Developing a custom pizza crust with Caputo “00” flour

As a dough manufacturer, one of the most frequently asked questions that we receive are related to flour types. We always tell our clients that when developing a custom crust recipe, flour is just as important as oven type and proofing techniques in achieving a unique texture and flavor. In this article, we will focus on Caputo “00” flour, the most traditional Italian four.

What is Caputo “00” flour?

Let’s start out by distinguishing between other flour types and Caputo “00”. Traditionally, flours are categorized by how finely they are milled. They range from “2”, “1”, “0” and “00”. In this case, Caputo “00” is exceptionally finely milled flour. To contrast, think of semolina or bread flour on the opposite end of the above-mentioned scale. The fineness of the mill is not the only difference between Caputo “00” and other flour types. Caputo “00” has a gluten content of only 12.5%, which gives the dough the right amount of elasticity. As we will see in the next section, this gluten content is what gives the pizza crust a distinct texture and flavor.

What type of custom crusts can I make with Caputo “00” flour?

Dough made with Caputo “00” flour is best when it’s baked in a wood burning oven, although a gas or electric oven will also work just as well. Using Caputo “00” flour in your custom crust is ideal when you are pursuing the highest quality product and when you wish to sell an authentic Italian signature pizza. Given the fine characteristics, Caputo flour is generally triple the price of Canadian flours.

The most important thing to note is that Caputo “00” flour is typically used to create the highest quality Neapolitan style pizza, although it can be used in any custom crust recipe ranging from thick to thin crusts.  Typically, Caputo flour is used for thinner crusts with thicker edges. Due to the fineness of the mill and the protein content, Caputo flour creates a soft, elastic crust with perfectly charred bubbles on the rim. When handling the dough ball, you will notice that it’s stickier than regular dough and it needs extra gentle handling as it is very soft. Skilled labour is required to handle this type of dough ball.

At Mimi Foods, our Caputo dough balls range from 8 to 25 oz, with stretch sizes as large as 10 to 16 inches. For custom crust development using Caputo “00” flour, contact us at artisticdough@mimifoods.ca or 905-660-0010.

Most popular pizza crust types

  • Par-baked crust
  • White dough ball
  • Caputo Italian flour dough ball
  • Flatbread

Par-baked crust: convenience and consistency

The par-baked crust, also known as the partially baked crust is, as the name implies, a product that is partially baked to your specific needs. Par-baked crusts are associated with two key characteristics: convenience and consistency.

Firstly, a par-baked crust is convenient because you simply take them from the freezer, thaw it for minutes (as opposed to hours in the case of the dough ball) and it’s ready to use. This is especially important in busy operations where there is little time for proofing or training workers to handle and roll a dough ball.

Secondly, when you think of par-baked crusts, think of consistency. Because we partially bake the dough, the product is essentially tailor-made to your specific needs in terms of size, texture and shape. Even without skilled workers to roll it, the par-baked crust will yield the same, consistent result each and every time.

Quick facts

  • Shelf life: very long, up to 8 months depending on some variables
  • Convenience: very quick and convenient; does not require skilled labour
  • Proofing: none required
  • Oven type: any oven or baking apparatus is fine to use
  • Operation type: restaurant, grocery store, convenience store, traditional pizza stores
  • Creations: thin & crispy pizzas

Mimi Foods Par-Baked Crusts are made with purified water and all-natural ingredients and range in sizes from 8” to 16”, as well as 12” x 9” and 12” x 17”.

White Dough Ball: versatility and craftsmanship

The top of the totem pole when it comes to getting the highest quality product, the dough ball requires craftsmanship and creativity, but it yields the best results. The dough ball is best handled by skilled pizza makers, although anyone can be trained to handle it, with a little TLC. When incorporating the dough ball into your operation, you will quickly see the advantages of its versatility.

Think beyond pizza with products like Panzerotti, Calzone, Stromboli or flatbreads. Unlike the par-baked crust, the dough ball gives you full control over the proofing stage, meaning that you get to create your own texture.

Caputo Italian Flour Dough Ball: from Italy to your kitchen

For the most authentic, wood burning oven dough, the Caputo Italian Flour Dough Ball made with Italy’s premium Caputo “00” flour is the way to go. This artisan-style dough reaches maximum performance when it comes to flavor, texture and authenticity. Bake it in a brick oven for an unmistakable taste, directly from Italy to your kitchen.

Quick facts

  • Shelf life: medium, up to 6 months
  • Convenience: requires skilled labor to handle it, yields a variety of versatile products, requires storage and freezer space
  • Proofing:
    • Proof 80% for a dense texture (example: breads).
    • Proof 100% for a full texture (example: pizza crust).
    • Proof 110% for a crispy, drier textured dough
  • Oven type: can be baked in any style of baking equipment that you may use. For the authentic wood burning flavor and texture, use a brick oven.
  • Operation type: more specialty pizza restaurants
  • Creations: Neapolitan Style Pizza, Panzerotti, Calzone, Appetizers, Personal Pizzas, Stromboli

Mimi Foods Pizza Dough Balls are made with purified water and all-natural ingredients and range in weights from 1 oz to 40 oz. The Caputo Dough Balls range in weights from 8 6 oz to 25 oz.

Interested in reading more about Dough Balls and Par-baked Crusts? See our blog where we discuss the pros and cons of each in detail: Dough Ball or Par Baked Crust: Which one is suited for your type of operation?

Flatbreads: healthy and flavorful 

Flatbreads stand out for their artisanal appeal and flavor versatility. Easy to infuse with almost any spice and herb mixture, flatbreads are also convenient and easy to serve, as they thaw and bake quickly.

Flatbreads are excellent products for limited time offers, seasonal dishes, appetizers, and can also be used as sandwich wraps. In addition to being a remarkably versatile product, flatbreads fit perfectly with health conscious consumers, since they are considerably thinner and lighter than traditional pizza dough.

Quick facts

  • Shelf life: long, up to 8 months
  • Convenience: easy to bake and serve, requires little time for baking and proofing
  • Proofing: none required
  • Oven type: any oven
  • Operation type: almost any type of operation wanting to diversify the menu
  • Creations: appetizers, wraps, sandwiches, healthy pizzas

Mimi Foods Flatbreads come in white, whole wheat, multigrain, garlic & rosemary.

Although each crust yields excellent results, deciding which one is best for your type of operation depends on factors such as time, convenience, available resources and desired end product. At MiMi Foods, we are happy to discuss your goals and create a unique product tailored to your needs. Contact us at 905-660-0010 or email us at artisticdough@mimifoods.ca.