In Lehmann's terms: saving time and adding garlic

QUESTION:

Do you see any problem with addinggarlic to our pizza dough?

ANSWER:

Adding garlic to your pizza dough is agreat way to add another dimension offlavor to the finished crust. However,you’ve got to be careful when doingso, since both garlic and onion exert a dough reducing effect; they will have asoftening or weakening effect upon thedough. The dough will develop faster inthe mixer, so you will need to mix thedough less when garlic or onion is present.I normally recommend mixing thedough about 20% less when garlic and/or onion is used in the dough. It will alsoreduce the refrigerated holding time ofyour dough. I don’t recommend holdingdough with garlic and/or onion morethan two days in the cooler, because youmay find your dough turning to putty.

Here are some tips for using garlicand/or onion in your dough: Use alarger particle size, such as granulated,minced or chopped rather than powderedor pureed. The larger particle sizewill help to limit the amount of reducingagent that is leached into the dough.If you are using a dried garlic or onionproduct, stir it into the oil that you normallyadd to your dough and allow it tosoak up the oil for a few minutes beforeadding it to the dough. This will helpto keep the reducing agents within thedried product, thus limiting their effectupon the dough. But still keep an eye onthe mixing time, as it will be somewhatshorter in all cases.

QUESTION:

We want to make deep-dish pizzas, butwe don’t want to par-bake the crustsor have to worry about running out ofdough (proofed) ready to bake. Is therea process that you know of that mightwork well for us?

ANSWER:

You’re in luck—many years ago, whendeep-dish pizza was just coming intoits own, and discussions raged overwhether deep-dish pizza would exceedthin-crust pizzas in popularity, I developeda procedure for making deep-dishpizza dough that was a lot more userfriendlythan other methods in that itallowed the dough to be stored and useddirectly from the cooler, rather than atroom temperature or in a temperaturehumidity-controlled proofing cabinet,which ultimately leads to running out ofproofed dough, as always, at the most inopportune time.

Using your regular deep-dish doughformula, adjust the dough water temperatureto produce a finished doughtemperature in the range of 85° to 90°F,with a target of 88° to 90°F. Immediatelyafter mixing, take the dough to thebench for scaling and balling, place thedough balls into plastic dough boxes,and wipe the top of the dough balls withsalad oil. Cover the boxes and allow thedough to ferment at room temperaturefor about two hours, or until the doughballs can be shaped to fit the pan(s)without excessive shrinkage or snapback.Place the shaped dough piece intoan oiled or greased deep-dish pan, andcover the pans; if they have a nestinglip, stack the pans and place a coverover the top pan to prevent drying. Takethe pans to the cooler for overnightstorage. On the following day, pans ofdough can be removed from the cooleras needed for dressing and baking tofill customers’ orders. In most cases,you should be able to hold the dough inthe cooler for up to two days. If you findthat the dough collapses on the secondday, this is an indication that you mayneed to reduce the yeast level slightly inthe dough. If you find that the finishedcrusts are too tough or chewy, this is anindication that the flour protein contentis too high, and a switch to lowerprotein-contentflour should correct theproblem. In our testing, we have foundthat the best deep-dish pizza crusts aremade from flour with between 11.6%and 12.6% protein content. This wouldbe considered a strong bread flour,rather than a “pizza” flour.

Tom Lehmann is the directorof bakery assistance for theAmerican Institute of Baking(AIB). Need more dough advice?Visit the Dough InformationCenter at PMQ.com/dough.