#1  
Old 04-16-2010, 07:16 AM
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Default Biga Based Dough

Made some very low yeast biga last night and gave it a go this evening. I allowed a 3 hr bench ferment. No semolina - just a dry run of the traditional recipe. Made 2 pizzas and kept one dough back as the "old dough".

Overall impression - Great. Not overproofed but definitely some bubbles from yeast activity. The dough had a lovely sweet tast despite no sugar being added. Puffing just about right for what I like. I chopped the biga up to aid mixing and kneaded it 5 mins in the mixer then 7 mins on the bench.
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Biga Based Dough-cimg3847.jpg   Biga Based Dough-cimg3848.jpg   Biga Based Dough-cimg3853.jpg   Biga Based Dough-cimg3855.jpg   Biga Based Dough-cimg3859.jpg  

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Old 04-16-2010, 07:20 AM
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Default Re: Biga Based Dough

Some more pics from this evening's bake...
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Biga Based Dough-cimg3861.jpg   Biga Based Dough-cimg3869.jpg   Biga Based Dough-cimg3870.jpg  
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Old 04-16-2010, 11:34 AM
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Default Re: Biga Based Dough

Quote:
Originally Posted by heliman View Post
Overall impression - Great.
I agree! That looks absolutely yummy!!
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Old 04-16-2010, 05:24 PM
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Default Re: Biga Based Dough

Fabulous crust there Rossco. I experimented with a biga last year. I seem to gravitate to poolish for some reason although I recall it was successful.

Your pizza bread looks amazing. Your pic looks like you put your olive oil on the dough with herbs AND then cook it in the oven. Is that what you did? I always bake it plain and then drizzle the oil and herbs on after but doing it before cooking looks good. I'll definitely try it, I guess it's no different than making a pizza so I don't know why I always made mine the other way.
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Old 04-16-2010, 06:11 PM
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Default Re: Biga Based Dough

Hi Dino!

Try the oil and herbs route and chop it into about 3/4 inch squares and try using it as croutons on the salad before your pizza! Works pretty well!
Jay
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Old 04-16-2010, 11:16 PM
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Default Re: Biga Based Dough

That's a great idea Jay! Salad goes really well with pizza (almost always have one) so setting aside an herb'd crust for croutons is something I'll definitely try.

I've just made an recipe and a half for overnight fermenting and a small pizza party tomorrow so I'll give it a whirl on the first pie.
Thanks, Dino
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Old 04-17-2010, 02:19 AM
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Default Re: Biga Based Dough

Thanks for the feedback Brian & Dino...

Dino, yes i added the rock salt, olive oil and rosemary before the pizza was cooked. I find that when I have rosemary which has a very "meaty" leaf (e.g. the Tuscan variety) then I put it on before.

In the WFO I sometimes 1/2 cook the pizza then remove it from the oven, add rosemary, then shove it back into the oven and it doesn't over cook the topping. I find a bit of slightly crispy rosemary quite nice though as it still has the full flavour.

I am very pleased with the "old dough" method and will see what the next batch turns out like tomorrow with a 48 hr brewing of the biga. The last lot was on done for 24 hrs. Will also be adding semolina and going slightly wetter on the mix.
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Old 04-17-2010, 11:22 PM
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Default Re: Biga Based Dough

Good Year Tyres... I am a supplier of raw materials... OK, well not quite...

Used a recipe with 40% semilina in the mix and the dough was VERY rubbery - even after a 4 hr proofing session. The dough consistence made it difficult to work with so I will have to revert back to a lower semolina formula of around 7-10%.

I also used a piece of dough from Friday night... and I realised that it may have been the salt that killed the good stuff which prevented it from rising. Must make a new biga each time...

No pics - to spare me the embarrassment!

Also, made a batch of Reinhart ciabatta and have a pot of soup on the go so we won't be starving (fortunately).

Lessons learned: go easy on the semolina and make new batch of biga before every baking session.
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Old 04-18-2010, 06:12 AM
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Default Re: Biga Based Dough

Hi Rossco!

Good experiment! Like so many, the results in retrospect aren't all that surprising There is a reason Italians use semolina to make pasta and wheat to make bread and pizza (sometimes with a little semolina). I make pasta with either flour or semolina and prefer semolina but the texture is definitely different from flour. So I am not surprised the pies were different.

I suspect your problem may have been exacerbated by overworking the dough. Hammelman says it is very easy to overwork semolina dough and that would make it very hard to work. Still, whether overworked or not my experience with pasta would suggest it would be quite different.

Were you able to get the dough to rise significantly? If not, that would also be an indicator of overworked (which in the case of semolina per Hamelman) damages the gluten.

Very interesting! Good learning experiment!
Jay
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Old 04-18-2010, 07:38 AM
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Default Re: Biga Based Dough

Hello Jay,

I don't think that I overworked the dough - did it a while in the mixer then finished off on the bench. I thought that the lack of rising may be attributable to the fact that I didn't make a dedicated biga, but difficul to determine with any certainty.

Will crank it up again with a bit of semolina and a good squirt of olive oil and compare the difference. Gearing up for a work function on Thursday so will have to err on the side of caution with my experiments as a few of the attendees are Italians!!

Just had some of today's ciabatta - turned out quite well. Haven'y had a batch fail on me so far - luckily!!
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