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Offline varasano

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #360 on: August 18, 2005, 05:45:08 PM »
I have a lot of news to report, but no time to write.  I'm going to update my site soon.  I now have 2 different procedures that can make an excellent dough. One is based on Marco's idea of a low yeast 18 hour warm rise. This has only natural starter with no baker's yeast at all. It's very flavorful and great for making a pie in under 24 hours. But it's difficult to time. The dough is good for a relatively small window of a few hours at the end of the 16-18 hr rise. If your plans change, you are kind of screwed. You can't really refridgerate near the end. This would be a great recipe if you owned a pizza place and made dough on a regular schedule.

The other method is my old method, listed on my site. natural starter with a baker's yeast booster and a long cold rise. The advantage of this method is that you can make it days in advance and it only needs a 1-2 hour counter rise to get ready. So basically it's ready any time you are.  I now have some excellent theory that explains exactly why these both work nearly the same. I don't have time to get into it though.

One minor thing. I know I've said this before, but my latest experiments really confirm that a light springy dough comes from high hydration (probably 62-65) and a very small amount of rise. Don't let the dough overrise. Marco said 25%. No doubling. I agree. It might be a bit more that 25% but not much.

My big news is in my sauce. As those who've read my site know, I strain rather than pre-cook my sauce. I'm a big fan of it. I discovered something else. As you strain the water coming out is highly acidic and has almost no sweetness. If you continue to strain longer, so the sauce dries out too much, the water coming out continues to be acidic. If you replace some of that water with fresh water, which is not acidic, the sauce is instantly much sweeter and fresher tasting. You can also repeat the cycle, adding more fresh water and straining it again. If you have a tight strainer, the water coming out is completely clear and has no red solids in it. This proceedure amounts to rinsing the tomatoes.  The end result is an amazing improvement. By far the best sauce I've ever made. Continue wtih the rest of my recipe, with a healthy amount of romano and a touch of sugar and a pinch of salt. I've confirmed that Johnny's (my favorite sauce) uses parmesian and not romano, so I'm now trying that too (or a blend). You guys need to taste this sauce. It's awesome.
« Last Edit: August 18, 2005, 05:47:53 PM by varasano »

Offline Bill/SFNM

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #361 on: August 18, 2005, 07:36:11 PM »
One minor thing. I know I've said this before, but my latest experiments really confirm that a light springy dough comes from high hydration (probably 62-65) and a very small amount of rise. Don't let the dough overrise. Marco said 25%. No doubling. I agree. It might be a bit more that 25% but not much.

I've been experimenting a lot, trying to stay as close as possible to Marco's recommendations and, although I agree with the importance of high hydration (65%), I've had entirely different experiences with fermenting. I've been getting great results using Marco's Camaldoli starter (no commercial yeast) with an 18-hour room-temp rise which just about doubles the volume (nothing happens for about the first 12 hours and then it rises quickly). I then place it the refrigerator for about 2 days. Shape and proof for 3 hours and then bake. I have tried doing this without the 2-day retardation and the flavor of the dough is not as rich. 

I am sure there are many reasons for the differences including the composition of the starter, kneading, my high-altitude (7000'), etc.

Bill/SFNM

Offline varasano

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #362 on: August 19, 2005, 04:46:41 PM »
I have found that chilling after the rise causes a major loss of spring. It's like blowing up a bubble. It's tighter on the way up then on the way down. Chilling risen dough damages it.   Try chilling before the real rise portion begins. Then leave longer for the final proof. 

Offline MTPIZZA

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #363 on: August 20, 2005, 05:40:57 PM »
jeff, sounds like you have hit on something here with rinsing or adding water to sauce... I'm going to try it with my next pie, thanks for the experiment update. I'm heading to your sight after this message.

Offline varasano

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Patsy's, Sally's, Johnny's
« Reply #364 on: November 03, 2005, 11:35:47 AM »
I hit Patsy's, Sally's & Johnny's this weekend.

Patsy's: First pie was awesome, like the old days of patsy's.  A 9.5 with 10 being the patsy's of old.  The second pie was terrible. Burnt on top, raw on bottom, flatbread-like crispy edge and bitter tasting. It was like a 4. What happened in the span of 10 minutes? I have no idea. 

Johnny's: a 10, as always. Unbelievably good.

Sally's: 40 minutes on line and another 40 to wait for a pie. But it was worth it. Excellent. I hadn't had it in 5 years and it was better than I remember. Also a 10. I had a clam pie too. That was good, but not great. I made a clam pie a few weeks ago that blew it away.

I made 16 pies recently for a party.  I was super organized. During the day I separted all the toppings into containers which I numbered and then I had a friend manage the list and the ingredients so I could focus on the final prep. Another person worked the oven clock so I didn't have to worry about burning things while I talked to people. It worked out really well:

1   Margarita   
2   Margarita   
3   Margarita   
4   Olives & Caper   
5   Strombolli - Pepperoni / Mozz / Fresh Tomato / Sundried Tomato /Rosemary   
6   Margarita   
7   Sausage   
8   Onion / Shitake  / Balsamic / Parmesean   
9   Capicolla   
10   Marinara (Garlic)   
11   Clams with original juice / Garlic / Oregano / Oil   
12   Margarita   
13   Onion / Shitake  / Balsamic / Parmesean   
14   Margarita   
15   Strombolli - Pepperoni / Mozz / Fresh Tomato / Sundried Tomato / Rosemary   
16   Thick pie w/ Parsley / Romano / Oil (Grandma's way)   

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Offline scott r

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #365 on: November 03, 2005, 03:53:59 PM »
Jeff, I had a similar experience this week.  I hit Patsy's, Sally's. and Pepe's on Tuesday on my ride back from the NY pizza show.  It was hard to save room for the later places because my first pie at Patsy's turned out great. I did somehow manage to only eat three slices. It was my first time there trying the fresh mozzarella, and it made all the difference.  I can't say that it was cooked perfectly as it was a little light on the bottom when compared to the top, but still a great pie.

My next stop was Sally's.  This was my first time ever not seeing a line (probably because it was Tues night) and I sat right down.  It was still forever to get approached and get my pie, but well worth the wait.  Even with the processed mozzarella this pie was truly amazing.  The sauce, crust, and the general flavor of the pie were all top notch. I was able to sit at the mini booth right in front of the pizziolo and I saw him add what I am assuming was grated cheese, pepper, salt, for the dry ingredients (I didn't see any herbs on the pie).  Maybe they use Romano, Parmesan, and salt or something.  He definitely added three different dry seasonings.  He then added  two liquids, one that was obviously a good quality olive oil, but the other liquid stumped me.  He squirted on what really looked like water.  It was totally clear, and definitely the viscosity of water not oil. There was a slight onion flavor to the pies, which I am assuming is being cooked into the sauce, but I am stumped.  Does anybody have any idea what this could have been?

My last stop was Pepe's right down the street.  I had never been able to try Pepe's and Sally's with visits closer than a month apart, so it was time to do a back to back comparison.  Both places are obviously making the same type of pie.  I have heard people say that one place is thicker than the other, but on this day they both had exactly the same thickness, and amount of sauce and cheese.   As soon as I ordered I started to get worried when I realized that unlike the first two places, this was a college (or possibly high school) kid making the pies.  To my surprise he actually did a great job, but the quality of the ingredients is holding this place back.  The sauce and cheese were very obviously a big step down from Sally's, and a decent step down from Patsy's as well.  I don't know if it was just that day, but Pepe's uses a TON of Romano put on last after the mozzarella.  One squirt of oil, and the pies are in the oven. 

One thing is for sure, the oven at Patsy's was way hotter then the New Haven places, and the final crust really showed what that difference can do.  The Patsy's pies had the fluffiest most tender crust, but the really hot oven makes it hard for them to make a consistent product.  Pepe's oven was not hot at all that day, and the pie took over twice as long to cook as Patsy's.  Sally's was right in the middle.  The sauce at Sally's is miles ahead of the other two.  The moral of the story is if you are in New Haven, take the time to wait for Sally's!
« Last Edit: November 03, 2005, 09:05:25 PM by scott r »

Offline pftaylor

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #366 on: February 02, 2006, 08:09:14 PM »
I traveled to NYC for the weekend and managed to stop by Patsy’s Pizzeria on the way to the hotel. As background, I consider Patsy’s to be the finest example of coal-fired elite pizza in the city and perhaps the world.

Lucky for me John, the owner, was there and seemed willing to share his knowledge and history of Patsy’s so I went on a fascinating journey with him. Apparently John was a history major in college and history is his passion. What makes him unique is that he knows very little about pizza, if anything. Unlike most pizzerias, Patsy’s exists due to John’s love of history not his love of pizza. It was a good story for him, and he decided to buy the place. Due to his keen sense of history, Patsy’s is in great hands as a result. John wants to redecorate Patsy’s one day with the original artifacts found throughout the building. He owns nearly the entire block lest the convenience store (which is owned by a Chinese family who got their first break in America by getting a job with Patsy Lancieri many years ago). So he has gobs and gobs of historical artifacts from which to pay tribute to the history of the place. You could sum up his approach as not wanting to change a thing for fear of screwing something up. He wants it to be an original.

Our conversation covered other areas I never thought would be shared. For instance, I had always wondered if the current coal-fired oven was the original so I steered the conversation there. It seemed to be constructed in a way which didn’t look like it came from 1933, the year Patsy’s opened, so I wandered down the uncertain path of questioning the very thing which makes Patsy’s special.

Unfortunately the answer was no. It was not the original. I felt somewhat dejected. Everything about Patsy’s was original except for the one thing that really counted. My mind was racing about how to delicately question the original’s fate. He explained the current oven was located originally in the far left hand side of the building and was relocated to its current position on the far right of the building. “The current oven?" I inquired, "what about the original?”

Much to my surprise, John asked if I would be interested in seeing the original. I was flabbergasted. I couldn’t believe it still existed and thanked the heavens I brought my trusty Cyber-shot to memorialize the moment. We went outside and opened up a pair of large metal doors built into the sidewalk, then down a flight of stairs we went leading to the basement.

Ah yes, the basement. It was like hopping into a DeLorean and time warping back to 1933. Every sense I had was yelling that something very special was about to happen. We were guided only by the thin light of John’s flashlight and a mysterious gravitational pull from the rear of the building. It was like I had walked down the hallway a thousand times, yet I am certain I have never been there before. The long and dark corridor featured 6’ high ceilings which were oozing pure history. I swear I could smell the yeasty scent of the Varazano preferment. I was on sensory overload and loving every moment.

We then went through another doorway and John pointed out a true relic to his left - the original pedal operated cheese grater Patsy’s wife used to grate balls of mozzarella. It looked like a cross between a heavy duty Singer sewing machine and a mid-evil torture device. The belt drive had long rotted away but the unit itself was in operable condition. What a sight to see. I had never even imagined such a device even existed. My heart was fluttering with anticipation when John said to look at the back wall. He shined his light along the building’s back wall and asked what I thought. There it was. There I stood at the altar of an original coal-fired NYC pizza oven. I was speechless!

The entire back wall, measuring some twenty feet across, was a brick oven. While words cannot adequately describe my sense of excitement, I Immediately thought of Pepe’s in New Haven. John agreed that Pepe’s is the closest he has ever seen to his mammoth oven. I had to touch the bricks. I had to inspect the inside of the oven. What old world craftsmanship!

The facing bricks were white porcelain and in excellent condition, once you smeared the layers of dirt from their face. The corners featured curved bricks. The inside of the oven was caked with mounds of dirt but the structure seemed intact. John was passionate about his intention of restoring this beast of an oven to its original glory. I have no doubt that one day he will. He thinks it could be a five year project to make all the building changes necessary to run a commercial operation.

He then went on to show another brick oven in the basement of his apartment located next store. This oven was found concealed behind the hot water heater and was blocked over. John, sensing what might lie beyond the cinder block took a claw hammer and revealed the truth. Another brick oven. This oven was not commercial and was perhaps 48” in diameter. It seems as if the entire block had brick ovens. Italians back in the 1930’s, living on 1st avenue, must have cooked everything in a brick oven. A chicken in every pot and a brick oven in every home!

I spent a while longer with John investigating the stuff strewn about his basement. The proudest of which was a picture of his father. It was from 1940. The photo showed his father being awarded the gold medal from the 1940 pre-Olympics. A humble man John explained. He further explained that the 1940 Olympics never came about due to the sober realities of WWII, so his father never got the chance to be the world’s best athlete in his sport.

At this point I had to have a Patsy’s Pizza pie. So we ended our sojourn and went upstairs to the restaurant where I ordered a plain cheese. I ended up adding another slice before whipping out my trusty MT-6 non contact thermometer. John smiled and gently warned me that the oven hadn’t reached its desired operating temperature yet but that it was sufficient for the lunch volume. I learned the oven is fired at about 9am every day and it really takes until 5pm before it reaches full temperature. I measured the oven at exactly high noon. It was discovered that the deck temperature where the pizzaiolo normally bakes the pie (on the far left side which is away from the coal), registered a mere 756 degrees. The ceiling came in at 920 degrees. About halfway from where the pies are normally cooked to the mass of coal measured 837 degrees. In all fairness, the pizzaiolo stated that the temperature was only warm. He claims it takes three minutes to bake a pie when the oven is warm and only 90 seconds when it is hot. He rotates the pie just once whether the oven is warm or hot during the bake so as to not burn one side or the other. He also confirmed that hot is right around 5pm – just before the dinner crowd. 

I have more pictures of my amazing adventure and trust the membership will enjoy them as much as I enjoyed taking them. They are located in the Pizzeria and Restaurant Reviews section of this board.
« Last Edit: February 02, 2006, 08:35:53 PM by pftaylor »
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Offline abc

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #367 on: February 02, 2006, 09:21:20 PM »
He owns nearly the entire block lest the convenience store (which is owned by a Chinese family who got their first break in America by getting a job with Patsy Lancieri many years ago). So he has gobs and gobs of historical artifacts from which to pay tribute to the history of the place. You could sum up his approach as not wanting to change a thing for fear of screwing something up. He wants it to be an original.



wha?  he owns nearly an entire block?  damn he's like a billionaire.

Offline Ronzo

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #368 on: February 02, 2006, 11:13:53 PM »
pftaylor...

In response to those pics of that lucious NY pie, all I have to say is...



DUDE!!!!!!!


SWEET!!!!!


;)



That looks delicious.

Fuggheddabowdit!

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Offline pftaylor

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #369 on: February 03, 2006, 05:42:52 AM »
nytxn,
I appreciate your enthusiasm about the Patsy's pie. I love their pies and have come to appreciate their special place in the pizza world. They make the best coal-fired pizza in the city in my opinion. When you combine it with the history of the place, it makes for a very satisfying overall experience.

I just wish they knew how to make a better Margherita. The sweet spot for Patsy's is a plain cheese pie or plain cheese slices. The price just went up to $2.00 per slice which is reasonable since the pies are cut in only six slices and not eight. I must confess however, that it wasn't as good as it looked. The crust was a little cracker-like due to the coal-fired oven not being at optimum temperature. The crust had little if any spring. Also the pizzaiolo on duty was not the master - Jose. Jose has been there since 1976 and can make a stellar pie when he puts his mind to it. When he doesn't put his mind into it, like last Easter, then the results are mediocre at best.

abc,
John is just a regular guy who has an eye for all things historical. I'm pretty sure his purchase of the original Patsy's Pizzeria location came at a bargain price. The surrounding neighborhood is just now becoming safe once again. For years it was not a safe place to be after dark. In fact, if you were to examine the pictures of the building you may notice numerous bullet holes in the green metal above the windows.

Truth be told, he had to license the Patsy's name to a Greek pizza making family (of Nick's Pizza making fame) to swing the mortgage. As the neighborhood continues to improve at a lightning pace, I wouldn't be surprised if John doesn't end up as a millionaire if he chooses to sell. His plan, as near as I can tell, is to restore Patsy's Pizzeria to it's original glory for two primary reasons. First, it would satisfy his historical sense of things and second, it would maximize his investment. Now there is an example of a guy who is able to make money with his passion.

I consider him to be very lucky indeed.
« Last Edit: February 03, 2006, 05:57:52 AM by pftaylor »
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Offline foodblogger

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #370 on: February 03, 2006, 08:53:43 AM »
pftaylor,
I am testing your dough prep protocol on a number of different doughs.  It looks solid.  My doughs will be ready to bake on Sunday.  Thanks for all the work you did and thanks to all the people who contributed to the process.

Offline pftaylor

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #371 on: February 04, 2006, 07:24:41 AM »
foodblogger,
Many months of effort were spent honing and polishing each and every facet of the dough preparation and stretching didactics for Pizza Raquel (an artisan version of a Patsy's Pizza) and Pizza Sophia (an original creation). Every time a change was introduced, I made sure it was measurable by changing only one variable at a time. I continued to introduce change until the return on investment stalled and the results didn't measurably improve. It was an exhausting process but one which I reasoned would be leveragable across a broad expanse of recipes. In the end, the finalized sequence was more robust than I had a right to expect. I trust the process will yield improved results no matter how much you deviate from the Raquel or Sophia recipes.

The crowning achievement was when I liberated Pizza Sophia dough from the bench and was able to freely toss the soft dough in the air to aid in forming the size skin desired. Up until that point, Caputo based doughs were generally too soft to perform air stretching manuevers. I was bound and determined to make a 16" Caputo-based skin. And in order to do that, I needed a more competent handling dough.

By this time the Pizza Raquel dough was completely robust and manageable. It was a difficult balance to achieve. I was practically laughing every time I made Raquel dough because the margin of error was so vast I literally could not make a bad batch. Results were linear each and every time. That's when I truly knew I was on to something. And the thing is, I managed to do this with the most common of mixers - KitchenAid. Which proved the old pizza adage about the most important ingredient in pizza making is the pizzaiolo. I will admit that the reproducibility of my results leapt when I began using not one but two scales to measure the ingredients. One for ultra precise measurements for salt, yeast, and water. Yet another for the flour. The lesson learned is to weigh all ingredients every time.

I look forward to you sharing your results foodblogger. My advice is to never give up.
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Offline foodblogger

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #372 on: February 06, 2006, 08:55:56 AM »
pftaylor,
I have good results to report.  I made 2 pizzas using your dough processing protocol.  One was an American chain pizzeria style pizza.  That pizza used a 57.1% hydration.  For full details see this thread:
http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,1515.20.html
The other pizza was using a dough I have been working on based on DOC specifications, but modified by using a flour that is more readily available to me.  That dough has a 63% hydration.

The most noticeable effect of the autolyse and various resting stages is that the kneed time is significantly reduced.  I followed your protocols exactly.  The 63% dough seemed to be ready after the 5 minute kneed.  The 57.1% dough looked like it could use a little more kneeding, but it ended up working out in the end.

The part of your protocol that seemed to make the biggest difference in the final outcome was the shaping protocol swiped from Patsy's.  I included a 5 minute rest between each of the shaping steps.  The 63% dough was so easy to stretch that I accidently stretched it to 16 inches when I had originally planned on stretching to 12.  The result was a thickness factor of .056 instead of 0.10.  My old pizza peel would only take a 12 inch pizza, but I recently purchased an 18 inch richlite peel so it was all good.  The crust had excellent oven spring with nice different sized bubbles in the rim, a nice leathery/chewy (although very very thin) bottom and just the right amount of crispness.

The 57.1% dough was a little more difficult to shape but still much easier than I am used to.

If I were to modify your protocol at all it would be to put rests between each shaping step.  I think you originally had rests listed.  I would also include the trick where you run a piece of dental floss under the dressed pie right before you slide it off the peel into the oven.  The pie slid off very nicely with no shenanigans.

My current project involves tweaking the hydration % of my DOC based dough.  Later this week I will try your protocol with a 65% hydration.
« Last Edit: February 06, 2006, 08:59:06 AM by foodblogger »

Offline pftaylor

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #373 on: February 06, 2006, 07:20:42 PM »
foodblogger,
Ah the sweet taste of pizza induced success. Congratulations are in order. I'm glad the protocols helped. Tweak where you feel it will be most beneficial. I know that in my home, using the protocols the membership here helped develop, I am able to produce killer pies each and every time.

Climbing the pizza mountain of enlightenment is never easy. One can never willingly go backward either. Which, in my opinion, makes this a very cumulative hobby where knowledge really does help.

My sense is you are now trapped. Yep, you are caught in a vicious cycle where the pie you are making today is a better pie than the one before it. Kindly share photographs of your journey...
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Offline foodblogger

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #374 on: February 07, 2006, 09:33:58 AM »
Quote
My sense is you are now trapped. Yep, you are caught in a vicious cycle where the pie you are making today is a better pie than the one before it.

Pizzamaking and cooking in general is a very pleasant addiction for me.  I went through this with deep dish over the course of 16 years and I am finally at the point where I am comfortable with my recipe/techniques.  I'll be the first to say that a LOT more goes in to making a perfect thin crust pizza.  I'm glad I found this board before I got too serious about thin crust.  I probably would have gone through trial and error for another 16 years before I figured out 'the protocol'.  Now that I have a dough protocol I can focus on experimenting with formula.

Quote
Kindly share photographs of your journey...

My digital camera lept to its death about a month ago.  At the bottom of the post is the last picture it took.  I was trying to make schawarma at home.  That is a whole different story.  Long story short I am back to working with film until I can replace the Nikon.  Pictures are coming, it just takes me a while.

In other news, I used your protocol last night to make a 65% hydration dough.  So far the trend has been that your method works better in my hands with a higher hydration percent.  I have made 3 different ones so far: 57.1, 63 and 65%.  The 65% has felt the best so far in the final 2 minute hand knead.


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Offline PizzaBrasil

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #375 on: February 07, 2006, 01:19:32 PM »
pftaylor:

Since I had reached this site a long time ago, it remains between my favorite ones and, using your own terms, I am trapped in the (frequently more than one time) day reading of it. Always learning, as Pete-zza claims! (at least trying to! – G -).
Having a brick-oven in my backyard, the week-ends are, actually, the days when I paid reverence to the Pizza God´s :-).
And I use to fulfill this sacrifice (G) with any one of the next three (or a combination of them) recipes: the reverse Varasano Patsy´s dough, the Tom Lehmann Pete-zza or yours Raquel one. The results are always blessed (despite a little waist increment!).
This prologue is just to say that, IMHO, there is time to have a new topic with a resume of each one of these dough recipes, with the latest formula and techniques.
Could you imagine a newbie try to learn / practice all this stuff at a time?
By the way, it is not time to do a roadmap of the roadmap from Pete-zza? (just kidding, I admire your dedication!)
As always, thanks you all.

Luis

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #376 on: February 07, 2006, 02:45:25 PM »
Luis,

pftaylor can correct me on this, but I don't believe that he has changed his basic Raquel formulation to any significant degree. Even with the Lehmann formulation, it is essentially the same from a baker's percent perspective as when I started. I tried different flours, hydration ratios, machines, and dough sizes/weights, but with the exception of the experiments where I used preferments, the baker's percents remained much the same. The objective in all cases was to convert an essentially commercial dough recipe to one for use in the home by ordinary home pizza makers using ordinary dough prepping equipment and ordinary home ovens. To help the newbie with the Lehmann NY style, some of us contributed recently to the thread at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,2223.0.html. If I were a commercial operator with commercial equipment, I would use the basic formulation created by Tom Lehmann and posted at PMQ.com, and I would follow the accompanying dough preparation steps.

Peter

Offline pftaylor

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #377 on: February 07, 2006, 07:54:20 PM »
Pete-zza is correct. I have not changed the basic Pizza Raquel formulary from below:

16oz  100%   KASL Flour
9.6oz   60%   Bottled or Filtered Water
.32oz     2%   Sicilian Sea Salt
.01oz .0625%Baker's Pinch of Yeast (IDY)
1.3oz    8%    Preferment (Optional)

Nor have I changed the basic preparation and stretching protocols from these:

Mandatory Preparation Steps
1 - Stir water and salt with spoon/whisk until dissolved in stand mixer bowl. (I use a Kitchen Aid)
2 - Add approximately half the flour first, then the yeast. Fit stand mixer with hook attachment.
3 - Mix 30 seconds on stir to incorporate yeast.
4 - Add preferment (Optional. But it does add undeniable flavor)
5 - Mix 1 minute on stir to incorporate preferment. (Optional)
6 - Allow dough to rest for 20 minutes. DO NOT SKIP THIS STEP (or you will die painfully).
7 - Mix on stir speed for 5 minutes, adding in remaining flour gradually over the 5 minute mix.
8 - Mix on 2/3 for 5 minutes.
9 - Check dough temperature with digital thermometer; it should be 80 degrees at the hook.
10 Allow dough to rest for 15 minutes. DO NOT SKIP THIS STEP (Or you will die really painfully).
11 Remove dough from bowl and hand knead for 2 minutes on a very lightly floured (if at all) prep area.
12 Cut into 2 equal pieces, form into balls, place dough into bowls, cover with shower caps.
13 Place dough in the refrigerator. Ferment for approximately 24+ hours.
14 On the following day(s), remove dough from refrigerator and bring to room temperature.

Mandatory Stretching Steps  
1 - Place dough ball in flour bowl. Dust both sides well. Dust prep area with flour.
2 - Flatten ball into a thick pancake-like shape with palm of hand, ~ 2" thick. Keep well dusted.
3 - Press fingertips into center and working toward the rim until skin is 10 inches round. Keep well dusted.
4 - Place hands palm down inside rim and stretch outward while turning. Stretch to 12" round.
5 - Place skin over knuckles (1st time dough is lifted off bench) and stretch to 16"+/-
6 - Place on floured peel and dress with favorite toppings.
7 - Peel dressed skin into preheated grill/oven (1 hr+ at max temp) outfitted with tiles.
8 - Bake until lightly or heavily charred (more flavor).

What I have consistently improved upon is the why Pizza Raquel works so well. How did I do that? Well, that's a good question. The answer lies in the driving force behind all that I do. Let me start by stating my firm belief about life: There is a difference between data and information. How does that relate to pizza? Everything about Raquel and Sophia is based on better information, not just meaningless bits of data. All the data flows into useable information where the outcome is ensured. Recipes by themselves have no value. The true value of a formulary like Raquel or Sophia is the problem that they overcome and/or the outcome they produce.  The value is in the way they solve existing pizza making problems or in the way they allow you to do things you weren't capable of doing before.

Raquel and Sophia overcome a number of pizza making problems and inevitably produce glorious pies. The sequencing of preparation steps combined with quality ingredients will improve one's pies. I guarantee it. Consider it my Six Sigma fly-specked process of pizza making. Six Sigma is really all about how much deviation from expected norms one should expect. Raquel and Sophia are remakable for their ability to deliver solid results time after time. Its almost like putting on an old pair of shoes where you know before hand exactly how your feet will feel.

What you may notice first about the formulary listed above is that I did not post volumetric quantities of ingredients. This is not an oversight but rather intentional. If someone wants to reproduce a Raquel they will have to buy a scale. Same goes for a Sophia. I am convinced they should not be attempted without one. This requirement makes Raquel and Sophia an aquired taste. It is for those home pizza makers who strive to reach artisan levels of outcome. I know a couple of "feel" artisan home pizza makers but they are the clear exception. Raquel and Sophia are not for everyone. But they are reserved for those who have that inner drive to climb higher up the pizza mountain of enlightenment. I have put training wheels on the recipe a little bit by making the use of a preferment as optional. This allows those aspiring artisans the opportunity to date Raquel before marrying her. Once you graduate to the use of a preferment, you will not want to go backwards. The taste enhancement is simply too beneficial.

Things such as insisting on the use of a scale have become mandatory now. Other than a super hot source of heat outfitted with a stone or bricks, I cannot think of a single tool which is more instrumental to repeatedly achieving success. The more accurate the better. I have two. A super precise one for weighing water, yeast and salt. The other, postal quality, for weighing flour.

I have not specified a hard set of ingredients but if I had to, the ingredients one could use as a solid base to launch their pizza making exploits from would be:
1) Vacuum packed Fresh Mozzarella such as Biazzo (available from Sam's Club)
2) Fresh tomatoes such as Florida Ugly Ripes, washed, drained and ground up by a hand blender
3) Fresh spices such as Oregano, Basil, and Sicilian Sea Salt should be added only after baking

What will all this produce? Local pizza joints better look out. I have also proven to myself that a dedicated home pizza maker can easily match and often times surpass the commercial efforts of legendary pizzerias. Why? well lots of reasons come to mind. Pizzerias win in the area of having a better heat source (most of the time). But we have a better outcome more often than not due to better protocols and higher quality ingredients. I started out this thread many months ago trying to reverse engineer a Patsy's pizza. I have long since achieved that goal and frankly surpassed it by a country mile. It wasn't really that hard in the end once the cumlative knowledge of the membership here began to collaborate and percolate. I just didn't know what I didn't know, which made asking the right questions tough to develop.

Oh yeah, there is one other thing we have that 99.999999% of the pizzerias don't have - passion. We want it more than they do. That is the difference betwween a good pie and a great pie. Don't believe me? Come to Tampa and find out... 
« Last Edit: February 08, 2006, 06:37:38 AM by pftaylor »
Pizza Raquel is Simply Everything You’d Want.
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Offline PizzaBrasil

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #378 on: February 08, 2006, 07:34:18 AM »
Pete-zza, pftaylor:

Passion!. That really is a good word to meaning why I like (love?) this site. May be that I just figure out this at this exact moment, but, yeah, this feeling is the master key behind our pizza world.
Satisfaction, with the progress in baking, with the obtained results reflected in our family and friends faces and with the always learning precept is the reward of us, readers of each one of your lines.
Thanks you by your answers.
And, of course, I do not need to go to Tampa to believe you!

Luis

Offline foodblogger

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Re: Reverse Engineering Patsy's Pizza
« Reply #379 on: February 09, 2006, 08:29:27 AM »
Pftaylor,
Results are in for the 65% hydration dough using your protocol - very very good.  After the cold fermentation step the dough was easy to work and shaped with no problems.  I was planning on trying a 67% but the dough is just beginning to stick to the gallon ziplock bags that I proofed in.  I decided instead to make a 66%.  When I make that dough up I will post results.  The film for the 57.1, 63 and 65 is being processed now.  Hopefully will have pics in the next couple days.

A D V E R T I S E M E N T