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Silky, Stretchable Dough - How?????? - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community

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Silky, Stretchable Dough - How??????

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  • Silky, Stretchable Dough - How??????

    Oh dear ... I've just watched the FB dough preparation video on youtube and realised that my dough is NOTHING like that at all. What I saw was a silky, elastic, stretchable dough that was easy to work.

    Mine does not stretch easily and partially springs back to it's original shape. When I do stretch it at room temperature it goes very thin in patches and I spend my time having to perform "puncture repairs" all the time. This despite overnight proofing in the fridge, weighing ingredients and dough balls with digital scale, special pizza flour and overnight fermentation. I have followed the FB recipe to the letter, so why not silky dough?

    Hmmmm ... Experts??

    BTW what is the recommended dough ball weight for a pizza?
    / Rossco

  • #2
    Re: Silky, Stretchable Dough - How??????

    I'm not sure of the exact cause, but springing back means that your gluten structure is too tight and not relaxed enough. What specific kind of flour are you using, and how long is the dough resting at room temperature before shaping into a pizza?

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    • #3
      Re: Silky, Stretchable Dough - How??????

      Process according to the FB recipe... except I cut down on the salt to 3 grams and the yeast to 6 grams (fresh).

      Autolyse - 20 mins, add remaining flour and knead for 5-6 mins.

      Proof for 2 hours on bench

      Knead briefly then cut dough into balls

      Put in fridge for 12 hrs

      Stand for 1.5 hrs on counter before using...

      Using Weston Milling - Milano Pizza Flour. It is a locally available pizza flour that has been used with good results by others.

      Rossco
      Last edited by heliman; 10-15-2009, 09:43 PM.
      / Rossco

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      • #4
        Re: Silky, Stretchable Dough - How??????

        I'm not totally sure what the official standard weight is, but I usually have 250 grams for a 10 inch pizza.

        When your dough ball is at room temperature, does it sit straight up on the counter, or does it kind of flop downwards? The flop indicates that the dough is extensible while a stiff dough ball means that the gluten needs more rest.

        A few more questions. Why did you remove the extra salt? Have you tried the FB recipe using commercial (not cake) yeast? Let's see if we can eliminate some variables.

        I'm not yet a great pizzaiolo, but I bake fairly well and understand how to manipulate a dough.
        Last edited by Stan; 10-15-2009, 10:02 PM. Reason: corrections

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        • #5
          Re: Silky, Stretchable Dough - How??????

          Thanks Stan - I just thought that the 10 grams (from memory) was a bit too much and the fresh yeast I used was scaled up - 1 batch 3 x dry = 9 grams, and the latest batch 2 x dry = 6 grams. Would changing say salt/yeast content affect the end result??

          No haven't used commercial yeast - only the fesh that I got from the local Italian shop. I think I should go back to the standard dry yeast that the recipe calls for to remove that as a potential problem as this has given the best results so far.

          Is it advisable to go to the full 10 grams of salt or whatever the number mentioned in the recipe was?

          Rossco
          / Rossco

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          • #6
            Re: Silky, Stretchable Dough - How??????

            Originally posted by heliman View Post
            ...
            Mine does not stretch easily and partially springs back to it's original shape. When I do stretch it at room temperature it goes very thin in patches and I spend my time having to perform "puncture repairs" all the time. This despite overnight proofing in the fridge, weighing ingredients and dough balls with digital scale, special pizza flour and overnight fermentation. I have followed the FB recipe to the letter, so why not silky dough?

            Hmmmm ... Experts??
            ...
            I'm not an expert, but a person who used to have the same problems as you are having. In my case, it had nothing to do with the dough. It was me overhandling the dough while stretching it. Do you remember how long you handled the dough when stretching? I think, for me, anything more than 30-40 seconds of handling results in the issues you mention.

            Originally posted by heliman View Post
            BTW what is the recommended dough ball weight for a pizza?
            I'm able to make 12-13" pizzas with 225 grams. Initially, I was unable to get nice round ones. I also had my share of tears and breaks. But over time, my wife and I have been able to make round ones. I think it took us about 50 pizzas to gain enough experience to handle and stretch right. The dough recipe never changed.

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            • #7
              Re: Silky, Stretchable Dough - How??????

              Tks delicioso - I am definitely handling it longer than 30-40 secs.

              In re watching the FB video I see that the dough at the cutting stage is very soft and floppy. As per Stan's question... my dough is not "floppy" but rather more stiff in texture. Does this need more water perhaps?

              I have gone strictly according to the FB recipe - even weighing the ingredients. Could it be to do with the weather/humidity?

              I'm sure that there is something small/simple that I am missing .. maybe using 3 grams instead of 10 grams of salt?

              Rossco
              / Rossco

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Silky, Stretchable Dough - How??????

                Rossco, I've been using 10 gr of salt (instead of the 20 in the original recipe) and it's worked out fine. I also had dough that occasionally refused to relax. However, I also left some dough balls out on the table in their tupperware on occassion, got busy doing other things (people were stuffed with pizza so I took a break) then had more guests show up. So I returned to the oven assuming my dough balls sitting in the tupperwares for 2-3 hours were ruined or couldn't make good pizza and they spread and were floppy like I've never seen before. I think you might let them come to better room temperature, but do keep them covered with a moist towel in a plastic bag. Just a thought, good luck - Dino
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                • #9
                  Re: Silky, Stretchable Dough - How??????

                  Thanks Dino - will give that a go. How many hours room temperature rest is necessary do you reckon?

                  I will definitely up the salt to 10 grams. Maybe that is necessary to ensure the correct checmical reaction.

                  Rossco
                  / Rossco

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Silky, Stretchable Dough - How??????

                    Ok - next round of dough started.

                    Working according to the FB recipe and added 350 grams flour for the autolese process.

                    I expect that when I add the remaining 150 grams of flour that the dough will end up too stiff. Can I add water to the consistence just right or is there a better way to approach this? Maybe slightly less flour added?

                    TKS

                    Rossco
                    / Rossco

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Silky, Stretchable Dough - How??????

                      Originally posted by heliman View Post
                      In re watching the FB video I see that the dough at the cutting stage is very soft and floppy. As per Stan's question... my dough is not "floppy" but rather more stiff in texture. Does this need more water perhaps?
                      I have only used Caputo Pizzeria flour so far. My hydration is about 65%, plus or minus 2%.

                      Originally posted by heliman View Post
                      I'm sure that there is something small/simple that I am missing .. maybe using 3 grams instead of 10 grams of salt?
                      When I had problems like you are having, I was so obsessed with getting it right that I made large batches of dough with just water and flour so that I could practice. I added no salt or even yeast. It worked fine once I got the knack of handling. So I am less suspicious of the salt.

                      I have an idea. Flour and water are cheap. But it is always stressful to waste dough when you took two hours to fire up the oven and guests are waiting. Perhaps you can do some experimentation like I did, without the pressure.

                      May be your scale is the culprit. Can you add 1/2 cup more water than what your scale indicates and play with the amount of flour you add towards the end to get the consistency you like? It is harder to add water at the end than to add flour at the end.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Silky, Stretchable Dough - How??????

                        in my case all the difference was made by the 12 hours in the refrigerator.
                        my own Quest for Fire:
                        http://www.flickr.com/photos/leckig/

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                        • #13
                          Re: Silky, Stretchable Dough - How??????

                          This has been an interesting exercise.

                          I handled the dough much less than before this tme around and the dough is now VERY floppy. In fact, I would say that it's a bit too floppy. I need just a small amount more firmness so that I can stretch the dough evenly when making pizzas. With the dough at the moment, if I lift it up to stretch it, even momentarily - it stretches too much instantly leaving me with a very large and thin pizza.

                          So the question is, how do I get that slight bit more firmness? Is a bit more kneading required perhaps?

                          Thanks everyone for the feedback so far...

                          Ross
                          / Rossco

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                          • #14
                            Re: Silky, Stretchable Dough - How??????

                            **UPDATE**

                            Just watched the FB video on Youtube again and noticed that the method was as follows:

                            1. Prepare dough
                            2. Place dough in fridge for 12 hours
                            3. Cut into small sizes and shape into balls
                            4. Allow to rest for a few hours

                            I am:

                            1. Cutting dough and rolling them into balls
                            2. Proofing in the fridge for 12 hours
                            3. Remove from fridge for 1-2 hrs
                            4. Shape and bake

                            I am wondering if there is any advantage in cutting and shaping after the 12 hr proofing. I will give that a try and see if there is any difference in the stiffness of the dough..

                            Rossco
                            / Rossco

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Silky, Stretchable Dough - How??????

                              The salt will make a difference if the dough is too slack. Salt tightens and sets a gluten structure. But, since your dough isn't/wasn't slack at all, I'd do what you're doing and check both kneading and rest time.

                              Are you kneading by hand or with a stand mixer? How long? Does your dough pass the window pane test? Is it at room temperature when you start to shape?

                              Stan

                              ps...weather (and humidity) definitely makes a difference. It's only 2-3 percent, but that's huge in bread baking.

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