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  • #1 by Bbqguy on 10 May 2021
  • What are your thought on The Elements of Pizza book by Ken Forkish?  I found a copy at a yard sale over the weekend. For $2 I couldnt pass it up. What I wonder is how the formulas, most of which seem to be at 70% hydration, work out. Does anyone have any experience with using these formulas and any input?
  • #2 by Peter B on 10 May 2021
  • I have the book, and there is some good stuff in it but there is some stuff that does not seem to work well also.  I like the way he is very deliberate at describing processes.  This was very helpful for me when I started, because there can be a good amount of intimidation when learning to make pizza.  However - I did not get the results he got in many ways.  My crusts did not get the color of his, and I was using bread flour instead of 00.  Since you mention the hydration, I do recall having some issues with tearing and thin spots.  IMO - beginners should start with lower hydration to get some confidence stretching and then work up, if desired.

    I think it is a good book to help one learn about making pizza, but it is not to be used alone.  Many here will say that you can get as good or better knowledge on this site.  While this is absolutely true, I think it is easy to forget that this site has such a crazy amount of content that it would be hard for a newbie to just learn from here alone.  Also - I think it is easy to forget that newbies often do not know what questions to ask or what to search for - I know this because that was my experience, and continues to be as I learn.  The book helps to introduce the topic to folks, which then makes this site much more helpful.

    My 2 cents.

    The Broz
  • #3 by Bbqguy on 10 May 2021
  • I have the book, and there is some good stuff in it but there is some stuff that does not seem to work well also.  I like the way he is very deliberate at describing processes.  This was very helpful for me when I started, because there can be a good amount of intimidation when learning to make pizza.  However - I did not get the results he got in many ways.  My crusts did not get the color of his, and I was using bread flour instead of 00.  Since you mention the hydration, I do recall having some issues with tearing and thin spots.  IMO - beginners should start with lower hydration to get some confidence stretching and then work up, if desired.

    I think it is a good book to help one learn about making pizza, but it is not to be used alone.  Many here will say that you can get as good or better knowledge on this site.  While this is absolutely true, I think it is easy to forget that this site has such a crazy amount of content that it would be hard for a newbie to just learn from here alone.  Also - I think it is easy to forget that newbies often do not know what questions to ask or what to search for - I know this because that was my experience, and continues to be as I learn.  The book helps to introduce the topic to folks, which then makes this site much more helpful.

    My 2 cents.

    The Broz

    Great advice here Peter and much of what you said kind of confirms some of my opinions. Just starting out on my pizzza making journey the highest hydration I’ve worked with so far is around 65% so when I saw 70% in the book all kinds of red flags went up. I also had read through another thread here about the book and on some of the formulas there is an error in the amount of yeast given. The one that stands out in my mind is the Saturday pizza dough. It should be 3 grams not 0.03. Look at replies 37 & 38 on this thread:

    https://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=41818.20

    So I may try a couple of the formulas that have a lower hydration like the 48-72 hour NY dough that has a hydartion pretty close to what I’ve been working with and definitely check the math first.
  • #4 by bethj on 22 May 2021
  • FYI Kindle edition on sale for $2.99

    https://smile.amazon.com/dp/160774838X/?tag=pmak-20
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