Pizza Making Forum

Reviews & Opinions => Cookbook Reviews => Topic started by: psedillo on May 19, 2021, 08:54:02 AM

Title: Modernist Pizza
Post by: psedillo on May 19, 2021, 08:54:02 AM
I just received an email from Kitchen Arts & Letters about the pending release of Modernist Pizza by Nathan Myhrvold and Francisco Migoya. Below are the details and the special that they're running and a link to the set:

Special offer: Order now and save $50 off the cover price and get a $50 Kitchen Arts & Letters gift certificate
Publication date: October 5, 2021. Your gift certificate will be emailed to you within 24 hours of your order and can be used immediately.
Modernist Pizza is the definitive guide to the worldís most popular food. Created by the team that published the critically acclaimed Modernist Cuisine: The Art and Science of Cooking and Modernist Bread, this groundbreaking set is the culmination of exhaustive research, travel, and experiments to collect and advance the worldís knowledge of pizza.

Authors Nathan Myhrvold and Francisco Migoya share practical tips and innovative techniques, which are the outcome of hundreds of tests and experiments. Spanning 1,708 pages, including three volumes plus a recipe manual, Modernist Pizza is much more than a cookbook: itís an indispensable resource for anyone who not only loves to eat pizza but is also interested in the science, stories, cultures, and history behind it. Each gorgeously illustrated chapter examines a different aspect of pizza, from its history and top travel destinations to dough, sauce, cheese, toppings, equipment, and more.

Housed in a red stainless-steel case, Modernist Pizza contains over 1,000 traditional and avant-garde recipes to make pizza from around the globe, each carefully developed with both professional and home pizzaioli in mind.

Modernist Pizza will provide you with the tools to evolve your craft, invent, and make sublime creations. Thereís never been a better time to make pizza.

3 Hardcover volumes + 1 spiral bound kitchen manual

https://kitchenartsandletters.com/product/modernist-pizza/?mc_cid=f94a870640&mc_eid=d016ddf934
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: SonVolt on May 19, 2021, 09:10:34 AM
Nathan Myhrvold, the word's greatest Patent Troll.

https://www.npr.org/sections/money/2011/07/26/138576167/when-patents-attack
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: texmex on May 19, 2021, 09:35:11 AM
Nathan Myhrvold, the word's greatest Patent Troll.

https://www.npr.org/sections/money/2011/07/26/138576167/when-patents-attack (https://www.npr.org/sections/money/2011/07/26/138576167/when-patents-attack)


 :o




The price of those 3 volumes... :o ??? :o
 :-D :-D :-D
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: psedillo on May 19, 2021, 09:44:59 AM
The price of those 3 volumes... :o ??? :o
 :-D :-D :-D

I'm just passing along news.  ;D

And you are right about the price. I would venture to bet there is more information on this site than could ever be contained in that set.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Jon in Albany on May 19, 2021, 10:25:53 AM
I had flipped through the full version of Modernist Cuisine and bought a copy of Modernist at Home when it was on sale. It had some interesting techniques and ideas, but overall, it wasn't worth it. I'm curious to flip through, but I imagine this will be the same.

The photography is very impressive, but that doesn't make food taste better.

Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: 02ebz06 on May 19, 2021, 10:32:35 AM
WOW!  You could by a pizza oven for the price of the books.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: jsaras on May 19, 2021, 10:40:02 AM
Modernist?  Do we have to go back THAT far?
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Bill/SFNM on May 19, 2021, 11:05:54 AM
I own the full set of Modernist Bread, read all 5 volumes, and tried most of the recipes. Fortunately, it cost me nothing (I owned the URL for modernistpizza.com and sold it to Myhrvold a few years back; I had him throw in the books as part of the deal).

Most of the exposition in the bread book is very uneven, poorly edited, and available elsewhere. Minor topics were covered in mind-numbing detail. Sourdough cultures, a major topic that could have benefited greatly from a deep dive in his multi-million dollar kitchen, were glossed over. I liked a number of recipes, but now a few years later, there is only one, modernist dosa, that is part of my go-to bread recipes.

In the few years that they have been working on the book, there has been an explosion of new pizza ovens targeted at home enthusiasts, like many here in this forum. I see this trend accelerating and I wonder how useful this book is going to be. For example, the Carbon Kitchen oven, which I have been playing around with for a few months, has changed the way I make dough and bake pizzas. I'm wondering how well this book will hold up in this regard by the time it is available.

I do wonder what kind of pizza photos we'll see if he uses his electron microscope.   :)
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: artaxares on May 19, 2021, 12:50:33 PM
Modernist bread and especially modernist cuisine are really really great books. Those books teach lots of important fundamentals from scientific angle and break lots of common myths which is extremely useful. I made lots of recipes from those books but more to see how techniques work because "best" recipes don't exist anyway but those books teach you how to modify any recipe because you know "how things work".
Unfortunately price is just too high for a single person to buy it, 425$ for book about pizza is just too much, but if someone finds it in a library or anywhere else I'm sure it would be a great read.
Title: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Jersey Pie Boy on July 07, 2021, 03:52:33 PM
How much Grande, All Trumps and Rosa Grande will $382 buy? >:D :-D

https://www.amazon.com/Modernist-MODERNIST-CUISINE-Nathan-Myhrvold/dp/1734386126
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Heikjo on July 07, 2021, 03:54:38 PM
Itís finally out then. Iíll be interested to hear some thoughts from someone buying it.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Pizza_Not_War on July 07, 2021, 04:04:59 PM
They picked Portland as best pizza city!
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Hanglow on July 07, 2021, 04:35:09 PM
That or singing up to this place...... I think I made the right choice
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Bill/SFNM on July 07, 2021, 04:50:18 PM
I'm going to merge this topic with an existing one that started a few months ago. Stand by.

Merge complete.

According to Amazon, this book will be released in October.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Heikjo on July 08, 2021, 04:47:01 PM
Most of the exposition in the bread book is very uneven, poorly edited, and available elsewhere. Minor topics were covered in mind-numbing detail. Sourdough cultures, a major topic that could have benefited greatly from a deep dive in his multi-million dollar kitchen, were glossed over. I liked a number of recipes, but now a few years later, there is only one, modernist dosa, that is part of my go-to bread recipes.
Thatís disappointing. With such a big volume, I would certainly expect sourdough to play a huge role. It is the ultimate way to make many kinds of bread in my opinion.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Bill/SFNM on July 08, 2021, 04:59:57 PM
Thatís disappointing. With such a big volume, I would certainly expect sourdough to play a huge role. It is the ultimate way to make many kinds of bread in my opinion.

Exactly 8 pages on sourdough with nothing useful that hasn't been known for years. 
Title: Modernist Pizza Three Book Set. Available for preorder.
Post by: Numerator on August 12, 2021, 08:11:17 PM
https://modernistcuisine.com/books/modernist-pizza/

For the low price of $425.  It is backordered.

https://modernistcuisineshop.com/products/modernist-pizza


That is one pricey pizza book set.  At least you get a calendar.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza Three Book Set. Available for preorder.
Post by: caymus on August 12, 2021, 08:28:22 PM
I think I will pass unless the library system has an electronic version.  I am in the 'Swedish Death Cleaning" mode of my life.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Numerator on August 13, 2021, 12:10:13 AM
I read one of the pizza recipes on the web site.  It was very disappointing. 
Title: New book release
Post by: galoot on September 13, 2021, 09:11:42 AM
Just saw this morning that Nathan Myhrvold of "Modernist Cuisine" fame has a new book release next month. A 3-volume set "Modernist Pizza" looks like it will cover every aspect of pizza making.
https://modernistcuisine.com/books/modernist-pizza/ (https://modernistcuisine.com/books/modernist-pizza/)

He also wrote "Modernist Bread". When this guy puts his mind to something, he does it! Such as spend 18 months developing a high speed camera to take pictures of snowflakes.
 https://news.artnet.com/art-world/nathan-myhrvold-highest-resolution-snowflake-photographs-1939833 (https://news.artnet.com/art-world/nathan-myhrvold-highest-resolution-snowflake-photographs-1939833)
And I thought I had lots of different interests....

You can tell from my number of posts that I am new here. :)
Great forum and learning lots by reading past posts.

ETA missed this thread - looks like this was old news....
Title: Modernist pizza
Post by: thezaman on October 04, 2021, 06:21:43 AM
 I not only collect ovens. I am a pizza cookbook collector as well. So yes I bought the Modernist pizza cook books. Just started looking it over. A few things I noted the use of meat tenderizer as a dough relaxer. The addition of xanthum gum to thicken sauces. Addition of cornmeal in deep dish dough. Dislike of New Haven pizza. Using tomato soup as a sauce. They throw a lot of different ideas out there.
 Looks like the scientific info on doughs would be helpful.
Title: Re: Modernist pizza
Post by: Jon in Albany on October 04, 2021, 07:12:06 AM
Tomato soup? Are they making tomato soup or using a can?

When I think tomato soup, my first thought is Campbell's. There are definitely more tomato soups though.
Title: Re: Modernist pizza
Post by: SonVolt on October 04, 2021, 09:08:26 AM
What purpose does the Cornmeal serve in the dough?
Title: Re: Modernist pizza
Post by: scott r on October 04, 2021, 09:35:29 AM
dont like new haven pizza.... thats an out for me
Title: Re: Modernist pizza
Post by: thezaman on October 04, 2021, 09:48:56 AM
 They used Campbellís tomato soup for a sauce on a margherita. Have not looked too deep into the books yet. Not sure if pm.com is mentioned at all. They have a nice piece on Derrick Tung complimenting his Detroit pizza and they liked it much better then the original Detroit pizza.
 The New Haven was burnt in their opinion. They have a modernist style new Haven in the recipe book.
Title: Re: Modernist pizza
Post by: scott r on October 04, 2021, 10:08:17 AM
They used Campbellís tomato soup for a sauce on a margherita.

that is so gross... too much sugar in there
Title: Re: Modernist pizza
Post by: apizza on October 04, 2021, 10:39:30 AM
that is so gross... too much sugar in there

Also too much sodium, unless it was their low sodium version.
Title: Re: Modernist pizza
Post by: DoouBall on October 04, 2021, 10:28:34 PM
that is so gross... too much sugar in there

if we start using campbell's tomato soup for our pizza sauce, we might as well use tortillas for our pizza base and call it a day. so much easier after all. or maybe we should use alphabet pasta as a pizza base - perfect! there, I said it. we don't need PM.com anymore.
Title: Re: Modernist pizza
Post by: RHawthorne on October 04, 2021, 11:16:38 PM
that is so gross... too much sugar in there
Don't ask why, but I tried a flatbread pizza from Panera a couple of months ago, and I could swear the sauce was tomato soup. It looked and tasted like it, and I was not into it. The rest of the pizza was not awful, certainly better than what you'd get from most cheap pizza chains. But the sauce was definitely not a good choice.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Heikjo on October 05, 2021, 03:41:25 AM
if we start using campbell's tomato soup for our pizza sauce, we might as well use tortillas for our pizza base and call it a day. so much easier after all. or maybe we should use alphabet pasta as a pizza base - perfect! there, I said it. we don't need PM.com anymore.
Imagine all the time and money we can save!
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: thezaman on October 05, 2021, 12:28:30 PM
 On my original post I am reading more each day. They have a uno DD recipe that is close to what is published in PM.COM. Not sure but oil is a 38 percent which might be a lot higher then most recipes.
Title: Re: Modernist pizza
Post by: typecase on October 05, 2021, 09:54:50 PM
I not only collect ovens. I am a pizza cookbook collector as well. So yes I bought the Modernist pizza cook books. Just started looking it over. A few things I noted the use of meat tenderizer as a dough relaxer. The addition of xanthum gum to thicken sauces. Addition of cornmeal in deep dish dough. Dislike of New Haven pizza. Using tomato soup as a sauce. They throw a lot of different ideas out there.
 Looks like the scientific info on doughs would be helpful.

How did you get it? I ordered from preordered from Amazon and was actually looking so foward to it I was salivating. I love their deep dive approach to testing and the photography is gorgeous. But my order is indefinitely delayed and every bookstore I called within 200 miles doesn't have it. Whats in their NY pizza sauce? I was hoping to try their NY pizza dough this weekend. ugh. 
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: thezaman on October 08, 2021, 07:47:44 AM
Not sure I can repeat the recipe on the forum? If it is allowed I will post the sauce and dough.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Bill/SFNM on October 08, 2021, 07:50:38 AM
Not sure I can repeat the recipe on the forum? If it is allowed I will post the sauce and dough.

Nope. Copyrighted material can't be posted.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: HansB on October 08, 2021, 08:44:09 AM
https://delishably.com/cooking-equipment/Fair-Use-And-Recipe-Copyright-Tips-And-Options
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Bill/SFNM on October 08, 2021, 09:26:03 AM
https://delishably.com/cooking-equipment/Fair-Use-And-Recipe-Copyright-Tips-And-Options

Steve, the owner of this site, has instructed the moderators to remove any copyrighted materials.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: thezaman on October 08, 2021, 10:28:51 AM
Yes didnít think I could write it up. I can tell you it is a cooked sauce.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: jsaras on October 08, 2021, 11:47:20 AM
Well, there's this: https://modernistcuisine.com/recipes/classic-pizza-sauce-recipe/
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: RHawthorne on October 08, 2021, 02:23:32 PM
Well, there's this: https://modernistcuisine.com/recipes/classic-pizza-sauce-recipe/
That sounds like a pretty garlicky sauce to me. I find it odd that they recommend dropping the amount of garlic used to make a marinara sauce instead.  Seems to me it would be the other way around. But to each their own.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: SonVolt on October 09, 2021, 10:18:57 PM
Nope. Copyrighted material can't be posted.


Individual recipes can't be copyrighted, only collections of recipes.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Bill/SFNM on October 09, 2021, 11:05:15 PM
All questions about what is permissible on this site should be directed to Steve.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: bakerbill on October 12, 2021, 10:04:19 AM
OK, I paid the full $425 for this three volume tome. Whether it was worth the price will take some time as it runs for about a thousand pages and weighs a ton. It would be unfair to write a fair review at this time, but I have a few impressions. First, the recipe for artisan pizza dough which is cited often provides no information that is not already available to readers of this forum and all this after supposedly countless experiments. The recipe lists water temp but no reference to temperature formulas as other books do, Also, there is no mention of stretch and fold techniques which I have found in other recipes and have found to be helpful. Second, after all their sleuthing about the great pizzerias of this world, why not dig deeper and find out what the recipe is for Nancy Silvertonís pizza which I have found outstanding. (The recipe in her book is not the same as used in the restaurant). The final test will come when the recipes are tried and eaten. Until then the jury is still out.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: DoouBall on October 12, 2021, 11:25:36 AM
OK, I paid the full $425 for this three volume tome. Whether it was worth the price will take some time as it runs for about a thousand pages and weighs a ton. It would be unfair to write a fair review at this time, but I have a few impressions. First, the recipe for artisan pizza dough which is cited often provides no information that is not already available to readers of this forum and all this after supposedly countless experiments. The recipe lists water temp but no reference to temperature formulas as other books do, Also, there is no mention of stretch and fold techniques which I have found in other recipes and have found to be helpful. Second, after all their sleuthing about the great pizzerias of this world, why not dig deeper and find out what the recipe is for Nancy Silvertonís pizza which I have found outstanding. (The recipe in her book is not the same as used in the restaurant). The final test will come when the recipes are tried and eaten. Until then the jury is still out.

Thanks for your pre-review. If you love Mozza pizza, have a quick look at TxCraig's wonderful thread about Mozza inspired pizza baked in a home oven. I've tried this method with was happy with the result. 

The thread start:

https://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=36346.0

My results:

https://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=36346.msg468025#msg468025
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: SonVolt on October 13, 2021, 08:22:46 AM
(The recipe in her book is not the same as used in the restaurant).



This drives me absolutely nuts and it's far too common in restaurant-themed cookbooks.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: DoouBall on October 13, 2021, 11:24:06 AM


This drives me absolutely nuts and it's far too common in restaurant-themed cookbooks.

It drives me absolutely nuts as well. Same story for Chris Bianco's cookbook. My guess is that these chefs are afraid of losing their competitive edge or losing customers by releasing their most prized recipes. However, customers are always asking them for recipes so they need to provide them something, and hence we get these watered-down recipes. It's a shame really. Luckily, there are many other chefs more than willing to give us the real deal.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: amolapizza on October 13, 2021, 01:29:47 PM
I think that there are no real secrets..

It's all down to the knowledge and skill of the pizzaiolo, and the oven!

Sure there is a lot to learn, and there are things that are done differently with different styles, but there is no recipe as such.  I can give you all my recipe (which I do), and your pizza will come out differently!
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Bill/SFNM on October 13, 2021, 01:33:39 PM

I'm curious to understand the target audience and how one fills 1700 pages in a way that makes that audience feel they got value.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: RHawthorne on October 14, 2021, 01:58:24 AM
I'm curious to understand the target audience and how one fills 1700 pages in a way that makes that audience feel they got value.
Dare I say it, I suspect that you may have already nailed it in one of your earlier posts when you said the book contained "mind numbing detail". I'm wondering if the extreme length of the work is meant to serve the purpose of doing exactly that, and ultimately driving some people to conclude that they're in way over their head, and that pizza just isn't for them, and thus also concluding that the author must be the world's foremost authority on the subject. I don't know; maybe I'm way off base and not making sense, but I am highly perplexed by the idea of just exactly what makes any author of pizza cookbooks think that a 1,700 page text will do anything other than completely lose the interest of even the most devout pizza fanatic. Maybe I'm crazy, but I think that what people need to keep moving along in the right direction in their pursuit of great pizza is live, interactive, open source, real time, cooperative, hands-on activity- such as the kind of thing we've got going on here, not reading some supposedly all-encompassing tome of information in written form. Call me crazy, but that's my reaction to this book.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: artaxares on October 14, 2021, 07:14:21 PM
Have you guys seen Modernist bread from the same authors? It's not all about going into mind numbing details, it's more of an encyclopedia, they put everything from history and origin stories to various recipes. Authors divide content from really scientific stuff to home oriented and it's pretty easy to navigate and find your level of understanding and follow those techniques and recipes for your own level of knowledge and equipment.
I'd actually say those books are for active hobbyists because they are too large for someone who just wants to make quick bread/pizza and they aren't as deep as some really scientific works. It's really a shame that these books are just so damn expensive that most people in that audience just can't afford them. For 100$ I'd buy them without blinking, but 400$ is pretty steep price.
Title: You're all kidding yourselves...
Post by: SpiceChef on October 17, 2021, 08:28:10 PM
if you really believe that you won't learn anything new or that the authors are just regurgitating publicly available information from other cookbooks or whatever, you really have no idea what the Modernist Cuisine people do.   Need proof without buying the books?

Watch this video and tell me you're doing these things.  You're not.  I already know it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PE4YytDY_SQ
Title: Re: You're all kidding yourselves...
Post by: TXCraig1 on October 18, 2021, 08:17:21 AM
I always wonder about the folks who register and their first real post is promoting a cookbook.
Title: Re: You're all kidding yourselves...
Post by: DoouBall on October 18, 2021, 12:24:51 PM
I always wonder about the folks who register and their first real post is promoting a cookbook.

Totally. I watched parts of the video for fun - Francisco sure has some nice toys! Most of them, like his freeze drier or his suspended camera, have nothing to do with making pizza. I imagine the Modernist team put a lot of effort into this and may even offer some good insights. I'm just not sure they're worth $425. Also if you watch the video, he does make a decent Neapolitan pizza, but the cheese is not properly melted and he tries to demonstrate the Neapolitan slap and does it completely wrong.

Meanwhile, you can pre-order Joy of Pizza by Dan Richer of Razza for $32 or get The Pizza Bible for $20 or just simply read our forums and learn for free from people who have been making far more (and likely better) pizzas than the modernist team could do in a couple of years of experiments for the book.
Title: Re: You're all kidding yourselves...
Post by: Bobino414 on October 18, 2021, 02:20:55 PM
I think the video is interesting.

Re: Modernist Pizza Book

Scam Alert:  Amazon listed the hardback 1708 pages for $382.50 and the paperback 32 pages for $250.  Packaging looks the same but author is different.
Title: Re: You're all kidding yourselves...
Post by: amolapizza on October 18, 2021, 04:28:14 PM
Nice video and toys!

He made a nice looking pizza, but I was somewhat disappointed that it wasn't a molecular pizza!  :D :D :D
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: ARenko on October 19, 2021, 05:14:03 PM
Watch this video and tell me you're doing these things.  You're not.  I already know it

Tell me why we'd want to do all those things.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: werty20 on October 19, 2021, 05:16:11 PM
just watched modernist pizza ig live with tony g, he went to 4-5 h fermentation now !
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: amolapizza on October 19, 2021, 05:17:33 PM
Tell me why we'd want to do all those things.

To make a cherry sized object that explodes with pizza margherita taste and costs $5! :)
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: wb54885 on October 19, 2021, 07:46:35 PM
I'm curious to understand the target audience and how one fills 1700 pages in a way that makes that audience feel they got value.

Based on this categorization, Iíd say the target audience is rich folk who have $400 to spend on a set of picture books.

And, of course, Larry (thezaman) who is obsessed and deserves a free copy and editing rights  :-D
Title: Re: You're all kidding yourselves...
Post by: Bill/SFNM on October 19, 2021, 09:10:10 PM
if you really believe that you won't learn anything new or that the authors are just regurgitating publicly available information from other cookbooks or whatever, you really have no idea what the Modernist Cuisine people do. 

I had a lot of fun with the first book, Modernist Cuisine, trying many new techniques; I did indeed learn quite a bit from it. (For example, the caramelized carrot soup was a revelation. I've applied that technique to other soups and blown away anyone who has tried it.)

But Modernist Bread was a real disappointment in almost every way. I learned almost nothing useful and found many of the "modernist" recipes to be inferior variations of traditional techniques. As stated upthread, I read the books from cover to cover and tried most of the recipes.

I'm waiting for my copy of Modernist Pizza (not sure why the shipment is stuck in USPS) and intend to give it a fair shake and see what new things the authors may have uncovered. Amazon gives me until the end of January to return it, so this was pretty much a no-brainer. 
Title: Re: You're all kidding yourselves...
Post by: wb54885 on October 20, 2021, 10:37:19 AM
Amazon gives me until the end of January to return it, so this was pretty much a no-brainer.

Hadnít even considered this. I was going to wait until a library near me carried it to take a look, but thatís a clever workaround.

Iíll be most curious to see what they can come up with to say about ovens and heat transfer in the baking process. Thatíd be interesting to see through their lense.

They came to a pizzeria in Seattle where I was working to research the book. I declined to be present for the meeting. I was told Myrhvold ate a whole 18Ē pie and more by himself and didnít ask a lot of questions, which is why Iím inclined to believe this was an eating tour for him personally with a picture book to show for it. But I canít wait to hear more reviews from members here and to get my hands on it as well. Even a pig can sometimes show you where to find a truffle.
Title: Re: You're all kidding yourselves...
Post by: werty20 on October 20, 2021, 01:48:34 PM
But I canít wait to hear more reviews from members here and to get my hands on it as well. Even a pig can sometimes show you where to find a truffle.
google for
Cooking with Myhrvold and Migoya's Modernist Pizza
some forums start to share and post results from the book
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: jsaras on October 20, 2021, 08:26:30 PM
Modernist?  Do we have to go THAT far back? 
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Bill/SFNM on October 20, 2021, 10:58:32 PM
I spent most of the day with "Volume 1 - History and Fundamentals." I was not disappointed. Most noticeable was the vastly improved photography with gorgeously composed shots of delicious-looking pizzas. The quality of the content was top-notch. Care was clearly taken in the historical research. Well-organized and edited. I enjoyed reading it and found many ideas for improving my pizzas. Very impressed so far.     
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: wb54885 on October 21, 2021, 08:32:37 AM
Glad to hear youíre getting a lot out of it Bill. Enough to consider not returning it...?

Now that you have it in front of you, who do you reckon its target audience/market is meant to be?

As far as historical information, have you noticed if they pay any homage to PM.com and Peter Regas for recently breaking the Lombardi 1905 ďfirst US pizzeriaĒ myth?
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: scott r on October 21, 2021, 10:00:29 AM
Thats great to hear Bill, thanks for taking the hit on this one for us!
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Pete-zza on October 21, 2021, 04:20:29 PM
Today I stumbled across a podcast that features Nathan Myhrvold, at a website of a money manager Meb Faber. I plan to listen to it at some point but I thought that some of our members would like to do so also. The link is:

https://mebfaber.com/2021/08/25/e343-nathan-myhrvold/

Peter
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Bill/SFNM on October 21, 2021, 04:36:49 PM
Glad to hear youíre getting a lot out of it Bill. Enough to consider not returning it...?

Now that you have it in front of you, who do you reckon its target audience/market is meant to be?


I'm leaning towards keeping it. If something I order is pretty much "as advertised", then I feel obligated to follow through on the purchase.

My impression is that the target audience is Myhrvold. It seems to be a labor of love passion project. He probably knows his break-even point and doesn't really care.
Title: Re: You're all kidding yourselves...
Post by: Rolls on October 22, 2021, 02:25:09 PM
They came to a pizzeria in Seattle where I was working to research the book. I declined to be present for the meeting. I was told Myrhvold ate a whole 18Ē pie and more by himself and didnít ask a lot of questions, which is why Iím inclined to believe this was an eating tour for him personally with a picture book to show for it. But I canít wait to hear more reviews from members here and to get my hands on it as well. Even a pig can sometimes show you where to find a truffle.

^^ Now this made me :-D :-D :-D.


Rolls
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: dineomite on October 24, 2021, 06:44:36 PM
Quote
I'm leaning towards keeping it. If something I order is pretty much "as advertised", then I feel obligated to follow through on the purchase.

I'm of the same opinion. I don't go in with the intention of kicking the tires and dumping it back on the seller if I decide I don't like it. It's for this reason I didn't buy it. There were some things I liked about Modernist Cuisine, but a lot of things I felt would be dated in a very short period of time. I'll be interested in your take on Modernist Pizza.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: HansB on October 24, 2021, 08:17:53 PM
I don't think I'll be getting MP. I already have Roberta's, Razza and and the new Tartine books on pre-order.

I am going to watch this out of curiosity. https://www.eventbrite.com/e/modernist-pizza-with-francisco-migoya-tickets-172014980437?keep_tld=1
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: pedrob on October 25, 2021, 12:32:43 PM
Same as others here, still getting through the book... Making their NY dough this week and can report results then.

I think bakerbill captured it pretty well:

Quote
The recipe lists water temp but no reference to temperature formulas as other books do

I'm slightly disappointed by that, was hoping for one step further beyond windowpane testing, finger testing and such. I guess what it does bring is a bunch of data to support these.

Quote
Also, there is no mention of stretch and fold techniques which I have found in other recipes and have found to be helpful

I believe this is covered briefly on 2.51.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Bill/SFNM on October 26, 2021, 07:27:40 PM
I spent today with the extensive section on sauces - so many versions I want to try. No, I won't be trying the one based on canned tomato soup, but many of the others seem like good candidates for upping my sauce game. The use of xantham gum to thicken sauces when necessary gets a thumbs up from me, although I use a modified corn starch (Ultra-sperse M) simply because I bought a big bag of it a while back.

I have my tomato sauces pretty much dialed-in so I plan to explore the more unusual ones like pressure-caramelized zucchini sauce. Garlic chive bechamel sauce is first on the list since I just harvested a bunch of garlic chives from my garden.


Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: ptix on October 27, 2021, 02:17:11 PM

You said you found many ideas for improving your pizza - can you give examples ?
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Bill/SFNM on October 27, 2021, 04:41:08 PM
You said you found many ideas for improving your pizza - can you give examples ?
The idea I have been thinking about the most is enzyme tenderizers/relaxers in the dough. I do use a synthetic amylase in my banh mi rolls, but I don't think I've ever tried it or bromelain, papain, fruit juice, etc. in my pizza dough. One of the problems I struggle with in using sourdough cultures is finding the right balance of flavor and texture in long-proofing doughs. Often I can get a perfect light, fluffy texture but the buttery tang is lacking; and the converse. As long as I've been doing this, I rarely hit that tiny window of perfection. I hope to run some side-by-side tests with these amendments to see if they help. 
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: DoouBall on October 27, 2021, 06:18:57 PM
The idea I have been thinking about the most is enzyme tenderizers/relaxers in the dough. I do use a synthetic amylase in my banh mi rolls, but I don't think I've ever tried it or bromelain, papain, fruit juice, etc. in my pizza dough. One of the problems I struggle with in using sourdough cultures is finding the right balance of flavor and texture in long-proofing doughs. Often I can get a perfect light, fluffy texture but the buttery tang is lacking; and the converse. As long as I've been doing this, I rarely hit that tiny window of perfection. I hope to run some side-by-side tests with these amendments to see if they help.

An interesting direction for sure Bill. I've been thinking about trying this yeast for the same reason. It has added strengtheners and enzymes. Won't help with your sourdough though :)

https://redstaryeast.com/red-star-products/platinum-yeast/
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: thezaman on October 28, 2021, 05:18:29 AM
  DoouBall, I really like the platinum yeast I never looked into itís make up, but felt it improved my doughs. 
 Bill after spending time with the three books I agree there is a lot of good information there. I liked the idea of a little  xantham gum to slightly thicken Neapolitan sauce. I use that work for thinner tomato products.
 I have not tried any sauces yet, but the New York sauce using anchovies oil looks interesting. I have been draining the salt and oil off of my anchovies at work and saving it for use in sauces.
 I think there is a lot of good information that will be useful and am glad I bought the books. I know the books are large to maximize the beautiful pictures, to me they are cumbersome to hold and read.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: DoouBall on October 28, 2021, 01:23:41 PM
  DoouBall, I really like the platinum yeast I never looked into itís make up, but felt it improved my doughs. 
 Bill after spending time with the three books I agree there is a lot of good information there. I liked the idea of a little  xantham gum to slightly thicken Neapolitan sauce. I use that work for thinner tomato products.
 I have not tried any sauces yet, but the New York sauce using anchovies oil looks interesting. I have been draining the salt and oil off of my anchovies at work and saving it for use in sauces.
 I think there is a lot of good information that will be useful and am glad I bought the books. I know the books are large to maximize the beautiful pictures, to me they are cumbersome to hold and read.

Thanks for letting me know you tried and like Platinum yeast - I'll be sure to give it a shot.

I'm not a fan of xantham gum. Like caregeenan, it can cause stomach side effects in some people like bloating and gas. Especially in a commercial environment, where you probably want customers to feel that your pizza is more "digestible" than the competition. Normally, xantham gum only produces side effects at larger doses, 15g or more. However, the problem is that xantham gum is made from fermented sugar. The sugar could be derived from wheat, corn, soy or dairy. People allergic to any of these foods could have a negative reaction to xantham gum. Just my 2c.  Sourche: https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/xanthan-gum#TOC_TITLE_HDR_7

Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: RHawthorne on October 28, 2021, 02:34:17 PM
An interesting direction for sure Bill. I've been thinking about trying this yeast for the same reason. It has added strengtheners and enzymes. Won't help with your sourdough though :)

https://redstaryeast.com/red-star-products/platinum-yeast/
I tried Red Star's 'instant sourdough' yeast earlier this year, and I wasn't impressed at all. It gave my dough a weak rise and there was no detectable sourdough flavor whatsoever. I don't know if I just didn't use enough of it or I got an old packet or what, but I definitely gave it all the right conditions to do it's job. I would think that even if the yeast was too old to give a good rise, it still should have given the promised sourdough flavor, but it definitely didn't But I would still give that other product a try.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: DoouBall on October 28, 2021, 11:40:09 PM
I tried Red Star's 'instant sourdough' yeast earlier this year, and I wasn't impressed at all. It gave my dough a weak rise and there was no detectable sourdough flavor whatsoever. I don't know if I just didn't use enough of it or I got an old packet or what, but I definitely gave it all the right conditions to do it's job. I would think that even if the yeast was too old to give a good rise, it still should have given the promised sourdough flavor, but it definitely didn't But I would still give that other product a try.

I had the same results with Le 5 Stagioni Naturkraft. My theory is that the dried sourdough either doesn't have any live sourdough bacteria, or it doesn't have enough of them to add a significant amount of flavor to the dough after only a single rise from dry starter to finished dough. With Naturkraft, I proved the theory by using a Ph Meter. Ph drops normally to around 5.5-5.6 with a direct yeasted dough after 24h fridge bulk. When adding 4% Naturkraft, my dough Ph was the exact same 5.5 - it's as if the Naturkraft wasn't even there. I imagine the instant sourdough is the same story. For context, my sourdough bread dough drops to about Ph 4.5 at the end of bulk. Even a hybrid dough with a mix of sourdough starter and IDY dropped to Ph 4.77.

The regular Platinum IDY is a bit different because it contains dough strengtheners and enzymes - but that's more about controlling dough texture and strength rather than flavor.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: RHawthorne on October 28, 2021, 11:52:48 PM
I had the same results with Le 5 Stagioni Naturkraft. My theory is that the dried sourdough either doesn't have any live sourdough bacteria, or it doesn't have enough of them to add a significant amount of flavor to the dough after only a single rise from dry starter to finished dough. With Naturkraft, I proved the theory by using a Ph Meter. Ph drops normally to around 5.5-5.6 with a direct yeasted dough after 24h fridge bulk. When adding 4% Naturkraft, my dough Ph was the exact same 5.5 - it's as if the Naturkraft wasn't even there. I imagine the instant sourdough is the same story. For context, my sourdough bread dough drops to about Ph 4.5 at the end of bulk. Even a hybrid dough with a mix of sourdough starter and IDY dropped to Ph 4.77.

The regular Platinum IDY is a bit different because it contains dough strengtheners and enzymes - but that's more about controlling dough texture and strength rather than flavor.
I have yet to incorporate the use of a pH test meter into my pizza dough regimen, but I do own a couple of them for other food purposes. Do you think it has made a major impact your processes in making pizza dough?
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: DoouBall on October 29, 2021, 12:40:37 PM
I have yet to incorporate the use of a pH test meter into my pizza dough regimen, but I do own a couple of them for other food purposes. Do you think it has made a major impact your processes in making pizza dough?
Not a major impact, no. But when I make biga/poolish/sourdough, it helps me to make sure Iím in the right Ph range. As you know, a poorly made indirect dough is worse than a well made direct, so this helps me ensure my indirect doughs are in the right range.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: RHawthorne on October 29, 2021, 02:14:24 PM
Not a major impact, no. But when I make biga/poolish/sourdough, it helps me to make sure Iím in the right Ph range. As you know, a poorly made indirect dough is worse than a well made direct, so this helps me ensure my indirect doughs are in the right range.
Truth be told, I've barely tooled around with preferments at all, and when I have, I haven't produced a good dough. What would you say is the optimal pH range that pizza dough (preferment or direct) should be in?
Title: Modernist Pizza
Post by: DoouBall on October 29, 2021, 09:57:02 PM
Truth be told, I've barely tooled around with preferments at all, and when I have, I haven't produced a good dough. What would you say is the optimal pH range that pizza dough (preferment or direct) should be in?

So I'm not an expert as I've only been using a ph meter for about 6 months, but I've had good results with dough in a couple of ranges:

For direct dough, at the end of bulk, the Ph is usually 5.5.
For indirect dough, at the end of bulk the Ph is typically 5.35-5.4.
Sourough ends up around 4.5, and hybrid dough ends up around 4.7-5.

I usually only measure at end of bulk because I don't want to pop the bubbles at the end of the ball/loaf stage.

According to Bakerpedia, the typical range is  5.3-5.8 for yeasted doughs and 3.8-4.6 for sourdoughs, but for me I don't like really sour breads so I think 4.5-4.7 is ideal.
https://bakerpedia.com/processes/ph/
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: TXCraig1 on October 30, 2021, 08:09:29 AM
According to Bakerpedia, the ideal range is  5.3-5.8 for yeasted doughs and 3.8-4.6 for sourdoughs,
https://bakerpedia.com/processes/ph/

Says it's "typical" not ideal.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: DoouBall on October 30, 2021, 10:13:38 AM
Says it's "typical" not ideal.
Youíre right. I corrected my post.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: dragonspawn on October 31, 2021, 11:18:03 AM
I used to swear by Modernist Something books. But in modernist bread they gave biga as 60% hydration thing - which I guess in the context of american baking in which every stiff preferment is called biga may be ok, but definitely is not what all the biga doughs that are popular lately use - which is the italian biga at 48-50 (44 as it turned out to be) . And they used shortening in the banh mi - which I have not seen in Vietnamize recipes.  So I kinda grew skeptical of the quality of their research - or at least when it comes to authenticity.

The results of their recipes are usually very tasty even if the process is a bit more overcomplicated.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: amolapizza on October 31, 2021, 11:28:46 AM
FWIW, the so called Giorilli biga is at 44% hydration with 1% CY, 24 hours at 18C.  This is normally what Italians mean when they speak about biga.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Jon in Albany on October 31, 2021, 03:08:16 PM
here's a Detroit recipe. I'm guessing the actual book uses grams.

https://www.wpr.org/node/1870136
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: typecase on November 01, 2021, 03:12:57 PM
So I finally got my copy and I've been going through it. Disclaimer, I've always enjoyed the modernist cuisine books mainly because of their exhaustive experimentation and the cutaways and the gorgeous photography. I've previously purchased Modernist Bread and found that valuable. I disagree about their conclusions about levains and them not being unique but it's pretty definitive in terms of the basics of bread baking, techniques, history. A great reference volume.

In regards to Modernist Pizza its much of the same setup as the set is divided into three volumes, History and Fundamentals, Techniques and Ingredients and Recipes. The first book does a great job of exploring the very diverse history of what we call pizza. It also includes a travelogue of some travels to pizza places over the US and around the world and what makes each style unique and features some profiles of notable pizzaoli. The second book covers techniques like stretching, proofing and handling dough for the various styles; a deep dive into flour, dough, cheeses (how they melt, etc) and tomato based sauces and how toppings should be handled (coverage, to pre cook or not to precook, etc). They also touch on on rescuing dough, freezing pizza, storage and reheating. 

The third book are their recipes for the various styles. They have authentic recipes (like the AVPN neapolitan pizza) and some that are improved based on their experimentation (the modernist versions of these classic recipes).

I had hoped for a deeper dive into authenticity. Like what canned sauces do most NY pizzerias use, do they add sugar to the dough, what cheese do they use, etc. What are the common factors that can be recreated for a good result. What's the thickness factor they use? Instead, they present NY style pizza based on their experiments and present what led to success in their taste and lab tests. Their NY style dough for example resembled Tom Lehman's dough, in that it has olive oil but no sugar but theirs is a bit higher in hydration. They also add some optional diastatic malt, which adds to the browning and oven spring. They discuss baking techniques suited for a professional baker and techniques that can afford the similar results with a home oven with tools like steel or with ovens like the OONI, etc.

Their NY style pizza sauce, for example, is a cooked sauce. I made it to their specifications and it was admittedly delicious when paired with their dough. Their thickness factor is higher than the experiments I've been doing at home (for example their 18 inch pie uses 28 oz. of dough, I had been using 24 oz.) but I quite liked the result. The finished pizza folds nicely and is excellent on reheat. They dive into what makes pizzas fold better, etc., but I had hoped they included an average NY style pizza for authenticity that uses a combo of 7/11 and red sauce that seems common to many NY pizzerias. 

Same is true for Detroit style. They don't present, for example, what would make Buddy's pizza but present their definitive Detroit style and, while great, I a not sure how true it is to the original.

There are many things I have learned from the books despite years lurking on this forum and making pizza for about 10 years and in that regard, the book was worthwhile. I enjoyed the experiments with cheese, the new draining techniques  and how to make a more creamy mozzarella. I enjoyed the best practices they've come up with to provide restauranteurs the techniques for successful service.

The book is massive and there is much to absorb from their experiments and techniques. I will have a better perspective once I have completed it and while I am disappointed this isn't the definitive tome on all pizza, and still does have some areas missing, it does get pretty close. As I mentioned earlier, I would have preferred more authentic or copycat recipes to round out the book. Overall, I found this a worthy addition to any pizza fan's cookbook shelf provided you can stomach the price.

 

here's a Detroit recipe. I'm guessing the actual book uses grams.

https://www.wpr.org/node/1870136

Yes. the recipe in the book is in grams.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: hotsawce on November 08, 2021, 08:47:16 AM
The author is a notorious and disgusting patent troll. Like all of their books, lots of junk science and click-bait worthy claims. But feel free l to make a mess of your kitchen to get mediocre results 😂
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: RHawthorne on November 08, 2021, 09:26:22 AM
here's a Detroit recipe. I'm guessing the actual book uses grams.

https://www.wpr.org/node/1870136
Interesting recipe. I doubt semolina flour is traditional to any of the older Detroit pizza establishments, and maybe not even any of the newer ones. But I don't necessarily disapprove of the idea. I use the stuff myself, but in thinner crust pizzas. I would like to see what it does in this case.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: DoouBall on November 08, 2021, 06:54:20 PM
The author is a notorious and disgusting patent troll. Like all of their books, lots of junk science and click-bait worthy claims. But feel free l to make a mess of your kitchen to get mediocre results
Haha. I have to say Iím much more excited to read Joy of Pizza, to be delivered tomorrow. As a humble but dedicated amateur, Iíd rather learn from one of the top pizza pros such as Dan Richer, Scott R or yourself rather than a couple of guys in a laboratory. I am sure there are some that are more hard core pizza nerds than I am, but Iím not planning to buy a siphon, centrifuge or dehydrator for the sake of making pizza ;)
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Bill/SFNM on November 08, 2021, 07:39:57 PM
but Iím not planning to buy a siphon, centrifuge or dehydrator for the sake of making pizza ;)

I'm still in the early stages of this book, so maybe I haven't gotten far enough, but where are these devices mentioned in the book? Thanks.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: DoouBall on November 08, 2021, 08:16:11 PM
I'm still in the early stages of this book, so maybe I haven't gotten far enough, but where are these devices mentioned in the book? Thanks.
If I had the books I would tell you. :)

These things were mentioned in the video posted earlier touting the advantages of the modernist lab.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Bill/SFNM on November 08, 2021, 09:33:54 PM
If I had the books I would tell you. :)

These things were mentioned in the video posted earlier touting the advantages of the modernist lab.

I think "Modernist" has become more of a branding for the author than a discipline. It would be a mistake to judge this book based on previous works. It isn't perfect, but it strikes me (so far) as the best in the series and a serious exploration of the art and science of pizza making in commercial and home settings. I've been diverted by other priorities, but hope to soon continue reading this book. Maybe it fizzles out and becomes a slog, but it is off to a strong start.   
Title: Modernist Pizza
Post by: DoouBall on November 08, 2021, 09:59:30 PM
I think "Modernist" has become more of a branding for the author than a discipline. It would be a mistake to judge this book based on previous works. It isn't perfect, but it strikes me (so far) as the best in the series and a serious exploration of the art and science of pizza making in commercial and home settings. I've been diverted by other priorities, but hope to soon continue reading this book. Maybe it fizzles out and becomes a slog, but it is off to a strong start.

Youíre probably right and thereís some some good info in this book. Itís just not for me. For what Iím personally looking to learn next in pizza, I believe there are better options.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: hotsawce on November 09, 2021, 11:21:52 AM
trash. and you're lining the pockets of and giving credibility to a vile little human in nathan myrvhold.

I had and trashed the book, because another one of their sneaky tactics is to spam the material to pizzamakers and shop owners to drum up hype for the product. I really did not think there was any good information in the book - certainly not enough to justify the price or the moral implications when purchasing.

I think "Modernist" has become more of a branding for the author than a discipline. It would be a mistake to judge this book based on previous works. It isn't perfect, but it strikes me (so far) as the best in the series and a serious exploration of the art and science of pizza making in commercial and home settings. I've been diverted by other priorities, but hope to soon continue reading this book. Maybe it fizzles out and becomes a slog, but it is off to a strong start.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Pizza_Not_War on November 09, 2021, 06:43:51 PM
Why is he a vile little human?
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: artaxares on November 09, 2021, 07:21:21 PM
I don't really care (or know much) about Nathan but it is pretty disingenuous to write these types of posts without any explanation or examples ("junk science" etc), especially considering that Nathan Myhrvold isn't really in charge of actual cuisine stuff. Main author is Francisco Migoya who is a brilliant and genuine guy who comes from pastry world but is one of those people who are real experts and are willing to share their knowledge not just in form of their own books etc but also via free channels such as youtube, instagram, guest appearances etc. He is "no BS, no myths etc" kind of guy and will straight up try to teach people things without holding back.

And I'm not sure why some people here disregard or laugh at their (scientific) approach. I do understand "tradicionalist" or "hobbyist" approach to making pizzas but great chefs, restaurants and pizzerias have always tried to improve their ingredients, just because someone puts a microscope in a kitchen doesn't make it any different than what people have always tried to do, doing it more scientifically just makes it easier to reproduce results in a different setting because you can know all factors that play a role. These books obviously aren't a gospel but I do appreciate every new approach to a topic that I'm interested in, there are always new things to learn.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: hotsawce on November 09, 2021, 10:10:02 PM
Pizza is not bread, first and foremost. But that's another discussion. I don't see how someone coming from pastry can competently make numerous styles of pizza without experience, but you seem to be posing the argument his pastry knowledge/background trumps practical pizza making experience. I would disagree with that. One example that comes to mind is when Migoya claimed you could reball expired sourdough pizza dough and it would be fine if you let it rise again. I think all of us here know that's simply not the case - you couldn't stretch it unless you had a very thick pizza. There are so many little tips and tricks I've learned from making pizza professionally for over 10 years. Respectfully, I don't see any possible way Migoya could be in the same lane as competent, professional pizza makers.

With regard to modernist cuisine, well, that's also a matter of opinion. Numbers on a piece of paper might tell you things like sous vide will perfectly cook meat in a way you could never achieve with any other method, but I've never had a sous vide protein that could compare to even a well executed traditionally cooked one. It's all preference, but I find the modernist "science" to not line up with my taste buds. After thumbing through all three books now, I don't anticipate that will change. Myrvhold and his crew can stick xanthan gum in sauces to make them sooth or boil meat in water to get perfect edge to edge doneness, but many of the best restaurants in the world are not taking things that far and make better food than that.

That being said, here's an article discussing Myrvhold's ventures crushing promising startups and entrepreneurs through patent law. That's enough for me to never buy anything this guy creates. He was also friendly with Jeffrey Epstein. Too many red flags for me.

https://psmag.com/magazine/a-patent-boogieman-with-the-potential-to-obliterate-aspiring-startups



I don't really care (or know much) about Nathan but it is pretty disingenuous to write these types of posts without any explanation or examples ("junk science" etc), especially considering that Nathan Myhrvold isn't really in charge of actual cuisine stuff. Main author is Francisco Migoya who is a brilliant and genuine guy who comes from pastry world but is one of those people who are real experts and are willing to share their knowledge not just in form of their own books etc but also via free channels such as youtube, instagram, guest appearances etc. He is "no BS, no myths etc" kind of guy and will straight up try to teach people things without holding back.

And I'm not sure why some people here disregard or laugh at their (scientific) approach. I do understand "tradicionalist" or "hobbyist" approach to making pizzas but great chefs, restaurants and pizzerias have always tried to improve their ingredients, just because someone puts a microscope in a kitchen doesn't make it any different than what people have always tried to do, doing it more scientifically just makes it easier to reproduce results in a different setting because you can know all factors that play a role. These books obviously aren't a gospel but I do appreciate every new approach to a topic that I'm interested in, there are always new things to learn.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: artaxares on November 10, 2021, 04:11:47 AM
At no point did I make a point that Francisco's pastry background trumps specific pizza making experience, I was just pointing out who he is for those who are unaware of his previous work. As I also noted, I do not  treat this book as some "pizza bible", I treat it as a contribution to pizza making knowledge, new resource which can be learned from.
I also don't like to divide things into "modernist", "scientific" or not because where is that difference? At which point does my using of precise scale, thermometers, prediction tables etc becomes scientific handling of pizza dough? Same with ingredients, If I decide to take another step and let's say ferment some ingredient, does it suddenly become "science" if salinity or acidity gets measured?
I do like this book series (cuisine, bread, pizza) because authors try to answer question "why?". They use "scientific approach" to reveal what actually happens on biological/chemical level in food which is important because that knowledge allows us to then use that knowledge for our specific purposes. 1 simplest example (which is so common when people from EU try doing US recipes) would be if someone gives you basic pizza/bread recipe you can spend ages battling that 70% hydration if you don't understand what impact does gluten, flour strength have. I appreciate when books explain things from ground up and these books are good example of that.
There are bunch of stuff in those books that I've read and don't intend to ever use, as you point out some of the ingredients are not worth it at best and pretentious at worst but no one forces me to use those, but I am open to learning what does happen if I decide to use it because it might be useful at some point, I don't see any advantages to disregarding new knowledge.

That being said, I can hardly recommend actually buying these books as a hobbyist pizza maker because price is quite prohibitive, it is really a niche audience that can think of it as a good value for money. As for other things, I don't consider them to be a topic here, it's personal for people to decide if they want to take those into account.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: SonVolt on November 10, 2021, 12:18:22 PM
Why is he a vile little human?


It's worth a listen.

https://www.npr.org/sections/money/2011/07/26/138576167/when-patents-attack
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: RHawthorne on November 10, 2021, 02:17:35 PM
Pizza is not bread, first and foremost. But that's another discussion. I don't see how someone coming from pastry can competently make numerous styles of pizza without experience, but you seem to be posing the argument his pastry knowledge/background trumps practical pizza making experience. I would disagree with that. One example that comes to mind is when Migoya claimed you could reball expired sourdough pizza dough and it would be fine if you let it rise again. I think all of us here know that's simply not the case - you couldn't stretch it unless you had a very thick pizza. There are so many little tips and tricks I've learned from making pizza professionally for over 10 years. Respectfully, I don't see any possible way Migoya could be in the same lane as competent, professional pizza makers.

With regard to modernist cuisine, well, that's also a matter of opinion. Numbers on a piece of paper might tell you things like sous vide will perfectly cook meat in a way you could never achieve with any other method, but I've never had a sous vide protein that could compare to even a well executed traditionally cooked one. It's all preference, but I find the modernist "science" to not line up with my taste buds. After thumbing through all three books now, I don't anticipate that will change. Myrvhold and his crew can stick xanthan gum in sauces to make them sooth or boil meat in water to get perfect edge to edge doneness, but many of the best restaurants in the world are not taking things that far and make better food than that.

That being said, here's an article discussing Myrvhold's ventures crushing promising startups and entrepreneurs through patent law. That's enough for me to never buy anything this guy creates. He was also friendly with Jeffrey Epstein. Too many red flags for me.

https://psmag.com/magazine/a-patent-boogieman-with-the-potential-to-obliterate-aspiring-startups
You're making some valid observations here, but I would also say that you also seem to be making a few assumptions and premature conclusions. For one thing, how do you know how much experience Migoya has in making pizza? Just because he's a pastry baker by trade (from what I gather from this discussion), how does that in any way mean that he couldn't be highly experienced with making pizza? He could be making pizzas in his own spare time, or he could be experimenting behind the scenes without actually putting much out. I would venture to say that at least half the people on this site aren't making pizza professionally or baked anything professionally, and never have, and that definitely doesn't stop them from making great pizzas. In fact, from what I've heard said from some of our members that put out great pizzas regularly, you would never even guess from their professional background that they had ever made a pizza in their life.  And pastry baking still gives a very good background for baking of any kind, really. Just because it isn't the same kind of baking, that doesn't mean it isn't relevant.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: artaxares on November 10, 2021, 03:58:40 PM
Also "pizza=/=bread" aside, there's also another thing which is "pizza = crust + toppings" and that second part is often overlooked even in professional settings because availability and cost is of primary concern so various different cuisine specialities can be even more qualified to talk about different ingredients that can be used as toppings. When I read these types of books that is often where my focus lies because pure dough management will depend too much on my particular settings, type of oven, temperature, humidity, flour availables, water etc which can hardly be fully covered in some specific book at all.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: hotsawce on November 10, 2021, 10:43:42 PM
How do I know? Because you can't really get a great feel for pizza until you put the reps in. 10+ years of doing this PROFESSIONALLY and I still make new observations daily. I can make a pretty good croissant or ice cream at home but I wouldn't go and write a book on it  :-D

We're going to have to agree to disagree on this one. I've trained people from both the bread and pastry world to make pizza and they are just very different things.

That being said, I'm still waiting to see anyone make anything half decent from ANY of their books. I still see them as complicated ways to make mediocre food.

You're making some valid observations here, but I would also say that you also seem to be making a few assumptions and premature conclusions. For one thing, how do you know how much experience Migoya has in making pizza? Just because he's a pastry baker by trade (from what I gather from this discussion), how does that in any way mean that he couldn't be highly experienced with making pizza? He could be making pizzas in his own spare time, or he could be experimenting behind the scenes without actually putting much out. I would venture to say that at least half the people on this site aren't making pizza professionally or baked anything professionally, and never have, and that definitely doesn't stop them from making great pizzas. In fact, from what I've heard said from some of our members that put out great pizzas regularly, you would never even guess from their professional background that they had ever made a pizza in their life.  And pastry baking still gives a very good background for baking of any kind, really. Just because it isn't the same kind of baking, that doesn't mean it isn't relevant.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: RHawthorne on November 10, 2021, 11:20:52 PM
How do I know? Because you can't really get a great feel for pizza until you put the reps in. 10+ years of doing this PROFESSIONALLY and I still make new observations daily. I can make a pretty good croissant or ice cream at home but I wouldn't go and write a book on it  :-D

We're going to have to agree to disagree on this one. I've trained people from both the bread and pastry world to make pizza and they are just very different things.

That being said, I'm still waiting to see anyone make anything half decent from ANY of their books. I still see them as complicated ways to make mediocre food.
Sounds to me like you're still operating under the same assumption, and I have to say I think it's completely unfounded. You don't know anything about the guy except that he's a pastry baker by trade. You have no idea, and no way of knowing, how much time he's spent making pizzas, or in what capacity, besides what's shown in the book. I hate to sound so blunt, but I have to say that I just can't believe that you think you know so much about the guy. You sound like you have some serious personal animosity against him, and are forming your opinions about his pizza making credentials based purely on uninformed prejudice. Sorry, I just to have to tell it like it is. I don't intend to keep on arguing about this, though. I don't think for a minute that I'm going to open your mind.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Rolls on November 11, 2021, 11:21:46 AM
Here's someone who perhaps knows a thing or two about bread, pizza and pastry, among other things in the world of gastronomy.  Pier Luigi Roscioli:

https://youtu.be/vyjqbyPVJYE


Rolls 
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: DoouBall on November 11, 2021, 10:18:26 PM
Here's someone who perhaps knows a thing or two about bread, pizza and pastry, among other things in the world of gastronomy.  Pier Luigi Roscioli:
Rolls

Nice video. Thanks for sharing Rolls. I'd love to try one of those those thin rectangular pies.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: hotsawce on November 12, 2021, 12:39:32 AM
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kLUvQ7SRSgw

This is how I know. You paid $400 for this. A lot of posturing (and inaccurate information) for what is ultimately a really underwhelming looking pie. What's "neapoilitan" about this?

There's no "personal animosity" here just speaking facts. He has a fine dining background in pastry - not pizza. His entire professional career has revolved around pastry in white tablecloth French restaurants and as an instructor in... you guessed it, pastry. And above, he shows you just how inept he is at making pizza 6 months before the book release. Give me a break.

He's a fantastic pastry guy. He's not someone you should be taking pizza advice from. You're much better off just crawling this forum.

Sounds to me like you're still operating under the same assumption, and I have to say I think it's completely unfounded. You don't know anything about the guy except that he's a pastry baker by trade. You have no idea, and no way of knowing, how much time he's spent making pizzas, or in what capacity, besides what's shown in the book. I hate to sound so blunt, but I have to say that I just can't believe that you think you know so much about the guy. You sound like you have some serious personal animosity against him, and are forming your opinions about his pizza making credentials based purely on uninformed prejudice. Sorry, I just to have to tell it like it is. I don't intend to keep on arguing about this, though. I don't think for a minute that I'm going to open your mind.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Gene in Acadiana on November 12, 2021, 03:40:13 AM
If I was ever served a Neapolitan that looked like the one he made in this video I'd send it back.

The most telling part is when he said, "It doesn't have to be perfect. It's pizza." Nice dismissive attitude for someone charging $400 for a book on how to make pizza. 
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: artaxares on November 12, 2021, 04:08:26 AM
This is getting ridiculous, taking these examples without context. It is extremely important to keep in mind which audience is someone talking to. When someone makes casual video where he makes pizza and says "it doesn't have to be perfect" it is quite obvious that he's talking about people making pizzas at home who might be intimidated with all the talk about time, temperature, hydration etc.etc, he's not talking to pizza professionals and telling them "meh, do whatever you want, customers don't care".
I've read almost all available popular pizza books and if there weren't Richer/Vetri/Beddia/Gemignani/Reinhart/Forkish names on the front cover I would've thought those books are written by casual hobbyist. Why? Because they wrote those books for casual audience, they didn't put even 1% of their knowledge in it because it would be too much for someone just trying to bake a pizza at home. Talking about how pizza doesn't have to be perfect? Here's quote from Dan Richer's new book: "Donít be intimidated if youíve never even baked pizza before. No other food is so perfect in its imperfections, so forgiving on its way to mastery." How is that any different than quote above?
People can at the same time give "don't worry about it, just roll with it" advice to someone starting to make a dough ball 2 hours before dinner and give extremely specific and scientific advice to someone who wants to know a lot more or needs information that can be used in professional setting.

Plus, honestly, I don't even buy that whole "practical skill" argument. Sure, if I want to eat a pizza I'd prefer if pizzaiolo has lots of practical skills for handling that dough but if I need background information, from chemical, physical, biological standpoint then I don't really care about that. Look at it this way, every top athlete has a coach who could never play at their level but still trains and teaches them each day. Do you think Lebron James tells his coach "go slam dunk or go home"?
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: RHawthorne on November 12, 2021, 10:06:50 AM
If I was ever served a Neapolitan that looked like the one he made in this video I'd send it back.

The most telling part is when he said, "It doesn't have to be perfect. It's pizza." Nice dismissive attitude for someone charging $400 for a book on how to make pizza.
I will agree that the pizza doesn't look like it should, but it's obvious to me that when he says "it doesn't have to be perfect", he's specifically talking about how the pizza doesn't have to be perfectly round, and nothing else.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: RHawthorne on November 12, 2021, 10:29:56 AM
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kLUvQ7SRSgw

This is how I know. You paid $400 for this. A lot of posturing (and inaccurate information) for what is ultimately a really underwhelming looking pie. What's "neapoilitan" about this?

There's no "personal animosity" here just speaking facts. He has a fine dining background in pastry - not pizza. His entire professional career has revolved around pastry in white tablecloth French restaurants and as an instructor in... you guessed it, pastry. And above, he shows you just how inept he is at making pizza 6 months before the book release. Give me a break.

He's a fantastic pastry guy. He's not someone you should be taking pizza advice from. You're much better off just crawling this forum.
I didn't pay $400 for this. I don't own a copy at all. I'd have to be doing extremely well financially to throw that kind of money at any kind of book. This video does raise serious questions about his aptitude for making pizza, in my mind. I will give you that. But I still think it's frankly way off base to say that being a pastry baker somehow makes one inherently disadvantaged as a pizza maker. That, to me, is pretty much just like saying that a person who's only learned how to play the piano can't also play the violin, or any other instrument, without being at a disadvantage. Music is music, no matter how it's being produced, and transitioning from one way of making it to another isn't a debilitating condition.
 Being too grounded in one way of doing things obviously makes it difficult to pick up a different skill set, of course. But that's a state of mind more than anything else. There's absolutely no reason why one can't move from one field to another, and pick up new skills and produce new work, without being hindered by what they were doing before. It's all in the mind. I was a cook for several years before I became a homebrewer, and while it definitely did take a long time before I made a batch of beer that I was really happy with, the process was in no way hindered by habits or ideas I previously had about making food or anything else. It was a matter of acquiring the necessary knowledge and equipment, and just developing instincts over time and knowing where to look for accurate information.
 I don't want to go on and on about this, and this isn't about "winning" for me. You've got some valid points. This particular clip you showed me points out how inept he is at making a real Neapolitan pizza, for sure. But I don't think for a minute that his skill set is to blame. I think it's his attitude; his disrespect for the tradition and his (probably) ego-driven desire to come up something "better"; not his technical capabilities, that are to blame for the poor product he puts out here. That's what I'm saying. I think that if he were to approach pizza making with the right mindset, there's no question that he could put out something great. I don't believe for a minute that coming from a pastry baking background puts him at any kind of disadvantage at all.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: hotsawce on November 12, 2021, 10:48:17 AM
Yet, rather than simply admit he's not a good pizza maker and not qualified to be teaching anything pizza related we have some forum members that would rather die on this hill. It's pretty funny, isn't it? One could write an essay picking apart not only the pizza he's made, and why him calling that pizza "Neapolitan" is just flat out wrong. If you're going to write a book that is supposed to be the definitive resource on pizza, you should probably be at least pretty competent and knowledgable in the subject  :-D

If I was ever served a Neapolitan that looked like the one he made in this video I'd send it back.

The most telling part is when he said, "It doesn't have to be perfect. It's pizza." Nice dismissive attitude for someone charging $400 for a book on how to make pizza.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: RHawthorne on November 12, 2021, 11:21:07 AM
Yet, rather than simply admit he's not a good pizza maker and not qualified to be teaching anything pizza related we have some forum members that would rather die on this hill. It's pretty funny, isn't it? One could write an essay picking apart not only the pizza he's made, and why him calling that pizza "Neapolitan" is just flat out wrong. If you're going to write a book that is supposed to be the definitive resource on pizza, you should probably be at least pretty competent and knowledgable in the subject  :-D
I don't think anybody here is accepting this book as "the definitive resource on pizza" or dying on any hill. And in case I didn't make it clear enough before, I agree that him calling anything about the pizza in that video "Neapolitan" is just ludicrous beyond belief. But do I think you're really taking this to an extreme. And even though you and I are having a bit of a disagreement about this topic, I would still rather have a conversation with you or most anyone else on this forum than I would the pastry chef who's attempting to make pizza, if that helps put things in perspective for you as far as where I'm coming from. It's just a book that we can either look at and attempt to glean information from, or ignore. We all know that. The best information I've gotten on pizza making has come from right here, and I wouldn't have it any other way. Relax and keep on making pizza. All I ask is that if anybody from Modernist Pizza ever came to this forum to talk turkey, grant them the respect of somebody who just walked in the door and wants to have a conversation, without any prejudices. And until they do, focus on their techniques and recipes, not their personal background. That's the only thing that's really helpful.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Heikjo on November 12, 2021, 11:45:50 AM
If Youtube videos is what we judge his skills and knowledge by, this one is at least more recent:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PE4YytDY_SQ
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: hotsawce on November 12, 2021, 12:15:14 PM
Is this a joke? The guy can't even turn the pie without pushing it to hotter spots in the back of the oven. By the way, if you jabbed at a real Neapolitan pizza 20 seconds into the bake like that you'd absolutely destroy the pizza.

If Youtube videos is what we judge his skills and knowledge by, this one is at least more recent:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PE4YytDY_SQ
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Heikjo on November 12, 2021, 12:33:13 PM
Is this a joke? The guy can't even turn the pie without pushing it to hotter spots in the back of the oven. By the way, if you jabbed at a real Neapolitan pizza 20 seconds into the bake like that you'd absolutely destroy the pizza.
$400 joke.

I don't have the book, but if he is quite fresh in the pizza game and helped write the book which covers a lot more than Neapolitan, I'm not surprised he hasn't mastered everything. Even if they made the book only about Neapolitan, you don't get the experience gained over time and especially working in a pizzeria.

There are a lot of details in a Neapolitan that can easily be overlooked in such a process.

They probably got some fun ways to do things in the book, but as far as learning how to make the best pizza in various categories, I'd put my money on this forum.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: artaxares on November 12, 2021, 01:25:17 PM
Too many people here ignore main fact that neapolitan pizza crust is only a miniscule focus of this book in general and that authors are researchers, not practicioners.
Here is a free preview of a book
https://digital.eatyourbooks.com/content/Modernist-Pizza-Preview/index.html#page=1

There is a wealth of knowledge in these books about different types of recipes, ingredients and overall pizza making. Dismissing straight up everything based just on whether one of the authors has practical knowledge in baking neapolitan pizzas is asinine.
On pages 44-45 of preview above you can read forewords by Enco Coccia and Tony Gemignani who specifically says he cooperated multiple times with them in their lab. So basically for those interested you have impressions from respected pizza makers saying they were consulted in making these pizzas and are impressed by their work. I do believe that has more importance than 1 video of authors presenting pizza making to casual audience.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: RHawthorne on November 12, 2021, 01:39:22 PM
Too many people here ignore main fact that neapolitan pizza crust is only a miniscule focus of this book in general and that authors are researchers, not practicioners.
Here is a free preview of a book
https://digital.eatyourbooks.com/content/Modernist-Pizza-Preview/index.html#page=1

There is a wealth of knowledge in these books about different types of recipes, ingredients and overall pizza making. Dismissing straight up everything based just on whether one of the authors has practical knowledge in baking neapolitan pizzas is asinine.
On pages 44-45 of preview above you can read forewords by Enco Coccia and Tony Gemignani who specifically says he cooperated multiple times with them in their lab. So basically on one side you have respected pizza makers saying they were consulted in making these pizzas and are impressed by their work and on other hand you have some people here who haven't even read the book dismissing it based on 1 video of authors presenting pizza making to casual audience.
I was not impressed with the display of "Neapolitan" pizza, but I have no doubt that there is interesting and valuable content to be found in the book. I just wouldn't pay $400 for it. I think that's insanely overpriced, especially seeing that it's been produced by somebody who has already made untold millions of dollars on other ventures and could basically put it out for free and write it off as charity. That's my biggest issue with the book. Other than that obvious fact, I'm not going to post negative speculation about a book that I've never even breathed on.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: hotsawce on November 12, 2021, 01:45:51 PM
Notice they consulted Tony and Enzo for help - not vice versa. You're right I didn't pay for it - their marketing team spammed it to me for free! I'm dismissing it based on a number of things I've seen and read. It's just not good.

If you want a book with a pretty good and wide range of recipes, Pizza Bible has already done it at a fraction of the cost. And you're not supporting a patent troll if you buy his book!

Too many people here ignore main fact that neapolitan pizza crust is only a miniscule focus of this book in general and that authors are researchers, not practicioners.
Here is a free preview of a book
https://digital.eatyourbooks.com/content/Modernist-Pizza-Preview/index.html#page=1

There is a wealth of knowledge in these books about different types of recipes, ingredients and overall pizza making. Dismissing straight up everything based just on whether one of the authors has practical knowledge in baking neapolitan pizzas is asinine.
On pages 44-45 of preview above you can read forewords by Enco Coccia and Tony Gemignani who specifically says he cooperated multiple times with them in their lab. So basically on one side you have respected pizza makers saying they were consulted in making these pizzas and are impressed by their work and on other hand you have some people here who haven't even read the book dismissing it based on 1 video of authors presenting pizza making to casual audience.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: kori on November 13, 2021, 12:58:02 PM
I was not impressed with the display of "Neapolitan" pizza, but I have no doubt that there is interesting and valuable content to be found in the book. I just wouldn't pay $400 for it. I think that's insanely overpriced, especially seeing that it's been produced by somebody who has already made untold millions of dollars on other ventures and could basically put it out for free and write it off as charity. That's my biggest issue with the book. Other than that obvious fact, I'm not going to post negative speculation about a book that I've never even breathed on.

At the end of the day I think this is the real issue, $400. If the set was being sold for idk maybe $149-$199 I dont think this conversation would be going on. I don't have the set nor will I be ordering strictly based on the price (btw $534.61 on amazon.ca), but I guarantee you there's a lot more pieces of crap pizza books out there then this, we've probably all bought at least one the over the years, but at $19.99-$39.99 we just live with it and throw it aside. When you're going to sell the set at that price, it's going to get nitpicked one way or another.

I have Tony G's book, with what I have learned on this forum I question a few things in his book.

Even though I bought one of those crappy books in 1997, I still have it because it is where my pizza sauce originated and evolved from.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: DoouBall on November 13, 2021, 04:01:41 PM
At the end of the day I think this is the real issue, $400. If the set was being sold for idk maybe $149-$199 I dont think this conversation would be going on. I don't have the set nor will I be ordering strictly based on the price (btw $534.61 on amazon.ca), but I guarantee you there's a lot more pieces of crap pizza books out there then this, we've probably all bought at least one the over the years, but at $19.99-$39.99 we just live with it and throw it aside. When you're going to sell the set at that price, it's going to get nitpicked one way or another.

I have Tony G's book, with what I have learned on this forum I question a few things in his book.

Even though I bought one of those crappy books in 1997, I still have it because it is where my pizza sauce originated and evolved from.
Tonyís book is solid, one of my top 5. Is there anything in particular that you question in his book?
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: kori on November 13, 2021, 06:04:49 PM
Tonyís book is solid, one of my top 5. Is there anything in particular that you question in his book?

Let me just start off by saying I'm not cutting down Tony's book, I think it's awesome. That book (and this forum) is what brought my pizza making to a whole new level. My point is that even though Tony is a 13 year world champion (I think is what he likes to mention in most interviews) his book is not perfect.

Diastatic Malt. He's kinda vague on the info and doesn't give the readers a substitute for his recipe's. Finding DM isn't the easiest thing to aquire, and sure isn't something that people keep in the cupboard, it's not a common ingredient, your not going to go to your local grocery store and pick it up. I would've thought he would have given a substitute measurement using just regular sugar. To anyone that's a beginner, it leaves you questioning and searching how much (sugar) to use, not what I wanna do when I buy a book with recipe's. Also he doesn't explain or caution about litner levels, all he says is "diastatic (sometimes labelled low diastatic) is the one you want." For his recipe's to work properly I think a little further explanation of the malt would help, and as I mentioned a sustitue measurement for sugar.

Yeast. From what I've learned from the forum 1% is on the high side for yeast isn't it? By the 5th day of CF with his recipe the dough is pretty extensible. According to Craig's chart yeast should be around the 0.06%.

1 hour counter rest. He instructs to let dough rest on the counter for 1hr (w/o starter recipe) prior to putting it in the fridge, this confuses me. He says to use ice cold water and keep the malt seperate from the yeast (when activating),
because you just want to wake up the yeast then cool it down immediately with the cold water, don't want the yeast to be too active or on steriods as he says. So why would you want to let the dough rise on the counter for an hour which will obviously start raising the dough temp, then put it in the fridge. To me put it in the fridge right away, not to mention by rising the temp, then putting it into a container of some sort and into a fridge there's a pretty good chance you'll get condensation build up if you don't crack the lid for a period of time, which I don't think he suggests to do.

As I said I think its a very good book and have recommended it to friends, I'm happy I purchased it.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: DoouBall on November 13, 2021, 06:50:16 PM
kori, agreed that Tony should have been more specific about diastatic malt. That said, I've tried several different ones and they all worked well even though they had different litner levels, so for most people it's not a big deal. The most important thing is that you can't substitute diastatic malt with sugar or honey because those don't provide the enzymes that hydrolyze starch to fermentable sugars thereby providing food for the yeast. That's why he doesn't recommend a substitute.

Yes, 1% yeast is high but it's not excessively high. Typical doses for yeast go from 0.1% to 1%. Yes, some people go even lower such as 0.06%, but that doesn't mean that's "the way", if you're a fan of Mandalorian :) Dough recipes include time and temperature as ingredients - more time and higher temperature means less yeast. Tony's recipes work - you might also find some that you like even better. Most of Tony's have 0.5% yeast. Only a few use 1%, and that's fine too.

Also, you will not find most professional pizza makers using 5 day CF. 12-48 hours is more common. If you want to do 5d, then of course you will need to reduce yeast.

The 1 hour counter rest is intended for the fermentation to start at least a little. If you chuck the bulk dough directly into the fridge you might have a rock solid center which will not rise at all and will take forever to come to room temperature to begin the secondary fermentation the next day. A short rest allows fermentation to start, and a few bubbles to form, lowering the density of the dough. Fermentation will continue in fridge, but slowly. Fabrizio Casucci covers this in detail in his book. A rest at room temperature in bulk is extremely common among professional pizza dough recipes. Maybe Tony should have explained the reasons more, totally agreed.

Hope this helps clear up some of the confusion. Tony's book isn't the most modern I would say but it helped me a lot - he definitely tried his best to spread his wisdom and didn't hold back real knowledge, and I love that.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: kori on November 13, 2021, 07:56:15 PM
Alex

Thanks, yes this does help clarify some things.

But I do have to comment, if you can't substitute malt with sugar or honey and he is publishing a book that will mainly be purchased by the home cook, why would you use such an ingredient that is so uncommen.

Yes his recipe's do work. I don't do the full 5 day CF anymore as he recommends for his master dough, I've since adjusted my yeast (and other things) and usually do a 72hr CF.

Counter rest thing makes sense, I think. Would I be correct in saying if you are only mixing a batch for one dough ball for a single 16" pizza then the counter rest isn't necessary as compared to mixing up a batch that will make 4 or more dough balls, in that case you would either counter rest or divide into balls right away then they can go into the fridge right away? I ask this because doesn't Tom L's recipes say to divide and ball immediately after mixing and put into the fridge right away.

Never heard of Fabrizio Casucci, are you talking about his book The Perfect Pizza Dough? Is that a book that you would recommend?

Thanks again for taking the time to explain a few things to me.

Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: RHawthorne on November 13, 2021, 09:50:29 PM
At the end of the day I think this is the real issue, $400. If the set was being sold for idk maybe $149-$199 I dont think this conversation would be going on.
Quite possibly, but no matter what, even if a person puts out free information, there will be people who want to deride and dismiss that person, and attempt all manner of character assassination...quite often for the sole reason that the person or persons doing it simply doesn't have the drive to put out any kind of body of work themselves that represents their body of knowledge. I think it takes some kind of courage (or something; maybe not courage per se, but some kind of inner drive) to put something out there and say "this is what I've learned". It doesn't take any such drive to %$# all over somebody else's work. And it doesn't produce any worthwhile results, either.
 But yeah, $400 is a hell of a lot of money to pay for any book, and it's definitely fair to expect a good deal of useful information for such a purchase. And I think that if I were to attempt to sell such a book, I would at least sell the thing in installments of some sort, not all in one lump sum. That way, people could sample it in small bites and decide if seems worth the cost. And if the book was a total crock of %$#, anybody who bought it would have a good reason to be unhappy. But I have a very hard time believing that anyone would spend years of their life putting out such a useless body of work. That's just not how the con game works.
 Anyway, I won't be buying the book, but I won't dismiss any part of it out of hand before I've even given it a fair shake.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: RHawthorne on November 13, 2021, 09:58:57 PM


Diastatic Malt. He's kinda vague on the info and doesn't give the readers a substitute for his recipe's. Finding DM isn't the easiest thing to aquire, and sure isn't something that people keep in the cupboard, it's not a common ingredient, your not going to go to your local grocery store and pick it up. I would've thought he would have given a substitute measurement using just regular sugar. To anyone that's a beginner, it leaves you questioning and searching how much (sugar) to use, not what I wanna do when I buy a book with recipe's. Also he doesn't explain or caution about litner levels, all he says is "diastatic (sometimes labelled low diastatic) is the one you want." For his recipe's to work properly I think a little further explanation of the malt would help, and as I mentioned a sustitue measurement for sugar.

No, it's not the easiest thing to track down, and it's not particularly cheap, either. But what is easily obtainable and quite inexpensive is amylase enzyme extract. I just bought a small bottle to play around with for only about $1.50 US last week. You don't even have to add any extra sugar to your dough if you want to see what a little extra enzymatic activity will do. Dry malt extract is also available for about $4 US per pound. DME has both maltose and enzymes, but you can buy those things separately, and know exactly how much of each you're using, if you want to go that route. If you have a homebrew shop near you, just drop by and ask for these things.  Or order them online. Just a thought.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: DoouBall on November 13, 2021, 10:20:39 PM
No, it's not the easiest thing to track down, and it's not particularly cheap, either. But what is easily obtainable and quite inexpensive is amylase enzyme extract. I just bought a small bottle to play around with for only about $1.50 US last week. You don't even have to add any extra sugar to your dough if you want to see what a little extra enzymatic activity will do. Dry malt extract is also available for about $4 US per pound. DME has both maltose and enzymes, but you can buy those things separately, and know exactly how much of each you're using, if you want to go that route. If you have a homebrew shop near you, just drop by and ask for these things.  Or order them online. Just a thought.

$11 shipped for this commonly used variety, available in 2 days from Amazon.

https://www.amazon.com/Hoosier-Hill-Farm-Diastatic-baking/dp/B008T9LX3C/ref=sr_1_4?keywords=diastatic+malt+powder&qid=1636859543&rdc=1&s=grocery&sr=1-4

It has a shelf life of a year and usually lasts me that long because it's not used in every pizza/bread recipe.

This is another good one.

https://www.amazon.com/Diastatic-Barley-Powder-Kosher-Certified/dp/B0721KWQFG/ref=sr_1_9?keywords=diastatic+malt+powder&qid=1636859543&s=grocery&sr=1-9

Both are litner 60.

Alex

Thanks, yes this does help clarify some things.

But I do have to comment, if you can't substitute malt with sugar or honey and he is publishing a book that will mainly be purchased by the home cook, why would you use such an ingredient that is so uncommon.

Yes his recipe's do work. I don't do the full 5 day CF anymore as he recommends for his master dough, I've since adjusted my yeast (and other things) and usually do a 72hr CF.

Counter rest thing makes sense, I think. Would I be correct in saying if you are only mixing a batch for one dough ball for a single 16" pizza then the counter rest isn't necessary as compared to mixing up a batch that will make 4 or more dough balls, in that case you would either counter rest or divide into balls right away then they can go into the fridge right away? I ask this because doesn't Tom L's recipes say to divide and ball immediately after mixing and put into the fridge right away.

Never heard of Fabrizio Casucci, are you talking about his book The Perfect Pizza Dough? Is that a book that you would recommend?

Thanks again for taking the time to explain a few things to me.

Yes, I really like Fabrizio's book a lot - it helps explain the dough maturation process very nicely.

Tom L's method is indeed to ball and put in the fridge right away. It's a good method for some American styles of pizza.  What I've learned from Italian pizzaiolos such as Fabrizio is that it's more common to rest both dough balls and bulk doughs at room temp before sticking them in the fridge. I think Tom L's method is more appropriate for New York Style and American thin crust style pizzas where the structure in the cornicione is irrelevant. If on the other hand, you want a really light and airy crust such a modern Neapolitan pizza, it really helps to make sure that fermentation gets a head start by not putting dough into a cold fridge immediately.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: RHawthorne on November 13, 2021, 11:40:25 PM
$11 shipped for this commonly used variety, available in 2 days from Amazon.

https://www.amazon.com/Hoosier-Hill-Farm-Diastatic-baking/dp/B008T9LX3C/ref=sr_1_4?keywords=diastatic+malt+powder&qid=1636859543&rdc=1&s=grocery&sr=1-4

It has a shelf life of a year and usually lasts me that long because it's not used in every pizza/bread recipe.

This is another good one.

https://www.amazon.com/Diastatic-Barley-Powder-Kosher-Certified/dp/B0721KWQFG/ref=sr_1_9?keywords=diastatic+malt+powder&qid=1636859543&s=grocery&sr=1-9

Both are litner 60.


Well okay, maybe not so hard to track down. But still, a one pound bag of malt extract for $4 and one small bottle of amylaze enzyme extract for $1.50 comes out to half the price of the first one you showed, and you know exactly what you're getting, whereas the ingredients listed for that one are " Malted barley flour, dextrose, flour, wheat ingredients". I don't even see any sort of enzyme listed there at all, so who knows exactly what you're really getting? I mean, I'd like to give them the benefit of the doubt and assume that they somehow  ??? neglected to list enzymes in the ingredients, but still...you know what I mean?
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: DoouBall on November 13, 2021, 11:51:24 PM
Well okay, maybe not so hard to track down. But still, a one pound bag of malt extract for $4 and one small bottle of amylaze enzyme extract for $1.50 comes out to half the price of the first one you showed, and you know exactly what you're getting, whereas the ingredients listed for that one are " Malted barley flour, dextrose, flour, wheat ingredients". I don't even see any sort of enzyme listed there at all, so who knows exactly what you're really getting? I mean, I'd like to give them the benefit of the doubt and assume that they somehow  ??? neglected to list enzymes in the ingredients, but still...you know what I mean?

The ingredient "malted barley flour" is the malt, and contains the enzymes within. "Malted barley is the main source of the diastase or diastatic power (DP) enzymes that hydrolyse starch. The DP enzymes comprise the combined activity of a-amylase, ,B-amylase, a-glucosidase and limit dextrinase whose concerted action hydrolyse the a-(1,4) and a-(1,6) glucosyllinkages in starch" Source: https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007%2F978-3-642-01279-2_6

Anyway, if you want to save a couple of bucks and get something locally, the amylase extract might work as well - you do you!

I did buy some very cheap nondiastatic malt from a local homebrew store. I think these stores also sell the diastatic variety too.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: RHawthorne on November 14, 2021, 12:37:59 AM
The ingredient "malted barley flour" is the malt, and contains the enzymes within. "Malted barley is the main source of the diastase or diastatic power (DP) enzymes that hydrolyse starch. The DP enzymes comprise the combined activity of a-amylase, ,B-amylase, a-glucosidase and limit dextrinase whose concerted action hydrolyse the a-(1,4) and a-(1,6) glucosyllinkages in starch" Source: https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007%2F978-3-642-01279-2_6

Anyway, if you want to save a couple of bucks and get something locally, the amylase extract might work as well - you do you!

I did buy some very cheap nondiastatic malt from a local homebrew store. I think these stores also sell the diastatic variety too.
I see. Never mind. I'm confusing malt extract and malted barley flour again. That makes sense.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: kori on November 14, 2021, 02:05:04 PM
Quite possibly, but no matter what, even if a person puts out free information, there will be people who want to deride and dismiss that person, and attempt all manner of character assassination...quite often for the sole reason that the person or persons doing it simply doesn't have the drive to put out any kind of body of work themselves that represents their body of knowledge. I think it takes some kind of courage (or something; maybe not courage per se, but some kind of inner drive) to put something out there and say "this is what I've learned". It doesn't take any such drive to %$# all over somebody else's work. And it doesn't produce any worthwhile results, either.
 But yeah, $400 is a hell of a lot of money to pay for any book, and it's definitely fair to expect a good deal of useful information for such a purchase. And I think that if I were to attempt to sell such a book, I would at least sell the thing in installments of some sort, not all in one lump sum. That way, people could sample it in small bites and decide if seems worth the cost. And if the book was a total crock of %$#, anybody who bought it would have a good reason to be unhappy. But I have a very hard time believing that anyone would spend years of their life putting out such a useless body of work. That's just not how the con game works.
 Anyway, I won't be buying the book, but I won't dismiss any part of it out of hand before I've even given it a fair shake.

I wonder how sales are doing, I see the book is already on special, $86 off on Amazon.ca (as well as another company called Indigo/chapters) and $42.50 off on Amazon.com. That should tell ya something.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Bill/SFNM on November 14, 2021, 02:18:29 PM
I wonder how sales are doing, I see the book is already on special, $86 off on Amazon.ca (as well as another company called Indigo/chapters) and $42.50 off on Amazon.com. That should tell ya something.

Amazon US price hasn't changed since release day. Was and still is $382.50.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: kori on November 14, 2021, 02:32:41 PM
$11 shipped for this commonly used variety, available in 2 days from Amazon.

https://www.amazon.com/Hoosier-Hill-Farm-Diastatic-baking/dp/B008T9LX3C/ref=sr_1_4?keywords=diastatic+malt+powder&qid=1636859543&rdc=1&s=grocery&sr=1-4

It has a shelf life of a year and usually lasts me that long because it's not used in every pizza/bread recipe.

This is another good one.

https://www.amazon.com/Diastatic-Barley-Powder-Kosher-Certified/dp/B0721KWQFG/ref=sr_1_9?keywords=diastatic+malt+powder&qid=1636859543&s=grocery&sr=1-9

Both are litner 60.

Yes, I really like Fabrizio's book a lot - it helps explain the dough maturation process very nicely.

Tom L's method is indeed to ball and put in the fridge right away. It's a good method for some American styles of pizza.  What I've learned from Italian pizzaiolos such as Fabrizio is that it's more common to rest both dough balls and bulk doughs at room temp before sticking them in the fridge. I think Tom L's method is more appropriate for New York Style and American thin crust style pizzas where the structure in the cornicione is irrelevant. If on the other hand, you want a really light and airy crust such a modern Neapolitan pizza, it really helps to make sure that fermentation gets a head start by not putting dough into a cold fridge immediately.

let me show you what we deal with in buying products in Canada.

https://www.amazon.ca/Hoosier-Hill-Farm-Fashioned-Diastatic/dp/B008T9LX3C/ref=sr_1_3?keywords=hoosier+hill+farm+dry+malt&qid=1636917125&sr=8-3

and that price has gone down, as you can see it is now considered "amazon's choice", that's new, just a few weeks ago that same product was over $50 and has been for a quite a while.

here's another good one

https://www.amazon.ca/DoughMate-ADTKIT-148-Artisan-Dough-Tray/dp/B00449IEM4/ref=sr_1_1?crid=1FF6BPJ6R30VB&keywords=doughmate+artisan+dough+tray+kit&qid=1636917373&sprefix=doughmate%2Caps%2C183&sr=8-1

like seriously, it's $45 (as low as $38.50) in the US, and that price is down a bit right now as well, it's been as high as $133

One thing I've learnt about amazon.ca, if they have a product available that can not be found at your regular mass merchandisers like Wal-mart, Home Depot, Canadian tire...their pricing is just down right ignorant, I could show so many examples.

I think I'll look into ordering that book as well, I'd like to learn more about that, I know the info is here on the forum but for me, in a book is easier and simpler to read through.

Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: kori on November 14, 2021, 02:46:43 PM
Amazon US price hasn't changed since release day. Was and still is $382.50.

Sorry my bad.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: DoouBall on November 15, 2021, 07:14:31 PM
let me show you what we deal with in buying products in Canada.

https://www.amazon.ca/Hoosier-Hill-Farm-Fashioned-Diastatic/dp/B008T9LX3C/ref=sr_1_3?keywords=hoosier+hill+farm+dry+malt&qid=1636917125&sr=8-3

and that price has gone down, as you can see it is now considered "amazon's choice", that's new, just a few weeks ago that same product was over $50 and has been for a quite a while.

here's another good one

https://www.amazon.ca/DoughMate-ADTKIT-148-Artisan-Dough-Tray/dp/B00449IEM4/ref=sr_1_1?crid=1FF6BPJ6R30VB&keywords=doughmate+artisan+dough+tray+kit&qid=1636917373&sprefix=doughmate%2Caps%2C183&sr=8-1

like seriously, it's $45 (as low as $38.50) in the US, and that price is down a bit right now as well, it's been as high as $133

One thing I've learnt about amazon.ca, if they have a product available that can not be found at your regular mass merchandisers like Wal-mart, Home Depot, Canadian tire...their pricing is just down right ignorant, I could show so many examples.

I think I'll look into ordering that book as well, I'd like to learn more about that, I know the info is here on the forum but for me, in a book is easier and simpler to read through.

Wow, that's just crazy! I get what you've been saying now.

To be honest, diastatic malt is an optional ingredient. If it costs this much I wouldn't use it either. Diastatic malt is primarily beneficial for getting your pizza crust to brown if you're cooking in a home oven at lower temps or if you're doing very long ferments. But if it's this crazy expensive, I would just use malted flour, ferment no longer than 48 hours and maybe just add 0.5% sugar or honey. That will help with browning too - even if they're not perfect malt substitutes. In most cases, neither diastatic malt, sugar or honey is really necessary to make a great pizza.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Pizza_Not_War on November 15, 2021, 07:24:25 PM
let me show you what we deal with in buying products in Canada.

https://www.amazon.ca/Hoosier-Hill-Farm-Fashioned-Diastatic/dp/B008T9LX3C/ref=sr_1_3?keywords=hoosier+hill+farm+dry+malt&qid=1636917125&sr=8-3

and that price has gone down, as you can see it is now considered "amazon's choice", that's new, just a few weeks ago that same product was over $50 and has been for a quite a while.

here's another good one

https://www.amazon.ca/DoughMate-ADTKIT-148-Artisan-Dough-Tray/dp/B00449IEM4/ref=sr_1_1?crid=1FF6BPJ6R30VB&keywords=doughmate+artisan+dough+tray+kit&qid=1636917373&sprefix=doughmate%2Caps%2C183&sr=8-1

like seriously, it's $45 (as low as $38.50) in the US, and that price is down a bit right now as well, it's been as high as $133

One thing I've learnt about amazon.ca, if they have a product available that can not be found at your regular mass merchandisers like Wal-mart, Home Depot, Canadian tire...their pricing is just down right ignorant, I could show so many examples.

I think I'll look into ordering that book as well, I'd like to learn more about that, I know the info is here on the forum but for me, in a book is easier and simpler to read through.
Have you checked beer brewing supply stores? Pure 100% diastatic malt is available in a well stocked shop. Briess as well as some other companies sell it. Breadtopia here in the USA just repacks it as diastatic malt in smaller quantities. Has a high 200 or so L value.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: RHawthorne on November 15, 2021, 09:55:26 PM
Have you checked beer brewing supply stores? Pure 100% diastatic malt is available in a well stocked shop. Briess as well as some other companies sell it. Breadtopia here in the USA just repacks it as diastatic malt in smaller quantities. Has a high 200 or so L value.
Really? The stuff they sell thatís just labeled ďmalt extractĒ is not diastatiic unless it specifically says so. Thereís no use for it in home brewing.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: kori on November 17, 2021, 02:27:15 PM
Wow, that's just crazy! I get what you've been saying now.

To be honest, diastatic malt is an optional ingredient. If it costs this much I wouldn't use it either. Diastatic malt is primarily beneficial for getting your pizza crust to brown if you're cooking in a home oven at lower temps or if you're doing very long ferments. But if it's this crazy expensive, I would just use malted flour, ferment no longer than 48 hours and maybe just add 0.5% sugar or honey. That will help with browning too - even if they're not perfect malt substitutes. In most cases, neither diastatic malt, sugar or honey is really necessary to make a great pizza.

Yes definetly optional, as I've chosen the option not to use it so far lol. My main recipe I use is 1.25% sugar, 72hr cf, yeast I've been experimenting and recording results for the last couple of months (1-2 18" pies a week) but I'm in the range of 0.2-0.35% ady. I'm kinda surprised, I've been using Ardent Mills Pizza Flour for quite a while which I really like, I've never actually looked at the ingredients until last night and there are no words barley malt or amylase. I would have thought being pizza flour it would contain malt, maybe designed for higher temps, it's not a retail product.

May I ask why you say to cf no longer then 48hrs.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: kori on November 17, 2021, 02:39:03 PM
Have you checked beer brewing supply stores? Pure 100% diastatic malt is available in a well stocked shop. Briess as well as some other companies sell it. Breadtopia here in the USA just repacks it as diastatic malt in smaller quantities. Has a high 200 or so L value.

I have called 3 local home brew supply stores and checked on line as well, my findings were the same as what Randy is saying, they dont seem to carry diastatic.

Funny you mentioned Breadtopia cause I'm ordering something from them and there's no extra shipping cost to add on 2 8oz bags of DM @ $4.95ea, so I guess I'll be getting some to play with!
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: RHawthorne on November 17, 2021, 09:56:05 PM
I have called 3 local home brew supply stores and checked on line as well, my findings were the same as what Randy is saying, they dont seem to carry diastatic.

Funny you mentioned Breadtopia cause I'm ordering something from them and there's no extra shipping cost to add on 2 8oz bags of DM @ $4.95ea, so I guess I'll be getting some to play with!
Yeah, diastatic malt extract is not used in homebrewing. Homebrewers who do extract brewing use malt extract specifically because they don't (or can't due to a vareity of reasons) do all-grain brewing. In the process of making malt extract, the enzymes present in the barley (or wheat) grains are exhausted, and are no longer in a usable state in the finished malt extract, and don't need to be. Diastatic malt extract has had enzymes added back in. Homebrewers who do extract (or partial mash) brewing either use enough malted grains to get the desired enzymatic activity going to get the necessary malt sugars, and may use a little amylase extract added straight to the brewing water if they feel it's needed. But the diastatic variety simply has no place in the process; or at least it would be a really expensive way to do it, and not really necessary if done properly.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Robenco15 on November 20, 2021, 09:37:13 AM
So Iíve had Mod Pizza since KA and Letters sent it out a month or so ago.

Iíve enjoyed it a ton. The dough recipes have all produced some pretty fantastic results. I skimmed the previous posts for the most part here and obviously some have their issues with Nathan, but strictly speaking about the books, Iím incredibly happy with them and have been learning a lot, even after making strictly Neapolitan pizzas for the past 2 years. As an avid home cook, they are perfect for me. The Artisan dough may be my favorite of everything Iíve done. Made my first 16Ē NY pizza using their dough too and it couldnít have been easier or more enjoyable. Iíll post some pictures of some pizzas Iíve made, all made in an Ooni Koda 16.

If thereís one takeaway on pizza I have between here and the eGullet forum, pizza is a topic people have A LOT of opinions on. I know this post sounds like a paid advertisement or something, itís obviously not. I just wanted to share my opinions on the books. I enjoyed Mod Pizza so much Iím going to get Mod Bread for xmas.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Bill/SFNM on November 20, 2021, 09:56:24 AM
I enjoyed Mod Pizza so much Iím going to get Mod Bread for xmas.

IMO, there is a vast difference between the quality of the bread books and the pizza books in almost every way. I'll sell you my bread books, but I can't recommend them. PM me if you're interested.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Robenco15 on November 20, 2021, 10:52:52 AM
IMO, there is a vast difference between the quality of the bread books and the pizza books in almost every way. I'll sell you my bread books, but I can't recommend them. PM me if you're interested.

Could you elaborate on these vast differences?
Title: Modernist Pizza
Post by: DoouBall on November 20, 2021, 11:20:59 AM
May I ask why you say to cf no longer then 48hrs.

Main reason is that the sugars tend to get consumed by the yeasts and this results in a pale(r) corncicione without excellent browning. For Neapolitan style pizza it can result in a very pale crust with lots of black spots, if youíre into that kind of thing. I dinít care for the pale crust + black spots thing, but itís a personal preference.

Robenco15, those are some excellent looking pizzas. Glad youíre enjoying the books. I might check them out too if one of my local libraries ever get a copy.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: RHawthorne on November 20, 2021, 11:30:14 AM
So Iíve had Mod Pizza since KA and Letters sent it out a month or so ago.

Iíve enjoyed it a ton. The dough recipes have all produced some pretty fantastic results. I skimmed the previous posts for the most part here and obviously some have their issues with Nathan, but strictly speaking about the books, Iím incredibly happy with them and have been learning a lot, even after making strictly Neapolitan pizzas for the past 2 years. As an avid home cook, they are perfect for me. The Artisan dough may be my favorite of everything Iíve done. Made my first 16Ē NY pizza using their dough too and it couldnít have been easier or more enjoyable. Iíll post some pictures of some pizzas Iíve made.

If thereís one takeaway on pizza I have between here and the eGullet forum, pizza is a topic people have A LOT of opinions on. I know this post sounds like a paid advertisement or something, itís obviously not. I just wanted to share my opinions on the books. I enjoyed Mod Pizza so much Iím going to get Mod Bread for xmas.
Very interesting effect with the rims on the pizzas in the top two photos. How are you getting those clear lines, with the outer areas darkier and crispier, and the inner areas softer? Are you scoring the rims or something? I've never seen anything quite like that.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Robenco15 on November 20, 2021, 11:41:36 AM
Very interesting effect with the rims on the pizzas in the top two photos. How are you getting those clear lines, with the outer areas darkier and crispier, and the inner areas softer? Are you scoring the rims or something? I've never seen anything quite like that.

So I believe thatís just me taking the sauce closer to the edge. When the crust puffs up, it brings some sauce with it, thereby keeping it wet/moist in the oven on the inside rim and then the outer crisps up.

All of those were made with an Ooni Koda 16 btw. Should have said that I guess. Those Neapolitans were made with Caputo Nuvola.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Bill/SFNM on November 20, 2021, 11:46:33 AM
Could you elaborate on these vast differences?

This could be a long one: but let me start out with some brief points:

1. Editing
The pizza book is concise and well-organized, while the bread one is repetitive and disorganized as if the goal was to pad the content to reach the desired page count. Minor topics are covered in great detail, while important ones (like sourdough) are glossed over in the bread book

2. Photos
The photos in the pizza book are breathtaking; many of the photos in the bread book are boring and add little, as if they are padding the page count.

3. Content
Bread has been an integral part of our culture since it was discovered that soaked, fermented grains could be cooked to sustain us and contribute to our success as a species. Tens of thousands of years have gone into developing the ingredients, grain varieties, growing, harvesting, milling technologies, baking, packaging, distribution .....etc. There is relatively new under the sun when it comes to baking bread. Much of the content in the bread book has been extensively researched elsewhere, and much of it is well-known or of trivial importance to bread enthusiasts. There are precious few "modernist" techniques in the book that result in a better outcome.

I'm still absorbing the content of the pizza book. Even though the authors are the same, the topic is very different (please shoot me now if this devolves into a "pizza is not bread" debate.) with countless ideas for improving my pizzas. Today is "toppings" day: I'm making Genovese Pizza inspired by Pietro Parisi (il Cuoco Contadino) with French onion sauce and braised short ribs. Also making a pressure-caramelized mushroom sauce for a different pizza. This is great fun! Maybe I'll have time to post photos.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: RHawthorne on November 20, 2021, 11:56:27 AM
So I believe thatís just me taking the sauce closer to the edge. When the crust puffs up, it brings some sauce with it, thereby keeping it wet/moist in the oven on the inside rim and then the outer crisps up.

All of those were made with an Ooni Koda 16 btw. Should have said that I guess. Those Neapolitans were made with Caputo Nuvola.
I'll be baking some pizzas in my Ooni Pro, with dough made with 65% Nuvola/30% durum/5% rye, in less than an hour. I like the Nuvola better than any "00" type of flour I've ever used. That's interesting about the rim. Those lines look so clean.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Robenco15 on November 20, 2021, 12:33:10 PM
This could be a long one: but let me start out with some brief points:

1. Editing
The pizza book is concise and well-organized, while the bread one is repetitive and disorganized as if the goal was to pad the content to reach the desired page count. Minor topics are covered in great detail, while important ones (like sourdough) are glossed over in the bread book

2. Photos
The photos in the pizza book are breathtaking; many of the photos in the bread book are boring and add little, as if they are padding the page count.

3. Content
Bread has been an integral part of our culture since it was discovered that soaked, fermented grains could be cooked to sustain us and contribute to our success as a species. Tens of thousands of years have gone into developing the ingredients, grain varieties, growing, harvesting, milling technologies, baking, packaging, distribution .....etc. There is relatively new under the sun when it comes to baking bread. Much of the content in the bread book has been extensively researched elsewhere, and much of it is well-known or of trivial importance to bread enthusiasts. There are precious few "modernist" techniques in the book that result in a better outcome.

I'm still absorbing the content of the pizza book. Even though the authors are the same, the topic is very different (please shoot me now if this devolves into a "pizza is not bread" debate.) with countless ideas for improving my pizzas. Today is "toppings" day: I'm making Genovese Pizza inspired by Pietro Parisi (il Cuoco Contadino) with French onion sauce and braised short ribs. Also making a pressure-caramelized mushroom sauce for a different pizza. This is great fun! Maybe I'll have time to post photos.

Thanks so much! I think Iím definitely going to get Mod Bread even with everything youíve said. Appreciate the reply!

And please post pictures or your pizzas! They sound INCREDIBLE!
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Bill/SFNM on November 20, 2021, 07:40:51 PM
Here is a quick snap of the Parisi Genovese (sorry for the shallow depth of focus): French onion sauce, braised brisket point (recipe called for short rib, but I had a nice brisket point in the freezer.) Beef cooked sous vide because braising at high-altitude is problematic. The crust was from a sourdough prepared by a friend. The combination was perfect. Other similar pizzas which were topped with cheese, mushroom sauce, etc. weren't as good as this simple pizza with just two toppings.  The pressure caramelized mushroom sauce was silky and delicious, but really didn't belong in a 900F oven. I'm thinking of using the leftovers for a savory crepe filling. The French onion sauce is a winner!
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: RHawthorne on November 20, 2021, 11:37:06 PM
Here is a quick snap of the Parisi Genovese (sorry for the shallow depth of focus): French onion sauce, braised brisket point (recipe called for short rib, but I had a nice brisket point in the freezer.) Beef cooked sous vide because braising at high-altitude is problematic. The crust was from a sourdough prepared by a friend. The combination was perfect. Other similar pizzas which were topped with cheese, mushroom sauce, etc. weren't as good as this simple pizza with just two toppings.  The pressure caramelized mushroom sauce was silky and delicious, but really didn't belong in a 900F oven. I'm thinking of using the leftovers for a savory crepe filling. The French onion sauce is a winner!
By any chance, were there any ideas from the Modernist Pizza book that were incorporated into this bake?
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Bill/SFNM on November 20, 2021, 11:46:03 PM
By any chance, were there any ideas from the Modernist Pizza book that were incorporated into this bake?
Of course; that is why I posted here. The entire Genovese pizza recipe from Parisi is in the book. The book calls for its "artisan dough", but I used the excellent sourdough a friend brought over. The recipes for the French onion sauce and the braised short ribs that are part of the Genovese pizza are from the book. Also the pressure-caramelized mushroom sauce which was used in another pizza is from the book. I didn't include a photo of it because I really didn't think it was something I want to use again in Neapolitan-style pizza. Maybe on a pan pizza or a savory crepe. 
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: RHawthorne on November 20, 2021, 11:54:00 PM
Of course; that is why I posted here. The entire Genovese pizza recipe from Parisi is in the book. The book calls for its "artisan dough", but I used the excellent sourdough a friend brought over. The recipes for the French onion sauce and the braised short ribs that are part of the Genovese pizza are from the book. Also the pressure-caramelized mushroom sauce which was used in another pizza is from the book. I didn't include a photo of it because I really didn't think it was something I want to use again in Neapolitan-style pizza. Maybe on a pan pizza or a savory crepe.
Now I feel like an idiot. For some reason, I was thinking I was looking at the 'post a pic of your pie' thread. Anyway, I've had the idea for a long time to do a French onion sauced pizza and incorporate some beef bone marrow somehow. I've never heard of anybody using beef bone marrow in a pizza, and I think it could work well, but maybe not with the French onion sauce. Those two ingredients together might be a bit too much. I also can see how either of those elements might work best without any kind of cheese, or maybe just a very light topping. I was thinking that the French onion sauce might be well complimented with some sort of bread crumb topping, probably post-bake. Your post has got me revisiting and reformulating these ideas.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Bill/SFNM on November 20, 2021, 11:57:45 PM
Now I feel like an idiot. For some reason, I was thinking I was looking at the 'post a pic of your pie' thread. Anyway, I've had the idea for a long time to do a French onion sauced pizza and incorporate some beef bone marrow somehow. I've never heard of anybody using beef bone marrow in a pizza, and I think it could work well, but maybe not with the French onion sauce. Those two ingredients together might be a bit too much. I also can see how either of those elements might work best without any kind of cheese, or maybe just a very light topping. I was thinking that the French onion sauce might be well complimented with some sort of bread crumb topping, probably post-bake. Your post has got me revisiting and reformulating these ideas.

Somewhere on some forum in the distant past I posted about a pizza with bordelaise sauce. I used to have easy access to marrow without the bone. Maybe something I should revisit, too.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: RHawthorne on November 21, 2021, 12:11:02 AM
Somewhere on some forum in the distant past I posted about a pizza with bordelaise sauce. I used to have easy access to marrow without the bone. Maybe something I should revisit, too.
I've never actually sourced bone marrow from anywhere, or even had it. It's just something that sounds good to me, and I think I've got at least some idea of what it should taste like. I would imagine any butcher shop should be able to provide at least the bones, but marrow without the bone? I don't know.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: ptix on November 21, 2021, 03:24:15 PM
As I understand it, there is a hardcover recipe book and a duplicate spiral softcover version - I would be interested in buying the spiral from someone here who ordered the set. 
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Robenco15 on November 21, 2021, 04:46:25 PM
As I understand it, there is a hardcover recipe book and a duplicate spiral softcover version - I would be interested in buying the spiral from someone here who ordered the set.

The Kitchen Manual is what youíre looking for. Check Ebay and Amazon. I was able to get the Modernist Cuisine Kitchen Manual last year. Would be surprised if the pizza showed uo so soon. Canít even find Mod Bread right now.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: hotsawce on November 22, 2021, 07:36:47 PM
Looks like more bread than pizza, but to each his own.

Very interesting effect with the rims on the pizzas in the top two photos. How are you getting those clear lines, with the outer areas darkier and crispier, and the inner areas softer? Are you scoring the rims or something? I've never seen anything quite like that.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Bengoshi on December 16, 2021, 01:37:13 AM
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kLUvQ7SRSgw

This is how I know. You paid $400 for this. A lot of posturing (and inaccurate information) for what is ultimately a really underwhelming looking pie. What's "neapoilitan" about this?

There's no "personal animosity" here just speaking factsÖ

So much negativity - pizza should be positive.  Iím fortunate I have lots of excellent books on pizza, pasta, etc. my passions, Pizza Bible, Mastering, etc.  Modernist may not be perfect, nor Mhyrvold, but Iím frankly thrilled to have a Microsoft billionaire sink his fortune into investigating my hobby. Book 1 is worth it alone for an amazing in depth history of Apizza and of regional and national variations.  Thereís a lot of interesting and useful info. $400 is a lot, but life is short, this is what I love, and luckily I can afford to have this around to expand my collection. Itís easy to be hyper-critical - find whatís good, then offer useful feedback.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: hotsawce on December 21, 2021, 01:45:53 AM
Toxic positivity is disgusting. I've offered my opinion and have no desire to engage further.

So much negativity - pizza should be positive.  Iím fortunate I have lots of excellent books on pizza, pasta, etc. my passions, Pizza Bible, Mastering, etc.  Modernist may not be perfect, nor Mhyrvold, but Iím frankly thrilled to have a Microsoft billionaire sink his fortune into investigating my hobby. Book 1 is worth it alone for an amazing in depth history of Apizza and of regional and national variations.  Thereís a lot of interesting and useful info. $400 is a lot, but life is short, this is what I love, and luckily I can afford to have this around to expand my collection. Itís easy to be hyper-critical - find whatís good, then offer useful feedback.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Bengoshi on January 05, 2022, 02:43:40 PM
Toxic positivity is disgusting. I've offered my opinion and have no desire to engage further.
Cool, then I get the last word. As an Italian citizen, with origins in Campania, Pizza is pretty much in my blood. Being Italian, and a lawyer, there's definitely a time to spar. But being a grump over Pizza? That I don't get. Pizza Ť delizioso e molto interessante, con qualcosa per tutti, non Ť vero? Basta cosi!
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: bifi85 on January 19, 2022, 03:31:52 PM
Maybe it is a bit out of place, but one of the Modernist Cuisine Team created a new revolutionary cooking thermometer (https://combustion.inc/?kolid=1HS5GA). The preorder starts at the end of this (January) month and people get 30% of the price, if they sign the newsletter before release. It looks very interesting and promising.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: 02ebz06 on January 19, 2022, 03:54:50 PM
Didn't see price anywhere.  I wouldn't pre-order without knowing the price first.
Lots of wireless thermometers out there.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Heikjo on January 19, 2022, 04:12:36 PM
You donít pre-order by signing up for 30% off, you get a chance to pre-order with 30% off later in January. Thatís how I read it.

Will probably be pricey. They even say so themselves:

Quote
Because we want you to have the best cooking experience possible, weíre releasing the Predictive Thermometer & Timer together. They were designedófrom the startóto work as a team. No messiní around. Right out of the box. That makes the price look a little higher than some. But the results will be worth it.

If it works as they say it does, itís probably a nice gadget to have.
Title: Re: Modernist Pizza
Post by: Bill/SFNM on January 19, 2022, 04:55:03 PM
Maybe it is a bit out of place, but one of the Modernist Cuisine Team created a new revolutionary cooking thermometer (https://combustion.inc/?kolid=1HS5GA). The preorder starts at the end of this (January) month and people get 30% of the price, if they sign the newsletter before release. It looks very interesting and promising.

You should disclose that people signing up using your link above earn you an additional discount.