Author Archives: Tom Lehmann

Achieve a Crispy Crust

For some of us achieving a crispy crust pizza is like chasing down that legendary Golden Fleece, but it really doesn’t have to be such a massive undertaking. Below are some tips to get you on your way. Tip No. 1: The protein content of the flour can influence the potential crispiness of the finishedMore »

Dough Proofing

If your thick crust doesn’t have a light texture, you likely are not proofing the dough properly. Proofing is the act of allowing the dough to rise after it has been formed. This is the final processing step before baking. During proofing, dough is aerated, which leavens it and creates a thicker, more tender andMore »

Improve Crust Flavor

Our pizza crust doesn’t seem to have much flavor. What can we do to improve the flavor of our crust? If you are allowing your dough to ferment overnight in the cooler, or several hours at room temperature, in all probability your dough has enough fermentation to achieve a good fermentation flavor, so we needMore »

Dough Doctor: Why Proof

Q: I am new to the pizza industry and I have read about “proofing” dough. Would you explain what this is and why it’s done. A: Proofing, or rising, is done primarily to allow the dough to achieve a greater height, or lightness than it would if it were taken directly to the oven withoutMore »

Tough Dough

There are a number of things that can cause a pizza crust to become excessively tough or chewy. The tough and chewy stage is set when a high protein (very strong) flour is used to make the dough. Pizza crusts made with a high-protein flour of 13 percent or more can have a wonderfully lightMore »

Cooler Effect on Dough

While yeast is a simple, single cell organism, what it does in a dough is rather complex. In addition to the yeast feeding on available carbohydrates, producing acids, carbon dioxide and alcohol as byproducts, the yeast also provides a source of enzymes such as amylolytic and proteolytic that break-down starches and proteins respectively. Initially, whenMore »

Temperature Essentials

Dough Mixing / Proofing Temperature Essentials Our Dough Doctor addresses dough, water temperatures By Tom Lehmann I’ve heard you say that the temperature of the dough after mixing is the single most important aspect of dough management. Would you please explain this to me? The temperature of the dough is vitally important because it setsMore »

Temperature Control

Temperature Control

One commonly overlooked aspect of dough management is that of temperature control. Temperature, temperature, temperature — our life in the store revolves around temperatures. The temperature of the cooler and oven, the holding temperature of the food on the lunch buffet, the temperature of the freezer, even the temperature of the room is generally knownMore »

Dough Snapback

Dough Snapback

Did you ever feel like you were in a “tug of war” with your pizza dough? You form or stretch it out to 12 inches in diameter and before you can say “Mozzarella cheese”, then it magically assumes the rather unwanted shape of a 10-inch pizza skin. Now you enter into the game of stretchingMore »

Par-Baked Pizza Dough

We’ve been tinkering with making a frozen pizza with a par-baked crust, but the finished crust comes out chewy and bland. What’s the problem? Pizza, as with most baked products, is always most flavorful when it comes fresh and hot out of the oven. That par-baked crust has actually been baked twice, once when itMore »