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Author Topic: Feel like I'm just missing something - seems to always taste ok, but never great  (Read 704 times)

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Offline pnilly

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I think I got a standstill in my progress. My pizzas just all taste ok and too bland. I don't know what I'm missing, but would love some help to bring it over the top... Think my dough is fine, but something with the cheese and sauce don't seem to hit...I'm kinda lost right now and would love some help and advice

KABF
63% hydration
0.25 IDY
2% salt
1% olive oil
0.085 thickness

Galbani whole milk low moisture 5lb block +sometimes with some pecorino romano

Sclafani jersey fresh crushed tomatoes with salt, oregano

Cooked on steel heated in 550 oven
« Last Edit: June 25, 2020, 12:14:50 PM by pnilly »

Offline texmex

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Try mixing it up with a small amount of sugar in your dough. That may be more to your taste buds preference. I don't know what NY style traditionally has or does not have in the dough, but if it's for yourself, try small tweaks to get to your happy place.
I like to use molasses in my dough, and often miss the flavor whenever I don't use it.
Reesa

Online Jon in Albany

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You may also want to bump the salt up to 2.2/2.25%.

I make a pretty similar dough formula that I like with a little more salt than you. Similar amount of yeast and a 48+/- hour balled cold ferment. I started with 1.8% salt and kept increasing it until I liked what I had. Settled on 2.2% salt.

Offline nickyr

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Add some garlic to that sauce! One to three cloves for a 28oz can of crushed tomatoes depending on how much of a garlic fiend you are. Youíve got good tomatoes, so for me garlic would take it from a good sauce to a great sauce.

Offline Pizza_Not_War

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Sometimes the only thing that saved a so so slice in New York was the free post bake garlic, oregano and cheese.

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Offline jsaras

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As others have mentioned, a bit more salt may get you there.  Iíd suggest going to 2.25% before going further north.  Also, tear up a single basil leaf and put it into your tomatoes for at least an hour.  It transforms the taste of the tomatoes IMO.  If you want to go slightly out of the box, you can try a small amount of fresh thyme.  A few sprigs will do it. 

Just eliminating the oil may also be a worthwhile thing to try. 
Things have never been more like today than they are right now.

Offline artaxares

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I'd rather say go wild man, not just sprinkle of garlic or +0.25% salt, I'm saying put some cheddar on top, ketchup in pizza sauce, bunch of spices, whatever, go "overboard" and you'll see which flavor you're missing.

Baking pizza with steel in a home oven will not give us maximum results from simple classic recipes, so adjust accordingly. Point isn't to make best "classic" pizza, it's about making best pizza that you can with tools that are available to you and flavor profile that you personally like, not what some committee in Napoli likes. So if pizza tastes "bland", put some chili, garlic, oregano in your sauce (or buy some premade sauce, maybe you find some spice/flavor in it that you realize you want in your usual sauce), mix some aged gouda with your mozzarella, put your pizza on steroids, you are the one making and eating it, you make the rules. Making small tweaks might just leave you running in circles so experiment a bit, it's a pizza cmon :D
« Last Edit: June 26, 2020, 02:23:47 AM by artaxares »

Offline jkb

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Black pepper in the sauce.
John

Offline PizzaSean

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What are your favorite pizzas? I find that going and eating my all time favorites is always revealing because the closer I get to making pizza I like, that shifts my focus to different details each time. So if you feel like something is missing or that it is coming up short, maybe you can figure out what it is that you love about your favorite pizzas. Just a thought!

Offline Minolta Rokkor

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 Try Jersey fresh

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00F9TCIL6/?tag=pmak-20

I HIGHLY recommend you use FRESH basil, FRESH oregano (sparingly because it's strong) and wee bit of fresh garlic if you like garlic.

This makes the sauce taste far better. Fresh herbs is the way to go.
« Last Edit: June 26, 2020, 07:25:38 PM by Minolta Rokkor »
Pizza is about balance, nothing more nothing less

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Offline nickyr

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Try Jersey fresh

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00F9TCIL6/?tag=pmak-20

I think those are identical to the Sclafani crushed the OP is using. I did a taste test once and couldnít tell any difference. Nutrition facts are the same. And sclafani has the Jersey fresh logo on it.

I am certainly partial to the Jersey Fresh though just out of Jersey pride :-)

Offline nickyr

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What are your favorite pizzas? I find that going and eating my all time favorites is always revealing because the closer I get to making pizza I like, that shifts my focus to different details each time. So if you feel like something is missing or that it is coming up short, maybe you can figure out what it is that you love about your favorite pizzas. Just a thought!
As good as the advice on this thread has been, this is the best advice!

Offline petef

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I think I got a standstill in my progress. My pizzas just all taste ok and too bland. I don't know what I'm missing, but would love some help to bring it over the top... Think my dough is fine, but something with the cheese and sauce don't seem to hit...I'm kinda lost right now and would love some help and advice
I had the same experience for many years, tried all kinds of adjustments to normal ingredients, spices, etc. Same problem!!! Then one day I added VINEGAR to my sauce and BAM!!! On my very first bite, as soon as the pizza hit the ROOF of my mouth and I could feel & taste the acidity, I knew I found the missing ingredient.  :drool:

That's when I learned to taste my pizza sauce each & every time I'm making it. Add all your favorite spices, and then for an 8oz portion of sauce, I begin with 1 tsp white vinegar and 1 tsp white granulated sugar to balance it. For a bit more ZESTY flavor, I add some (1/8 ts) finely ground red cheyanne hot pepper. Add more vinegar until you get the desired sharpness to taste and I found for my personal preference, it's usually better to error on the side of sharpness/acidity, rather then sweetness. I also add some (2 to 4 tsp) Coca-Cola for sweetness to balance out the acidity of the vinegar. Perhaps the carbonation adds something too? 

TIP: As you are experimenting with your new sauce recipe, try adding about 1tsp sauce to a small glass bowl and top it with some grated mozzarella cheese & olive oil. Heat it up so that the cheese melts and taste it. Then make changes to the sauce as needed. No need to make an entire pizza when developing a new sauce recipe.

--pete--


« Last Edit: June 27, 2020, 01:30:40 AM by petef »

Offline Minolta Rokkor

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I think those are identical to the Sclafani crushed the OP is using. I did a taste test once and couldnít tell any difference. Nutrition facts are the same. And sclafani has the Jersey fresh logo on it.

I am certainly partial to the Jersey Fresh though just out of Jersey pride :-)

Years ago when I tasted them side by side, sclafani had a more tart hard taste.

Jersey fresh was bright and smooth and superior imo.

Maybe they changed, idk.
I only use Alta Cucina and 7/11 now
Pizza is about balance, nothing more nothing less

Offline nickyr

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Years ago when I tasted them side by side, sclafani had a more tart hard taste.

Jersey fresh was bright and smooth and superior imo.

Maybe they changed, idk.
I only use Alta Cucina and 7/11 now
Could be! Do you prefer 7/11? I just had my first can but it didnít seem as good as I recalled Jersey fresh being.

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Offline Minolta Rokkor

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Could be! Do you prefer 7/11? I just had my first can but it didnít seem as good as I recalled Jersey fresh being.
7/11s are great, but Jersey fresh is just a little better imo.
Pizza is about balance, nothing more nothing less

Offline quietdesperation

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what does your sauce and cheese ratio look like? i carefully weigh my sauce and cheese to achieve the ratio we like.
"If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world" - the hobbit, jrr tolkien

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