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scott123

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Everything posted by scott123

  1. I'm looking for an all stainless whisk with a length between 7 and 9 inches with an epoxy seal where the wires go into the hollow handle- or some other material that gives it an air tight seal. It seems like every stainless whisk I find on Amazon has a handle that will fill up with liquid if you put it in a dishwasher with the wires facing up.
  2. The best and worst calzone I've ever had came out of a wood fired oven (at Lucali, in Brooklyn). Best, because the hand dipped ricotta rocked my world, but worst because the intense heat of the oven produced sections of raw dough. But the parts where the dough was cooked... wow. The reason I bring this up because, as big of a fan as I am of the Koda 16... I'm not sure I'd buy it for the specific goal of making calzones. Ooni's don't really have low settings- it's either incendiary, or slightly less than incendiary with the knob at it's lowest. This means that, for lower temp baking, you have to cycle them off and on. It's very possible that a calzone might benefit from hotter than your average home oven temps, but, I think the Koda is pushing it.
  3. As big of a fan as I am of the Koda 16, I'm not impressed at all with Ooni's accessories. First, anodized or not, you don't want an aluminum turning peel. Aluminum is just way too soft and won't stand up to the wear and tear. Also, 7" is a little small for turning. In Naples, turning peels are traditionally 9" or 10". This is still a little small https://us.gozney.com/products/roccbox-turning-peel but it should be stainless. 7" should be comfortable for turning a 13" Neapolitan pie- and might be okay for a 16" NY, but I've never tried turning a 16" pizza with a 7" peel, so I can't say for certain. 7" should be fine for retrieving a 16", since you can slide the pizza up the handle a bit. This piques my curiosity: https://www.amazon.com/Stainless-Perforated-Turning-Detachable-Handle/dp/B0912JFT7Q/ Very reasonable price, 9", stainless, and has a longer handle that can be unscrewed into a shorter one. Loving all four of these aspects. But the reviews. Yeesh. Dialing in the right gauge metal on a peel can be difficult. You want it thin enough to cleanly get under the pizza, but, not so thin that the material bends when you go to pick the pizza up. The review seems to point towards a gauge of metal that might be too thick. If this is the case, you should be able to sand down the edge to a finer point, but, without having the peel in hand, I can't make any promises. https://www.amazon.com/Turning-Stainless-Perforated-Paddle-Handle/dp/B07YXTDXJ3 This is a classic Italian peel at a very reasonable price (these used to typically be $100+) but that 47" handle is rough. Depending on how the plastic handle is attached, you might be able to take it apart and cut it down to a more reasonable length. While I like the $34 price tag of the previous peel, this peel feels like a better known quantity. This is probably what I'd get if I were getting a turning peel. As far as what to spend your $50 credit on, that's tough. Bamboo wood peels are worthless. An infrared thermometer is incredibly useful, but, 40 bucks for a $20 thermometer? They've got a lot of nerve. A good wood peel is even more important than a turning peel, btw. No bamboo (bamboo doesn't absorb moisture as well as other woods). It also needs to have a thin face/blade- NOT a thick blade with a taper just at the very end. With a thick blade and a short, stubby taper, the toppings have a tendency to waterfall as you launch the pie. Lastly, you've got a 16" oven, you're going to eventually make 16" pies, which will require a 16" wood peel. Btw, perforated metal peels for launching are overrated. Wood absorbs moisture and gives you a longer window before the dough starts to stick. I'm still looking for the peel of my dreams, but, for an Ooni 16, I'd probably go with this: https://www.amazon.com/American-Metalcraft-4216-Standard-42-Inches/dp/B00G67R72K Good price, good dimensions, good wood. It's a little bit clunky, but it's way better than what's available right now. You'll probably need to cut the handle down a bit, though.
  4. I'm not sure if you're looking to reduce the puff further, but docking the rim with a fork will reduce the puff considerably.
  5. This is one of the major reasons why you won't find 65% water in any pizzeria in Naples. Da Michele could never sell 1000 pizzas in a day if the dough was sticky. Btw, it's possible that you're already taking this into account, but, you want to be careful when working with doughs with different hydrations, since the hydration will impact yeast activity. The less water, the slower the proof. In order to reach the same volume/level of fermentaton as the wetter dough, the drier dough will need more time- ideally both in the balled and bulk forms. Obviously, since the dough is already balled, you can't add time to the bulk this time, but I'd push the balled proof further on the drier dough- maybe as much as an hour longer, if possible. If you're very comfortable proofing dough and know exactly what peak volume looks like before it starts to overproof/collapse, then you might play around with placing the drier dough in a warmer place so that it's done about the same time as the wetter dough. But this can be a little riskier, since it's easier to push the dough too much.
  6. Anthony is the quintessential purist. The original gangster's original gangster. In a way, by basically channeling Raffaele Esposito, he's turning back the clock 130 years. Sourdough is fundamentally narcissistic masochism, but I do respect his obsession. And, while I don't have a time machine, I'm fairly confident that the only difference between archaic Neapolitan and modern Neapolitan pizza is the leavening- that it was most likely 60% then, as it is now. Don't get me wrong, you can make beautiful 70% hydration pizza. But... if you want the pizza in that particular photo, it's not going to happen at 70% water.
  7. That particular pie is sourdough, but the look can be recreated with commercial yeast exponentially easier. If that's the look you're trying to replicate, I can't recommend a traditional Neapolitan approach strongly enough. This means: W290 flour (Caputo Red works well, but any Italian 00 with a strength of W290 is fine- just make sure you absolutely never use English flour). 58%-60% hydration Straight dough with a bulk and a balled ferment No refrigeration- ever The right dough ball size - typically no more than about 250g for a 13" pie Using enough yeast and enough time to get peak volume, but not so much time you get big black spots (the Italians call them measles). For W290 flour, this means proofing the dough no longer than about 24 hours A blazingingly hot oven - beyond the recommended 20 minutes in the instructions A quality turning peel - stainless, round, no smaller than 8" and no larger than 10"
  8. I could be wrong, but I don't think restaurants are pickling- it's more like a home hobbyist thing- like homebrewing. I'm also not aware of any Chinese restaurant supply stores in my area (that would be awesome if there was). But Restaurant Depot might have something. Maybe. Thanks. Chinatown (NYC) isn't too terribly far, but the tolls across the river would make for a very expensive crock.
  9. I've been contemplating pickling for years, and have finally reached a place where I'm ready to take the plunge. The issue is, though, that I can't find a container I'm happy with. I like the traditional Chinese design: https://www.amazon.com/Traditional-Fermenting-4000ml-Gallon-Airlock/dp/B01FRBTU7K But 50 bucks?! There's also these: https://www.walmart.com/ip/One-Gallon-Wide-Mouth-Jar-with-Lid-and-Twin-Bubble-Airlock-Set-of-2/194888232?u1=&oid=223073.1&wmlspartner=2z//F4WtKZw&sourceid=17269632240084465373&affillinktype=10&veh=aff and, while I like the fact that, once the fermentation is over, you can swap out the lid and put it in the fridge, it's just not as sexy. I'm in Northern NJ. I have a pretty good local Taiwanese grocer, but cursory investigations haven't turned up anything. Thoughts?
  10. As I said before, hydrocolloid gums (like Super Neutrose) can be used to replace sugar- not just augment sugar based recipes. But you need considerably more- but, not too much since they can be laxating. And I wouldn't just ramp up the Super Neutrose, either, since, although it's hydrocolloid gums, the first ingredient is sugar, which works against your sugar free goal. Gelatin is not a bad idea- for some of the lifting. To it's credit, it's not laxating, but if you go too heavy with it, it will become chewy. When it comes to gums, much like sweeteners, the more the merrier. Acacia, guar, carob, xanthan, locust bean, alginate. carageenan. Agar can get a little complicated, but maybe even some agar as well. With enough gelatin and the right amount of a wide variety of gums, you might be able to cut the inulin in half. Half as much inulin should be more tolerable. The other thing I'd play around with would be allowing the sorbet to warm up a bit before serving it. The warm up only works with the additional ingredients, though. since it will require some structure as it thaws.
  11. It's sold out https://ooni.com/products/ooni-pro Even if the Pro were in stock, I'd still recommend the Koda 16.@Kerry Beal has made some beautiful pies with the Pro, but the thermodynamics in the Koda are superior. For it's dimensions, the gas burner on the Pro is a little underpowered and the burner's torch-like flame requires considerably more turning than the L-shaped pipe burner on the Koda, which extends around two sides of the pizza. The size of the Pro does give it a bit more flexibility when it comes to other foods, but, if you're investing in an oven like this, you should really be looking for the best possible configuration for pizza, not other foods- imo. And, try not to be too enamored with using wood. There's a common misconception that wood adds flavor to pizza. It does not, since the pizza bakes below the layer of smoke. Wood is also much dirtier and far harder to get consistent temps with. The Ooni wood options are especially problematic, since, when you place them on a table, it puts the top of the chimney at face level, so, when the wind shifts, you're breathing in smoke. I know plenty of folks who make stunning pies with the Karu, but I also know plenty of folks who curse the hassle that wood introduces. The Koda makes the same stunning pies with a fraction of the hassle.
  12. As you're probably figuring out, there really is no truly low setting for an Ooni. At least, not with the propane burner. If you're burning wood, you could probably control the quantity of wood to limit the heat output. A gas burner isn't really happy on it's lowest setting for a 4-6 minute NY style pizza and a loaf of bread, even a small one, will be exponentially less heat/a longer time than that. For NY style, the best workaround is to cycle the oven on and off, so, in theory, if you wanted to babysit it, you could try taking the cycling route. If anyone could figure out how to do great bread in an Ooni, it would be you, but, I think this might be more trouble than it's worth. At least, not a loaf. Naan or pita- world class, but, a loaf... If you're truly dead set on a loaf, I'd invest in a flameguard: https://ooni.com/products/flame-guard-v1-3 This one is currently sold out, and isn't the right size for the Pro, but, something along these lines will help even out the flame and give you less localized burning. I would look for something pretty tall so that it sends the heat towards the ceiling and not at the loaf.
  13. Were these cookies baked twice? My South German grandmother made her spritz cookies with only egg yolks- no other liquid. I believe, much like pie crust, she refrigerated the dough for a bit to help it form a more solid mass.
  14. I'm assuming, from the radio silence, 3.25-3.5 hours was a success. This being said... dough that fights you after a 2 hour warm up could indicate other issues beyond too short of a warm up. Could you share your recipe?
  15. Balling dough activates a gargantuan amount of gluten- so much so that the dough will never fully relax in 2 hours. Every dough is different, but, in general, you never want to re-ball dough within 6 hours of stretching it- and, even then, you don't want to re-ball cold dough, since cold dough loses its tackiness, which risks a pinch-shut that doesn't completely hold. And, although rests can help stubborn dough, dough that's just barely rested enough to stretch won't give you the same oven spring as a more relaxed/extensible dough that was only balled once- prior to putting it in the fridge.
  16. I think, because granular erythritol looks so much like sugar, it's easy to fall under the misconception that it provides bulk. It doesn't. The molecular weight for sugar is 342 g/mol, while erythritol is 122. You might be tempted to think that erythritol provides 1/3 the bulk, but, it's way worse than that, since the relationship isn't linear. At room temp, 370g of erythritol is soluble in 1 liter water (1/5th the solubility of sugar). If you were to dissolve 370g sugar in 1 liter of water, it wouldn't be super viscous, but it would clearly not be pure water. 370g of erythritol, on the other hand, would be indistinguishable from pure water. That's how little bulk erythritol is bringing to the table. Erythritol has only one purpose in desserts- in small enough quantities to keep it from being crystallized (crystallization = no sweetness + offputting endothermic/cooling effect) it's invaluable for bumping up the synergy with other sweeteners and elevating the overall quality of sweetness. Fats, protein and starches all impact erythritol's crystallization, so there aren't any hard and fast rules. Keeping my erythritol in proportion to the polyd has worked pretty well for me. 7 parts polyd to 1 part erythritol, in solution, tends to keep the erythritol from misbehaving.
  17. When it comes to achieving the textural qualities of sugar, there is no free lunch. Either the product digests, and raises blood sugar, or it doesn't and it causes digestive issues. As I said, erythritol is already laxating, so inulin is not that dramatic of an addition- and is certainly not anything bordering on toxic. If you eat legumes/artichokes, you're eating inulin. Sugar free desserts involve a certain amount of personal responsibility. You need to inform your guests and/or customers what ingredients you're using, but it's up to them to make the decision as to whether or not to consume it. It's like serving lentil soup to guests. It's up to you to tell them it's lentil soup, but it's up to your guests to forgo it if they typically have issues digesting legumes. Hydrocolloid gums like acacia are sometimes used to mimic the texture of sugar, but those are laxating as well.
  18. Polydextrose and I go way back. I was the first online advocate for baking with polydextrose at home. I bought a 50 lb. bag in 2004 and am still baking with that same bag today (it's clumped into a single mass that's hard as a rock, but I can break pieces off with a hammer). I've had inulin in my pantry all this time as well, but, I'd never betray my beloved polyd. This being said, polydextrose would most likely be impossible to find in Finland, while here's a link for inulin: https://iconfit.fi/toode/iconfit-inulin-400g-kasulik-kiudaine/ As far as tolerability goes, inulin and polyd are very close molecular cousins. Polyd is polymerized glucose, while inulin is polymerized fructose. Long chain sugars shouldn't really cause dramatically more or less issues than other long chain sugars. Not that I'm discounting your experience. I think, though, that if you look at most people, all things being equal, polyd and inulin should digest somewhat similarly- ie, they should be fine up to a certain dose. Is it possible that you might have built up a tolerance to polyd since you eat it more frequently, but, don't eat inulin as frequently?
  19. Erythritol isn't really a valid sugar substitute. At least, not on it's own- and not in something that requires the texture or the chemical properties of sugar. The alcohol in the limoncello gives you some freezing point depression, so that helps, but, you're going to need some sugary bulk. If you were in the U.S., I'd tell you to buy allulose. I'm not head over heals in love with allulose, but, it's the closest thing you'll find to sugar without having any obvious down sides- at least, not as of today. Are you making this for yourself or serving it to others? Inulin can be laxating, but, then, so is erythritol (for some). As long as you keep the serving size small, though, the inulin should be tolerable- and actually adds some health benefits in the form of a prebiotic. If I were making this, I might start with 2.5DL inulin, .5DL erythritol, .5DL xylitol for the sugar component. For 5DL water, that's about as much erythritol and xylitol as you're going to be able to work with while avoiding issues with crystallization. I would make the mix, chill it in the fridge overnight- maybe even 2 nights, and see if the sweeteners start to crystallize. If they do, you'll want to back down on the erythritol and xylitol even more. Inulin is pretty powdery, so 2.5DL isn't much, so you can definitely increase the inulin for better texture, but, remember it's propensity for laxation. If you have dogs, forget the xylitol, though. That's the textural aspects of sugar. As far as sweetness goes... Lemon requires a load of sweetening- and stevia isn't up the task- at all. You're going to need at least one other high intensity sweetener in the mix. Sucralose will help considerably, but I don't think even sucralose and stevia can rise to the task of countering the sourness of the lemon. Maybe add aspartame as well.
  20. If you decide to build it, keep the ceiling height low. There's an unbelievable number of wood fired oven plans that pretend to be pizza ovens, but that are actually just outdoor fireplaces and that don't work for pizza at all. Even if you buy a prefab or a kit, watch your ceiling height, as the thermodynamics on those can frequently be off as well.
  21. A bit stale. Good one I can't speak for other flours in other countries, but my previous comment related to pizza flour. Pizza flour is only milled in 4 countries. U.S., Canada, the UK and Italy. The Italians are renowned for bending over backwards trying to protect the protein by keeping the temperatures low during the grinding process. This being said, I've seen countless doughs made with Neapolitan flour that fell right in line with North American flours with the same protein percentages, so the common idea that North American millers are taking protein damage less seriously than the Italians is not true in my experience. Now, British pizza flours, specifically the Manitoba varieties, they do consistently underperform their specs, but I've always chalked that up to a quality issue with private label rather than questionable milling. My data is only observational, but it is comprehensive. Based on what I've seen, I think that modern milling methods have reached a point where protein damage is no longer much of a concern- in pizza flour milling countries.
  22. For white flour, protein is basically gluten. When you start extracting closer to the hull, as you do with whole grain/high ash, you'll run into proteins that don't form gluten, and thus skew the numbers.
  23. https://www.amazon.com/King-Arthur-Specialty-Flour-American-Grown/dp/B08J23Z8DD "Our new ‘00’ Pizza Flour’s perfectly balanced blend of hard and soft wheats deliver an outstanding Neapolitan-style crust that’s crispy on the outside while chewy on the inside, and has a 11.5% baking protein level along with extra-fine ‘00’ milling." I'm not endorsing this flour, btw, just relaying information from the miller.
  24. Thank you for your kind words. I'm happy to help! Steven Shaw, founder of this community used to talk about being hard on ideas, but soft on people (or something to that effect). It doesn't have to be, but a homemade pizza is an extension of the person who made it, so being hard on homemade pizzas is, to an extent, being hard on people. There are plenty of ideas worth being hard on within these walls (so SO many ideas ), but homemade pizzas should probably be off limits.
  25. I've been working with and researching alternative/artificial sweeteners for 17 years. What you're describing, a viable sugar free chocolate bar, would take an R&D department and at least $500K to develop. There's not an edible sugar free chocolate bar on the market that hasn't devoted these kinds of resources towards development. And even throwing that much money at the problem, the bars are never that good- forget about any kind of snap. Unless you can keep erythritol dissolved, it will not only have that horrible cooling effect that @jimb0 described, it will provide very little sweetness. Also, because of it's minuscule molecular structure, it doesn't really provide any of the sugary texture/bulk that you would want a sweetener to provide. Polysaccharide are somewhat effective at keeping erythritol dissolved, and, as the thermometer goes up, perhaps a small amount of erythritol could be kept in a glassy state with a hard polydextrose stage- that might be able to be used as a powder. But polysaccharides are insanely hygroscopic- and I've never heard of anyone doing this. This is absolutely a 'mud track to nowhere.' A sugar free ganache, though, that might be feasible.
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