A cube of baker’s yeast, 25g for 600 pizzas. This is the picture Salvatore posted some days ago on his Facebook profile. There were many comments on this, a bit of skepticism about this small quantity. We understand that. There are lots of recipes that talk about a cube of baker’s yeast for 1 kg of flour. We can only smile upon this.
In our sector the experts of the Neapolitan pizza are not surprised that we use so few baker’s yeast. We even decreased the quantity that is normally used as we did a lot of research upon this subject. For us the yeast is only a very little “fuse” that we need to start the leavening process. We don’t use neither old dough nor sourdough.
During the ripening process microbiological processes make the dough ripen. This happens thanks to the enzymes that are in the flour and that modify the complex macromolecules of starch and proteins into simple molecules to make the pizza digestible. Our pizza dough leavens for 20 hours. It’s not a question of outside temperature. We work with very small quantities of baker’s yeast in summer as well as in winter. We don’t have a leavening chamber, but we take care of our dough paying attention to the weather conditions. We follow the seasons. Every day we are searching for the best conditions to prepare a good pizza. Every day we try to reach the right balance of all factors that condition our daily work.
Of course we use a flour that makes our dough soft, provides the right dough texture and is flexible, so that it can be flattened without pressing too much. We use a flour that is able to absorb up to 70% of water. This high hydration intensifies the microbiological processes and gives a light texture to the dough that will rise with the leavening and in the oven, so that the crust becomes soft and is full of tiny bubbles and occasional blisters. The crust melts in your mouth and puts you in a good mood. Every Neapolitan pizza lover will do the same by just taking a look at the soft crust.
For a long time we tested different flour blends. Some months ago we started to use a flour blend that has especially been created for us by the Molino Caputo. It’s made out of natural flours that have been ground by slow milling method. The grain has been directly selected on the fields and it has been worked without any additives. We created the perfect flour for our pizza. A flour with higher enzymatic activity, containing more fibers and that absorbs more water to increase the lightness and to make the pizza digestible, soft and fragrant with an aroma and taste of ripen grain.
Our dough has a persistent aroma. It’s not only the sweetness of the starches but the roundness of taste that can be appreciated by every bite.