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Author Topic: 00 vs 0 Flour  (Read 407 times)

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Offline ambiveillance

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00 vs 0 Flour
« on: May 16, 2021, 07:24:18 PM »
Hi all,

I was wondering if someone could explain the differences between using 00 vs 0 flour in a typical home oven. I've seen in some posts that using 00 flour in a home oven is pointless, but I've also seen plenty of recipes that say 00 flour is best for pizza. Can anyone please enlighten me?

Thanks!

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: 00 vs 0 Flour
« Reply #1 on: May 16, 2021, 07:39:15 PM »
Hi all,

I was wondering if someone could explain the differences between using 00 vs 0 flour in a typical home oven. I've seen in some posts that using 00 flour in a home oven is pointless, but I've also seen plenty of recipes that say 00 flour is best for pizza. Can anyone please enlighten me?

Thanks!
ambiveillance.

For definitions of Italian flour types see http://www.cooksinfo.com/italian-flours; see, also, this article in Italian which you might want to translate into English using Google Translate: https://bressanini-lescienze.blogautore.espresso.repubblica.it/2009/01/28/la-forza-della-farina/

For Italian regulation on wheat flours, see Reply 8 at https://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=61800.msg615616#msg615616 ; see, also, Reply 10 at https://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=62327.msg618980#msg618980

Peter

Online Pizza_Not_War

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Re: 00 vs 0 Flour
« Reply #2 on: May 16, 2021, 11:41:05 PM »
I use 00 in my oven with a baking steel. I add a bit of diastatic malt for the browning and it works great.

Offline TXCraig1

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Re: 00 vs 0 Flour
« Reply #3 on: May 17, 2021, 09:51:30 AM »
Just get some decent quality malted* AP flour or bread flour, and you'll be fine. Compared to basic pizza making skills and a decent stone or steel, the choice of flour hardly matters at all. You definitely don't need '00' or '0' flour, and likely will not make your best pizza in a home oven with either.

* Look for malted barley flour or "enzymes" listed on the ingredient statement.
"We make great pizza, with sourdough when we can, baker's yeast when we must, but always great pizza."  
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Online nickyr

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Re: 00 vs 0 Flour
« Reply #4 on: May 18, 2021, 01:27:50 AM »
What style of pizza do you want to make?

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Offline ambiveillance

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Re: 00 vs 0 Flour
« Reply #5 on: May 18, 2021, 06:25:54 PM »
I'm hoping to improve my NY style. I've seen some say that 00 flour is pointless for a home oven and I'm just curious as to why that might be the case.

Offline billg

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Re: 00 vs 0 Flour
« Reply #6 on: May 18, 2021, 08:09:52 PM »
I'm hoping to improve my NY style. I've seen some say that 00 flour is pointless for a home oven and I'm just curious as to why that might be the case.

It's not pointless at all.  It normally won't brown on its own at such low temperatures.  Just add some sugar and low diastic malt powder to your dough formula and you'll be good to go.  Approximately 2-3% sugar and .5-1% LDMP.

Offline TXCraig1

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Re: 00 vs 0 Flour
« Reply #7 on: May 18, 2021, 08:54:07 PM »
Or simply use bread flour and make better pizza. People saying that '00' will magically make you pizza better don't know what they are talking about.
"We make great pizza, with sourdough when we can, baker's yeast when we must, but always great pizza."  
Craig's Neapolitan Garage

Online nickyr

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Re: 00 vs 0 Flour
« Reply #8 on: May 18, 2021, 10:52:12 PM »
I'm hoping to improve my NY style. I've seen some say that 00 flour is pointless for a home oven and I'm just curious as to why that might be the case.
For NY style, what you probably want is a high protein flour. 14% protein is probably the most common. The closest you can buy in most grocery stores is King Arthur Bread Flour, which is 12.7% protein. You can order High Gluten flour from King Arthur online. Itís 14%, but a bit pricey. It does really make a noticeable difference though. If you can get access to a restaurant supply store (Restaurant Depot has been open to the public during the pandemic), you could buy a massive bag of something for cheap. You can also add vital wheat gluten to bread flour to get the protein up.

People say 00 doesnít brown as well in low temperature home ovens. I havenít done enough testing myself to confirm that, but I can definitely confirm that using 14% protein flours completely revolutionized my NY style pizzas. 00 is usually used for high temperature neopolitans.

Online nickyr

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Re: 00 vs 0 Flour
« Reply #9 on: May 18, 2021, 10:56:15 PM »
The best way to find out would be to buy some of each type of flour youíre curious about, make a few pizzas, and see how they compare. Your tastes might be different from other peopleís :-)

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Offline ambiveillance

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Re: 00 vs 0 Flour
« Reply #10 on: May 19, 2021, 08:58:10 AM »
For NY style, what you probably want is a high protein flour. 14% protein is probably the most common. The closest you can buy in most grocery stores is King Arthur Bread Flour, which is 12.7% protein. You can order High Gluten flour from King Arthur online. Itís 14%, but a bit pricey. It does really make a noticeable difference though. If you can get access to a restaurant supply store (Restaurant Depot has been open to the public during the pandemic), you could buy a massive bag of something for cheap. You can also add vital wheat gluten to bread flour to get the protein up.

People say 00 doesnít brown as well in low temperature home ovens. I havenít done enough testing myself to confirm that, but I can definitely confirm that using 14% protein flours completely revolutionized my NY style pizzas. 00 is usually used for high temperature neopolitans.

Thanks for this. Am in the UK and cannot get King Arthur Flour here but will look for substitutes in the 12-14% range.

Offline ambiveillance

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Re: 00 vs 0 Flour
« Reply #11 on: May 19, 2021, 08:59:47 AM »
It's not pointless at all.  It normally won't brown on its own at such low temperatures.  Just add some sugar and low diastic malt powder to your dough formula and you'll be good to go.  Approximately 2-3% sugar and .5-1% LDMP.

Thanks! I'll give that a shot this week! So the DMP and sugar together basically help with browning the crust in low temp ovens? I assume then if you had a high temp one you don't need to add these ingredients?

Offline Rolls

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Re: 00 vs 0 Flour
« Reply #12 on: May 19, 2021, 09:48:28 AM »
I was wondering if someone could explain the differences between using 00 vs 0 flour in a typical home oven. I've seen in some posts that using 00 flour in a home oven is pointless, but I've also seen plenty of recipes that say 00 flour is best for pizza. Can anyone please enlighten me?

Quote from: ambiveillance
I'm hoping to improve my NY style. I've seen some say that 00 flour is pointless for a home oven and I'm just curious as to why that might be the case

The difference between 00 and 0 flours has to do with their respective ash content and minimum protein content as mandated by Italian law, as cited in the links provided by Peter.  For all intents and purposes, 00 flour is highly refined, meaning that the germ and bran components are mostly sifted out.  Tipo 0 flour and Tipo 1, 2 etc. have progressively more bran in their composition which is reflected in their higher "ash content".

You'll often hear in this forum that 00 flours are "pointless in a home oven" because these flours contain no malt, and pizza dough made with them will not brown properly in an oven that only reaches about 550F.  This may be true for some 00 flours, such as Caputo Pizzeria, which is formulated for higher temp Neapolitan ovens, but it certainly doesn't apply to 00 flours in general.  If 00 flours were pointless in a home oven, then why are all the supermarket shelves in Italy lined with 1 kg bags of 00 flours intended for household use?  If 00 flours were pointless in a home oven, then how are the forum members on Italian pizza forums producing pizza that looks at least as good as the pictures you see here? 

Malt is indeed sometimes added to Italian flours in order to correct what is known as the "Falling Number", which is a measure of the enzymatic activity of a flour sample when tested at the lab.  It is important for a brand of flour to perform consistently from one lot to the next, so the miller needs to make such adjustments.  Just as the Italian government regulates flour classifications, it does the exact same thing regarding the use of malt.  If malt were never added to Italian flours, then why would such laws even exist?

Flour selection is important, but I agree it is only one part of the puzzle in learning to make great pizza.


Rolls
« Last Edit: May 19, 2021, 07:04:34 PM by Rolls »
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Offline TXCraig1

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Re: 00 vs 0 Flour
« Reply #13 on: May 19, 2021, 11:34:17 AM »
I don't disagree with anything in Rolls' post above, however I'd comment (IMO) that "pointless" is not the right word. "Counterproductive" is the word that I think should be used for folks in the US or other places where shelves are not lined with '00' flour for household use. It's counterproductive to spend time seeking out '00' flour and adding malt/sugar to correct browning deficiencies. For home oven use, there is no reason to do it. There are plenty of AP and BF options that will perform as well, and likely, better.

As I see it, the really big problem with '00' recommendations for most people is that it misleads them into thinking that flour will somehow improve your pizza in and of itself. In most cases, it won't. What improves pizza is practice and experience. For that, there is no substitute.

In the dozen years I've been here, I don't think I've seen even a single example of someone buying '00' flour and it making their home oven pizza better. Not a single time - and I've seen many examples of doing so making pizza worse, folks getting discouraged, and never coming back, presumably having stopped trying to make great pizza.
« Last Edit: May 19, 2021, 04:44:15 PM by TXCraig1 »
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Offline Rolls

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Re: 00 vs 0 Flour
« Reply #14 on: May 19, 2021, 01:01:44 PM »
I agree that flour is no magic bullet when it comes to making pizza.  Buying an exotic flour and expecting to make great pizza is like buying Nike golf balls and expecting to play like Tiger Woods at his best.  It just ain't that simple.


Rolls
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Offline Pete-zza

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Re: 00 vs 0 Flour
« Reply #15 on: May 19, 2021, 02:19:08 PM »
I can sympathize with both Rolls and Craig, both of whom I hold in high esteem for their knowledge of pizza making and their many contributions to the forum. Their comments brought me back to my early days on the forum where I experimented with 00 flours in a home setting.

By way of background, I personally became aware of 00 flours mainly through the contributions that member pizzanapoletana (Marco Parente) made to this forum, principally for Neapolitan style pizzas. His posts led me to try that type of flour even though I did not have an oven that was most suitable for the classic Neapolitan style of pizza (I have a standard electric oven). But that did not stop me. I was too curious. But when I decided to try the 00 flour, I had difficulty even finding a source. Somehow, I learned about Orlando Foods in NJ that supposedly was an importer of the Caputo 00 flours. I was referred to Fred Mortati at Orlando at a time where I believe the only nonprofessional on the forum who used the Caputo 00 flour was Bill/SFNM, although there were a couple of members who were professionals who used that flour (Ron Molinaro at Il Pizzaiolo and Charlie Restivo at Naples 45 in NYC, both of whom offered to give me samples of their flours). About the only 00 flours that were available at that time at the retail level were the Bel Aria and Delverde 00 flours, and there was little information on those flours. The Caputo 00 flour was not available at the retail level at that time. I was referred by a seller of the Bell Aria flour to Fred since they couldn't answer any of my questions. Fred was very helpful in answering my questions about the 00 flours and he even sent me some samples.

The two places that spent my time on the forum playing around with 00 flours in order to learn as much as I could about those flours in a home setting were in the threads at:

https://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=1298.msg11672#msg11672, and

https://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=986.msg8806#msg8806

If someone scans those threads, both of which started in 2005, they will see what I and others (like member Friz who still visits the forum from time to time) produced in the way of dough recipes and the pizzas that resulted from those recipes in our home settings with ordinary home ovens. I had never had an authentic Neapolitan style pizza so I did not even know what to expect and whether I would even like my attempts to replicate the Neapolitan style. So, my only standard was whether I liked the pizza I made. And, by and large, I liked the pizzas I made but I am also sure my liking the pizzas also reflected the enormous amount of information I gained from making the pizzas. In the latter respect, it helped that Marco was active in both threads. I should also note that member Friz was also happy with his efforts as he so noted at Reply 25 at:

https://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=1298.msg11959#msg11959

And when I scanned the photos of the pizzas in the two threads today, apart from putting a smile on my face (and in a few cases, laughter), I was actually quite surprised and pleased with what I saw, even though the pizzas might not have been the best representations of the classic Neapolitan style. I also noticed that the two threads combined have over 284,000 page views, so it looks like others had, and may still have, an interest in the use of 00 flours in a home setting.

I have set forth the above as a way of encouraging our members to try different things out and to be happy when they get pizzas that they really enjoy. At the same time, they will learn a lot of things they never knew before. The knowledge I gained through the two threads cited above would not have occurred had I not decided to throw caution to the winds and try my hand at 00 flours in a home setting. I also laughed when I saw that I titled the second thread Caputo 00 Pizza with Caputo 00 Biga using the term biga even though I did not know at the time what a biga was really like.

Peter




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