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heliman 10-21-2009 03:27 AM

Autolyse 101
Another thread highlghted the critical nature of the Autolyse process in pizza making so I thought it would be worth discussing this under a separate thread.

Specific questions so far:

1. The FB recipe talks of an autolyse time of 20 minutes but others have suggested 30 minutes. Any preference?

2. Does the autolyse have to take place with flour and water only - or can the salt and the instant dry yeast be added with other ingredients before autolyse takes place?

3. What percent of the recipe flour needs to be added to the mix to make the autolyse most effective. The FB recipe suggests 80% but I have heard 65 - 75%.

Any thoughts or suggestions appreciated.


DrakeRemoray 10-21-2009 02:05 PM

Re: Autolyse 101
Personally, for all bread and pizza making, I add all my flour, water and yeast, then I do a brief knead, autolyse for 20 minutes then add salt and finish kneading...

heliman 10-21-2009 05:12 PM

Re: Autolyse 101
I have been adding all ingredients before autolyse but last night went flour and water only - and left it for 30 minutes. I made the dough balls and they are now sitting in the fridge awaiting a baking session this evening.

Observations so far are that the balls have maintained their shape much better than before. Previously with all ingredients added to the mix before autolyse the balls puffed up and even overflowed from the container. Using the same amount of yeast this hasn't happened with the latest batch.

I will provide an update on the final shaping and cooking process after the session this evening as I will have a better idea of the overall results. So far however I am quite impressed...


FrankF 10-26-2009 11:06 PM

Re: Autolyse 101
I've noticed a difference in the e-books for WFO's and Pizza stones. The WFO e-book calls for 80% of the flour for autolysing while the pizza stone e-book says to put all in all the flour. Both call for holding off on the salt and yeast till after autolysing is complete. I've been following the pizza stone version in my WFO with excellent results. Helps to use Catputo flour if you can get it. Just my 2 cents.


heliman 10-27-2009 06:35 AM

Re: Autolyse 101
Yes, I also went with the 100% flour, added in two stages about a minute apart. I added the salt and yeast together as well. The result was the very best dough I have made so far.

I went with Dino's suggestion of 2 grams yeast (instead of 3). I was very pleased with the results at this evenings bake-off. Nice crusty, crispy result and the dough stretched very easily with no weak/thin spots at all.

Can't wait to crank the WFO up at the weekend...


Mitchamus 10-27-2009 03:39 PM

Re: Autolyse 101
I normally dissolve the yeast in the water with a pinch of brown sugar to get it moving... (and to make sure the yeast is ok)

so until now, my autolyse has included the yeast, but I'll try water only the next time.

really - you need to do two batches side by side at the same time to campare methods properly, as temperature & relative humidity could be skewing your results :D

heliman 10-27-2009 05:24 PM

Re: Autolyse 101
Thanks Mitch ....

Think I may do a few batches this weekend (simultaneously) on a scaled back recipe which produces 2 x pizzas..

The last batch was just incredible I have to say and I attribute the success largely to the use of the "padddle" attachment on the KA at the beginning of the process, then switching to the hook after autolyse.

Doing a quick batch this evening to see if I can duplicate the results of the last batch .... here's hoping ...


heliman 11-03-2009 07:10 PM

Re: Autolyse 101
I have a quick question on autolyse...

I understand that different flours absorb water differently. In making dough with say 65% hydration, one calculates the 65% water/flour ratio accordingly. The question I have however is how can one check to determine if the flour/dough is actually 65% hydrated. I know there are adjustments to be made for temperature etc. so perhaps this is also a factor at this stage of the process.

What made me think about this was when I watched the FB dough preparation video again and I saw how floppy that dough was. I would think that mine may need more water ... or could that be kneading to get the floppiness??

Hope my question is clear enough..



Mitchamus 11-03-2009 07:48 PM

Re: Autolyse 101
Since you are using a KA to do the kneading,
I doubt that it's due to a lack of it!

Although the recipe says 65% hydration, it also says to add enough flour till it just forms a dough ball. - the final result may be higher than 65%.

Since you are experimenting - have you tried the no knead method yet?
put everything in a bowl, mix it up a bit, and leave it on the bench over night.
In the morning, punch down & make up your dough balls, let them sit for a at least 30 mins before using - or store in the fridge till you ready. (snaplocks!) again allow 30 mins or longer to get to room temp (maybe an hour?)

Mitchamus 11-03-2009 07:58 PM

Re: Autolyse 101
go on try it!
In the time it takes you to reply, you could have made a batch! :P

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