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szv9n5 08-10-2012 05:03 PM

limp pizza dough
I am in the process of building my oven. I have been dreaming of a pizza slice where the crust will have a slight crunch on the outside and a moist dough on the inside. I imagined being able to hold the slice by the end crust and have the slice stand out straight as I eat it. Tonight I went to a local pizza restaurant that had a WFO. Cool to see....however, the pizza crust was not the way I expected. It was very limp and not crunchy at all. In fact, I had a hard time eating it without a fork. My question this normal? Do I have expectations of the WFO that are unrealistic or is it just a bad restaurant?

TropicalCoasting 08-10-2012 07:28 PM

Re: limp pizza dough
50 % of the time mine stand straight
For me it depends a lot on what/how much wet stuff goes on top

Tscarborough 08-11-2012 05:59 AM

Re: limp pizza dough
It depends upon what type of dough you make and how long you cook it. For what you had at the restaurant, it was probably a 24 hour warm rise and the 60-90 second cook. For the pizza you want, you will probably want a 24-48 hour cool rise and a 2-3 minute cook.

shuboyje 08-11-2012 08:07 AM

Re: limp pizza dough
Curious which Pizzeria you were at? There is one in Metro Detroit doing fairly authentic Neapolitan that is pretty wet and floppy like it should be. Most of the others do what I call americanized neapolitan that is dryer and crisper.

I agree with Tom, a wood fired oven is a versatile beast. You an cook what you want, it will just be done at a lower temperature and longer back time than traditional Neapolitan pizza.

ronh 08-11-2012 08:58 AM

Re: limp pizza dough
1 Attachment(s)
I'll tell you what has worked well for me. I find I get my 'desired' result, which is close to what you describe, when the dome is hot but the floor is 'moderately hot' allowing the floor to cook a bit longer and get a little drier/crisper. Of course, the life fire gets you the right spring for the desired crust, so the top will be done before the bottom....but I simply hold my larger metal pizza peel over the top for 45 sec or a minute to keep it from getting overdone while the crust on the bottom reaches my ideal spot.

Fired up yesterday, here's my personal favorite. I julienne pepperoni and pan fry it to intensify the flavor. That and some nice sweet sausage, bought with no casing. I have this as my wall paper on my computer and my mouth waters everytime I use the pc!

szv9n5 08-11-2012 01:27 PM

Re: limp pizza dough
Thanks guys....the place I went to was called Utica...glad to hear my desired results will be possible with some experimentation....I appreciate the feed back....back to my build...

mrchipster 08-11-2012 02:29 PM

Re: limp pizza dough

Originally Posted by szv9n5 (Post 136477)
Thanks guys....the place I went to was called Utica...glad to hear my desired results will be possible with some experimentation....I appreciate the feed back....back to my build...

You may also want to experiment with higher protein bread flours, I believe you are trying to achieve a more new york style crust and that can be achieved more easily with a cold Ferment of 48 to 72 hours with a 13% or higher protein flour.

Dakota maid, all trumps, or king Arthur all make this type of flour.

Do a couple of stretch and folds to the dough midway and cook at a 700-800 degree oven and it will come out great.


shuboyje 08-11-2012 07:15 PM

Re: limp pizza dough
I'm really surprised to hear it was Tivoli's. I enjoy their pizza, but it is much more New York then Neapolitan, and I've never had anything wet there in many trips. I'd guess Tivoli's is about a 4-5 minute bake time with a high gluten flour and dry mozz.

To get a result as dry as you want you are gonna need to use a fairly low hydration(maybe 55%, not really sure), a dry mozz, and an oven running much cooler then normal, I would start around 600F.

The only downside is that in all honesty what you are after could easily be cooked in a home oven. The upside to that is you could start dialing in your dough now. I'd head over to and get some advice on making what you are after from people who have done it.

szv9n5 08-12-2012 03:48 PM

Re: limp pizza dough
I appreciate all the feedback. Especially the part about being able to do it in a tradition home oven....I'm sure it was a bit hard to tell the guy that just invested thousands of dollars and countless man hours to something that he could have done with what he already owned. But I appreciate you telling me that. I think WFO cooking will teach me alot......has already! This post is just one example. You are probably correct about Tivoli's....they offered a thin crust (which is what I got) that is cooked in the brick oven. They also offered a NY style which was cooked in a gas oven. Sounds like I picked the wrong one for what I was looking for. Now that I know the difference I will have to investigate the two methods. I like them both and it would be fun to be able to have different styles....although I think I like the crunchy style best at the moment. I am learning more every day that this oven is not a one trick pony....which is awesome.

shuboyje 08-13-2012 02:15 PM

Re: limp pizza dough
No matter what, having a wood fired oven is always better then not having one, you are gonna love it. I'm also gonna bet that if you get really in to pizza you will eventually branch out into different style, some of which the wood fired oven will be a huge plus for due to the extreme heat it can produce.

Just for clarity my statements on Tivoli's were based on their thin crust wood fired pizza, only thing I've ever had there. Like I said before it is much closer to New York then Neapolitan. I would bet their New York style is actually closer to a standard american style pizza then actual New York style. Pizza style classifications can get pretty complicated, and like most pizzeria operators I don't think the people at Tivoli's really care about using the proper names, just the names that sell. Most are in the money business, not the pizza business.

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