The last time I asked a question of you I got my answer, so lets try again.

How do I make my pizza dough bake more airy and light withoout loosing the chewiness?

My dough formulation is as follows:

800 grams of Heckers (Bread flour)
500 grams of water = 62%
1/2 tsp ADY
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp Olive Oil
1 tsp Sugar

I use a 5 hour Poolish consisting of:

300 grams flour
300 grams cold water
1/2 tsp Ady (45 grams of the 300 grams at 110 degree water to activate ADY)
Pinch of sugar

After the 5 hour poolish period I mix in the balance of the above recipe using cold water and a 5 minute spiral hook knead.

I ball up the doughs, usually 3 - 15oz doughs and cold ferment for at least 24-48 hours.

I then allow a up two hour counter rise and bake it at 475 in a deep dish pan. Excellent pizza.

I am looking for ways to make it more airy and light while keeping it as chewy as possible. Would you advise me as to ways that this might be accomplished.


MWTC :smiley:

To get a lighter, more “airy” finished crust you will need to allow the dough skin to rise again before baking. You can experiment with proofing times of 30, 45, 60 and 75 minutes. Since you are doing this at home, I would suggest proofing the skins under a suitably sizes pan (like a dish pan) inverted over the dough skin. This will keep it from drying out while proofing. After proofing, dress the skin and bake. It will be lighter textured, all you need to do is to pick out the crust that has the texture you like the most and from that point on, proof all of your dough skins to that same time. This is how Pizza Hut gets their light textured crust.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

Would yeast levels effect this, in my dough formulation?


The yeast level will affect the proofing time only. You will not get a lighter textured crust just by increasing the yeast level alone. You must allow time for the yeast to do its job. As you increase the yeast level you will find that the proofing time required to give you a specific lightness in th ebaked crust will be less, but this works only to a certain point. Time is still a critical element in getting the texture you want.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

So by time, you mean the time that I allow it to proof in the pan before baking.

So it is thru experimentation with dough weight and proofing times that the desired texture is achieved in relation to the chosen recipe.



Has anything been published revealing the outcome of mixing different flours as it relates to texture and taste?

Using Bread Flour as the base ingredient. Like adding 25% rye, or potato, semolina, OO, All Purpose, wheat, etc. Combinations.

I’m looking to lighten the density and play with the taste, other than what you just described in the proofing element. The 62% hydration seems to be the right percent. It seems that when I add any fat it just makes it more dense. I want the chew but not the weight.

Please advise.


Yes, you must allow the dough to proof in the pan prior to baking to achieve that light, open structured texture that you are looking for. The proofing time required will vary for every dough to some extent based on the dough formulation and temperature conditions.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

I’m not aware of any SPECIFIC research that has been done looking at all the different potentiasl flour combinations, bakers have pretty well covered all those bases over the past couple hundred years. That’s the great thing about baking. You can experiment to find new or different flavors. You can make unique doughs from any number of combinations/blends of white flour, whole wheat flours, rye flours, buck wheat flour, triticale, spelt, and then you can toss in some of the other flours too such as corn, potato, soy, millet, flax seed, chick pea, you name it, you can do it, and some of the blends can be pretty interesting (in a good way). Fat, in the form of oil, shortening, butter or margarine will actually halp to make the crumb structure “lighter”, less dense, as it lubricates the dough for easier expansion while also helping the cells to retain the leavening gas, making for larger gas cells (holes) in the crumb, leading to greater expansion properties for a lighter bread/pizza crust. Just don’t over do it, if you go much more than 4% of the flour weight as fat you might find that you will begin getting a denser crumb structure rather than a lighter structure. You are right about the dough absorption, the higher the dough absorption (again, within reason) the easier it is for the dough to expand, so you actually end up with a lighter (more airy) product.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

Thanks Tom.

So, now that I basically got the basics down it up to me to experiment and work with those basics and combinations. A lifetime of fun!!!

MWTC :smiley:

You might try attacking the problem from the other direction. For example, you might use a combination of a good all-purpose flour, enough vital wheat gluten to bridge the protein gap between the all-purpose flour and the Hecker’s flour you have been using, and some dried dairy whey to increase the crust color a bit without adding any perceptible sweetness to the finished crust. Combine this with proofing the skin and you might get something that is close to what you are looking for in terms of finished crust/crumb characteristics.