oil (34.89 g)

I didn't have time to let the dough proof for 5 days or whatever, I mixed the dough in a stand mixer for about 2 minutes until it was just combined and then kneaded it on the counter for about 30 seconds maximum, it looked very raggy and was much dryer than any pizza dough I have ever made. I let it rise for 2 hours then made the pizza without further proofing. The crust was really nice, tender and flaky. I think probably should have waited 10 minutes or so before cutting it.







Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on October 13, 2013, 12:18:05 PM
Nice!

It's awesome to see some other people following my lead. Especially considering there has never been much effort, either here or elsewhere on the internet, to really figure out this style of pizza. To make that pizza after just a two-hour ferment, especially out of dough that's formulated to be used after at least a few days of cold fermentation, is impressive.

Montster and MightyMouth: You guys better stick around here. The fact that both of you made these pizzas nearly immediately after joining the forum is unbelievably impressive. It seems pretty clear to me that both of you had a good bit of experience making pizza before you joined, but even if so, it's still very impressive. You both obviously put a good bit of work and research into this, at least by carefully reading this whole thread, before you started participating. That's very uncharacteristic of most new members.

All of a sudden this is making me seriously consider taking a trip to Chicago just to try Giordano's for the first time. Since people are clearly interested in trying to replicate my efforts, I want to find out if I've been pointing them in the right direction. Interestingly, both me and the two people who have followed my lead have never had Giordano's. Although I think all three of us have made amazing-looking pizzas, we need someone who's actually had Giordano's to give it a try. Nate?
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: MightyMouth on October 13, 2013, 02:04:25 PM
Thanks for the praise, I always research new things before trying them, it would be more time and effort trying to make something without knowing as much about it as you can. I prefer to use the experience of others.

I have made many New York style pizza and worked in a pizzeria for a couple years when I was much younger.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Garvey on October 13, 2013, 08:38:13 PM
It's awesome to see some other people following my lead. Especially considering there has never been much effort, either here or elsewhere on the internet, to really figure out this style of pizza.

Careful there, buddy: you might get tennis elbow from patting yourself on the back too much. 

I dig your work, but there is no need to crap all over the forum with the idea that not much work has been put in here.  There are at least a couple of very, very long threads and multiple formulations on here.

And FWIW, the definitive Giordano's has spinach.  I suppose people eat other pies there, but spinach is their signature deal.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on October 13, 2013, 10:26:58 PM
Careful there, buddy: you might get tennis elbow from patting yourself on the back too much. 

I dig your work, but there is no need to crap all over the forum with the idea that not much work has been put in here.  There are at least a couple of very, very long threads and multiple formulations on here.

I wasn't patting myself on the back or trying to insult anyone. It's just a simple fact that there's not much substantial information about this style of pizza on the internet or anywhere else, especially compared to pretty much every other popular style of pizza. If you want to learn how to make NY style, Neapolitan, deep dish, Chicago thin, cracker, laminated cracker (Shakey's, Round Table, Tommy's), Papa John's, or essentially any other style out there, there is an abundance of good information, offered by countless people; mostly on these boards. Including dough formulas and possibly just about anything you'll ever need to know about how to modify your oven or grill to suit a specific style of pizza, or even to build an oven suited only for a specific style of pizza. If you go the the NY style boards and post a dough recipe in volumetric measurements, it will almost certainly disappear into obscurity in almost no time because it's not 2003 anymore. Because Scott123 knows a thousand times more about NY style pizza than anyone on the Food Network payroll or any other celebrity chef or "expert" out there. And he's not the only one. He's just the most knowledgeable. There are probably at least a few dozen other people on these boards who know more about NY style than just about anyone who's not a member of this site.

With stuffed, there may be a couple long threads on these boards, but I'm not sure there is another weight-based recipe or formula anywhere outside of this thread. And there are very few pictures. For a style of pizza as well-known as Giordano's stuffed, especially considering it doesn't require any special or modified equipment, that's essentially the same thing as no information.

When I said "following my lead," all I meant is that I think it's very cool that a couple people have already tried recreating specifically what I've created here, in an effort for us all to understand what changes may need to be made. I said that because for more than two and a half years of trying to clone Tommy's Pizza (laminated cracker), no one tried to do what I was doing, and it got kinda lonely. Finally, a few weeks ago or so, someone tried cloning Tommy's by building on the foundation I'd spent nearly three years building, and then he posted a whole bunch of pictures of the whole process. That's one of the best gifts anyone can give you after you've spent so long doing it all alone. Same thing here, even though I really haven't spent much time working on this style of pizza.

When I tried 2% sugar and quickly decided 2% sugar is way too much sugar, was I patting myself on the back for sharing something I learned after doing something that I now consider the wrong way to do it? No, I was simply wrong, and I learned from it. Tell me I was wrong. It won't offend me. It won't hurt my ego. It's just the truth. And if you know there's something I'm doing wrong that I haven't already figured out, please tell me (and everyone else) what I'm doing wrong.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Garvey on October 13, 2013, 11:09:35 PM
With stuffed, there may be a couple long threads on these boards, but I'm not sure there is another weight-based recipe or formula anywhere outside of this thread. And there are very few pictures.

lol.

Weights and pix from Loo (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=9635.0)
Weights and pic from Jdurg (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5674.msg276006.html#msg276006)
Weights and pix from Garvey (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5674.msg209575.html#msg209575)
Weights and pix from haybot (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5674.msg79864.html#msg79864)
Weights and pix from Elevenbravo and Peter (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5674.msg69607.html#msg69607)
Weights and pix from Wazatron (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=8402.0)
Weights and pix from Buzz, Peter, and DKM (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,1585.0.html)

And I'll just stop there. 
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Garvey on October 13, 2013, 11:16:42 PM
Let me reiterate, I dig your work and think you're adding much to the existing knowledge base.  Just pointing out that pretending you're Leif Erikson of Giordano's clones is disingenuous.  It's really easy to search the forum and look at the hundreds of pictures and multiple formulations that came prior.

And the most helpful thing I can say is to get on the spinach with this thing. 
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: CDNpielover on October 13, 2013, 11:31:02 PM
lol.

Weights and pix from Loo (http://"http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=9635.0")
Weights and pic from Jdurg (http://"http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5674.msg276006.html#msg276006")
Weights and pix from Garvey (http://"http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5674.msg209575.html#msg209575")
Weights and pix from haybot (http://"http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5674.msg79864.html#msg79864")
Weights and pix from Elevenbravo and Peter (http://"http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5674.msg69607.html#msg69607")
Weights and pix from Wazatron (http://"http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=8402.0")
Weights and pix from Buzz, Peter, and DKM (http://"http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,1585.0.html")

And I'll just stop there.

These links aren't working for me :'(
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on October 14, 2013, 02:35:18 AM
Just pointing out that pretending you're Leif Erikson of Giordano's clones is disingenuous.  It's really easy to search the forum and look at the hundreds of pictures and multiple formulations that came prior.

I have no idea why it might bother anyone that I used the phrase "following my lead." That's exactly what MontsterTX and MightyMouth did. They used a formula that I shared; a formula I came up with completely on my own (although I was influenced by something Peter said about the fat percentage in another Giordano's thread, as well as Peter's transcription of Giordano's documents). The formulas I've shared in this thread are nothing like any of the formulas or recipes I've seen in any other Giordano's thread. What else could I have said that may have been any more appropriate than "following my lead"?
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Garvey on October 14, 2013, 08:01:35 AM
These links aren't working for me :'(

@CDNpielover: Links fixed.  Sorry--wacky board code inserted extra "http".

Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Garvey on October 14, 2013, 08:08:56 AM
Ryan:

You said that no other thread contained weights or pictures.  You were wrong.  No biggie.  So you didn't bother to search the forum or do any real homework here.  That's cool.  It happens to a lot of people.  Is your formulation different?  Sure.  Have other people posted detailed formulations, procedures, and hundreds of picture before you, dating back six and seven years?  Yeah, that, too. 


Garvey

Quote
there's not much substantial information about this style of pizza on the internet or anywhere else
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I'm not sure there is another weight-based recipe or formula anywhere outside of this thread
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And there are very few pictures
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: BTB on October 14, 2013, 09:28:08 AM
You said that no other thread contained weights or pictures.  You were wrong.  No biggie.  So you didn't bother to search the forum or do any real homework here.  That's cool.  It happens to a lot of people.  Is your formulation different?  Sure.  Have other people posted detailed formulations, procedures, and hundreds of picture before you, dating back six and seven years?  Yeah, that, too. 
That's why Ryan goes by the "Aimless" moniker !  Just joking.     :-D
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on October 14, 2013, 01:54:42 PM
lol.

Weights and pix from Loo (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=9635.0)
Weights and pic from Jdurg (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5674.msg276006.html#msg276006)
Weights and pix from Garvey (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5674.msg209575.html#msg209575)
Weights and pix from haybot (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5674.msg79864.html#msg79864)
Weights and pix from Elevenbravo and Peter (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5674.msg69607.html#msg69607)
Weights and pix from Wazatron (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=8402.0)
Weights and pix from Buzz, Peter, and DKM (http://"http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,1585.0.html")

And I'll just stop there.
My current best-yet Giordano's style dough formula (for at least a three-day cold ferment) is:

100% Flour (probably Power flour)
47% Water
1% ADY
0.9% Salt
6% Shortening
0.00% Sugar

Following are selected specific percentages of some of the ingredients of the formulas you linked to. The things I list here represent components of these formulas that make them considerably different than my formula. Most of them have a very high fat percentage, which, as I read through the other Giordano's threads, was the one characteristic that would instantly tell me to move on to the next reply. That's because when I started "researching" Giordano's pizza, as I've already said earlier in this thread, I could tell just by looking at pictures of Giordano's dough and Giordano's crust that the fat percentage of their dough was significantly lower than deep dish dough. Yet when I looked through the Giordano's threads, all I saw was dough formulas (or, more commonly, volumetric recipes) that contained fat percentages above 16%, which is exactly what I see when I follow your links.

loowaters:
50% water
18% corn oil

The hydration figure here is reasonably close to my hydration figure, but this formula contains three times more fat than my formula, which totally negates the similar hydration figure. This dough does not resemble my dough at all.

Jdurg:
60.8% water
20.5% corn oil
0.4% sugar

Did not include bakers' percents, which says to me every time, "Next!"
Additionally, this formula does not resemble my formula in any way.

Garvey:
50% water
17% corn oil

Like loowaters, your hydration figure resembles mine, but the oil figure makes it an entirely different dough.

haybot:
40% water
2% salt
2% sugar

Did not specify what kind of yeast (1.25%).
Did not include bakers' percents.

I admit you kinda got me with this one. Kinda. This formula is in the same ballpark as mine, with 40% water (reasonably similar to mine) and 6% fat (identical to mine). Apparently I didn't pay much attention to this one when I read these threads because it does not list bakers' percents. I rarely pay attention to any recipe that does not list bakers' percents because bakers' percents are the most important, most helpful part of a recipe. Generally when someone does not list bakers' percents, it's a good sign that extensive analysis of their post(s) will end up being a waste of time.
I do remember haybot's pictures, though, and I remember thinking they were probably by far the best-looking Giordano's style pictures I saw anywhere, either here or elsewhere on the internet. That is, haybot's pictures looked more like Giordano's to me than any other pictures I saw.

Peter's translation of ElevenBravo:
41.2% water
1.57% ADY
2% salt
16.7% corn oil

I watched ElevenBravo's videos. I remember them vaguely, but I can't remember much or anything about them. My guess, considering the 16.7% corn oil, is that I moved on pretty quickly because he wasn't making the same kind of pizza I intended to make.

I definitely paid plenty of attention to Peter's replies, though, simply because they were replies from Peter. One thing I definitely took from Peter's post is that the baked weight of a 10" Giordano's cheese pizza should be 42 oz. Although I came up with essentially the same target pizza weight before I ever saw Peter's post, I definitely used Peter's information as a hint that I was headed in the right direction.

Wazatron:
41% water
1.57% ADY
2% salt
16.7% corn oil

This formula is almost identical to the previous formula. My formula does not resemble either of them. Again, whenever I saw that much fat in someone's formula, I quickly moved on to the next reply. I'm not making the same pizza these guys are making, which is why I have not cited them as having influenced either my formula or my workflow. If I said they did influence my work, I'd be lying. Are you saying you want me to lie?

Wazatron's pics look pretty good, but the dough does not resemble the dough in Giordano's videos. Both the dough and the crust appear to contain considerably more fat than Giordano's dough or crust, so I moved on pretty quickly after seeing it. It was simply not what I was looking for.

Your last link still doesn't work. However, I'm familiar enough with Buzz's work to know: 1) He refuses to use either bakers' percents or weight measurements; 2) Volumetric flour measurements cannot be translated to weight measurements with any accuracy; 3) Buzz kept insisting that Giordano's pizza does not contain a top crust. He said this over and over, and he kept calling it deep dish; and 4) Even with with a recipe expressed in volumetric measurements, I could tell the oil percentage in Buzz'a dough was way up there; possibly well over 20%.

You have linked to one example of a Giordano's clone attempt that used dough bearing any resemblance to my dough. And even that one is only sorta close, as opposed to actually close. You're trying to say there were many others who did a similar style of pizza before me and documented it thoroughly, but your own evidence fails to support that claim in any way. All you've shown is that at least a handful of people have attempted to make pizza that resembled Giordano's pizza. Theirs may have been more on the mark than mine, or they might have been more off the mark than mine, but there is no doubt that none of those pizzas is remotely similar to my pizzas. Except maybe haybot's.

I'm not looking for a fight or a flame; that's just the simple truth.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: tinroofrusted on October 14, 2013, 02:10:52 PM
Aimless Ryan and Garvey are both awesome!  I love reading both of your posts and think you both have contributed so much to this forum.  You both deserve a great deal of credit for your contributions. 
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on October 14, 2013, 02:24:01 PM
Wow. Thanks. Maybe we can meet at Giordano's sometime, which is a trek I'm getting the urge to make very soon. (I'm thinking you live way south nowadays, though, right, Garvey?)
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Garvey on October 14, 2013, 04:05:44 PM
Ryan, with all due respect, stop moving the goalposts.  I've never seen anyone so stubborn and full of hubris who can't admit the tiniest flaw.

Quote
You're trying to say there were many others who did a similar style of pizza before me and documented it thoroughly, but your own evidence fails to support that claim in any way

You're just plain wrong.  I'm not angry in any way: I am now genuinely curious to see if you can possibly admit you're wrong.  It's kind of fascinating to watch.  I linked over a half-dozen self-described Giordano's clones by people who have eaten it before.  You said:

Quote
there has never been much effort, either here or elsewhere on the internet, to really figure out this style of pizza

And that is simply false.

And then you said:
Quote
I'm not sure there is another weight-based recipe or formula anywhere outside of this thread. And there are very few pictures.

Which again was proven false.

And now you move the goalposts once more, now claiming that this "style" is only as you personally define it.  Because none of these previous formulations are not identical to yours, they are (according to you) a different style of pizza.

To be honest, your formulation probably is the best among all the attempts of this style.  But I stand by everything I said: you are not the first to go here.  Maybe the best to go here, so congrats.  But is it that hard to acknowledge you come alongside a long line of practitioners?


[P.S. I fixed the link to Buzz's formulation with Peter's math on it.]

Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on October 14, 2013, 06:02:52 PM
Disclaimer: These are just the words of a passionate pizzamaker here. No insults intended to anyone, so please don't interpret anything I say as being intentionally insulting to anyone. If I have said anything that could be considered insulting, it's simply because I'm almost-Asperger guy, and I didn't know any better.

Funny that you say I'm stubborn, because I've always felt like Chicago style regulars are very stubborn and resistant to change. For example, it seems to have become common knowledge that there is semolina in Malnati's dough, even though there isn't. Lou-to-go packaging clearly lists flour, water, corn oil, olive oil, and yeast (in that order) as the ingredients in Malnati's dough, at least for that particular product. It doesn't list semolina because it doesn't contain semolina. Yet people continue trying to change reality to suit their perceptions of what reality should be. That's stubborn.

I admit flaws and mistakes all the time. For example, I used 2% sugar when I almost certainly should have used none. I also allowed at least a couple of my doughs to overferment. I screwed up and baked one pizza at 500 for the first 12 or 13 minutes. At one point some of the math in my spreadsheet was wrong. Those are just the things I can think of without looking.

A couple handfuls of people made pizzas that had relatively the same shape as my attempted Giordano's clones. ONE of those people used a formula that was kinda similar to the formula I use, yet that formula was still considerably different than my formula. Go to the the NY style boards and try to convince Scott that a dough with 12-14% oil is in any way similar to any of the accepted NY style doughs that contain 0-2% oil. He probably wouldn't even bother responding, because those two doughs are simply not the same thing--not the same style--just as my dough is not the same style as any of those other doughs (except maybe one of them).

You don't read any of the other boards, do you? Compared to just about every other style of pizza, there has been almost no effort by members to really figure out stuffed pizza. And of the people who have tried, I can't immediately think of anyone other than me who has tried it (and documented it) more than a few times. And I've only tried eight times myself, I think. That's nothing. That's why I've been careful not to act like I know too much about this style when people ask me questions about how I've done it. I know how I've done things, but I have no idea if that's "the right way." Besides, I've made formula changes and/or flour changes with every stuffed pizza I've made. And whenever I make the next one, I'm sure I'll make even more changes.

You're telling me I was wrong when I said, "I'm not sure there is another weight-based recipe or formula anywhere outside of this thread." Are you saying I actually was sure there were more weight-based recipes to be found, but for some reason I thought I wasn't sure? Or are you saying I knew there were more weight-based recipes but I chose to lie by saying I wasn't sure? Cuz I'm pretty sure I really wasn't sure. As of this moment, we both know there are some weight-based recipes and formulas outside of this thread, but I'm pretty sure I wasn't sure there actually were some when I said that.

I didn't claim any rights to the definition of stuffed pizza, first of all because I've never had stuffed pizza from Giordano's or any other stuffed pizza merchant, which you already knew because it's one of the first things I said when I started contributing to this thread. The only definitions I've tried to create, if that's how you want to describe it, are "like mine" and "not like mine." None of the others are like mine, except perhaps that one. They're not even close to being the same thing. Maybe they're better than mine, or maybe they're not as good as mine, but one thing is certain: They are not like mine.

To be honest, your formulation probably is the best among all the attempts of this style.  But I stand by everything I said: you are not the first to go here.  Maybe the best to go here, so congrats.  But is it that hard to acknowledge you come alongside a long line of practitioners?

Thank you. I hope you truly do think mine is the best, but I'm also not that worried about it. I just want to make it better, and I want to try the real thing ASAP. And if someone else makes it better before me, that's cool too. All I know right now is that the style of pizza I've made is really awesome. It's probably my favorite of all the different styles I consider myself proficient with, which includes laminated cracker (Tommy's, Shakey's), deep dish, and NY style (even though I hesitate to say I am truly proficient with stuffed pizza). I don't know what a real Giordano's pizza tastes like, but I do know that the stuffed pizzas I've made are something special. That's my own opinion, which is worth whatever you consider it to be worth, but it's also how my guests seem to have felt about these pizzas.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: CDNpielover on October 14, 2013, 06:05:33 PM
I've got to agree with Garvey on this one.  Ryan's formulation is probably "best" (as Garvery put it) because it had the benefit of everything that came before it.  Maybe you don't mean to come across this way Ryan, but I see what Garvey means here.   :chef: :chef: :chef:
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: CDNpielover on October 14, 2013, 06:08:32 PM
Disclaimer: These are just the words of a passionate pizzamaker here. No insults intended to anyone, so please don't interpret anything I say as being intentionally insulting to anyone. If I have said anything that could be considered insulting, it's simply because I'm almost-Asperger guy, and I didn't know any better.

Funny that you say I'm stubborn, because I've always felt like Chicago style regulars are very stubborn and resistant to change. For example, it seems to have become common knowledge that there is semolina in Malnati's dough, even though there isn't. Lou-to-go packaging clearly lists flour, water, corn oil, olive oil, and yeast (in that order) as the ingredients in Malnati's dough, at least for that particular product. It doesn't list semolina because it doesn't contain semolina. Yet people continue trying to change reality to suit their perceptions of what reality should be. That's stubborn.

I admit flaws and mistakes all the time. For example, I used 2% sugar when I almost certainly should have used none. I also allowed at least a couple of my doughs to overferment. I screwed up and baked one pizza at 500 for the first 12 or 13 minutes. At one point some of the math in my spreadsheet was wrong. Those are just the things I can think of without looking.

A couple handfuls of people made pizzas that had relatively the same shape as my attempted Giordano's clones. ONE of those people used a formula that was kinda similar to the formula I use, yet that formula was still considerably different than my formula. Go to the the NY style boards and try to convince Scott that a dough with 12-14% oil is in any way similar to any of the accepted NY style doughs that contain 0-2% oil. He probably wouldn't even bother responding, because those two doughs are simply not the same thing--not the same style--just as my dough is not the same style as any of those other doughs (except maybe one of them).

You don't read any of the other boards, do you? Compared to just about every other style of pizza, there has been almost no effort by members to really figure out stuffed pizza. And of the people who have tried, I can't immediately think of anyone other than me who has tried it (and documented it) more than a few times. And I've only tried eight times myself, I think. That's nothing. That's why I've been careful not to act like I know too much about this style when people ask me questions about how I've done it. I know how I've done things, but I have no idea if that's "the right way." Besides, I've made formula changes and/or flour changes with every stuffed pizza I've made. And whenever I make the next one, I'm sure I'll make even more changes.

You're telling me I was wrong when I said, "I'm not sure there is another weight-based recipe or formula anywhere outside of this thread." Are you saying I actually was sure there were more weight-based recipes to be found, but for some reason I thought I wasn't sure? Or are you saying I knew there were more weight-based recipes but I chose to lie by saying I wasn't sure? Cuz I'm pretty sure I really wasn't sure. As of this moment, we both know there are some weight-based recipes and formulas outside of this thread, but I'm pretty sure I wasn't sure there actually were some when I said that.

I didn't claim any rights to the definition of stuffed pizza, first of all because I've never had stuffed pizza from Giordano's or any other stuffed pizza merchant, which you already knew because it's one of the first things I said when I started contributing to this thread. The only definitions I've tried to create, if that's how you want to describe it, are "like mine" and "not like mine." None of the others are like mine, except perhaps that one. They're not even close to being the same thing. Maybe they're better than mine, or maybe they're not as good as mine, but one thing is certain: They are not like mine.

Thank you. I hope you truly do think mine is the best, but I'm also not that worried about it. I just want to make it better, and I want to try the real thing ASAP. And if someone else makes it better before me, that's cool too. All I know right now is that the style of pizza I've made is really awesome. It's probably my favorite of all the different styles I consider myself proficient with, which includes laminated cracker (Tommy's, Shakey's), deep dish, and NY style (even though I hesitate to say I am truly proficient with stuffed pizza). I don't know what a real Giordano's pizza tastes like, but I do know that the stuffed pizzas I've made are something special. That's my own opinion, which is worth whatever you consider it to be worth, but it's also how my guests seem to have felt about these pizzas.

jesus christ man, give it up and relax already.  didn't you get banned once for this kind of behavior.  just sayin'  :chef: :chef:
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on October 17, 2013, 12:17:33 PM
Sorry. I didn't mean to be nasty or offensive or anything like that.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: mrmojo1 on October 18, 2013, 01:28:58 AM
Aimless!  Garvey!  et al. you guys have so much passion about pizza!  it is so awesome!  sometimes passions clash! but I truly am thankful for all the contributions and intellectual discussions all of you provide! and for the arguments! we have such great  discussions and such desire to get to the solutions!  so im sure there's no hard feelings!  just intersecting passions!! keep having fun and keep up the passion! 

Aimless ive ordered a cheese only I think frozen shipped from giordanos...its prob a 50buck pizza with the shipping!  but it was good and it definitely brought back memories of giordanos as a teen in Chicago!  its cheaper than a plane ticket or hotel??  gas??  your pizzas sure look awesome my friend!!!! 
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on October 18, 2013, 05:05:20 PM
Aimless!  Garvey!  et al. you guys have so much passion about pizza!  it is so awesome!  sometimes passions clash! but I truly am thankful for all the contributions and intellectual discussions all of you provide! and for the arguments! we have such great  discussions and such desire to get to the solutions!  so im sure there's no hard feelings!

your pizzas sure look awesome my friend!!!!

Thank you. They were. Still, I'm sure there is a ton of room for improvement.

I have no hard feelings, and it seems pretty clear that Garvey doesn't, either.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Garvey on October 18, 2013, 07:56:57 PM
Yeah, everything's cool.  I do love a drunk Mojo Man, though.  :D
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: mrmojo1 on October 19, 2013, 12:39:01 AM
Ha!  too funny! my wife says I get really sweet after a few Beers!
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on November 05, 2013, 07:37:48 PM
I scanned through this thread last night, looking at all the pictures and reading a lot of the posts. Having not made pizza in at least a couple months, I think I was able to look at everything with a fresh perspective, which allowed me to see things I couldn't necessarily see when I was making all these pizzas. So here are some of my thoughts from last night.
I might do another 180 as soon as I post this reply.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: IHK on November 05, 2013, 09:41:31 PM
Wow Ryan's pics look amazing! Thanks for sharing all the info.

I just finished making Garvey's thin crust(which was awesome) and built up some courage to try a stuffed pizza.

My wife has banned me from Giordanos. Recently I've been going there about a couple times a week for the past 6 months. So I hope I can contribute to this thread.

For toppings I used to order Spinach and Mushrooms for years, but lately I've been getting Jalepenos and Garlic.

I was wondering if anyone can comment on this... I feel that in the past couple of years thier dough recipe has changed. It tastes a lot lighter. I used to feel heavy after eating thier pizza, but as of a couple years I don't get that feeling. This could all be specific to the location I goto on the Northside of Chicago.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Garvey on November 05, 2013, 10:47:36 PM
My wife has banned me from Giordanos...
I was about to ask why, but then, mystery solved:
Quote
lately I've been getting Jalepenos and Garlic.
;D
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on November 05, 2013, 11:31:23 PM
...So I hope I can contribute to this thread.

Please do. If there's anything you think I may have been doing wrong, anything that just doesn't look quite right to you, or anything you think could be a better alternative to how I've done things, please speak up. Even things that may not seem very important. It's nice to receive compliments (and I thank you for yours), but I want criticism, too.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: IHK on November 06, 2013, 01:28:36 AM
I was about to ask why, but then, mystery solved:  ;D

Haha. I put on some weight recently and have been spending too much on Pizza. I cut down to thin crust from Nancy's/Al's Beef chain.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: IHK on November 06, 2013, 01:29:52 AM
Please do. If there's anything you think I may have been doing wrong, anything that just doesn't look quite right to you, or anything you think could be a better alternative to how I've done things, please speak up. Even things that may not seem very important. It's nice to receive compliments (and I thank you for yours), but I want criticism, too.

Your very close to it... A couple things I noticed and I could be wrong. But just from my opinion I noticed the following:

1. Sauce seems a little more than what they put on, yours is more liquidy. Which in my opinion is a good thing. But there's is definetly drier. Sometimes I feel there sauce is a little dry.

2. I see you put a layer of pramasean on top and they do too. But there's is usually very visable. At first I thought you didn't put any but then after a second glance it looks like you did.

3. The top skin, yours is either thicker than there's or more cooked. Usually you can't even tell that it's there, that's how un-noticeable it is.

4. Cheese in the middle. Either yours has oozed out but it seems a little less in the middle. Maybe there's stays more solid. I usually carry out so it could be that the cheese becomes a little solid. But it just seems less. From some angles it looks like you have enough but in some it doesn't.  Or maybe it's the top skin which blends in visually with the cheese.

I'm gonna have to go back and study your pics more, so take my opinion with a grain of salt.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on November 06, 2013, 02:42:01 PM
Excellent critique.

1. I'm totally with you on the sauce comment. In fact, heavy sauce on my pizzas is one thing that stood out to me a couple nights ago as I reviewed this thread (but which I forgot to mention a night later). Even before that, I already kinda thought I was going a little too heavy on the sauce. I am surprised to hear that my sauce may be thinner than their sauce, but I'm not surprised to hear that this may be a good thing. One thing I've thought about recently is watering down the sauce a little. Or perhaps adding a more watery tomato product (like processed undrained whole tomatoes) to the ground tomatoes that currently constitute my sauce. Because even though I've never had Giordano's, and even though my experience trying to clone it is very limited, I learned right away that you can't let the sauce dry up. With the long bake time, if the sauce dries up, all you taste from the sauce is the herbs/spices you've added to the sauce, as well as a very cooked tomato flavor. In fact, that's precisely why I began going very heavy on the sauce after my first pizza.

2. The parmesan comment is also in line with things I've been thinking. I've never been much of a parmesan fan; I mostly only use it when I know it's used on a style of pizza I'm trying to clone (which I guess is actually most of the pizza styles in my repertoire). I recently became more conscious of this idea after eating a couple slices of member waltertore's NY style pizza, to which I think he adds a liberal amount of grated hard cheese just before baking. Honestly, part of the reason why my pizzas may be lite on parmesan is because of those damn parm containers (and how they don't work when the cheese clumps). I'd much rather distribute a small handful of parm from a bowl (like they do in videos made in places like Giordano's and Malnati's), but that's just not very practical when you're only making one pizza. Will definitely keep this in mind, though.

3. The top skin is an interesting topic. My last one was much thicker than earlier ones, intentionally. There's a lot of discussion between me and Nate on this topic early in the thread. He insists that the top skin should be much thinner than the bottom skin, but when I look at pictures of actual Giordano's pizzas, I see both thick and thin top crusts. And as is evident in videos, they clearly do not adjust the sheeter to make thinner top skins. I suspect the top skins often end up noticeably thinner than the bottom skins because Giordano's pizzamakers hand-stretch the top skin a bit more than the bottom skins. Then, because they leave a lot of air beneath the top skin, the skin becomes a little thinner when the weight of the sauce stretches it a little more. Interestingly, though, I really liked the pizza I made with a noticeably thicker top crust. I thought the thicker top crust specifically made this one better than all the others. (I think this was the last pizza, which used Power flour.)

4. The cheese is kind of an interesting point. I think it's hard to tell from the pictures what's really going on with the cheese. The appearance largely seems to depend on how long you let the pizza sit between cutting it and serving it. If you serve it right away, there won't be any (or much) stretched cheese. But if you cut it, then let it sit for five minutes before serving, the cheese will stretch forever, as in my most recent pics. Those pics are not an accident. After I figured out in my mind which procedure(s) might be largely responsible for the stretchy cheese phenomenon, I forced myself to let the next pizza sit for at least five minutes after cutting it. Only then would I serve the pizza. That's precisely how/why I was able to get that series of four pics with cheese oozing out of the slice a few pages back (page 9, I think). Also, I think you're right on with the "oozed out" comment. I've thought that many times myself. Particularly, I've wondered if the neighbor lady who ate the slice from the pictures showing a ton of oozing cheese ended up with a not-cheesy slice.

It's very possible (or maybe even likely) that I'm not using enough cheese, but I assure you that I am using a ton of cheese. Also, my cheese portion is very in line with the detective work and educated guesses Peter contributed a long time ago in one of the other Giordano's threads. And if you haven't already figured this out, Peter's information is very trustworthy. Peter is a facts guy. That is, he digs up facts that none of us would ever be able to acquire (because we're too lazy) before sharing anything that may be considered a fact. And when he provides educated guesses rather than facts, he makes it clear that he's not providing facts.

Your feedback was awesome. I appreciate it a whole bunch. Also, I'm sure many others will appreciate it, and it will surely lead to a better collective understanding of what constitutes Giordano's stuffed pizza.

I just remembered this. I've been wondering what sizes Giordano's offers. It seems that they offer 10" and 14" (top diameter, it appears). Is that correct? And if so, are there any other sizes? (This question is directed toward everyone, not just IHK.) I ask mainly because one of the restaurant supply stores in Columbus carries some nice-looking, dark, slope-sided pans. Although I'm fine with using vertical-sided pans, most of my vertical-sided deep dish pans (6", 9", and 12") are only 1.5" deep, which is simply not deep enough for this style of pizza. I'd love to get a few of the right-sized pans, with sloped sides and 2" depths, for future pizzas.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on November 15, 2013, 01:05:57 PM
The more pictures I see of Giordano's pizza, the more I think the dough may be bulk fermented. Also, the more I think about the dough recipe that was shared with me, which is allegedly the original Giordano's dough recipe, the more I think the dough was likely bulk fermented back then. If the alleged original dough recipe is actually the original dough recipe, I can see how a bulk ferment would make everything work smoothly. Due to the recipe's very low yeast percentage, it makes sense that they probably would have made the dough at night, then let it bulk ferment overnight at room temperature, then used it all day the next day.

If that's how they did it, would they have punched down the dough in the morning (following the all-night bulk ferment), then immediately scaled dough balls? I'd say it seems very reasonable to do it that way.

I don't know if I've explained my thoughts well, but the following dough management model works well in my mind for the alleged mid-1970s dough: 1) Make dough after dinner rush, using warm water; 2) Bulk ferment all night at room temperature (or possibly in proofer); 3) Punch down and scale dough in the morning; 4) Leave dough balls at room temperature all day; 5) Sheet dough just before assembling pizzas; 6) Recycle scraps (perhaps mainly for use as top crusts, to hide the visual imperfections inherent in most scrap dough).

That seems pretty feasible to me. Regardless, we know some things are done differently today. Even if it was done that way in 1975, here are some differences we know (or suspect) about how they do it nowadays: 1) Dough is made in a commissary, then delivered to Giordano's stores; 2) Dough is allegedly used 3-4 days after it's made.

That raises some questions with me:

1) Since dough is now made in a commissary, rather than in-store, is it reasonable to bulk ferment? If so, do the commissary workers leave 40-some large batches of dough (for 40-some stores) sitting around bulk fermenting at room temperature in the commissary, or do they refrigerate the dough batches right away?

2) If the dough is bulk fermented, is it delivered to individual stores in bulk, or is it scaled in the commissary, then delivered? (This seemed like kind of a stupid question to me earlier, with an obvious answer, but after some thought it seems like a very reasonable question.)

Since this post is getting long, and since these questions raise a whole bunch of other questions, I'm going to stop now, then resume sharing these thoughts in another reply later, in hopes of making it a little easier for you to follow me. If anyone feels the urge to respond to anything I've said here, go ahead and respond, because it might be a while before I post my follow-up response.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Pete-zza on November 16, 2013, 08:25:05 AM
Ryan,

Your questions are reasonable questions to ask. However, having become reasonably familiar with the practices of pizza companies that use a commissary model, I have found that they invariably the dough balls are formed at the commissary. This is true of national pizza companies like Papa John's and Domino's and Mellow Mushroom, but it is also true of much smaller regional pizza companies like Papa Gino's, Regina Pizzeria and Home Run Inn. In some cases, remote locations might make their own dough in-store because they are too far out of the distribution area, as is the case with outlying stores of the Papa Gino's chain and, most likely, with the Regina Pizzeria chain, both of whom have stores in neighboring states. In the case of Giordano's with its three stores in Florida, I would guess that the dough is made in-store at those three locations. However, that doesn't automatically rule out using a commissary. There can be big commissaries and there can be small commissaries.

If you think about it, it makes a great deal of sense to do as much as possible at the commissary level. In addition to keeping trade secrets away from the prying eyes of store employees who might be tempted to spill their guts for a few bucks, you achieve far better quality control and consistency and uniformity of product when using the commissary model. Also, everything flows through the commissaries, not only the dough balls but the sauces, cheeses, meats, paper goods, and just about everything else but fresh vegetables that out of necessity are sourced and processed at the store level. The main objective of the commissary model is to simplify everything at the store level. That means that you can hire transient, low cost labor to assemble the pizzas. Those workers don't have to do anything but make the pizzas. You don't want them to divide and scale and round dough balls from a bulk dough, or doing anything else that might possibly result in a different product being produced from one location to another. It also wouldn't seem to make much sense moving refrigerated bulk dough from commissaries to the various store locations. That would require a specific and targeted logistics solution, including provisioning stores with cooling capacity to store bulk dough, that perhaps doesn't even exist at this time. These days, competitive forces demand simple solutions. That means less room for artisan type pizzas that harken back to the "good old days" where most pizzas were truly artisan pizzas.

What you described would have worked in the old days of Giordano's when there were only a few stores and where those few stores were in a small geographical area. Most likely, the dough was made in each store. In that case, the type of dough production you described would have been feasible. In fact, that model is the one used today by Vito & Nick's in its single location in the Chicago area:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Ob1tLx5wiM (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Ob1tLx5wiM)

But once you get to a certain critical mass, it makes sense to go with a commissary and do as much as possible there. Of course, in a home setting, you are free to use a bulk dough and divide it later. With the original Giordano's dough formulation, you would be going back in time to the 1970s. So, if you yearn for the good old days and are nostalgic about these matters, there is a certain attraction and appeal to doing that.

Peter
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on November 16, 2013, 01:41:26 PM
You make very good points (and total sense), Peter. I guess that's pretty much how I was seeing everything before I wrote my previous post. Your post seems to focus on the second question I raised.

So do you think it's reasonable or feasible to bulk ferment in a commissary? I would think not, for many reasons:

One thing that bugs me, though, is the fact that there is no need to accurately scale or round Giordano's dough, which means dividing dough in the commissary is essentially wasted work and wasted energy (if they actually divide their dough, which videos suggest they do). Preparing a Giordano's skin is not unlike preparing a Pizza Hut thin skin (when Pizza Hut made their dough on-site). Just like with Pizza Hut, Giordano's does not require an accurately scaled piece of dough to end up with a perfectly shaped and sized skin of the proper weight. The only real guidelines for a Giordano's employee to make a skin is: 1) That the skin-maker starts out with more than enough dough than is required for the skin, and 2) That the piece of dough is relatively round before it goes through the sheeter. If the skin-maker uses too much dough, it's no big deal because the pizzamaker trims the scraps and returns the scraps to the skin-maker to be reused.

So why even bother scaling and rounding dough in the commissary? Unlike Giordano's, it makes complete sense for Papa John's, Domino's, and Regina to scale and round their dough in the commissary because their dough has to be scaled and rounded. (I don't know about the other places you mentioned, but I assume they also scale their dough in the commissary out of necessity.)

Maybe Giordano's scales their dough in the commissary for other reasons than out of a need to have accurately scaled dough portions. If they do scale dough in the commissary, maybe they do it for storage reasons, quality control during transport, and/or some other good reasons that I've considered (but forgotten).

Still, I'm not convinced that they scale the dough in the commissary. One big reason is because it appears that they store their dough on sheet pans in the make area of the kitchen. I wouldn't consider sheet pans a good long-term dough storage vessel, nor would I expect it to be very easy to transport dough on sheet pans. Loading and unloading the delivery truck with lots of sheet pans full of dough balls would also be difficult and inefficient.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on November 16, 2013, 02:49:02 PM
Ryan,

You need to get up to Chicago to try a real Giordano's pie.  The crust flavor, texture and sauce is like no other.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Pete-zza on November 16, 2013, 05:11:24 PM
Ryan,

You raise some legitimate issues. But, for the record, let me say that there are some pizza operators, albeit a very small number, who cold ferment their dough in bulk and do the division and scaling later. In almost all cases, the reason is limited storage space. However, I have never heard or read of a commissary delivering cold fermented dough in bulk to its stores.

The issue of bulk cold ferment and divide and scale later versus doing the division up front and then cold fermenting is not a new one on the forum. It has come up quite often. For example, if you don't mind doing a bit of reading (well, maybe a lot :-D), see the following threads:

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,20067.msg197025.html#msg197025 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,20067.msg197025.html#msg197025)

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,10142.msg88569.html#msg88569 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,10142.msg88569.html#msg88569)

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,15208.msg150141.html#msg150141 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,15208.msg150141.html#msg150141)

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,10371.msg91351.html#msg91351 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,10371.msg91351.html#msg91351)

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,19620.msg192236.html#msg192236 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,19620.msg192236.html#msg192236) (starting at Reply 4)

In the above collection of threads, you will find a considerable amount of discussion and debate as to the merits of both approaches mentioned above, with discussions of the "mass effect" and other arcane technical matters. However, if I were to distill the essence of those threads, I would say that the main reason for doing the division and scaling of the dough ball up front, especially if one attempts to control the finished dough temperature to the desired value, is because of convenience and, more particularly, better dough inventory control and management. No doubt, there are some apparent advantages to using the bulk dough method, such as increased fermentation byproducts that contribute to final crust flavor, but such advantages are arguably outweighed by the convenience and related factors mentioned above.

As for the use of sheet pans, I do not see that as an impediment. While most commissaries that I am aware of use dough boxes rather than sheet pans, it is possible to place dough balls on sheet pans, place the sheet pans in racks, and place what is often referred to as a "body bag" over the racks. Alternatively, the sheet pans can be placed in their own bags. Most racks have wheels so it should be possible to roll the racks into refrigerated trucks. I have never heard or read of commissaries doing this, but I suppose that it is possible. It could also be that the dough balls on trays are put into humidity and temperature controlled proofing racks. Another possibility is that the dough balls actually are delivered in dough boxes and are then transferred onto sheet pans for use in proofing units. On the matter of dough boxes versus sheet pans, you might take a look at the PMQ Think Tank thread at http://thinktank.pmq.com/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=7668&hilit= (http://thinktank.pmq.com/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=7668&hilit=).

As you mentioned, as long as the dough balls are big enough, there should be no problem of forming skins of the right size and reuse any scrap dough after trimming, as you also mentioned.

All things considered, I would still come down on the side of doing the division and scaling of the dough balls at the commissary. Anything else strikes me as being too unorthodox and unwieldy and without sufficient advantages to compel delivery of cold fermented bulk dough to the Giordano stores.

Peter
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: jkolassa on November 22, 2013, 08:11:37 PM
WOW... This blew up.  Back when I started this thread I chickened out of trying to cook one because I was overwhelmed with very little cooking experience but a buddy of mine who has cooked a lot is helping me cook it.  We have all the ingredients but we need to know how much flour to use for the power flour recipe for a 12" pan. 
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on November 25, 2013, 02:00:44 PM
Sorry Joe. Although it seems your post was kinda directed at me, I kinda forgot to respond.

My spreadsheet is telling me to use 27.11 oz of flour (769 g) to end up with 42 oz of dough. However, I think the crusts on these pizzas probably need to be a little thicker than I've made them. When I tell the spreadsheet I want the thickness of both crusts to be TF=0.1 oz of dough per square inch (instead of TF=0.09), it tells me I need 48.85 oz of dough, which (rounded up to 49 oz) means you should base your recipe on 31.63 oz of flour (or 897 g).

I think that should be accurate, but it's been a while since I've thought much about this stuff, so I might be a little off.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on November 25, 2013, 11:43:59 PM
Correction: Where I said 48.85 oz in the previous post, it should have said 45.85 oz. I apparently misread the spreadsheet. That means an appropriately sized batch of dough should be based on about 30 oz of flour.

Also, I forgot to add this: For a 12" vertical-sided pan that's 2" deep, my spreadsheet says to divide the dough into one dough ball of 25.92 oz (735 g) and another dough ball of 19.93 oz (565 g). After trimming, your bottom skin should weigh about 17.91 oz (508 g) and your top skin should weigh less than 13.1 oz (371 g). I said "less than 13.1 oz" because 13.1 oz will give you a pretty thick top skin, which is fine, but you'll probably want to roll it a good bit thinner. In other words, roll the top skin to a thickness that feels right to you.

Sorry about all the confusion. There are a lot of different variables to balance with this stuff, and some of it is very difficult to communicate.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on December 11, 2013, 07:05:59 PM
I just made a batch of dough and a batch of sauce for the pizza bash we're having Sunday at member waltertore's classroom in Newark, Ohio. If anyone is interested in attending, check out this thread: http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,29016.0.html (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,29016.0.html).

Dough
100% Power flour
48% Water (cold)
0.9% ADY
0.9% Salt
6% Shortening

Sauce
28 oz 7/11 ground tomatoes
4 oz water
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp crushed red pepper
1/2 tsp garlic powder

This is gonna be cool because I get to bake this pizza in Walter's Blodgett 1000 oven. Can't wait.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on December 11, 2013, 07:44:54 PM
I just made a batch of dough and a batch of sauce for the pizza bash we're having Sunday at member waltertore's classroom in Newark, Ohio. If anyone is interested in attending, check out this thread: http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,29016.0.html (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,29016.0.html).

Dough
100% Power flour
48% Water (cold)
0.9% ADY
0.9% Salt
6% Shortening

Sauce
28 oz 7/11 ground tomatoes
4 oz water
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp crushed red pepper
1/2 tsp garlic powder

This is gonna be cool because I get to bake this pizza in Walter's Blodgett 1000 oven. Can't wait.

Nice Ryan.  Let us know how it turns out.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on December 11, 2013, 08:01:43 PM
Nice Ryan.  Let us know how it turns out.

Nice and simple for once, without writing a thousand words to complicate everything, right?

Having only made only enough dough for one 10" pizza, I'm wondering if maybe I should have made more. Sounds like the guest list is growing, and it's hard to slice these things into any more than 8 slices. I'd hate for anyone not to get a taste of this one, but I ain't giving up my slice.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: mrmojo1 on December 11, 2013, 10:35:44 PM
make some emergency dough!!!  they are going to love your pie Ryan!!! you could have a riot on your hands!  auction off the last slice for charity!!  hee!!
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Chicago Bob on December 11, 2013, 10:47:33 PM
make some emergency dough!!!  they are going to love your pie Ryan!!! you could have a riot on your hands!  auction off the last slice for charity!!  hee!!
Mr. Mo.....you don't like to get too excited about pizza matters do you?
Always love your posts man....you crack me up!  ;D
Good idea about the auction too.... 8)
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on December 11, 2013, 11:05:48 PM
make some emergency dough!!!  they are going to love your pie Ryan!!! you could have a riot on your hands!  auction off the last slice for charity!!  hee!!

Thanks. I think I am going to make another batch, out of Mondako flour, either tonight or tomorrow, since the guest list keeps growing.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on December 12, 2013, 08:14:00 PM
I made that Mondako batch a couple hours ago, then took it to the fridge in the basement. While downstairs I noticed that yesterday's batch has risen a lot more than I expected. It looked about double the size of my freshly mixed batch. (I was expecting no noticeable rise.) Wish I had looked at the dough earlier because I used a little more yeast with today's batch. I considered making another Mondako batch right away, using 0.7% ADY, but I think I'll wait to see how the dough looks tomorrow.

I'm sure it'll all work out fine, but I'm still a little worried that I did something wrong enough to make the dough unusable by the time I intend to use it.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Chicago Bob on January 06, 2014, 02:33:18 PM
I made that Mondako batch a couple hours ago, then took it to the fridge in the basement. While downstairs I noticed that yesterday's batch has risen a lot more than I expected. It looked about double the size of my freshly mixed batch. (I was expecting no noticeable rise.) Wish I had looked at the dough earlier because I used a little more yeast with today's batch. I considered making another Mondako batch right away, using 0.7% ADY, but I think I'll wait to see how the dough looks tomorrow.

I'm sure it'll all work out fine, but I'm still a little worried that I did something wrong enough to make the dough unusable by the time I intend to use it.
Ryan,
I'd like to try my hand at one of your lower oil stuffed crust pizzas. How did your last batch of dough work out for you? Would this be your current recommended formula? I have some KABF I'd like to try here...what do you think my man? How long to ferment...I want a blockbuster flavor bomb!  >:D
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on January 06, 2014, 08:03:47 PM
Ryan,
I'd like to try my hand at one of your lower oil stuffed crust pizzas. How did your last batch of dough work out for you? Would this be your current recommended formula? I have some KABF I'd like to try here...what do you think my man? How long to ferment...I want a blockbuster flavor bomb!  >:D

It's hard to say how my last batch turned out. I didn't even use the Mondako dough I made for the gathering at Walter's classroom, and Walter's ovens don't seem ideal for this kind of pizza. (The ovens are awesome for NY style, though.) I think there's more than one pic of my Power flour stuffed pizza in Walter's thread (in General Pizza Making), but I don't know how much you can really see in these pictures. I didn't rotate the pizza I baked in Walter's oven, and it was obvious because there was one very dark spot. I pulled the pizza five minutes earlier than I would have at home, and it's a good thing I did, although I think the cheese needed a little more time in the oven. I'm still trying to figure out a way to determine visually when this type of pizza is done baking.

I think my latest formula would be what I'd recommend, but with less yeast. So I'd probably go with this formula:

100% Flour
48% Water
0.7% ADY
0.9% Salt
6% Shortening

I like the hydration figure above, at least with the flours I've used. There's no major reason why I still have the salt figure at 0.9%. It's just that that's where I started, based on my interpretation of what I'd read about Giordano's dough before I ever tried making this kind of pizza. Eventually I'd like to make two of these pizzas side-by-side but make one out of dough containing oil instead of shortening, with everything else being the same.

I'd say at least three days in the fridge, but I have to admit I know very little about what's really the best way to do this. I mean, what I've done has worked unbelievably well, especially the most recent few, but I've still only done this like 8 times (and I've still never had Giordano's).
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: TomN on January 06, 2014, 08:39:47 PM
I just made a batch of dough and a batch of sauce for the pizza bash we're having Sunday at member waltertore's classroom in Newark, Ohio. If anyone is interested in attending, check out this thread: http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,29016.0.html (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,29016.0.html).

Dough
100% Power flour
48% Water (cold)
0.9% ADY
0.9% Salt
6% Shortening

Sauce
28 oz 7/11 ground tomatoes
4 oz water
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp crushed red pepper
1/2 tsp garlic powder

This is gonna be cool because I get to bake this pizza in Walter's Blodgett 1000 oven. Can't wait.

Hi Ryan,

In your sauce recipe: Can you substitute fresh chopped garlic for the garlic powder or does the garlic powder give the sauce a different taste? Thanks.

TomN
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Chicago Bob on January 06, 2014, 08:52:56 PM
Thanks Ryan,
Has it been determined how long Giordano's ferments for and how long they bake their casseroles?  :drool:
I'm curious about their bake time and temp....I think I pretty much know how to tell when something like this is done. But like I said...jus curious.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on January 06, 2014, 10:19:43 PM
Tom, my sauce recipe is in no way representative of Giordano's sauce, as far as I know. My sauce is based on things people have said about Giordano's sauce, but it's still just a totally blind stab at recreating a sauce I've never tasted. So yeah, go ahead and use fresh garlic.

Bob, from what I've read, it seems pretty clear that Giordano's ferments 3-4 days. Nate posted a video several pages back in which a Giordano's regional manager says they bake 35 minutes at 465 degrees. I have no reason to believe the manager was being deceptive about this or anything else he said. At home I've baked most of my pizzas for 35 minutes at 460. Walter's oven was 450, and I pulled that pizza after about 30 minutes.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Chicago Bob on January 06, 2014, 10:47:10 PM
Tom, my sauce recipe is in no way representative of Giordano's sauce, as far as I know. My sauce is based on things people have said about Giordano's sauce, but it's still just a totally blind stab at recreating a sauce I've never tasted. So yeah, go ahead and use fresh garlic.

Bob, from what I've read, it seems pretty clear that Giordano's ferments 3-4 days. Nate posted a video several pages back in which a Giordano's regional manager says they bake 35 minutes at 465 degrees. I have no reason to believe the manager was being deceptive about this or anything else he said. At home I've baked most of my pizzas for 35 minutes at 460. Walter's oven was 450, and I pulled that pizza after about 30 minutes.
Thanks Ryan...I'm going to follow your lead and if fancy pants Mr. Garvey don't like dat then the Devil may care!!   >:D
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Garvey on January 07, 2014, 08:09:22 AM
Thanks Ryan...I'm going to follow your lead and if fancy pants Mr. Garvey don't like dat then the Devil may care!!   >:D

What?  Fail to follow the joke here, C-Bob.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: CDNpielover on January 07, 2014, 11:20:11 AM
I don't think it's a joke, Garvey.   :chef:
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Garvey on January 07, 2014, 11:04:11 PM
Still not following.  Am I "fancy" about bake times... whatever that means? ???
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: TomN on January 08, 2014, 12:56:17 AM
Hi Ryan,

I made a deep dish pizza tonight with dough that i made with Blue Moon Beer. it turned out good, but I like my pizzas that are made on the pizza screen the best.  Take a look at my link. Thanks for the dough ball measurements on your thread.

TomN

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,17415.msg295840.html#msg295840 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,17415.msg295840.html#msg295840)
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Pete-zza on January 08, 2014, 08:58:57 AM
Still not following.  Am I "fancy" about bake times... whatever that means? ???
Garvey,

Knowing that Bob likes to tease people, my first instinct was that he was teasing you. But when I am not sure whether someone is joking or not, I just ignore the statement. It's a problem with words. The reader can make them mean just about anything. But unfortunately they tend to see the worst possible meaning as it affects them. For this reason, it is usually a good idea to avoid sarcasm or even satire in posts, and sometimes even humor. More than once I have composed posts that were intended to convey humor or satire but, upon further reflection, went back and deleted the posts because I was afraid that my comments would be taken the wrong way.

All that matters to me is that you are a good man, and you have made valuable contributions to the forum.

Peter
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Chicago Bob on January 08, 2014, 10:46:17 AM
Garvey,

Knowing that Bob likes to tease people, my first instinct was that he was teasing you.

All that matters to me is that you are a good man, and you have made valuable contributions to the forum.

Peter
^^^
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Garvey on January 08, 2014, 04:28:14 PM
Aw, thanks, fellas.   :)
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Omahachicagostuffed on January 13, 2014, 12:56:11 PM
Hi Guy's,

Been making Giordano's style pizza for 20 years in Iowa City.  The joint was named the best pizza in Iowa last year by zagut.  Here is the Giordano's stuffed sauce recipe.  It's awesome and legit.  Enjoy.

Stanislaus Alta Cucina
Stanislaus 7/11
Veg. Oil
Oregano
Garlic Salt
Granulated Garlic
Salt

That's all.  The amounts I have are for bulk sorry.  We crush the Alta Cucina by hand and mix with the 7/11 before adding the oil and spices.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on January 13, 2014, 03:20:19 PM
Hi Guy's,

Been making Giordano's style pizza for 20 years in Iowa City.  The joint was named the best pizza in Iowa last year by zagut.  Here is the Giordano's stuffed sauce recipe.  It's awesome and legit.  Enjoy.

Stanislaus Alta Cucina
Stanislaus 7/11
Veg. Oil
Oregano
Garlic Salt
Granulated Garlic
Salt

That's all.  The amounts I have are for bulk sorry.  We crush the Alta Cucina by hand and mix with the 7/11 before adding the oil and spices.

Any hints about the dough?  What type or types of fat are they using?  What type of flour?

Nate
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Omahachicagostuffed on January 13, 2014, 04:13:56 PM
Dough originally was Ceresota but any 11.5 protein should work.  Use 6% Oil 2% Margarine.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on January 13, 2014, 04:35:32 PM
Dough originally was Ceresota but any 11.5 protein should work.  Use 6% Oil 2% Margarine.

Their dough has a very distinct flavor.  No secret ingredient?
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Omahachicagostuffed on January 13, 2014, 05:19:19 PM
No not on my recipe.  Maybe the oil as corn oil and using the margarine to get the texture and some subtle flavor.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on January 14, 2014, 07:38:05 AM
I'd like to share something I found online which I think is crucial in nailing Giordanos layered crust.  This should enable us to take the next step.

http://sweets.seriouseats.com/2011/07/the-food-lab-the-science-of-pie-how-to-make-pie-crust-easy-recipe.html (http://sweets.seriouseats.com/2011/07/the-food-lab-the-science-of-pie-how-to-make-pie-crust-easy-recipe.html)

Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on January 15, 2014, 10:20:46 AM
Hi Ryan,

I made a deep dish pizza tonight with dough that i made with Blue Moon Beer. it turned out good, but I like my pizzas that are made on the pizza screen the best.  Take a look at my link. Thanks for the dough ball measurements on your thread.

TomN

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,17415.msg295840.html#msg295840 (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,17415.msg295840.html#msg295840)
OK, Tom. Important things first. I'm gonna be blunt. Don't be offended by my bluntness, because I'm just trying to help.

The pizza in your linked post is neither a stuffed pizza nor a proper deep dish pizza. The dough appears to resemble Giordano's style dough, but it is nothing like Malnati's style deep dish dough. (Giordano's/stuffed is not deep dish. It just looks like deep dish.)

In your private message, you mentioned the cheese browning too much, and I replied by asking if you were adding dough to the pan, followed by cheese, then toppings, then sauce. Well, now I know. If you're shooting for deep dish, cheese (preferably sliced) should be placed on the dough before anything else. That alone will eliminate your overbrowning problem. With stuffed, the shredded cheese (and a lot of it) goes between a bottom and top crust, like a pie. (Having not read much about the history of stuffed pizza, I think this style was first created in an attempt to make literally a pizza pie, because that's exactly what it is.)

You might be able to make the pictured pan work, but it appears to be too shallow for deep dish, and it is definitely too shallow for stuffed. I can't tell if the pan is 1" deep or 1-1/2" deep. Regardless, you probably want to season the outside of the pan (if it's not already seasoned, which I assume it's not). You can also season the inside if you want. (Might as well.) I think the second link I shared with you in the private message should help you with that.

Even though that pizza is neither a proper deep dish nor a stuffed pizza: If you like it, keep doing it.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on January 15, 2014, 04:05:45 PM
I'd like to share something I found online which I think is crucial in nailing Giordanos layered crust.  This should enable us to take the next step.

http://sweets.seriouseats.com/2011/07/the-food-lab-the-science-of-pie-how-to-make-pie-crust-easy-recipe.html (http://sweets.seriouseats.com/2011/07/the-food-lab-the-science-of-pie-how-to-make-pie-crust-easy-recipe.html)

The recipe used to make this crust above.

* 100% flour
* 7% sugar
* 80% butter
* 0.75% salt
* 25% water

To achieve the Giordano's layers the fat content must be high, not sure if that high though.  Any thoughts?
The dough making procedure is just as important as well if you want layering.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on January 15, 2014, 04:08:31 PM
No not on my recipe.  Maybe the oil as corn oil and using the margarine to get the texture and some subtle flavor.

Check your PM please.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Aimless Ryan on January 16, 2014, 09:51:52 AM
OK, Tom. Important things first. I'm gonna be blunt. Don't be offended by my bluntness, because I'm just trying to help.

The pizza in your linked post is neither a stuffed pizza nor a proper deep dish pizza. The dough appears to resemble Giordano's style dough, but it is nothing like Malnati's style deep dish dough. (Giordano's/stuffed is not deep dish. It just looks like deep dish.)

TomN, I want to apologize if I sounded at all mean or condescending in my previous (partially-quoted) post. That's not what I intended, and the post didn't sound that way to me when I wrote it. But it does sound that way now when I re-read it, and I don't like that. I was truly trying to be helpful, and no one has indicated that I sounded like a jerk, but I just feel like I did. So I'm sorry if my words made that kind of impression with you or anyone else.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on January 23, 2014, 07:26:11 PM
Found a new Giordanos vid we haven't seen.

http://vimeo.com/m/20711435 (http://vimeo.com/m/20711435)
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Chicago Bob on January 23, 2014, 08:09:42 PM
That's pretty funny...just as the manager is saying; "if I have a bad dough...."  the video is showing the pizza maker using a dough with a gaping hole in it!  ;D

Bob
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on January 23, 2014, 08:44:06 PM
That's pretty funny...just as the manager is saying; "if I have a bad dough...."  the video is showing the pizza maker using a dough with a gaping hole in it!  ;D

Bob

I know right.  I read a comment from a ex employee today that confirmed my suspicion that the dough is pre laminated with cold butter before being sheeted. 
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Luscus on June 05, 2014, 03:05:24 PM
Hi guys

I don't mean to artificially revive an old thread. But I just wanted to say thank you to you all. I've read a tremendous amount on this forum as an unregistered observer, but I've finally registered. This topic has been tremendously interesting and useful. I'm going to try and make one in the next couple of weeks and will post the result. I made buzz's interpretation last night and although pleasant was too 'bready' and yeasty. Although the last might be my own fault.

I'll post to let you know how I got on.

Thanks

Luscus
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: TomN on June 05, 2014, 05:54:14 PM
TomN, I want to apologize if I sounded at all mean or condescending in my previous (partially-quoted) post. That's not what I intended, and the post didn't sound that way to me when I wrote it. But it does sound that way now when I re-read it, and I don't like that. I was truly trying to be helpful, and no one has indicated that I sounded like a jerk, but I just feel like I did. So I'm sorry if my words made that kind of impression with you or anyone else.

Ryan,

Life is good. No worries. We all have different ideas of how we like our pizza or how they should be made. Anyhow, I just like what beer does for pizza dough and having some left over to drink.

TomN
PS
I was wine tasting the other day and saw a sign on the wall that read: "Don't take life too seriously. Nobody gets out alive anyway."
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: Giorgi on August 30, 2014, 08:10:43 AM
Hi Guy's,

Been making Giordano's style pizza for 20 years in Iowa City.  The joint was named the best pizza in Iowa last year by zagut.  Here is the Giordano's stuffed sauce recipe.  It's awesome and legit.  Enjoy.

Stanislaus Alta Cucina
Stanislaus 7/11
Veg. Oil
Oregano
Garlic Salt
Granulated Garlic
Salt

That's all.  The amounts I have are for bulk sorry.  We crush the Alta Cucina by hand and mix with the 7/11 before adding the oil and spices.

Is it possible to get bulk amounts?
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: pythonic on September 10, 2014, 04:46:39 PM
Dough originally was Ceresota but any 11.5 protein should work.  Use 6% Oil 2% Margarine.

I need to make this tomorrow.
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: buzz on February 29, 2016, 05:16:11 PM
I studied the Giordano's workers making deep dish pizza (it's been a while, though). they sheet the dough, then draped it over a pan swabbed liberally with butter (I asked and they said it was real butter), then trim around the outside before filling it.

I also talked to guy who used to own a Giordano's franchise and he said that 6-in-1 makes their sauce and that Stella provides the cheese (again, some time ago now).
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: mrmojo1 on February 29, 2016, 11:40:15 PM
great to hear from you again Buzz!!!!!
Title: Re: Definitive Closest Giordano's Clone as of 6/12/13?
Post by: buzz on March 01, 2016, 10:23:40 AM
Thanks!