Serious pizza critics often say things like, “I judge a pizza first by its crust; at least 80 to 90 percent of what makes a pizza great — or not — is about the crust, and only then is it about its toppings.”
Some dough formulas are sacred family secrets, with owners vowing never to change them. But what happens when the flour itself changes or no longer works according to the old rules; or if new, better-tasting flour becomes available; or if you taste a pizza that, like it or not, is even better than your own? Do the old rules still apply?
There are myths about dough and there is also science about it. Where does fermentation fit in, and how do colder temperatures and extended fermentation affect flavor and texture? What about fats and oil, or sweeteners and enzymes?
The largest area of uncertainty is usually about the length of fermentation, and the ideal temperatures at which to hold dough in order to achieve maximum flavor. Nobody can keep up with or test all of the options, so I’m especially thrilled to be able to moderate a panel with two of the most highly respected dough experts in the world, Tom Lehmann (The Dough Doctor) and Bill Weekley of General Mills, my longtime go-to guy (for nearly 30 years now) for all technical aspects of baking. I have lots of my own questions and am looking forward to grilling these two guys, and to also opening the discussion for questions from everyone who attends.
My expectation is that all of us, including me, will walk away knowing more than when we came in, and emerge with some immediately practical ideas for taking our pizza dough to even greater heights — especially by increasing our understanding of how and why extended fermentation can be the difference maker. Please come with lots of questions for our esteemed panel.
Peter Reinhart is the author of “American Pie: My Search for the Perfect Pizza” and host of pizzquest.com. He will moderate the panel discussion Is 24 Hours Enough — Understanding Fermentation and Dough Enhancement on Monday, March 27, at 1:30 p.m.
July 21, 2017 | Videos
Frank Pinello, owner of Best Pizza in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, leads off his second season of The Pizza Show at International Pizza Expo 2017. Pinello takes The Pizza Show viewers into the world of pizza and its culture. The Pizza Show is presented by VICE Media’s food-centric channel Munchies (@Munchies) Read More ›
July 10, 2017 | Press Releases
Additional Dollar Will be Donated by Cottage Inn Pizza for Every #GlutINNfree Social Media Post with Photo of Gluten-Free Pizza ANN ARBOR, Mich. – There’s no pizza like Cottage Inn Pizza —and this time, on July 13, they are celebrating their gluten-free menu by hosting a “Dine and Donate” event! Cottage Inn has long been… Read More ›
July 7, 2017 | Press Releases
Elgin, Ill. (July 6, 2017) – The CTX WOW! Grilling System has been chosen as a recipient of the 2017 Kitchen Innovation Award from the National Restaurant Association. The award was presented at the National Restaurant Association Show in May. “It is exciting that the Middleby Marshall and the CTX team are able to continuously… Read More ›