Here in Massachusetts, the pizza is almost exclusively pan pizza. In the place I previously owned, and in nearly every place I’ve worked over the years, we would stack the pans with separators, and place the pizzas on top of the oven for 10-15 minutes if we needed them to rise quickly. Doing it this way can really heat up the pan and the dough so you have to keep an eye on it so it doesn’t over-rise or dry out. Putting them straight in the cooler would make them go flat, so these pizzas you would want to use right away.
Typically we would prepare all the pizzas for the entire day in the morning, and leave them on the prep table stacked up and once risen most of the way (could take anywhere from 1 hour to 3 depending on the weather lol), we would put them in the walk-in after saucing and cheesing most of them. In the walk-in they would be good for about 8 hours, mediocre from 8-12 hours and kinda garbage after 12 hours.
I have never used baker’s percents but this dough recipe for these rise times was as follows:
50 lbs GM Full strength flour 53381
25 lbs water
2 lbs veg/olive oil blend
2.5 cups sugar
1.5 cups salt
10 oz yeast
mixed for about 15 minutes on low speed
The crust is sweet and crunchy, popular with kids.
We would use 15.5 oz doughball for a 15" pizza
We would cook them off if they were left over to get them out of the pans the next day since they were not really that great after sitting overnight in a pan, and just pulling the dough out would make the pans stick the next time…
The downside to this is exactly what you said - if you run short it is hard to manage. However, we would always stretch a few extra and keep an eye on how many we had ready. This system worked great in one place I used to work where a friday night would typically be 140 Large and 100+ small between 5 and 10 pm handled pretty smoothly with 2-3 guys handling making, cutting and boxing the pizzas.
All that being said, in my newer store that I am in the process of opening(about 3 weeks away hopefully) I got rid of this style of pizza and am going with something very similar to Tom Lehmans NY Style recipe.
Back in the day when Dominos rolled out their pan pizza (now they use a pre-made par baked crust made by Pilsbury) I was the pan god for the franchisee I worked for. I made par bakes for the 5 stores he owned. I rolled out the dough and put in pans. Let proof by oven (later we built a proofing room) for 4 hours then we par baked the crusts for 3:30. The pan shell was about 1-1/2 thick in the middle when we set it. Cooked fully through oven when ordered (7:00). The proofing room made it a 2 hour rise for us.
I had to make some on the fly once and speed proofed them on top of the oven but it still took 30 minutes and did not obtain the 1-1/2 rise…closer to 1 inch.
Slow and low is the best method…I had a seal a meal bag sealer and the crusts would last about 4-5 days without much issue.
Out of curiosity, what is the breakdown of the vegetable/olive oil blend, and what kind of yeast is used (e.g., fresh or IDY or ADY) and is it by weight or by volume? Is the pizza what is sometimes called a Greek style pizza?
Yes, this is exactly the Greek style pizza that dominates most of central MA and the surrounding towns. In my city alone, there are about 100 pizzerias, ~90 of whom are this style.
The oil is 90/10 veg/olive blend. This works because its cheap (like $9/gallon) but I’ve used straight olive oil when i ran out of the blend with not much of a noticeable difference. The yeast is fresh yeast by weight. This is one of the better recipes that I’ve used for this style. Other people i know use shortening instead of oil, which I didn’t really care for. Another guy I know uses a recipe close to this one, but a little more yeast, less oil, and half the salt and sugar. For me, this style all tastes the same after a while, and doesn’t cook well in an impingement oven.
Thanks for the information. I understand that there are quite a few places up there in Massachusetts that are using eggs and milk in their Greek style pizzas, especially on the Southshore. That was a big surprise. Would you mind telling me where you are that there are so many Greek style pizza places?
Good luck with your switching over to the NY style. There is a lot of activity on the Lehmann NY style over at the pizzamaking.com website.
Yes, there are a bunch of places that use milk and eggs as well. This I would imagine is just to brown up the crust, a lot of people here shoot for a golden brown or dark brown crust.
I am in the beautiful city of Worcester, population between 180k and 200k. We have about 100 pizza places, like I said before, and I was told by a health inspector they have 1500 food establishments to inspect in the city.
THanks for wishing me luck, I’ve been browsing the forums here and at pizzamaking.com for years while working on the set up for the new shop. I remember reading a post by another Massachusetts guy Raymir (i think that was his name) that he switched the styles the same time I was thinking about switiching for the new store and how it was a great success. Sorry for hijacking this thread lol.