Author Topic: Thoughts about fermenting/proofing style  (Read 761 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline parodius4

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 41
  • Location: Deutschland
  • Neapolitan, fresh tomatoes and small electric oven
Thoughts about fermenting/proofing style
« on: November 19, 2016, 05:00:07 AM »
Hello,
like probably many of you I noticed that dough recipes from others don't necessarily yield the same results that others have.
Good Recipes are most of the time ingredients in % or g and bulk/ball time at which °C/F; but kneading and proofing are probably very different from one to another.
Kneading is another subject, I have mostly been wondering about proofing.

I have seen proofing:
-on desk covered with bowl or damp cloth
-on sheet covered with cling film
-in plastic box w/ loose lid, dough covered with flour or without
-wooden box with flour on the bottom
-in airtight container with or without oil
-...

I'm guessing especially comparing proofing in wooden box with flour to proofing in airtight container with oil might make a noticable difference in the skin of the dough, and this could influence things like handling, ovenspring and leoparding?
I've seen bread bakers leave the dough uncovered on the desk 1h pre baking to build skin.

I started to proof in small round oiled plastic containers with a loose lid and slighly flour dusted dough.

Just my thoughts but would be nice to hear some opinions or even experiences.

Greetings

Offline TXCraig1

  • Supporting Member
  • *
  • Posts: 20378
  • Location: Houston, TX
    • Craig's Neapolitan Garage
Re: Thoughts about fermenting/proofing style
« Reply #1 on: November 19, 2016, 08:25:41 AM »
like probably many of you I noticed that dough recipes from others don't necessarily yield the same results that others have.

Yes, the number of important variables with values not specified in even a very complete formula+workflow is quite large.
"We make great pizza, with sourdough when we can, commercial yeast when we must, but always great pizza."  
Craig's Neapolitan Garage

Offline parodius4

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 41
  • Location: Deutschland
  • Neapolitan, fresh tomatoes and small electric oven
Re: Thoughts about fermenting/proofing style
« Reply #2 on: November 20, 2016, 05:40:42 AM »
That is very true txcraig. But it takes time to recognize what is important and beginners like myself will quickly start tinkering with the ingredients, eg going back and forth with yeast% and fermentation time, as that seems most important. This way you can get stuck not knowing why it sometimes works great and sometimes not at all.
This is why I brought up the subject.

Even after over 6months of pizzamaking I just realized I had exact ingredients but was proofing differently most of the doughs. It depended often on simply which container or lid was at hand or if I had a little flour left and decided to coat the doughball before putting in box.

I dont bake regularly enough or in big enough quantities to really be sure, but after my last experience I'd guess the proofing method can have as big an influence on the final dough as 12-24h fermentation time or 5°C temp diff. or changing the yeast % by a factor of 0.5 or 2.
That influence being on handling of the dough but also on oven spring.

I always wondered how the pros could have a dough that is both well fermented, i.e. moist and with a lot of trapped air inside, and yet firm enough for a good handling.
My last dough was set for 24h and was good at that time, good bubbles and still good handling. I kept a part of it for another 12h a 18°C. Normally that would give me a dough that bakes great with much spring and taste but is terrible to handle as it flows through the fingers. But in a proofing box with a looser lid it came out rather firmer than the day before although it was full of bubbles. I could really slap and stretch it and it baked with much spring and taste.
That was more like it should be I think.

It would be great if the proofing method could be seen more often in recipes.
Would be nice to know if some of the more experienced agree/disagree with all of the above.


Greetings

PS picture are of said dough. I have made pies as that before, some I even liked a little better, but they were never so good to handle.

Offline The Dough Doctor

  • Tom Lehmann
  • Lifetime Member
  • *
  • Posts: 2287
  • Location: Manhattan, KS
Re: Thoughts about fermenting/proofing style
« Reply #3 on: November 20, 2016, 11:28:11 AM »
There are SOOOOO many things that can/will affect the way a ferments/proofs/rises that it is literally impossible to follow any one specific procedure and hope to get the same results. For example, placing the dough on the bench top to proof uncovered for a period of time may work fine in Miami, Florida but it may not work as well in Cree, Colorado as the dough will exhibit more than a propensity to develop a dry crust. How do the big guys do it? They control as many of the variables in their dough management procedure as possible, keeping in mind that time and temperature control are the key to effective dough management. If you go into the archives at PMQ or Pizza Today and dig up some of my past articles (In Lehmann's Terms/PMQ) and The Dough Doctor/Pizza Today) you will find articles/discussion on dough management as it pertains to pizzerias.
So how do you know the correct way to ferment or manage a dough? I think the easiest way is to look at it this way:
What is the finished/mixed dough temperature?
Is the dough cold fermented or fermented at room temperature?
Is it fermented as a portioned ball or is it bulk fermented?
Does the dough sit out prior to cold fermentation/for how long? Or does it go straight into the fridge?
How long is the dough fermented?

Once you know these details you can try to incorporate them into a dough management procedure that works best for you.
By the way, those wooden dough boxes, over time they become impregnated with bacteria, different strains of lactobacillus (lactic acid forming bacteria which are responsible for certain unique flavors in bread type doughs) in this manner they act something like the addition of a sourdough starter to the dough.....in SOME cases the wooden dough box might have an important part to play in the finished crust flavor BUT, and this is a big BUT, it doesn't just happen overnight, it might take months or years of use to develop the bacteria so just putting the dough into a wooden box to ferment probably won't have the desired effect if it's flavor that you're looking for.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

Offline parodius4

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 41
  • Location: Deutschland
  • Neapolitan, fresh tomatoes and small electric oven
Re: Thoughts about fermenting/proofing style
« Reply #4 on: November 21, 2016, 12:16:16 AM »
Thanks Tom,
one thing that just occured to me because of your words, not only do I allow more air to reach the dough while proofing with a looser lid, but I guess the winter air now is also much dryer. So simply looking at the thermometer might not be enough for same conditions in a room.
I'm not the type to put my dough in a climate control chamber, but just knowing the effects of the variables helps a lot and things like air humidity and proofing method are seldom discussed on a beginner/intermediate level, at least not nearly as exact as say yeast% or hydration.

Regarding wooden boxes, didn't even think about micro cultures, just guessed they are far more likely to enable a dry climate than sealed plastic containers. And I really would like to see dough balls from the same batch, proofed in the same room/ same time, just in these different boxes.
I'll see if I have enough plywood left to build a quick one.

Greetings

Offline The Dough Doctor

  • Tom Lehmann
  • Lifetime Member
  • *
  • Posts: 2287
  • Location: Manhattan, KS
Re: Thoughts about fermenting/proofing style
« Reply #5 on: November 21, 2016, 12:41:35 AM »
Just be sure to seal the surface of the wood box that will come into contact with the dough by saturating it several times with mineral oil prior to the first use, otherwise the dough and the box will become as one. Also be sure to use a flexible hand held scraper to free the dough from the sides of the box. You don't want to use a metal one as it will result in wood splinters in your dough.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor


Offline parodius4

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 41
  • Location: Deutschland
  • Neapolitan, fresh tomatoes and small electric oven
Re: Thoughts about fermenting/proofing style
« Reply #6 on: November 25, 2016, 12:20:04 PM »
So I hammered a proofing box out of plywood remains. Just enough for 125x125mm bottom area.
Thanks for the coating reminder, I did not know that. I plan to use linseed oil for coating the bottom and a couple of cm of the walls and leave the remaining wood open to moisture. Hope that is all to remember.

Will show the results/differencies? of doughballs with my next bake here, so stay tuned if interested 8-)

Greetings

Offline Icelandr

  • Supporting Member
  • *
  • Posts: 190
  • Location: Gabriola Island, British Columbia
  • One day . . a really Good Pizza!
Re: Thoughts about fermenting/proofing style
« Reply #7 on: November 25, 2016, 01:44:45 PM »
Hi - I am a bit concerned about your plan to use linseed oil to coat the proofing box, I note that Tom suggested mineral oil and think that would be a better solution. I looked for linseed oil on food prep areas and found this, among others

http://www.naturalhandyman.com/qa/qalinseedoil.html

Just don't want to see you set back the work you are doing because of off flavours or harmful ingredients


Offline parodius4

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 41
  • Location: Deutschland
  • Neapolitan, fresh tomatoes and small electric oven
Re: Thoughts about fermenting/proofing style
« Reply #8 on: November 25, 2016, 04:09:40 PM »
Thanks for your concern icelandr, I guess there might be some issues with how some things are called locally. The raw linseed oil I have here is sold in most supermarkets as salad oil or for other cooking purposes and is edible.
I assume your link refers rather to something like a linseed varnish? (Leinölfirnis here) which I learned is treated to dry quicker and only meant for wood sealing, whereas raw it is used for eating and sealing for ages.

Another example, when you say mineral oil here, one thinks of engine oil or other technical oil, not something edible.
I dont really know what is meant or where to get, can you give an example or other name?

Thanks and greetings

Offline The Dough Doctor

  • Tom Lehmann
  • Lifetime Member
  • *
  • Posts: 2287
  • Location: Manhattan, KS
Re: Thoughts about fermenting/proofing style
« Reply #9 on: November 25, 2016, 08:29:21 PM »
Use white mineral oil (available at any pharmacy) to seal the wood. Linseed oil will polymerize (into varnish) over time making a real mess out of the box as the dough will stick to it with a death grip. White mineral oil is also used to treat/seal wood cutting boards and wood counter tops.
Now, you can't say that you haven't been warned by more than one person here.  :)
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

Offline parodius4

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 41
  • Location: Deutschland
  • Neapolitan, fresh tomatoes and small electric oven
Re: Thoughts about fermenting/proofing style
« Reply #10 on: November 26, 2016, 04:25:54 AM »
Ok I got it, even the pharmacist had to doublecheck what is meant as the name is not so common. It is rather called paraffinöl or white oil and those can still be medical or technical grade.
And plese dont think I take your advice lightly, looked up butcherblock oil and linseed was suggested 8-)

Ahyway, hope I got it right now and am good to go.
« Last Edit: November 26, 2016, 04:27:31 AM by parodius4 »

Offline SimonDouglas87

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 17
  • Age: 29
  • Location: Edinburgh, Scotland
  • Trying to put some Pizzazz in my Pizzas
Re: Thoughts about fermenting/proofing style
« Reply #11 on: November 26, 2016, 07:55:10 AM »
Excellent thread here guys this is something I think about a lot, whilst I don't have a climate controlled chamber I do have a cellar which is temperature controlled and I think the environment is pretty constant so I'm working my dough management around that. Cant wait to see how this box works out for you!
Trying to put some Pizzazz in my Pizzas


Offline The Dough Doctor

  • Tom Lehmann
  • Lifetime Member
  • *
  • Posts: 2287
  • Location: Manhattan, KS
Re: Thoughts about fermenting/proofing style
« Reply #12 on: November 26, 2016, 12:46:17 PM »
In large commercial bakeries white mineral oil (food grade) is the sole lubricant for dough dividers and rounders, in fact, it the trade it is known as "divider" or "rounder" oil. If you ever had a McDonalds hamburger the bun was made using an AMF screw type divider aka SPD (superior bun divider) which requires the use of mineral as its lubricant and then the rounding bars on the dough rounding table are also lubricated with white mineral oil. This is important to the operation of the equipment as it is producing hamburger buns at the rate of 360 to 800 buns per minute. Even in large pizza commissaries like Domino's mineral oil is the only oil used with their dividers and rounders.
Keep in mind that you won't see anything special coming out of your wood box for quite some time as it will take some time for the bacteria to be able to build up in the wood (especially considering wood is pretty resistant to bacteria). The main places for the bacteria to collect are in the scratches and pores of the wood, but one you have it the flavor profile of the finished crust will change. This is how crackers used to be made, I say used to because when the cracker industry changed to steel dough troughs from their wood troughs the whole flavor profile of the crackers changed, the ultimate solution was to identify the bacteria responsible for the flavor, culture it and add it back to the dough as one would a concentrated sourdough culture. That's how crackers are made today.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

Offline parodius4

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 41
  • Location: Deutschland
  • Neapolitan, fresh tomatoes and small electric oven
Re: Thoughts about fermenting/proofing style
« Reply #13 on: November 29, 2016, 11:58:42 AM »
Hello,
ok the dough is made.

-60% water
-0,1% IDY
-5% starter (not quite in full bloom)
-2,5% salt

This will sit in a slightly oiled plastic bowl for [email protected]°C/65F and then be balled to go into plastic and the wooden box.

In the meantime, here are two videos from my favourite yt doughsqueezer (I like when he calls himself maestro), that I think show some interesting "dough dynamics" not quite unrelated to the subject.





Offline IIFYMpizza

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 201
  • Location: Poland
  • I Love Pizza!
Re: Thoughts about fermenting/proofing style
« Reply #14 on: November 30, 2016, 10:43:22 AM »
Things mentioned by parodius4 vary in my case depending on many things. For example if i use caputo only dough formula, i like longer bulk and shorter balled fermentation to avoid pancake-like final product. on the other hand when i incorporate farina integrale into my dough i like to give dough balls extra 3-4h to relax a bit more. i like my dough very relaxed and i am used to it by now after using 70%-74% hydration. I wouldnt do bulk ferment in the wooden box as i think it'd dry out the dough too much. I always bulk ferment my dough on a marble tile covered with a large bowl, i also dont see the point in covering the dough with extra flour as by the time it undergoes fermentation it should be no longer sticky to the touch and if it ends up sticky you can always sprinkle a litle bit of flour on the dough or your hands when you have to work it (ball it or strech into a disc). After balling my dough i put it in the wooden wine box with a wooden cutting board on the bottom (i find it is less thirsty than the bottom of the box which is made out of pine). Wooden dough box has its pros and cons, temperature stability is a plus whereas risk of slight drying out of the dough is the latter. I try to avoid drying out my dough by putting a small glass filled with water inside the dough box. 
« Last Edit: November 30, 2016, 10:45:38 AM by IIFYMpizza »

Offline parodius4

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 41
  • Location: Deutschland
  • Neapolitan, fresh tomatoes and small electric oven
Re: Thoughts about fermenting/proofing style
« Reply #15 on: December 02, 2016, 01:23:59 PM »
Ok here some experiences after proofing for 12h at 20C in oiled plastic box and wooden box:

-the paniello in plastic kept a sticky surface, the wood one stayed slightly floury, almost exactly like after balling
-the wood box was dusted, too, and the dough was easy enough separated, although I dont have a scraper
-the fermentation/texture inside the dough was the same to my eye
-the wood one was a little bit easier to work with from the beginning, due to not being sticky. After dusting both could be stretched the same way

I include pics of the baked pizzas, plastic first, but I wont compare the baking and final pizza as it is still impossible for me to get the same conditions twice in my small oven. There was around 40C difference in stone temp.

So far for 12h proofing, I'll show 36h too.

Offline parodius4

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 41
  • Location: Deutschland
  • Neapolitan, fresh tomatoes and small electric oven
Re: Thoughts about fermenting/proofing style
« Reply #16 on: December 02, 2016, 01:27:56 PM »
Btw, how are wooden boxes maintained? Just brush the flour out?

Thanks

Offline parodius4

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 41
  • Location: Deutschland
  • Neapolitan, fresh tomatoes and small electric oven
Re: Thoughts about fermenting/proofing style
« Reply #17 on: December 07, 2016, 03:32:03 AM »
Hello,
these are the results from a 48h dough. It was balled after 12h and divided into plastic and wood, so basically like before just longer. As the pic shows the difference was much bigger this time. The wood dough had not only a skin but was also firmer inside. Both doughballs were equally fermented and mature though.

As a sidenote:
The resulting pizza was no longer neapolitan style, the crust was too crispy, but it was a very good crispiness that is still airy and soft inside and not like cracker. I was very surprised how much I liked the change in style for variety, it was almost a relief 8-)
It baked in around 115s, so the tomatoes, basil and cheese were still in good condition. Like a mix of neapolitan toppings with a crispier crust. Dont know if this is a style that exists but I will do it again for a change.

What I take from this:
-especially with fermentations longer than 24h the proofing method/box can have a significant influence on the final dough
-wooden boxes seem more suitable for 24h or less, at least if the dough is 60% hydr. or less
-box type and size play a role, too small and airtight seem to hinder rise, too big and open dry the dough

Still just a guess for me, but maybe a slightly dryer surface of the doughball can be helpful for neapolitan, too, as in keeping the pressure in and helping with spring.

For my low quantities of 2-4 pies small plastic boxes with a somewhat loose lid seem to work best. For 12-20h and wet doughs I will use wood, too.

Bye