Flour Alternatives for Stretching Dough

My background is from mostly Papa John’s Pizza prior to opening up my own independent store. As such, a lot of my standard techniques are based on those acquired at Papa John’s, including our dough stretching technique.

To date I have been using my flour, All Trumps, to work the dough. We place a pile of the flour on our stainless steel table, and work the dough in it, doing our edge lock, edge stretch, docking, and ultimately slapping the dough to size. The problem is the flour gets EVERYWHERE. The computers, the phones, the counters, customers, everywhere.

Now we have taken some steps to reduce this, including using less of it at a time, a sneeze guard, and other minor changes, but today I got the bad news that the compressor on my make table seized up and had to be replaced. The unit was older to begin with, and I have opted to replace it entirely, but the technician said it was heavily due to the flour particles getting in there and recommended we use corn meal.

After doing some research, and knowing from past experience I do not wish to use straight corn meal, I found that the “Dustinator” used at Papa John’s is not actually a straight flour, but a blend. The suggestions of the blend range, with the most consistent being Flour, Semolina, and Fine Corn Meal, but it definitely is not straight flour.

Does anyone already use a product similar to this, or have their own mixture they would not mind sharing, to use moving forward? My Performance Food Group representative recommended using straight Semolina, but I wanted to get some other feedback to see what some of my fellow tankers use or think.

Thank you in advance!

Try Wondra

Slapping and tossing are specifically forbidden at my place for this reason…I’ve fired guys over this. That being said we’re still pretty floury, and we work in a really tight space, between the mess on the floor and the concerns about the make line coils getting dirty we can’t risk extra flour everywhere

I’ve played around w using semolina, but never committed to it. I wonder if a blend of semolina and your house flour might work for you

My flour bowl is 1 scoop flour 1 scoop semolina.

Semolina and corn meal are going to change the texture and apperance of your pizza, it may be for the better who knows, seriously try Wondra. I think that will keep you closest to what you have now except less dusty flour particles floating around

From my time spent pouring through the pizzamaking.com forum, I recalled that member Pete-zza had a years long obsession with making the perfect PJ clone, involving trial-and-error for every little detail, including coming up with a “Dustinator” clone. It took a little bit of digging, but I found his recipe for a 3lb batch of his Dustinator clone:
Regular Wheat Flour (100%): 663.48 g | 23.4 oz | 1.46 lbs
Vegetable (Soybean) Oil (5.1%): 33.84 g | 1.19 oz | 0.07 lbs | 7.45 tsp | 2.48 tbsp
Caputo Semola (100%): 663.48 g | 23.4 oz | 1.46 lbs
Total (205.1%): 1360.8 g | 48 oz | 3 lbs

(if you need that translated, it’s 1.46 lbs each of wheat flour and semolina, and just shy of 2.5T soybean oil)

Now, I have no experience from using it myself, but his obsession with nailing the fine details of PJ’s pizza and all the other users reporting great success with it leads me to believe it’s pretty accurate as to what Papa John’s uses. Hope this helps.

I can see being obsessed with a lot of things…stamp collecting, exercising, model trains, tango…but Papa John’s pizza is just not one of them. But good on the guy for having a hobby, that’s more than I can say for myself.