Pizza Making Forum

Pizza Making => American Style => Topic started by: dapizza on January 30, 2007, 12:03:04 PM

Title: Dough Rising
Post by: dapizza on January 30, 2007, 12:03:04 PM
I have a question on letting the dough rise.  I am still a little foggy on this topic. 

1)  If you let the dough rise for 2 hours instead of 1, will it be better?  If you let the dough rise for 3 hours instead of 2, will it be better?  If you let the dough rise for 4 hours instead of 3 hours will that be better?

2)  Punching the dough down and getting the air out of it.  If you don't punch the dough down and just start using it, will this make a significant difference?

3)  Do all rules apply to all types of dough?   

Thanks for your insights.
Title: Re: Dough Rising
Post by: Pete-zza on January 30, 2007, 01:18:27 PM

I don't think you can generalize on these matters.

You didn't indicate at which stage the dough is allowed to rise, for example, right after it is made or just before shaping into a round after a reasonable period of fermentation, but all else being equal, and assuming that the dough is not on the verge of overfermenting, I would say that the dough with the longer rise will be better in just about all respects (handling, fermentation, etc.) than one with a lesser rise. But it is quite possible, and perhaps likely, that you won't be able to tell the difference. You should be able to tell the difference between a dough that is given, say, one hour of room temperature fermentation and one that has had several hours of room temperature fermentation and, similarly, one that has had a few days of cold fermentation, but one hour differences may not be detected.

If you are talking about punching the dough down just before using, and that you are not re-kneading the dough, then so long as you are fairly gentle in punching down the dough, you perhaps will be OK. Re-kneading the dough is generally a bad idea because it rearranges the gluten structure and causes the dough to become very elastic and hard to shape. I prefer not to pound the dough in shaping it because I want to keep the gasses in the dough intact so that I get a decent oven spring when it hits the oven. I have seen professionals handle their doughs fairly roughly without noticeable harm but I suspect their doughs are of better quality than mine and can take the rougher handling. Also, their ovens are better.

I also don't think you can generalize across different styles. For example, a standard dough can perform differently than a deep-dish dough or a cracker-crust dough. Some principles are shared in common but there are also differences.