Saturday, July 30, 2016

Laminated Cracker Style (Tommy's style) videos

Making dough:

Dough prep:

Baking and whatnot coming soon.

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New York Style videos

Here's a couple videos

Deep dish video

Here's Part 1 of deep dish (making dough). I still haven't made any effort to edit Part 2 (everything after making dough) because I accidentally deleted the footage from my phone after I was sure it was also in my computer, and I haven't figured out how to get it back to my phone, where I can edit it and create the video.

As of last night, I may no longer be a snarky prick.

Saturday, July 2, 2016

Detroit style video

I finally made a pizzamaking video. Strangely I did it with a style I know almost nothing about. At least, I should not be able to know much about Detroit style. But apparently I do. I know I got at least a few things wrong here, but I still think I did a very good job. Especially considering pretty much everything I did in the video was based on my interpretation of pictures. And it's not that I have some strange ability to make pizzas look like the style of pizza I'm trying to clone, without also getting some of the taste characteristics right. Rather, it's more likely that I have an ability to read and make sense of the appearances of certain pizzas, then replicate them pretty well. 

At this point, here are some things I think I may have done wrong in the video: I did not give the dough enough time to ferment properly. The dough was probably a little too stiff. I also used old yeast, which I think may have been half dead. (I may have more to add.)

Here's the video:

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Detroit Style Experiment

I have eaten Detroit style pizza once, at Jet's, which I think is probably not a perfect example of what constitutes Detroit style. Also, I have never read a word about how to make Detroit style, nor have I ever discussed Detroit style with anyone. I don't know if you can tell from the pictures (which I will add whenever I figure out how from my phone, but I think I came pretty close to nailing Detroit style on my first try. One thing I know is that this pizza was way the hell better than Jet's.

Here are the basics of how I did it.

100% Bread flour
60% Warm water
2% IDY
1.75% Salt
6% Oil
  • Mixed for 10 minutes.
  • Scaled into two 11 oz dough balls.
  • Put one dough ball in the fridge.
  • Put the other dough ball in a well-oiled Detroit style pan.
  • Allowed the dough ball to rise/proof for a couple hours at room temperature.
  • Press dough to make it take the shape of the pan.
  • Let it proof for maybe another hour.
  • Pressed it again, so it was pretty much the shape of the pan.
  • Covered the dough with mozzarella pretty heavily, all the way to the edges.
  • Applied four separate spoonfuls of sauce.
  • Baked on stone in 500° oven for 12 minutes.
Things I will do differently next time:
  1. Bake at 475 instead of 500.
  2. Use less dough; maybe 8 oz instead of 11 oz. (I can't remember the pan dimensions at the moment.
  3. Seems like there was one other thing.
I have several pics, but I need to figure out if I can post them from my phone. I may have more to add, but right now I'm in a hospital bed trying to recover from a gruesomely broken leg.

Monday, January 25, 2016

NY Style No-No List

I feel like I do not have a good NY style post on this blog. The one that exists is decent, but it's very outdated, and I have learned a ton since posting it. I would like to post a new one, with lots of good pictures, but I can barely move anymore. I have been making NY style pizza about every other day for the last two or three weeks, but it's now very difficult for me to photograph them, and I may never make another one after tomorrow.

The following is a post I wrote to start a thread on Regardless of what you may already think, this post contains the most helpful information you will ever receive about NY style...

It just occurred to me that knowing what not to do may sometimes actually be more helpful to some people than knowing what to do. So here's a short list of things I consider what not to do with NY style, along with explanations.
  • DO NOT bake on screen or pan. They don't do this in New York; they do this at Domino's. There are plenty of reasons why, but the fact that they don't do it in New York is reason enough not to do it at home. You're not going to get the same results by doing something considerably different. Just by putting a thin piece of metal (2 mm?) between your pizza skin and your hot stone keeps that heat from reaching your dough for a considerable amount of time, which does not happen when you bake directly on hot stone, like they do in New York. Not only do screens insulate, but they also lift your pizza to a zone of much lower temperature than the surface of the stone, while stealing heat from the stone.
  • DO NOT re-ball. Also not done in New York; first of all because this is something that can easily be taken care of through effective dough management. In business you don't have the option to do work you have already done. If you do, you don't stay in business (because that is inefficient, which means it costs money that wasn't supposed to be spent). If one can't stay in business by being inefficient, it's impossible to have an entire industry doing the same thing. More importantly, though, the fact that your dough has blown is a very clear signal that it has fermented more than it was supposed to.
  • DO NOT bulk ferment. This is not done in New York. By doing this, you totally change the pizza to something not even close to NY style. In a commercial setting, this also makes it infinitely more difficult to manage the dough, or to keep the dough consistent throughout the time you use a single batch. Bulk fermentation works with some pizza styles, but not NY style.
  • DO NOT bake at extremely high temperature. I won't bake NY style pizza above 550° (580° stone temperature) anymore. I'm not sure where people got the idea that NY style pizza bakes at a temperature above 600°, but experience has taught me over and over that if I do that, I cannot replicate the pizza I have eaten in New York. Even though I have a ton of respect for Scott (scott123), my NY style improved significantly once I stopped worrying about a 4-minute bake time. I am inclined to think a 7 or 8-minute bake time is much more appropriate.
  • DO NOT cook your sauce. No need to explain this one. Cooked sauce is simply gross.
If you do any of those things and your NY style seems to be missing something, it's probably because you do at least one of those things.

Now, I'm just some guy from Ohio who has never worked in a pizzeria in New York, so you have my permission to disagree with what I've said.

Can you add to this list? If so, go ahead, even if it disagrees with something I've said. I can handle it.