So last week we lost our walkin overnight. Came in and the temp was at 80F. Long story short that problem is fixed and it is working correctly again.
Now the dough at 72 hours is acting like it is only 24 hours old. In ball form, it looks correct, no difference in smell and no black spots from dead yeast. But when we attempt to work it out, it feels wrong. And when we cook it, it bubbles and the dough rises very little. Does not brown (stays white and we can get it to brown by pushing it back).
I am at a loss as what the problem is, or how to fix it.
Is the yeast dead ? ( we were almost out anyways, 2 packages left so i was going to order a new case since i order tonight)
It sounds like when your cooler was on its last leg (could have been for some time) it was operating slightly warmer than it should have been and now that things have been fixed it is operating as it should be and is actually colder than before -OR- the repair man adjusted the set point to a lower setting than it had previously so now it’s operating at a lower temperature. Check the current operating temperature and compare it to the operating temperature prior to the repairs. Essentially everything you mentioned related to an under fermented dough or a dough that hasn’t been allowed to warm to 50F prior to opening into skins.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor
When it was repaired, he set it even lower. I raised the temp back up, but yes it still feels cooler then before. I will continue to slowly raise it up and see if that fixes the problem over the next few weeks.
As a test today i left out 4 trays covered on the dough table for four hours. The bubbles were almost gone, but it still wasn’t rising exactly as before. But it was rising and coloring much better.
Actually, the “perfect” temperature for cold fermentation/storage of pizza dough is the very same temperature that your food safety auditors require that you keep your cooler operating at (36 to 40F), Anything within this temperature range is perfect. The reason for this is that those temperatures are what is needed to control microbial growth and yeast, being a microbe, is controlled under the same temperature conditions, a major difference though is at the other end of the spectrum, while you need to achieve an internal temperature of at least 160F to achieve a kill step in your processing, yeast is effectively killed at only 140F.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor
The thermostat in the walkin has a +/- of 5F. With the walkin working correctly now it seems to always be at the lowest temp. Right now i have it set to 41F as the center point, and the walkin is around 36F almost always.
I will note the dough is already reacting more as desired. Sunday i am going to see how the last few batches have faired after 3 days and adjust the temp. I am only going to increment in 1/2 degrees until i get it perfect again (within the 36 to 40F range of course).