Are you new to making pizza dough and coming across the common problem of overworking it? Keep reading!
What to do with overworked pizza dough?
The best thing to do with overworked pizza dough is to stop kneading it and let it rest. It’s a common problem for those that are new to making pizza dough. You will end up with a tough dough with little elasticity if you overwork it.
It is important to make sure your flour is completely incorporated with all the ingredients before adding more flour. If you see the mixture is too dry, add a few more tablespoons of water at a time. Make sure you avoid under- or overworking your dough, as this can affect your final product.
What Is Overworked Pizza Dough?
Overworked pizza dough is dough that you have been working for a long period of time. This can be from mixing the ingredients, kneading it, or the actual rising process. You will know that your dough is overworked when you can’t get it to stretch anymore. It will begin to tear and break.
Overworking your dough can make a pizza crust chewy and tough rather than crispy and thin. Overworking your dough will also make it difficult to shape and form. It is important to not overwork your dough, and in fact, letting it rest is the best thing for it.
What Does Overworked Pizza Dough Look Like?
The most common way that a recipe will indicate that your dough is overworked is in the form of a “kneaded ball.” This means that you have been kneading your dough so much that it has become a tough, large clump. This can be seen anywhere from back in the days when you would hand knead the dough to today when you use a stand mixer or bread maker.
How Did I Overwork My Pizza Dough?
I remember the first time I made pizza dough from scratch was a few years back. It just seemed so easy that I thought I could overmix it and still be fine with the results. At that point, I didn’t know how much water or flour made what type of consistency.
I ended up mixing the ingredients together in a bowl for what seemed like forever, but it probably only took 15 minutes. This could have been fine, but I then decided to knead it by hand. Another mistake I made was not using enough flour on my flat surface or the dough itself.
Once I started kneading it, it became quite stringy and difficult to work with. It almost felt like I was overworking it even though I didn’t think so at the time. I then decided to let it rest for a few hours before I shaped it. That was another mistake I made, as the gluten had set in at that point.
I realized how bad of an idea kneading the dough was when I tried to shape it into a pizza crust shape. It would not hold its form because it had hardened so much from being kneaded. I ended up having to roll it out with a rolling pin to reshape it. This just added a lot of unnecessary time to the process.
Read more about Why Your Pizza Dough Is Hard to Stretch.
Common Pizza Dough Problems
You’ve probably heard about other mistakes that one can make while making pizza dough, but here are the most common ones:
Not Kneading the Dough
It is important to mix all ingredients and knead the dough to get a uniform and consistent texture. Try not to overwork your dough because this could cause it to be quite stringy and difficult to form.
It is important to mix all ingredients and knead the dough to get a uniform and consistent texture.
Adding Too Much Flour or Too Much Water
You will see that the dough looks too dry and not smooth and stretchy. This means that there is too much flour in the mixture. If it is not rolled out, this same dough would not be as stiff and tough to work with. It may make your pizza dough hard to stretch.
We want to make sure we have a nice smooth texture so we can form our dough into shapes efficiently without having to re-knead it during the process. You will probably need to add up to 1/2 cup of additional flour.
To fix pizza dough with too much flour, you can add more water to get the consistency right.
Not Using Enough Flour on Your Surface
You will notice that it is hard to roll out your dough or form it into shapes. This means that you did not use enough flour on your flat surface or the dough itself. Adding more flour is usually all you need to do to fix this problem.
Alternatively, you can transfer your dough onto some parchment paper and roll it out there instead using more flour.
Not Resting the Dough
Pizza dough is very sensitive to temperature changes. Since it is resting now, you want to keep it at room temperature at around 70 degrees farenheit. If you take your dough out of the refrigerator before it is fully cold, this could cause the yeast to die off faster, making it way too dry for you to work with.
Putting the dough in a cold place too soon will also cause it to flatten out and become very tough. If you forget to take your dough out ahead of time, don’t worry. It can still be used, but it will be quite hard to work with.
How do I Prevent Overworking Pizza Dough?
Pizza dough is easy to make once you get the hang of it, but there are ways that you can prevent overworking it in the future.
Here are some tips to ensure you don’t overwork your dough in the future:
Mix all ingredients together in a bowl. Make sure they are completely mixed together before adding more flour or water. If it needs more water, add it slowly until it reaches a consistent dough texture. You can also add bread flour if you want a stronger rise.
Make sure they are completely mixed together before adding more flour or water. If it needs more water, add it slowly until it reaches a consistent dough texture. You can also add bread flour if you want a stronger rise. Don’t keep on kneading or working with it. If you are mixing this in a stand mixer, using the dough hook is great.
If you are mixing this in a stand mixer, using the dough hook is great. Try not to over-flour your work surface or dough when forming it. You’ll notice that some recipes call for too much flour on the pizza peel so that they can easily slide off when cooked.
So there you have it. We hope this article will teach you how important it is to knead your pizza dough for a consistent and smooth texture. Overworked dough can cause it to be hard and pliable, but we want ours to be soft and flexible.
Remember that when shaping your pizza, you don’t want layers to start peeling off in the middle because you overworked your dough. If this happens, just re-flour and let it rest for a short while until it has set before shaping again.