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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 »

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 »

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 »

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 »

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 »

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 »

Fermenting Dough

Like a fine wine, rum, bourbon or scotch whiskey, pizza dough is one of those things that just seem to get better when they’re allowed to age a little. There are times when aging, or allowing the dough to ferment, just isn’t an option — such as when you come into your shop one morningMore »

Leavening Dough

Like other types of yeast leavened bread doughs, pizza doughs will benefit from fermenting for a period of time before using or baking it. Fermentation provides dough conditioning, making the dough easier to shape. It also reduces the propensity of the dough to bubble during baking, and it does wonders for the flavor of theMore »

Emergency Dough

Have you ever had one of those nights where a storm kept you awake? Then, after getting a few hours of sleep you go to your store to open and find that your dough has blown courtesy of a power outage. It’s a nightmare come true, and panicking is usually the first reaction. But youMore »

Gummy Pizza

Gummy pizzas can be caused by a number of things. One, the pizza may not be thoroughly baked. If the oven temperature is too high, the outer portion of the crust can be nice and brown, but the center has not been fully baked. In these cases, the crust is generally said to be moreMore »