need help on how to get crispier crust on lehman style dough

I use a water hydration of around 60-62%, .6% compressed yeast, 1.75 percent salt.

I follow the lehman procedures as far as mixing cross stacking and downstacking… then letting cold ferment for 14-16 hours minimum. i then let the dough rise at room temp for 1-2 hours till its useable.

my oven (blodgett 1000) cooks the pizzas from 500-550 depending on how much its open or the area of the deck the pizza is cooking.

I get good browning on my dough but my cheese (sorrento) also seems to brown before the crust really cooks through good. my bottom of the pizza and sides are nice and brown and crispy at first but after a few minutes they lose their firm bottom and the pizza becomes saggy and chewy.

anyone have any suggestions on how to maintain a firmer crust?

Re: need help on how to get crispier crust on lehman style d

What kind/brand of flour are you using, and are you using any oil or sugar in the dough?

PN

Re: need help on how to get crispier crust on lehman style d

no oil or sugar… just hi gluten flour, salt, cake yeast and water.

I get good browning on the crust and it is originally decently crispy but after a short amount of times the dough turns soggy and the bottom is floppy.

Re: need help on how to get crispier crust on lehman style d

You might be too low on the yeast level. the typical level for compressed yeast is 1 to 1.25%, or roughly doubly the amount you are presently adding. If the yeast is too low, the dough doesn’t rise sufficiently during baking to create an insulating barrier between the toppings (sauce) and the bottom of the pizza. When this happens, the bottom heat is transferred right through the dough and into the sauce/toppings where the heat is dissipated as steam. You can get the same effect by stretching the dough too thin, or even by sheeting the dough. Sheeting does such a good job of degassing the dough that you need a thicker dough structure to get a crispy bottom than you do with a hand tossed dough skin.
What to try?

  1. Hand shape the dough skin if you are not already doing so.
  2. Increase the dough weight by 1-ounce, then 2-ounces to see if that works better.
  3. lower your oven temperature to 500F to provide for a longer baking time.
    Please keep me posted on your results.
    Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

Re: need help on how to get crispier crust on lehman style d

Tom,

Are you suggesting that the 0.5-0.75% compressed yeast level in your NY style dough recipe at http://www.pmq.com/tt2/recipe/view/id_1 … yle-Pizza/ is too low?

PN

Re: need help on how to get crispier crust on lehman style d

Yes. Typically 0.5 to 0.75% compressed yeast is used in making the New York style crust/dough. In some instances, we will use as much as 1%, but seldom ever any more than that. Most formulas for this type of dough do not contain any sugar, however, there are some operators who do like to add a small amount of sugar (2%) to the formula to help reduce the baking time, but this may also act to reduce the overall crispiness of the finished crust due to the shorter baking time.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

Re: need help on how to get crispier crust on lehman style d

Id like to add im more at a thickness of .115 my 16" pie uses 23 oz doughball… but also I have a big crust so the dough isn’t as thick as you might thick as you might think. I also stated I use a hydration percentage of 62% but its more like 58%.

I noticed that your right the crust wasn’t rising enough during baking there was no breadiness and i ocould only get the bottom crispy after reheating it.

What do you suggest i try first? raising the yeast? how much would you suggest.

thanks for the help

Re: need help on how to get crispier crust on lehman style d

Tekari;
Your dough weight of 23-ounces for a 16-inch pizza makes for a relatively thick, thin crust pizza. putting it into perspective, we normally see a scaling weight of 18 to 19-ounces for a 16-inch, thin crust pizza. You state that you are having a problem getting the dough to rise sufficiently (spring) during baking. Do yo u presently allow the dough to rise (proof) any prior to dressing and baking, or do you form the dough skin, dress and bake it?
Also, how do you form the dough skin? Do you press it? sheet it? Or hand form it?
With 58 to 62% dough absorption it should be sufficiently soft to exhibit good oven spring properties, so I’m guessing that you problem could be related to the forming method, especially if you sheet the dough, or it might be due to the amount of yeast used in the dough formulation (too low of a yeast level).
What is the finished temperature of your dough immediately after mixing? I’m thinking if your dough temperature is too high, you have gradually reduced the yeast level to control excessive fermentation properties, and you now don’t have sufficient yeast to develop the desired oven spring properties. Typically, when this happens, we also see a problem with the development of a gum line immediately under the sauce. If you are having this problem too, you should increase the yeast level back to normal, or at least 1% of the flour weight when compressed yeast is being used (0.5% with active dry yeast, or 0.4% when instant dry yeast is used), then adjust the water temperature to give you a finished dough temperature in the 80 to 85F range. Take the dough directly to the bench after mixing for scaling and balling, then box it, wipe the dough balls with oil and cross stack the dough baxes in the cooler for 2-hours, then down stack the boxes and cover to prevent drying. The dough will be ready to use after about 16-hours in the cooler. To use the dough, remove about a three hour supply of dough from the cooler and allow it to temper at room temperature for 2-hours, then begin opening the dough balls into skins as needed. The dough will remain good to use like this for a three hour period of time. If you will go into the RECIPE BANK, I’ve got this entire process all spelled out on a DOUGH MANAGEMENT sheet, or request a cope from me by sending me an e-mail at tlehmann@aibonline.org and I’ll be glad to send you a copy.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

Re: need help on how to get crispier crust on lehman style d

Tom,

Thank you for taking the time to respond. I hand form my dough and yes I reduced the yeast to .6 so it wouldnt overexpand in the cold fermentation process.

I also am experiencing this gumline under the sauce… especially when i dont let the dough fully warmup and rise alot. Im gonna try putting more yeast in see if this fixes the gumline issue.

Re: need help on how to get crispier crust on lehman style d

could it be that its getting cooler now and using cold water the finished dough temp is too cool when it gets balled up before putting it in cooler?

what happens if its below 80 when put in cooler will that prevent it from breading up? i notice when i take too long to ball it up and get it in (30-35 min) that by the next day it will have overexpanded and collapsed andthen the dough also isn’t fluffy.

i had a batch a few days ago that was absolutely perfect but i think its because i happened to have the right balance of finished dough temperature. I seem too often to be working with overfermented dough

Re: need help on how to get crispier crust on lehman style d

Tekari;
This is why we always like to work with finished dough temperature rather than just water temperature alone. We use whatever water temperasture is needed to achieve the desired finished dough temperature. If it is taking more than 20-minutes to scale and ball your dough, you should either get help with the cutting and balling, or reduce the dough size. The problem is that the dough will begin to ferment after 20-minutes, thus increasing the potential for the dough to over ferment (blow) during the night, as it looks like you have already experienced. Something to think about to speed up your cutting and balling of the dough might be a dough rounder from A-M Manufacturing <www.ammfg.com>.
If the dough is only slightly too cold, say, in the 75 to 80F range, you shouldn’t experience any major difficulty, you might5 just need to leave the dough out to temper at room temperature a little longer when you’re ready to shape it. If the dough is much colder than this, you may nor get sufficient fermentation until the second day in the cooler. This is why I always say that dough temperature is the key to successful dough management.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor

Re: need help on how to get crispier crust on lehman style d

Tekari;
Your yeast level is a bit on the low side. For compressed yeast, you should be at about 1% of the flour weight. If you have sugar in the dough formula, try taking it out, this may allow you to bake the crust a little longer to develop a better initial crisp. Also, be sure to use an oven thermometer to check your actual oven temperature. What method do you use to open the dough balls into skins?
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor