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Piecing Together the Pizza Puzzle

Piecing Together the
Pizza Puzzle

February 1998 -- Design Elements

By: James C. Burg
Technical Editor

  The traffic heading home is running steadily at 9.8 miles per hour. Time on the digital dash glares "5:58 p.m." You have 6.2 miles to the driveway, and precisely 3.0 hungry consumers gathered around 2.0 electronic entertainment devices awaiting the 6 p.m. dinner bell. What's the solution?

  This might sound like a math problem on a 6th grade test, but it's a question most working parents face daily. The answer is not always easy, given the diversity of consumer tastes, but one common solution is fortunately always at hand -- pizza.

  Pizza has had a U.S. presence since the late 19th century, when Italian immigrants brought it to the New World. Focaccias, or Italian flat breads with herb, tomato or cheese coverings, are the progenitor of the present dish.

  The immense popularity of pizza in the United States expands new product development opportunities. Ethnic and regional focuses provide a world of new potential. Pizza's popularity in no way diminishes its healthful aspects, and the formulation challenges won't involve just flavors and ingredients, but also nutritional considerations.

  The goal in creating frozen pizzas is to deliver a product that bears more than a passing resemblance to the local pizzeria's product. Product formulation, processing, storage and preparation all play a role in consumer acceptance, and designers can take clues from consumer sensory test results to define and develop stellar new products.

Building the foundation

  Crust might not seem very exciting, but it forms the basis upon which all the other parts come together. It also holds possibilities for flavor and color additions to enhance new products. Crust types vary from product to product, including thin or cracker-type crust, thicker breads, and deep-dish styles. Formula variations develop the different qualities of each.

  "Flour types vary considerably, but protein content should be in the range of 11.5% to 14.0%," says Tom Lehmann, director, bakery assistance, American Institute of Baking, Manhattan, KS. "Thin crusts benefit from the higher protein level, which lowers absorption of the sauces, and yields a crisper, stronger structure. Deep dish pies are better formulated at the lower protein levels, which allow for less shrinkage and more chewiness. Protein contents can be adjusted by addition of vital wheat gluten to lower protein flours, each 1% addition on a flour weight basis increasing the protein by about 0.6%.

  "Normally, unbleached flours are used, as they are not needed in a pizza product," he says. "Lack of bromates provides a cleaner label."

  Establishing performance characteristics of a flour for a given crust type ensures product consistency over time. Specifications of a flour or blend of flours include: protein content, ash and moisture content. The relationship of a flour with a given protein content to crust volume and strength depends on the seasonal variations in the wheat crop used. Properties differ from cultivar to cultivar as well. Guaranteeing the established quality generally requires using bake tests as a benchmark.

  Rheological tests performed for absorption, mixing time and dough stability indicate flour performance for an application. They also are faster than bake tests. Bake tests, used in conjunction with analytical methods, allow for minimally required variances. Pizza sells better with an apparently handmade appearance than on a uniform appearance. However, high-speed product lines require consistent processing for maximum product quality and throughput.

  Water absorption influences the dough's machinability. Absorption is partly due to damaged starches in wheat flour; the damage is caused primarily by milling. Damaged starches absorb up to twice their weight in water, compared to sound starch, which absorbs only about one-third its weight. The damaged starches also aid dough softening due to hydrolysis by amylase enzymes during processing. Usually, the dough is allowed a period to "relax" prior to processing. Pentosans occur in wheat flours at approximately 1.5% to 4.0% and are very absorbent. These carbohydrates are capable of absorbing approximately 4 to 10 grams of water per gram. Additionally, the pliable dough produced by hydration of the glutens is more readily worked in the stamping or rolling stage.

  Moisture absorption for thin-crust formulations is in the 55% to 60% range, while thick crust types have 60% to 70% water. Moisture levels are critical, as high levels yield sticky doughs, and low water levels contribute to doughs that tear easily and produce tough crusts.

  "Additional ingredients formulated into pizza can include a number of different functional ingredients, depending on the desired characteristics," Lehmann says. "Salt use in pizza doughs serves several functions. Taste, along with flavor modification, are obvious effects, though sodium chloride, to some extent, controls ice-crystal formation in frozen products. Levels used in thin crusts are at 1.0% to 1.5%, which are increased to 1.5% to 2.0% in thick crusts to improve taste and flavor, as the thicker crusts represent a greater weight percent of the total product." The added levels of salt to crusts are relatively low, due to the flavor contributions of salt coming from the sauces, cheeses and sausages.

  "Sugars are added at low levels to provide fermentable carbohydrate during the short periods used in yeast-raised pizza doughs," says Lehmann. "Sucrose, high fructose corn syrup, and corn syrup are generally used, though honey, brown sugar, or molasses can be used for color and flavor effects. Residual sugars add to desirable Maillard browning in the baked crust."

  Shortenings or vegetable oils provide doughs that are not sticky and flow properly for shape control. Thin crusts require higher fat levels, as do crusts formed by stamping. Thick crusts and roller-formed crusts contain lower fat levels. Fats add lubricity and mouthfeel, and carry flavor. Or, as in the case of olive or sesame, they can add flavor.

  Corn meal, added at levels between 10% in thin shells and 20% in thick shells (on a flour-weight basis), adds color, bite and chewiness, without adding toughness.

Rising expectations

  A vitally important pizza component, leavening agents consist of either yeast or baking powders, which sometimes are combined. "Yeast used in pizza crusts is the typical baker's yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae," Lehmann says. "Yeast is supplied as a compressed cake, which can be added to some of the water prior to mixing of the dough. The compressed form is generally desirable, though yeast is also supplied as an active liquid concentrate, and in dry form. The dry yeast must be activated in 100°F water for about 10 minutes prior to addition for mixing. The relatively short period of fermentation allowed a dough -- up to 30 minutes -- helps as much with development of desirable yeasty flavor as the risen structure of the dough."

  Baking powders increase dough volume by producing CO2 gas. These consist of finely powdered sodium or potassium bicarbonate, along with an acid salt such as sodium acid pyrophosphate (SAPP). SAPP, a fast-acting acid, produces most CO2 during mixing, with additional gas production occurring early in the bake. Sodium aluminum phosphate (SALP) is slow-acting, yielding much gas above 135°F. This allows a self-rising effect in the oven -- a very popular trend in pizza crusts. Thin crusts essentially require very little rising beyond development of an open, smooth structure; rising that occurs is mostly within the mixing cycle plus early bake cycle.

  Baking acids may be coated with a fat to prevent loss of activity in storage. These can prove more reliable than frozen yeast doughs in delivery of crust volume development.

  Self-rising frozen pizza doughs exhibit their volume increase during baking. This property can be developed by using a slow-acting acid in the baking powder. SALP releases gas above 135°F, allowing volume development as early baking progresses. Another slow-acting acid is glucono-delta-lactone. SALP has the cost advantage, though the leavening systems are used at only 0.5% to 2.0% based on flour weight.

  Calcium propionate inhibits mold on pre-baked shells, which are tempered to reach moisture equilibrium and to firm up before applying toppings. Refrigerated shells benefit from a maximum level of 0.375% calcium propionate on a flour-weight basis. A potassium sorbate spray prior to packaging gives additional protection.

  Dough conditioners comprise a number of different compounds including: protease enzymes, emulsifiers, L-cysteine, pentosenases, stearoyl lactylates, and deactivated yeast cultures. In addition, shortening at levels of 3% to 6% (flour basis) increases volume due to interaction with starch and gluten. As dough temperature rises to between 140° to 158°F, starch granules gelatinize. Between 176° to 194°F, protein denaturization sets the crust. The shortening delays the onset of the reactions and expands volume approximately 15% to 25%.

  Sodium stearoyl lactylate (SSL) aids crust volume with flours of 11.5% to 12.0% protein. At 0.25% to 0.50% use levels, SSL adds more volume and tenderness. Calcium and sodium stearoyl lactylates increase tolerance of dough to processing, and improve gas retention.

  Protease enzymes hydrolyze flour protein into peptides and amino acids, yielding doughs with better elasticity. Pentosenases hydrolyze pentosans, yielding a softer dough.

  L-cysteine reduces dough-mixing time by softening dough when used at a 60 to 90 ppm level, flour-weight basis. This amino acid also can act as a reducing agent to prevent ascorbic acid loss by oxidation. For doughs receiving short fermentation times, a reduced mixing time will reduce dough toughness and improve forming of the crusts.

  Dough is allowed time to "relax" briefly to reduce shrinkage. A relaxer can reduce the hold time to increase line speed. Deactivated yeasts relax doughs and impart yeasty, fermented notes.

  "Pizza doughs can be improved by using conditioner blends, which soften doughs and improve volume, depending on the product types," says Pete Gautchier, applications manager, Quest International, Hoffman Estates, IL. "Customized products for fresh and frozen pizzas are available, yielding a variety of effects for processing improvements."

  One specific dough conditioner used for frozen pizzas at a level of 0.25% to 2.0% improves volume and adds tolerance. The product consists of DATEM emulsifiers and enzymes, and yields six months shelf life in yeast-leavened products, Gautchier notes.

  Fresh doughs and pizzas only requiring a short shelf life benefit from various conditioner types. "Adding an amylytic enzyme cocktail blend allows dough softening and moisture management," says Chris Colston, senior bakery technologist at Quest. "Such a product is blended in with the flour at the 300 to 500 ppm level, flour basis. We have a system incorporating dry fruit solids -- such as pear -- enzymes and emulsifiers, which, when used in refrigerated finished pizzas at the 0.5% to 2.0+% level, can extend shelf life to more than 90 days."

  "We offer additional products, such as dough relaxers and gluten-replacement systems," Gautchier notes. "The gluten-replacement systems provide volume and strength enhancement, while reducing reliance on fluctuations in gluten supplies."

Getting saucy

  The oft-repeated phrase "the sauce is everything," is a pizza truism. For the sauces can be a signature part of the piece in progress.

  The basis of all pizza sauces is, of course, the tomato, an indigenous Central American plant that emigrated to Europe. It was soon adopted by the Italians, who incorporated the fruit into many regional and national specialties. In North America, the tomato was considered to be of only medicinal value, and did not make its way to the table until Italians introduced Americans to, ironically, what is a Western Hemisphere vegetable.

  Pizza sauces start with a tomato paste and water base; many other ingredients can be added to develop a signature sauce. Additions can range from spices, herbs, vegetable pieces, mushrooms, sweeteners, cheese powders and herbal pastes to modified food starches for thickening and stabilizing the paste. As many proprietary sauces exist as do producers, and the search continues for a sauce profile that either creates a new identity or meets expectations for a target market. Sauce specifications must blend with the pizza style being sought. Total solids can range from 15% to 30%, including sugars added to the tomato solids.

  Modified food starches control such factors as thickening, adhesion and freeze/thaw stability. "Modified food starches having a greater degree of cross-linkage in the molecules provide better stability in terms of heat, shear and acid stability," explains Tonya Armstrong, applications scientist, Grain Processing Corporation, Muscatine, IA. "Starches containing more substitution in the molecules provide better freeze/thaw properties in frozen sauce applications." Starches for application in fresh and retorted shelf-stable pizza sauce, as well as for frozen pizzas, are available.

  "We have a starch that exhibits good freeze/thaw and viscosity control for frozen and refrigerated sauce products," Armstrong says. "Used at a level of 0.5% to 3.0% of the finished sauce weight, the product handles shear stress and has good cling. The sauce yields a clean flavor, while having good sheen and gloss. Maltodextrins and corn syrup solids can also be applied for tomato solids extension. Longer-chain maltodextrins yield some viscosity, while also apparently picking up the color of the tomato sauce. A level of 2% to 5% maltodextrin deepens the orange-red appearance of tomato sauce.

  "Our modified starches are prepared from dent corn, which has a starch consisting of 24% amylose and 76% amylopectin," she says. "The modified starches prepared from this type have a thinner hot viscosity, which aids pumping at hot temperatures, especially with sauces containing large particulates."

  Many ingredients can spice up a piquant or subtly seducing sauce. Popular additions include oregano, basil, onion and garlic powders. However, a wider interest in new flavor experiences, as well as acceptance of new ingredients, opens the way for a wider range of choices. "A number of spray-dried products can be applied to pizza crusts or used within the sauce or crust," says Gautchier. "We have spray-dried flavors -- pepper, sausage and regular crust -- which can be applied to the crust to increase or modify flavor. We also have more unique products that can be used for pizza, such as "Tuscany," an Italian blend of garlic, onion and herbs. There are also products in a Mexican vein, such as spray-dried black bean, and a thing we call 'chipotle,' with the heat of Mexico. Spray-dried black bean and sun-dried tomato and herb can be used inside the crust for added flavor appeal."

  Products that add a fresher flavor include a wide array of frozen herbs and vegetables. Individually quick-frozen herbs from basil to thyme in their prime are at hand for incorporation into sauces and doughs. "Fresh-frozen and freeze-dried herbs for pizza products lend a fresh appearance as well as flavor to pizzas," says Laurel Place, marketing director, SupHerb Farms, Turlock, CA. "In addition to more traditional herbs for pizzas, such as oregano, garlic, basil and green onion, we have products for new application such as jalapeños, cilantro, marjoram, rosemary and tarragon. There is a lot of interest in ethnic flavors, and combinations such as garlic, cilantro and lemongrass, or jalapeños, garlic and cilantro, are becoming more popular in pizza products." Pizza lends itself well to new interpretations of flavor, and if trends are any indication, there are as many variations on the theme as there are ingredients available.

  Herb pastes are another possibility for use in, and on, pizzas. "Pastes in our line include rosemary garlic sage, basil sorrel, and tomato creole, among others," Place says. She suggests that the pastes be spread onto a pizza, rolled onto a pizza prior to baking, or folded into dry ingredients for the dough before baking. Usage levels for the pastes would be approximately 1:10 on a weight basis of the dry bakery blend. Sauce would require approximately 1:5, or one part herbal paste per five parts finished sauce.

  Fresh, frozen herbs are used at one-and-a-half to twice the weight of the dried herb. They are added directly to the sauce after heating or to the pizza prior to freezing. Since there is no preservative other than freezing, they must be used immediately out of the freezer. Dehydrated herbs, on average, initially retain approximately 60% of the fresh herb volatiles. After six months of storage, dehydrated herbs average approximately 30% of the original oils content. On the other hand, fresh-frozen herbs start at a level close to a 100% retention of volatile oil, dropping in storage to about 93% retention after six months.

Into the stretch

  Many regard cheese as the raison d'être for pizza itself. Mozzarella has the leading role in this drama, but numerous other characters can play an integral part, or add color to the piece. The opportunities for cheeses are limited less by imagination than by technical concerns in terms of freezing or heating a pizza. Melting characteristics compatible with or close to mozzarella, and flavor profiles that add new dimensions to the product are all considerations. While focusing on mozzarella, a number of other cheeses are popular or useful for pizza.

  Compatible factors include the ability to shred or dice cheeses that melt evenly, without scorching or crumbling on thawing. A good blend with mozzarella is provolone, with its golden to golden-brown color and smoky notes. Brick cheese is mildly pungent and sweet, shredding and blending well for pizza. The jacks -- Monterey, pepper and Colby-jack -- shred well and melt easily, adding their distinctive notes. Cheddars, from mild to sharp, are firmer cheeses and shred easily and bake on the pizzas. Gorgonzola, fontina and other European and American specialties can be worked into pizza formulations. New flavor combinations are of interest as long as physical factors are in line with the other ingredients or process of preparation. Grated cheeses, such as Parmesan or Romano, may be added to the crust or used in sauces.

  Cheese consists of milk solids, and represents a number of preparation methods conforming to FDA standards of identity (21 CFR 133). Mozzarella cheese is a pasta filata process, in which curds formed are heated and stretched to form a stringy character. Two types of mozzarella are commonly used. The first is the semi-soft, whole-milk type, which contains between 52% to 60% moisture, and the minimum milkfat is 45% by weight of the solids. Low-moisture part skim mozzarella contains moisture greater than 45%, but not more than 52% by weight. The milkfat content must be between 30% and 45%, based on the solids weight.

  Understanding cheese chemistry and properties requires a closer look at its structure. Cheese begins with milk, to which is added an enzyme, a starter culture and salt. The biochemical changes occurring in the milk allow for the development of the physical properties of the cheese. Reactions involving the proteins, carbohydrates and fats largely determine the outcome. Fermentation of the milk sugar lactose is begun by adding starter cultures. These cultures produce lactic acid, which lowers the pH and changes the protein structure.

  "The protein matrix of cheese is largely responsible for the properties of cheese," explains Carol Chen, researcher at the Wisconsin Center for Dairy Research, Dairy Management Inc., Madison, WI. "The main structure of cheese is a continuous protein matrix, consisting of the primary cheese protein, casein. The matrix contains entrapped fats and a water solution of serum. The integrity of the protein, or degree of hydrolysis, determines the ultimate quality of the product. Reduction of the pH allows release of casein-binding calcium phosphate complexes. As fermentation proceeds, up to 75% of the colloidal phosphate is mobilized and removed with the whey. The ideal pH is at 5.25 for development of the structure in mozzarella. At pH 5.8, the cheese is very stiff, while a drop in pH to 4.8 yields a cheese that won't melt.

  "Melt is affected by pH, composition of the cheese, and degree of proteolysis," Chen says. "Stretch is prominently affected by pH, as this factor will determine how much colloidal phosphate has been dissociated from the casein micelle. Stretch is maximized at pH 5.2. The protein hydrolysis is also an important factor, as too great a degree of hydrolysis will limit strand formation."

  Browning of pizza cheese -- produced through the incomplete fermentation of lactose -- is a desirable characteristic when controlled to the proper degree. The galactose residual can enter the Maillard reaction, yielding color and flavor enhancement. One possible problem with frozen pizzas involves water loss from drying. Weeping of cheese, or loss of moisture to the surface, leaves ice that will flash off quickly on placement into the oven. The protein is then subject to scorching.

  Low-moisture cheeses are generally more freeze-resistant than high-moisture ones. Frozen pizzas should be stored in airtight packaging to prevent moisture loss and drying. Storage temperatures must be less than 0°F to minimize drying throughout storage. Allowing a frozen pizza to thaw in the refrigerator before baking helps to prevent moisture-related problems during the bake cycle.

Top spin

  Meat items, including sausage and pepperoni, have been the top pizza topping choices, and vegetables and mushrooms also have enjoyed extreme popularity. But designers have only scratched the surface of the potential number of topping ingredients. This is another example of value-added areas that can represent flavor, trends, profitability and nutritional gains. It is likely that more health advantages can be designed to enhance fat reduction, especially in the sausage category, and increase nutritive value through vegetable and herb additions.

  Toppings, which, on average, would typically comprise only 10% to 15% by weight of pizzas, represent the "top cost" items. The crust represents, on average, 55% by weight, with sauce constituting the difference.

  Sausage, typically pork in pre-cooked form, is a well-established item. It can be applied as a frozen raw meat or as a pre-cooked piece, which reduces microbiological concerns. Pepperoni sausage requires slicing and application to the shell. Beyond these typical adornments, any type of meat or sausage can be used: Italian, Creole, Mexican or other varieties. These must be compatible with the baking process -- no varieties that exhibit "cupping" or fat "capping" should be used. Other suitable meats include ham, bacon, chicken, Canadian bacon, shrimp and other seafoods.

  A vast array of vegetables and herbs are available, from artichokes to zucchini. The color and shape appeal of vegetables should pique the imagination. Consider rings of red onions or golden pear tomato sections as a finishing touch. Air-dried herbs are incorporated into sauces and doughs or applied to the top for flavor and appearance. The sun-dried tomato, which has an appealing color, texture and flavor, can be applied as a topping.

  Fresh forms require equipment for washing, culling of waste sections, and cutting. Air-dried preparation techniques are used primarily for herbs. Individually quick-frozen herbs and vegetables retain more flavor than their dry counterparts. Vegetables typically used include the onion family, the pepper family, olives, and mushrooms, but jalapeños, eggplant and spinach also represent options. Interesting products for ethnic pizzas include various roasted vegetables in individually quick-frozen form. Some of the products include sweet and hot peppers, tomatoes and eggplant, plus enough others to keep a vegetarian coming back for more. The vegetarian market, in fact, is an emerging area for new products.

  Freeze-dried products are another form that retain reasonable structure and appearance. The products readily rehydrate for use. Drum-dried products of vegetable origin are available in flake and powder forms. The ingredients retain much flavor and color improvement is increasing. As a result, they are useful for addition to sauces. Vegetable and herb ingredients are available in almost any size and form, and lend many avenues for creativity.

Putting it all together

  Mixing of pizza dough is accomplished in a short period of time, due to high mixing temperatures (80° to 87°F). Fermentation in yeast doughs is minimal, with perhaps a short rest period of 10 to 15 minutes out of the mixer.

  Chemically leavened products go directly to makeup from mixing. Mixing is completed within three to five minutes to produce a machinable dough that is not overly tough. Dry yeast is first added to a portion of the 100°F water from the formula water to activate the yeast. The other dry ingredients are mixed into another portion of the formula water. The solution and the yeast suspension are added to the flour, oil and the remaining water in the mixer.

  "Perhaps the best overall dough mixer for pizza is the horizontal type, with three bars for turning the dough," Lehmann says. "Mixing must hydrate the gluten without toughening the dough. Stamped dough will benefit from a small portion of the oil being added to the dough before the mixer is turned off."

  On a high-speed line, the dough proceeds from the mixer to a scaler, where the weighted portions are sent for a short rest period prior to stamping. Sheet-processing requires the dough pass through an extruder to a set of rollers to achieve a pre-determined thickness. The sheet is then docked, or punched with a pattern of holes, to prevent blistering due to water loss. The sheet is then die-cut to the appropriate diameter.

  For most frozen pizzas, the shell is prepared, par-baked, and then cooled. "The trend to use of impingement ovens allows greater flexibility," Lehmann says. "In these ovens, heat and humidity can be controlled within zones. The entry temperature is lowest and the middle stage has the highest temperature. Moisture can be recycled to the first-stage oven, where it condenses on the cheese. The moisture helps prevent scorching of the cheese in the second-stage heat, and dries off in the final stage of the oven."

  After the crust is baked, it is cooled down to a level of between ambient temperature and 90°F for transport to the refrigeration rooms for sauce, cheese and topping applications. A water mist is applied to lock down cheese and toppings prior to freezing. Pizzas may either pass trough a cryogenic freezer employing liquid nitrogen or carbon dioxide mists, or a mechanical spiral freezer that chills the pizzas to -20° to -30°F. The product then passes to a cold room for a packaging overwrap. The pizzas are then boxed, cased and palletized, and then moved to the holding freezer. The product is held at -10°F for a minimum of 12 hours prior to shipping.

A fresh perspective

  Fresh or store-baked pizzas offer consumers a pizza baked on the premises. Many prefer it that way, as it's the next best thing to a homemade pizza.

  Approaches to catering to that desire for flavor and freshness can vary from scratch-built products to highly automated systems for delivering that "just-baked" freshness that everyone loves. The larger the scale of such a system becomes, the more difficult it is to maintain that personal pizzeria approach. Meticulous attention to product development, ingredient quality, and processing control throughout the operational chain is paramount. This commissary, or centrally located supply system, allows for a much greater degree of control and product consistency at the satellite stores preparing the finished pizzas.

  "We are an extension of our pizzeria restaurants" says Joe Perrino, president and chief executive officer, Home Run Inn, Inc., Woodridge, IL. The Chicago-area company began as a family business, and now has three pizzerias. As one of the first companies to begin preparing frozen pizzas right after World War II, the company has expanded into two plants, including its new Woodridge site, from which a total of 15 million frozen pizzas are produced annually. "We supply the same product in frozen form as we do at our restaurants, the original family business," Perrino says. "The recipes are our own, the ingredients are natural, and we use no preservatives. We prepare our pizza sauces and our own pork sausages at our Woodridge plant for use in the restaurants and in the frozen products."

  Maintaining a similar approach at a large chain-restaurant company, such as Domino's International, requires the same attention to detail as a family-run business, though with close to 4,800 stores, that is a very large family to oversee. "As I see it, there are two key elements to managing this type of operation," says Jim Bail, senior director, corporate quality for Domino's. "Design quality, where R&D and marketing research set the level of the bar, is the standard for performance. Secondly, consistency is making that goal every time.

  "Our approach to product development involves design of products and systems that are fully researched and defined, so that not only can we anticipate any problems or situations before they become fires, but we can continuously improve the process as well," Bail says.

  Their product design is proprietary. However, they involve their suppliers to a high degree, ensuring a growing basis of quality from the pre-certified and highly trained suppliers, shippers, and franchised store owners and operating staffs.

  Developing trends portend a bright future for the pizza business and, therefore, for the product designer in maintaining growth in that sector. The increase in pizzas purchased from restaurant, foodservice, and in-store delicatessens is one part of the trend. Frozen pizzas purchased from groceries and convenience stores represent another.

  Driving the continuing move to increased pizza purchases is the reduced time spent in the average American kitchen. As preparing pizza from scratch represents a long preparation time, this course will likely continue. Leading the way into the next phase of the pizza phenomenon will be the product designers with answers to what the next taste trends will be, and how to deliver the freshest appeal in a frozen product.

  Baking formulations are based on 100 lbs. of flour, with the amount of added ingredients per hundredweight of flour expressed as a percent (flour basis) or "baker's percent." For example, a typical pizza crust might consist of the following:

Ingredients and Formulation
Ingredients % (Flour Basis)
BASIC:
Flour 100.00
Water 5. 0 to 70.0
Salt (NaCl) 1.0 to 2.0
Sugar 1.0 to 5.0
Shortening or Oil 3.0 to 14.0
Yeast (or baking powder) 0.5 to 4.0
Calcium Propionate 0.1 to 0.2

Protease Enzymes as recommended
Reducing Agents (L-cysteine, etc.) 0.00045 to 0.0009
(45 to 90 ppm)
Corn Meal 10.0 to 20.0
Flavor as desired
Vital Wheat Gluten 1.0 to 2.0
Dough Conditioners (other) as recommended
Additional Ingredients as desired

Source: American Institute of Baking,
Guide to Pizza Crust Production, 1979



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