45 posts in this topic
By John Setzler
I have read the Ken Forkish "The Elements of Pizza" book cover to cover and I'm ready to try my second pizza from his techniques. I have started rebuilding a sourdough starter with his technique that I'll use next week sometime to make a pizza but this project is starting today with the 48-72 Hour Biga Pizza Dough recipe on page 120 of the book.
A "Biga" is another term for a preferment but this preferment is done with commercial yeast. The preferment process is a simple procedure where you take some of your flour and water from the overall recipe and add a tiny bit of yeast and let that 'ferment' for a period of time in which the yeast multiplies and builds flavor character. When the preferment is done (12-14 hours in this case) you add the rest of your flour, water, and salt to the Biga and mix your dough. I will be modifying the recipe in the book because the book recipes are tailored for cooking in a home oven at 500-550 degrees. Most of the doughs in the book are made at 70% hydration which is perfect for that temperature range. I plan to cook these on my Blackstone oven at a much higher temp so I will be reducing the hydration of this dough to 60%.
This recipe makes enough dough for 3 pizzas of approximately 12" in diameter.
48 hours before you plan to cook your pizza:
Mix the Biga:
140 grams 95°F Water
250 grams flour (preferably 00)
.2 grams yeast
If you can't weigh .2 grams, this is approximately 1/5 of 1/4 teaspoon. So divide 1/4 tsp into 5 parts and one of those parts is how much you need for this
Place the yeast in the water and give it a gentle stir and let the yeast dissolve for a minute or two. Add the flour and mix by hand until all the flour is incorporated and there is no dry flour left. Stretch and fold the dough several times and then place in a 6 quart container with a lid and let sit at room temperature for 12-14 hours. The Biga should triple in size and be visibly gassy.
8pm Wednesday Evening:
250 grams of Antimo Caputo 00 Pizzaria Flour
0.2 grams active dry yeast
140 grams 95°F water
6-quart Cambro... add the water and swirl the yeast in it until it's fully dissolved...
Dump in the flour...
Work the flour by hand to get the flour and water completely incorporated... folded and stretched several times during the process...
Put the lid on the container and will let this sit for 12-13 hours before moving on to the next stage.
For those interested in the time factor, it took about 10 minutes to weigh out my ingredients and get to the point of letting this sit...
After about 12 hours of rest we have this...
This biga has risen and gassed up nicely...
Time to move on to the rest of the dough...
Another 250g of 00 flour...
13g of fine sea salt...
160g of 95°F water in the dough tub...
Add the salt to the water in the tub and swirl until it's dissolved...
Add the 250g flour...
Mix by hand until you have a unified dough mass...
Add the biga...
Wet your hands to keep the dough from sticking and combine the two dough masses by squishing them together for several minutes to make sure they are thoroughly incorporated.
Cover and let rest for 20 minutes.
After it has rested covered for 20 minutes, turn it back out onto a lightly floured work surface...
Knead by hand for about 30 seconds and then form into a dough ball...
At this point, you can clean your tub or switch to a clean tub... lightly oil the tub...
Place the dough ball in the tub seam side down and cover with a lid and let rest for another 45 minutes.
After 45 minutes, remove the dough to a floured surface and dust it lightly with flour...
I used my bench knife to segment the dough into three equal parts...
I then stretched/folded each segment several times and then formed into a dough ball...
I covered this with plastic wrap and it will now sit on the counter for two hours...
At the end of the two hours, this will go into the fridge where it will stay until friday evening when I'm ready to make the pizzas. This will be about 32 hours away. I will remove the dough from the fridge 90 minutes before I am ready to start making the pizza to let it come to room temp.
Here are the final photos:
These were cooked on the Blackstone oven at 900°F -
These were my best tasting pizzas to date. This crust is seriously delicious. I can't wait to try the same recipe using the sourdough starter. Hopefully I'll get to try that one in a couple weeks.
The taste is perfect. My shortcoming now is my ability to properly stretch and shape the dough into a proper pizza crust. I need some practice with that and will keep working on it. I may make a double batch of this dough next week and just use it to practice shaping crusts...
I LOVE to make home made pizza, well as home made as I'm willing to go. I have long used my oven inside so I look forward to chronicling my use of the Akorn for this task.
Today was Pizza cook #1. A learning experience with some mistakes made.
1)I buy store bought dough from a place near me that sells a good "NY Crust". I always use fine ground cornmeal to roll it out, as I like it far better than flour once it cooks into the bottom of the pizza.
2)For cheese I use a mix of shredded "4 or 6 cheese italian" with the usuals: mozzarella, asiago, parmesan, romano. Lately I've leaned heavier toward Mozzarella in the mix for the chewiness, I'd say 75% of the mix lately is Mozzarella. Sometimes, including today I sprinkle a little yellow cheddar or mexican cheese mix on at the end for the color and a little zing to the flavor. Sometimes I buy a ball of mozzarella and cut into slivers that I plop down (kind of like margarita stlye) but totday was all shredded.
3)Sauce is a can of whole peeled tomatoes, drain and discard the juice. Add several shakes of oregano, pinch of basil, pinch of parsley, pinch of salt, pinch of brown sugar, 1/2 teaspoon of olive oil. Grind in blender for ~10 seconds, just enough to break up the whole peeled tomatoes.
4)Here is where my mistakes begin. I don't have a diffuser (I'm ordering the CG smokin stone) so I went without one, just using a pizza pan. I knew this carried risks, so I elected to try and keep the temp down. I got it fired up with a lot of coals, but kept it around 400 at the built in dome thermo. I usually put the dough in the pan into the oven for 3-5 min to give it a bit of a crisp before doing the rest of the toppings, so I did that again. No issues observed so far. edit: Also of note I threw 3 hickory wood chunks on, again just to experiment, I guess trying for a fusion of coal and wood fired. Too much wood, too much smoke, didn't need it and won't do that again. Also not sure Hickory is the right wood for pizza, unless its BBQ chicken or pork maybe. Anyone use wood chunks?
5)I put the sauce and toppings on, just what I had in the house, so half cheese, and half sliced pepperoni from the bag. Nothing special. I always sprinkle some basil on top of the cheese on the whole pie.
6)I put it back onto the grill on pan and it cooked for about 10 minutes or so. I couldn't help but peak at it repeatedly since I've not used it yet so wasn't sure what to expect. I didn't do well enough checking the bottom or turning it, so one side (pepperoni) got charred black on the bottom. Like gross charred. The other side was very good.
Here are some pics. More to follow in this thread. I will do many types and topping, and next time diffuser and closer eye on the crust is a must.
My boys wanted some pizza so on Friday I made the dough and after proofing 30 minutes; I placed in the refrigerator overnight. Today I then warmed up 2 hours and the formed into 3 balls. Made 2x18" and 1x 14". Pizza was ham and pepperoni. Next time I think I will blend extra old cheddar cheese and pizza mozzarella. Today the cheese, I used was on,y pizza mozzarella.
Hey all, so I've owned this thing for a few weeks and have gotten fairly used to temperature control. I've roasted ribs, chuck roasts, and pork shoulders. The whole family loves the added wood component vs. regular charcoal grilling. My only complaint is that I have yet to master timing, so more often then not my meat is a little on the dry side. One thing I'm learning, particularly with beef, is that you can't go on temperature alone. You definitely have to factor in where the meat is in terms of collagen deterioration. Another skill I'm sure that I'll acquire over time. Pizzas, on the other hand, have been great! I have a ton of experience with bread and pizza - so I've been able to draw upon those experiences. For crust recipes, I've been using Nancy Silverton's recipe in her Mozza cookbook, as well as various recipes in Ken Forkish's Elements of Pizza (my favorites are Enzo's Pizza Dough and the 48 hour biga dough). Pictures attached!
By John Setzler
300 grams (2 cups plus two tablespoons) all purpose flour (100%)
195 grams (7/8 cup) lukewarm water (65%)
6 grams (3/4 tsp) salt (2%)
6 grams (1 1/2 tsp) active dry yeast (2%)
2 tbsp melted butter
1 1/2 to 2 tsp ground cinnamon
Note: You can easily use a store-bought pizza dough for this recipe if you choose.
Combine the yeast and water and let dissolve for 10-15 minutes. Add the melted butter.
Wisk the dry ingredients together in a separate mixing bowl.
After the yeast has dissolved, combine with the dry ingredients and knead by hand or in a mixer with a dough hook until there is no sign of dry flour left. Cover with plastic in mixing bowl and let rise until doubled in size, about 1 hour.
Preheat the grill to 375°F and set up for indirect cooking on a pizza stone.
Make your glaze drizzle:
1 cup powdered sugar
2 tbsp milk
1 to 2 tsp vanilla extract
After your dough has risen, form it out into a 12-14 inch diameter pizza crust. Put it on the grill and cook it by itself for about 10 minutes.
Remove it from the grill.
Spread cream cheese frosting over the surface of the crust (See recipe below).
4 oz butter, softened
4 oz cream cheese, softened
2 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
Mix together completely
Spread Strawberry Pie Filling over the surface (or any other pie filling or combination of pie fillings that you might like.
Return to the pizza stone on the grill for another 10 minutes.
After that 10 minutes. sprinkle on some chocolate chips and cook for another 5 to 8 minutes.
Remove from the grill and let cool for 10 minutes and then drizzle with your glaze.