Is it possible to achieve window pane kneading by hand? I have never managed to do that with ~68% hydration doughs. I usually just knead till smooth and elastic and call it quits. Am I too lazy?:)
While it can be accomplished with hand mixing, achieving a 'window pane' is somewhat overrated. If you plan on a long first fermentation, you actually don't want to achieve a full window pane. The dough will continue to develop during the fermentation to get the dough to where it needs to be. If you mixed to a full window pane, your dough would be overdeveloped by the time the first fermentation was complete.
Let me rephrase my question. I want to make a pizza dough and have it stretchable like the professionals have it. Can this be accomplised with manual kneading + long fermentation? If so, how much time do I need to spend kneading? I usually don't spend more than 10 mins. on my daily loaves.
Half Rice Half Woman
The short answer is "Yes" but the kneadng time would be dependent upon a number of factors including your flour's protein content, the hydration, etc.
I don't think you would treat the pizza dough any different than the bread dough at this phase, so Steve's first reply is right on the money above. It is also consistent with the Hamelman's teaching.
Rudy----------------------------- My TFL Blog Page
I disagree to a certain extent. The shaping technique used in a normal (65%) hydration dough does not require the dough to have windowpane properties. You are roughly keeping it a football or amercian footaball shape. On the other hand, making a pizza means turning a ball into a flat disc which may tear if too much force is applied. Therefore achieving windowpane is desirable. I dare say there are good bakers who can't make decent pizza dough and vice versa.
I think what they're saying, though, is that if you use less yeast, then kneed until you have a nice, smooth ball and you can feel that it's elastic, if you then let it ferment longer, do a fold or two, the dough will have the chance to reach proper gluten development. If you overwork a high protein dough, you could actually ruin it. And don't forget that good gluten development is necessary but if it's too developed, your dough won't relax enough to stretch out. There is a balance to achieve. You need to experiment with the type of flour you're using because the protein content doesn't really tell you about the type of protein and how it's gluten will develop.