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scott123

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  1. Normally, you need a tax id to get an RD membership, but, right now, they're open to the public- no card necessary. I am definitely not talking about Caputo flour- at least not in the context of a home oven. For those with Neapolitan capable ovens (like an Ooni or a Roccbox), Caputo works very well, but, it's lack of malt is extremely anti-browning in home ovens. When you delay browning, you extend the bake time, which ends up drying out the crust and producing a stale hard texture. I'm talking about wholesale pizza flour. Your local RD will have 50 lb bags of Full Strength brand flour and All Trumps- and various All Trumps analogs. For pizza, these will all run circles around either all purpose or retail bread flour. Modern NY style pizza is traditionally made with high gluten (All Trumps), but high gluten has a strong tendency to make too chewy of a crust, so I prefer medium high gluten flours like Full Strength- and Spring King. If you want to buy Flour Water Salt Yeast and use it to make bread, I have no doubt it will produce phenomenal results, but, Forkish is a baker, and pizza is not bread. Forkish is part of your flour issue. The flour is definitely to blame, but, had you not been using a recipe that incorporated such an extreme amount of water, you might have weathered the new flour's shortcomings a little better. Extra water in pizza dough is not your friend- 70% water doesn't exist in the commercial pizza universe- at least, it doesn't for non pan pizza. In New Haven, there's outliers that can hit 68% hydration, but, that's oven related. Everywhere else, you're almost never going to find anything higher than about 65%, with medium high gluten flours playing well with about 62% water. With the weaker flours they use in Naples, these numbers drop even further (generally below 60%). If you find someone telling you to add 70% water to pizza dough, it means that they've never talked to a professional pizza maker- or in the case of Forkish, they've talked to pros, but didn't listen.
  2. So far, I've gotten probably 8 buckets from the bakery department, and one had cuts in the seal and the other one wasn't completely airtight. But the other six have performed flawlessly. While I agree that there's a bit of a gamble when getting free buckets, if you're shopping at the supermarket already, it's not like you're going out of your way. If the bucket isn't airtight, it's not hard to throw out.
  3. Do you know anyone else who bakes? Maybe you could split a bag. One thing you might consider regarding wholesale flour is quality. I can't speak for galettes, but the quality of wholesale pizza flour absolutely destroys any retail offerings. And this isn't just flour. Across the board, pizzerias get access to the best flour, the best cheese and the best tomatoes- all at considerable savings over retail. Do you live anywhere near a Restaurant Depot? Presently, they're open to the public.
  4. I regular push flour stored in buckets to a year and a half. As long as the bucket has an airtight seal and you store it in a cool place (like a basement), it will last a long time. Obviously, this is white flour. Whole wheat has a crazy short shelf life. Some great bucket options have been mentioned, and you're probably already aware of this avenue, but, I'm a huge fan of free. Most supermarket bakery departments have large covered plastic buckets that they're constantly throwing out. If you ask, they'll normally give you these buckets for nothing. You can also try other departments, like the deli, although things like pickles might leave a smell. Bakery ingredients (usually glazes and icings) clean off easily with no residual odors. Make sure you get a bucket with a very tight fitting lid, with a seal that is intact (sometimes the seals get cut when they open them).. With some jiggling, I can fit one 50 lb. bag of flour into two 4.25 gallon buckets.
  5. If wheat has been harvested at the wrong time, ie, it's been allow to sprout, it's enzyme activity will be too high, making it unsuitable for milling into flour- and potentially producing the results you're witnessing. But ruined wheat is super easy to detect and I don't think KA, even in the middle of a pandemic, would stoop to that. Unless a miller is using an aging agent such as bromate, flour needs aging for proper gluten development. My best guess is that your flour is just very very young. If you can, I would just give it time. If youth is the issue, a month should help.
  6. I haven't come across anyone working with yeast in a tub, but, I can tell you that the plastic lid is going to be far too air permeable for longevity. If you have a local bakery that will sell you fresh yeast that you can use within a day or two, that's ideal. But the yeast has to be super fresh on their end (no more than a day or two in their fridge) and super fresh on yours. And it's got to be a one shot deal- ie, if you score a 2 lb. brick, whatever you have leftover after using it gets tossed. Other then fresh yeast, which, for obvious reasons, isn't really practical for most, the best yeast for the home pizza maker is this: https://www.walmart.com/ip/Fleischmann-s-Classic-Bread-Machine-Yeast-4-oz/10306744 It's instant (instant is better than active) and is in an airtight jar. When stored in the fridge, you can easily get a year and a half from it. You won't find this in the UK, so the next best option is to make it by purchasing something like this: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Mauripan-Instant-Dry-Yeast-500g/dp/B086K4SLRC/ and storing it in something like this: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Kilner-Wide-Mouth-Preserve-Litre/dp/B078WYZZ4Y/ That specific .5 liter jar could work very nicely with a 100g pack of vacuum packed IDY, but, right now, I'm not finding any 100g packs from reputable sellers. No matter what, make sure it's vacuum packed instant dry yeast, and, the split second you open it, get it into an airtight glass jar with a metal lid and a rubber seal. As far as your overnight idea goes... the Caputo cuoco can definitely handle it, but longer room temps can be difficult when dialing in the yeast, because you're typically talking about so little. I also think that a longer balled ferment makes it even a little harder to hit the perfect schedule. I'd kind of like to see you fully dominate a same day dough first, but, if you were going to go overnight, I might go bulk until morning (starting as late as possible in the evening) and then ball when you get up. This test you did in the glass- was that dough bulked first? The glass test does tell us, to a point, how far you can take the dough. Assume the dough started off in a ball-ish shape, and not a perfect column, that could be 3x it's original size. I definitely wouldn't take that dough further than that- and might even go for a little less. If you're fermenting in clear plastic containers (a good idea starting out), you can match the pockmarks on the side of the glass jar with the bottom of the dough in the container. I took the yeast quantity directly from the VPN specs, and have never actually calculated the baker's percent. .06% (1g/1650g) is a crazy small amount. For my same day NY dough (no bulk), I'm at about .5%. I'd like to see you get your hands on IDY, but, I get the feeling that the recipe is mostly to blame. If you want to work with the yeast you have... I might give .2% a shot with... 2 hours bulk and 6 balled. It won't be perfect, but it should get you in the ballpark. Considering the underproofed dough, this looks really good. At this point, I think it's just about making more pizza. As you recognized, because of the less than ideal proof, the dough was hard to stretch. You should be able to dial in the proof within about 5 batches, and as you dial it in, stretching will get more and more comfortable. You're doing the slap technique that's in the video I posted, correct?
  7. Fermentation/proofing generates heat, which, in turn, accelerates the process even further. Because bulk fermentation is all one mass, it keeps some of this heat from dissipating. Yeast activity ramps up, as do enzymes (dough degradation). Bulks degrade the dough a little faster- which, for a same day, is generally a good thing, and, assuming the yeast is viable, they generate more CO2 than balls. This is still a bit theoretical, but I believe that even though the act of balling is equivalent to a punch down, where the majority of whatever gas is formed is pressed out, I think there's a method by which dough retains some of this gas, so the net oven spring of a double proof is greater than a single one. Improved final volume is either greater gas retention, and/or gluten extended further by letting the dough rise, deflating it, and then letting it rise again. I've also read that balling/punching down redistributes yeast and introduces it to new nutrients. So a bulk is a bit more flavor (atrophy) and a bit more final volume. The length of the bulk is not that critical, though. It's not like a 3 hour bulk is going to be noticeably less flavorful or have considerably less volume than a 4 hour hour one. You generally don't want the dough to deflate during the bulk, as this can damage the gluten. The most important element of the bulk is consistency- picking a time and sticking to it, so that the balled ferment always proofs at the same rate. The length of the ball is much more important, because the balled proof has a very clear goal. You want dough that, by the time you go to stretch it, is at or near the peak of it's volume. The traditional approach of allowing the dough to double is really just an oversimplification for beginners. Depending on the flour, the hydration, and how you treat the dough, you can see anywhere from between doubling and quintupling, and, if you're chasing perfection, you really want to push the dough as far as it will go- without having it deflate. Determining peak volume for a particular dough can generally only be done by failing- by giving the dough too much time, seeing how long it takes to deflate, and then making the dough again and using it right before the deflation deadline. The most important part of this initial process is consistency. Every step has to be done the same way, every temperature involved has to be close to identical and the schedule cannot deviate. The only thing you want to change, as you've already figured out, if the dough is proofing too quickly or too slowly for your schedule, is to make minor adjustments to the yeast. This particular recipe, with the yeast you're using, might work perfectly well with 6 hours bulk and maybe 8 hours balled. But that's obviously not a very user friendly schedule. Before you dive in and start ramping up the yeast, though, I would look at the form of the yeast that you're using. Are these yeast packets?
  8. Well, @Franci did ask about pala style in an Ooni, but, unless I'm wrong, the rest of the conversation has related to Neapolitan style pizza, so when she mentioned Italian home pizza makers using Polselli, I assumed that the Neapolitan aspect was implied. If she was referring to Italians baking pizza in their home ovens, that's a different ball of wax. For pan pizza in a home oven, I think it's possible to coax something passable from the flours being discussed, but, for non pan pizza in a home oven, because these flours are all so incredibly anti-browning at lower temps, they are all recipes for disaster, imo, with the lower protein of the Polselli being a worst case scenario. With their Americana flour, Caputo understands the importance of malt and high protein flour for cooler ovens, but I think, so far, that knowledge hasn't made it's way very far throughout Europe, and, whatever inroads it has made have been on the wholesale front, and not retail. All of the Italians I've dealt with own some kind of Neapolitan capable equipment, so I really can't speak to what the average Giovanni Q Pubblico is making in their home ovens. Based on the fact that I've dealt with at least a few thousand European home pizza makers, though, and I haven't run across any Italians working with home ovens, I have a strong feeling that they are going to be the last Europeans to get the high protein/malt memo. The fact that high protein/malt is so closely associated with American pizza (hence the 'Americana'), it's most likely only going to compound the problem.
  9. Technically, it's the VPN recipe but you're very welcome. Thanks for the kind words. I'm looking forward to seeing where you go from here.
  10. For about a decade, I was a huge proponent of long cold ferments. I've always been at the forefront of the time = flavor philosophy and that less time = flavor compromised pizza, which, if you look at the online pizza making community, is pretty much universally adhered to. Even you exhibited a little short ferment shame in your earlier post Like many, it wasn't a case of "I set out to make an emergency dough, because that's what I like," but, rather, you felt like you were forced to compromise because of your impatience. But I'm finding myself moving away from some of that dogma. One thing that helped me to perceive this a little differently was coming to grips with understanding the chemistry. The flavor you get with long fermentation is basically amino acids/umami via proteolysis. It's fundamentally just process derived msg. Now, I'm not necessarily telling people that a 2 day dough can be recreated in 2 hours with the addition of some Accent (not yet), but, I am confident that the extra 'flavor' people respond so favorably to in long fermented dough is umami. Instead of looking at long fermentation as this mysterious, magical, inherently better process, I now look at it as a means of adding more or less umami to dough- and, while sometimes I want to ramp up those amino acids, sometimes I don't. Don't get me wrong, I not necessarily "Yay, 1-2 hour doughs!" I think, for most styles, you want at least a tiny bit of time derived umami, not to mention I believe it can take longer than 1-2 hours for the flour in dough to fully hydrate for optimum texture (temperature can play a role). But I don't think that Neapolitan needs to be an umami bomb. I think that the magic of Neapolitan pizza comes from the super puffy and soft texture and char, not a super flavorful crumb. While, in the past, I might have bristled at the loss of flavor in a shorter ferment, I can now see the benefits of a blanker canvas. Pardon the pun, but I also find myself cooling on refrigeration. At least, I do for shorter ferments. You never want to bake cold dough, and, depending on your container, it can easily take 6+ hours to reach room temp in the center of your dough balls. Once you get into minimum warm up times, refrigeration can push the clock too far. And when you add bulks to the mix (which I'm very much warming on), it's an added layer of complexity. There's also a camp who believes that refrigeration comprises texture. I'm not completely sold on this concept, but, since warm up times can be problematic for shorter ferments anyway, if cold is compromising texture, it's just one more reason to avoid it. Now... am I going to freak out if I encounter someone tossing their dough balls in the fridge overnight and then letting them warm up 6 hours the next day? Of course not. But I think the traditional same day room temp Neapolitan approach deserves more respect than it's been getting. Like most people, I thought that this tradition was born out of spacial limitations- or possibly even corner cutting/greed, but, in recent years, that stigma has faded. TL;DR? This has been a very long winded way of saying that I resonate very strongly with the VPN specs- but not because I'm blindly following them, but rather, that I started off believing that I knew better- that I could basically take bread baking knowledge and somehow improve upon the original, but I've now reached a point where I can see that keeping it simple isn't necessarily a compromise. For me, the sweet spot is anywhere between 8 and 24 hours total time, with a portion of that being a bulk. I've also reached the same traditional place with water. Pizza is not bread. This is my best attempt at narrowing down some of the parameters in the official VPN specs: https://www.reddit.com/r/Pizza/comments/8rkpx3/first_pizza_attempt_in_blackstone_oven_72_hr_cold/e0s9sqr/
  11. In my travels, I've met hoards of Caputo fanboys/fangirls, countless pizzaiolos that worship at the 5 Stagioni altar, and a considerable number of Pivetti devotees, but, so far, at least, outside Italy, I haven't run across a lot of praise for Polselli. Not to say that there isn't, I just haven't run across it. http://www.polselli.it/download/334/?lang=en At 11.5% protein and a W value of 270, the Polselli Classica could be a little stronger, imo. I'm guessing that Italian home pizza makers are most likely not taking this flour beyond a same day ferment much. Within that paradigm, I'm sure it performs admirably. But I lean a bit more towards a W of 300ish, which is where the Caputo Cuoco sits. This person ran an interesting experiment comparing Classica to Caputo pizzeria flour (at the time, a W value of 295) https://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=39897.msg400212#msg400212 He said that they 'looked identical when baked up.' I disagree :) But I think the number of people that would care that much about the difference would be minimal. If the Polselli is readily available- and, these days, readily available is an important feature, then enjoy the Polselli in good health. But, like the Caputo pizzeria, I wouldn't recommend pushing it past a day.
  12. FWIW, that white pie has one of the prettiest Neapolitan crusts that I've ever seen on this forum. I had a sense that the pizzeria flour @ 48 hours wouldn't be as wonderful as your emergency dough, but the gumminess is throwing me for a bit of a loop. How are you stretching these? Are you using the slap technique? If you are, how aggressively are you slapping? The reason I bring this up is that slapping with a heavy hand tends to promote gumminess. It's so closely associated, the second I hear 'gummy' my mind goes to the slap. Basically, aggressive slapping compresses the dough and makes it harder for heat to penetrate. It might just be as simple as 48 hours breaking a (relatively) weak dough down, which, in turn, freed up water, with a wetter dough resulting, with a similar amount of heat/bake time as your last bake- resulting in a wetter crumb. Was the dough overly sticky and/or slack? What bake times did you play around with? Did you go as long as 90 seconds? Visually, I'm not going to lie, this doesn't really look like a dough that's too far past it's prime. On the last pie, those blisters that you're seeing at 8:30pm, in Naples, those are generally considered to reveal overproofing, with smaller, more freckled leoparding being the goal. Considerable numbers of home pizza makers are happy as a clam with that kind of blistering. All the same, if you keep the pizzeria flour to 24 hours or less, you be less likely to see those.
  13. My feelings are mixed. I've seen some puffy crumbs with Nuvola, but also some crumbs that weren't puffy at all. For me, it's difficult to view Nuvola outside of the greater Caputo lens. Like many American pizza makers, when I started this journey, I was a pretty rabid Caputo fanboy. And then, about 10 years ago, I learned that, in Naples, they didn't have the market share, which surprised me. And then I watched Caputo take over the Pizza Expo in Vegas and, amazingly, make it even crasser. Combining that with the Americana- attempting to sell Americans their flour back to them at a markup- with the inference that we don't know how to mill good flour for our styles of pizza, the transitional whole wheat Typo 1 (bran is a gluten/volume killer), and the more recent corner cutting with the reformulation- needless to say, my love affair with Caputo has come to a close. Not that I'd ever to tell anyone to avoid the Cuoco or that the 5 Stagioni Napoletana is inherently superior. As a company, though, I resonate more with 5 Stagioni- and Pivetti- and I'm also hoping a domestic 00 producer steps up their game. GM was showing some promise with their Neapolitan, but, then they got greedy and starting jacking up the price. North American flour that hasn't been marked up by the Italians shouldn't be comparably priced. Ardent Mills came out with an 00 last year. Perhaps they could be the competition that brings down the price of GM. At the end of the day, I think it's kind of ridiculous to sell wheat to to the Italians and then buy it back again. So... it's not that I'm anti-Nuvola, I just, at this point, don't trust Caputo any more.
  14. Somewhere around June 2019, Caputo took the pizzeria flour from 12.75% protein: https://web.archive.org/web/20181024231832/http://caputoflour.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/00-Pizzeria-SPECS.pdf to 12.5% https://www.mulinocaputo.it/en/flour/la-linea-professionale/pizzeria A drop in .25% may not seem like a great deal, but, because the Neapolitans import so much of their pizza flour from North America, and, since strong North American flour is so expensive, they've always formulated these blends with just enough strength- and no more. From a perspective of a flour that's always been a bit borderline, a small drop in protein can be meaningful. Don't get me wrong, I'm sure that the pizza that you made yesterday turned out fine, but if you really want to play to the blue bag's strengths, I would recommend keeping it to a day or less, and saving the stronger Cuoco for the longer ferments.
  15. Wait a second. The first Modernist Cuisine says that, with steel plate, "you can cook a pizza that's as fast and good as any you'll find in Naples." Have you finally proven Nathan wrong? :) Seriously, I'm happy that you finally found your Neapolitan style pizza bliss, but, without folks like Nathan, Kenji and Andris (bakingsteel.com) telling home pizza makers that they could make Neapolitan pizza on steel, you likely could have reached this goal many years ago. There's an entire universe sitting between 60-70 second pizza and a 2 minute bake. Had any of these people actually spoken to Neapolitans, they would have understood this. Congrats on finding an Ooni 16 in stock. That's not easy to do these days. If you're going with a 48 hour or longer ferment, I recommend the cuoco, since the pizzeria flour was reformulated last year and doesn't stand up quite as well to long ferments.
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