Author Topic: The Great Lehmann NY Style Dough Disaster :(  (Read 2323 times)

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Offline gottabedapan

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The Great Lehmann NY Style Dough Disaster :(
« on: January 01, 2006, 06:19:35 PM »
I discovered this wonderful site a couple of weeks ago. So far, I've tried DKM's Chicago Style and xPHmgr's Pizza Hut Pan recipes with creditable success (my 6-year old niece, who turns her nose up at anything that's not a PH pan actually ate two slices of the xPHmgr pie.)

Anyway, yesterday I decided to try a Tom Lehmann NY-style dough following the instructions provided by Pete-zza in the initial post on the Tom Lehmann NY Style thread, using the proportions from Wallman's Dec 20 post:

Flour 100%, 12.10 oz. (KASL)
Water 63%, 7.62 oz.
Salt 1.75%, 0.21 oz. (just over 1 t.)
Oil 1.00%, 0.12 oz. (about 3/4 t.)
IDY 0.30%, 0.04 oz. (about 1/3 t.)

although I used Gold Medal Better for Bread flour fortified with 1 Tbs VWG since I don't have KASL (I measured 6 oz flour into KA mixing bowl, added 1 Tbs VWG, then added the remaining 6.1 oz flour, whisked 2 min at speed 4 with wire whisk to blend, then dumped flour into separate bowl), and added an extra 1 Tbs of water to take into account the VWG. I used a KA Professional Series KSM50 to mix the dough.

From what I gather reading the posts in the Lehmann dough thread, the dough should have been smooth and tacky (as opposed to sticky) and should easily have passed the windowpane test, however, my dough came out quite sticky (even after adding and additional 2 Tbs flour), and as you can see from these pics, the finished dough is lumpy/pebbley, and it didn't come anywhere close to passing the window pane test:


Oh, yeah: the dough temp. was 77 off the hook.

At this point, I was tempted to throw out the batch and start over, but decided to proceed anyway.

Divided it into two balls, put them in oiled tupperware bowls, and stuck them in the fridge for 24 hrs, then took one out and gave it a 4 hour counter rise. As I expected, the dough was virtually impossible to handle: it stuck to everything (including the oiled bowl), and tore constantly. In the end, I pressed it out on a piece of parchment paper (I made a 10-incher, cuz it was pushing it to get it that big and there weren't no way on God's green earth it was gonna make it to 16), dressed it, slid the whole thing on a screen, and baked at 500 for 8 min. (Preheated the oven for 20 min. at 500.) Here's the result:


Two (ok, three) questions:

1) is there any hope of salvaging the second piece of dough: perhaps let it warm up a bit and reknead it, adding a little extra flour to dry it out, or is it beyond saving; and

2 and 3) what went wrong and how do I fix it? If I had to guess, I'd say the dough was underkneaded (hence the lumpiness and lack of gluten development), and too wet (hence, the stickiness).

Thanks for your advice.

Offline sfpipeline

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Re: The Great Lehmann NY Style Dough Disaster :(
« Reply #1 on: January 01, 2006, 08:53:58 PM »
Hi... just found this web site today. 

While I don't know what VWG and KASL are, I can tell you how to activate your gluten.  Put 1/4-1/2 cup of flour in your bowl plus liquid (I use water for pizza) and beat it for a while.  I do dough in my food processor, so it goes a lot faster for me than a mixer.

Also, please remember that your liquid to flour ratio is not gospel.... you need to play around with every batch.  If your dough was too wet/sticky, it didn't get enough flour and probably wasn't kneaded enough.  Look for bubbles breaking on the surface to tell you "it's done.  Did you remember to add oil?  If you forgot it, that's another way to get a sorry looking batch of dough.

Offline abc

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Re: The Great Lehmann NY Style Dough Disaster :(
« Reply #2 on: January 01, 2006, 09:14:15 PM »
sure does look underkneaded.

Online Pete-zza

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Re: The Great Lehmann NY Style Dough Disaster :(
« Reply #3 on: January 01, 2006, 11:17:21 PM »

From the photos, it's pretty clear that the dough was too wet, and quite possibly also underkneaded. I assume that you correctly and accurately weighed out the flour and water on a scale. However, even when that is done, it is possible that adjustments to the water and/or flour may be needed. And because of all the possible variables it is not always possible to predict when such adjustments will be needed. That is why it is important to monitor the dough as it is being made to be sure that the finished dough is smooth, elastic and with a tacky outer surface. You should be able to stick your fingers into the dough and withdraw them without the dough sticking to your fingers as shown by your photo.

You might be able to salvage the second dough ball by adding more flour, kneading it in gently, and letting the dough rest for an hour or more to allow the gluten to relax enough so that you can easily stretch and shape it. You might even refrigerate the dough for several hours or even overnight. Since the second dough ball is one half of the total dough, I might mention that the correct diameter for the second dough ball is 12 inches, not 16 inches.

I am confident that you will achieve success with the Lehmann dough recipe with experience. You might also find it helpful to read the thread at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,2223.0.html, where some of the basics of making a Lehmann NY style dough are discussed in detail.