#31  
Old 02-13-2010, 09:35 PM
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Default Re: Overworking Dough?

Rossco, I think Reinhardt's methods have changed (and improved) since BBA was published...which was in the pre-no-knead era. I have his most recent book, "Artisan Breads Everyday" and he is ALL about the stretch and fold and rest/retard which is not a technique that appears much if at all in the BBA.
Incidentally, his Neo pizza dough recipe in the latest book is 71% hydration, IIRC.
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  #32  
Old 02-13-2010, 09:48 PM
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Default Re: Overworking Dough?

Thanks Splat - will have a read through my copy of "Artisans Bread Every Day" again to refresh my memory.

Just wondering then what the "pizza" makers of note like Anthony Mangieri and of course da Michele and the likes do: knead/no-knead? Would the answer to this perhaps be the key to the knead/no-knead question? Maybe they just stick to age-old practices regardless and would not change even if newer and more efficient preparation methods became available?
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  #33  
Old 02-14-2010, 07:57 AM
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Default Re: Overworking Dough?

Good comments, Splatg! His approach has changed. I think having several hundred testers for his recent books contributed a lot to that.

WRT mixers, Rossco, we tend to use the word "mixer" as a generic, all-equivalent term, and I think conventional mixers probably deserve to be lumped but the spiral is, in my experience, a different animal that should not be lumped with mixers so....

To the question "do we need mixers" I think the answer is clearly no. But the type of dough one is after is an important consideration. I don't think it is so clean as "yes" or "no".

The ultilmate answer personally is that I hardly ever use a mixer for bread. Mainly for volkornbrot (sp?) cause it is such a mess (100% rye sourdough) and sometimes for whole grain breads. I also typically use one for crackers.

When I first read The Bread Builders (Daniel Wing) I was amazed by the stories of bakers like Alan Scott making 50 pound batches of dough in tubs. But the idea is growing rapidly less daunting.

One anecdote. After the bread class with Reinhart we went to a pizzaria. The owner of the pizzaria had been at the class. And he commented to Peter how he had been impressed by his handling of the dough and use of wet hands. Peter responded that it had taken him a LONG TIME to figure out that dough would not stick to wet hands. I will guess that it was only about five years ago. In the first class I did with him he used wet hands and flour. Sort of ambivalent.... Now there is a heavy focus on wet hands. And the dough is simply gorgeous - even when really wet. (Can be a bit sticky but...amazingly well controlled - much better behaved than when adding flour which seems to exacerbate stickiness now that I am growing used to wet).

Hang in there!
Jay
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  #34  
Old 02-14-2010, 08:07 AM
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Default Re: Overworking Dough?

Mixers are indispensable if you are making a LOT of dough, as bakery and pizzeria operations do. In my opinion, if you are only mixing a pound or two of flour than you can easily mix that much flour and water by hand. On that scale, a mixer is just one more thing you need to clean.
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Old 02-14-2010, 09:17 AM
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Default Re: Overworking Dough?

Hi dmun!

I do not have experience with bakery size production but agree with your premise. My comment on Scott was more thatI couldn't originally imagine doing dough by hand it that size batch but now am beginning to see how it could be reasonably done. But using a mixer would be far preferable! And even for 4 to 6 pound batches...hand is IMO fine. No problem! And less cleanup is highly appreciated!

Thanks!
Jay
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  #36  
Old 02-14-2010, 05:03 PM
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Default Re: Overworking Dough?

Right ... I am going to put this to the test. I read Reinhart's latest method in Artisan Bread last night and thought that I would give it go tonight so will make a batch when I get home this evening. I will follow his "hands only" method to the letter and see how it turns it. If one can get away with not having to knead this would certainly simplify the process and save a lot of time and cleaning up. Will report back on my findings....
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Last edited by heliman; 02-15-2010 at 04:01 AM.
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Old 02-15-2010, 03:59 AM
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Default Re: Overworking Dough?

OK, I've made a batch of Reinhart's no knead dough.

Observations so far are that it looks a bit like thick glue!! Definitely hasn't got the strength/smoothness of kneaded dough. The high hydration makes it very difficult to work with too.

It is in the fridge at the moment so I will give it the benefit of the doubt and hope for a miracle by the fridge fairies in the night...
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  #38  
Old 02-15-2010, 08:20 AM
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Default Re: Overworking Dough?

Hi Rossco!

It is perhaps worth noting that what people write and what they do are not always the same. The things I saw Peter do cannot readily be put in words. So following his instructins do not get you to the same point. His doughs definitely tend to be wet but when properly done, far more manageable than what your comments suggest. It sounds like something went astray but...???

It should be at least somewhat more obedient in the morning!
Jay
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  #39  
Old 02-15-2010, 02:54 PM
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Default Re: Overworking Dough?

Hello Jay,

Just checked on the dough (it's almost 6 a.m. here) so its had a night to work. There is no rising detected and the dough can best be described as blobs. I haven't given up but will test it out in the electric oven this evening and see how it goes.

BTW I did true Neapolitan so left out the honey/oil which would have made it less wet, but if I had included them then I'm sure that the dough would have been so wet that it would have been porridge!!
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Old 02-16-2010, 08:37 AM
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Default Re: Overworking Dough?

I prepared 2 pizzas from the dough I made last night and the results were disasterous. The dough itself was unworkable as it just tore into holes and fell apart when stretched. I ended up rolling it into a ball and then used a rolling pin to flatten it (yes I am ashamed to admit it but I had no option). The dough tasted like one of those frozen ones that you get in the supermarket, dry and tasteless - strange given the high hydration level.

I was about to bin the remaining dough but decided to pop it in the oven as a small loaf of bread. That turned out OK so we didn't starve this evening.

I would like to just clarify that I believe I followed the Reinhart neapolitan pizza dough recipe very accurately, but as it was the first time I had made it I may have got something wrong. Either way, I cannot recommend NOT kneading pizza dough and will definitely not risk wasting more flour on this process. The kneaded dough I have been producing since getting the new mixer has been consistently far superior to this last batch. Perhaps others have had better success than I have by not kneading the dough however there are plenty of subscribers to the kneaded dough method school of thought so I will stick the latter for the foreseeable future.

It was a good experiment though and a great opportunity to explore new areas of pizza making despite its failure.
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Last edited by heliman; 02-16-2010 at 07:28 PM.
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