Ladies and gentlemen, put away your spatulas, step away from the rolling pin, and listen closely. Because today, we’re talking about the real MVP of the pizza game: the dough scraper. In this post, I’ll be breaking down why every pizza lover should invest in a good-quality dough scraper.
A dough scraper is a handheld tool that’s used to scrape up and cut pizza dough. It’s basically an extension of your hands and fingers, but better. It can be used for a variety of tasks in the kitchen and is especially useful for working with high-hydration pizza dough.
Not only is it a lifesaver when it comes to portioning and shaping your dough, but it’s also a great tool for cleaning up your workstation. But let’s be real; the real reason you need a dough scraper is that it makes you look like a pro.
Imagine the look on your friends’ faces when you effortlessly scrape away excess flour like a boss. Trust me, it’s worth the investment.
What Is a Pizza Dough Scraper and Why Professional Bakers Swear by It?
The only type of manipulation I support is dough manipulation. And to do that well, you absolutely need a dough scraper. That’s the gist of it.
A pizza dough scraper/pizza dough spatula is a simple yet essential tool for any pizza or bread baker. It’s made of stainless steel sheet or plastic, or silicone. It has a flat, rectangular shape with a plastic or wooden handle.
The flat side is used for scraping dough off of counters, and the handle is used for lifting and moving dough. I’m not exaggerating when I say that this tool is a game-changer when it comes to high-hydration dough.
I remember the first time I discovered the power of a dough scraper. I was making panettone, a type of Italian sweet bread with a high hydration level. I had never encountered dough that was so sticky, and I was struggling to work with it.
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That’s when a wise old baker handed me a dough scraper and said, “Son, this will change your life.” And boy, was he right. The scraper allowed me to easily lift and move the dough without it sticking to my hands or counters. It was a small tool with a big impact.
What to Look for in a Dough Scraper – Pro Tips
A good dough scraper is made of stainless steel and has a comfortable handle that’s easy to grip. You can find scrapers in different sizes, shapes, and prices. Smaller scrapers are good for portioning out dough. Larger ones work best when you need to move large portions of sticky dough around your workspace.
I like using a rectangular-shaped dough scraper because it’s long enough that it keeps my hands away from the dough while I’m working with it (no more sticky fingers!).
But here’s the thing, what works for me might not necessarily work for you. So, to help you make an informed decision that caters to your specific needs, here is a quick overview of what to look for when picking a dough scraper:
When shopping for a dough scraper, the material is an important factor to consider. Each material has its own benefits and drawbacks.
For example, stainless steel scrapers with wooden handles are durable, easy to clean, and won’t absorb any bacteria. Plastic dough scrapers are lightweight, affordable, and come in different shapes and sizes. This makes them perfect for small or irregularly shaped workspaces.
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They are also flexible, which can be helpful when working with delicate dough. Silicone dough spatulas are also heat-resistant, making them great for working with dough straight out of the oven. They are also easy to clean and come in a variety of colors, which can be a fun addition to your kitchen tools.
Personally, I prefer classic dough scrapers made of a thin sheet of stainless steel with a wooden handle. The thin yet sturdy blade allows for easy dough movement.
And the wooden handle ensures that the dough does not stick to the counter. Plus, the wooden handle also adds a touch of elegance to the tool, and it’s comfortable to use for long periods of time.
But that being said, I also have plastic and silicone scrapers in my arsenal. They are great for specific tasks and situations.
Size and Shape
When it comes to the size and shape of a dough scraper, it’s all about finding the right fit for your needs. A rectangular scraper can be more versatile for different dough shapes. They can be used for various tasks such as scraping dough off of counters, dividing the dough into portions, and even chopping the toppings.
A round scraper is perfect for circular pizzas and can be used to shape and smooth out the edges of the dough.
As a home baker who bakes A LOT, I can attest to the importance of having a dough scraper that fits the shape of your pizza. So, my advice to you is to think about the type of dough you typically work with and the shape of your workspace.
It may not seem like a big deal, but trust me, having the right dough scraper can make your job easier.
Markings on the Scraper
A lot of dough scrapers come with quarter-inch markings. It’s a highly useful feature for bakers who are looking for a precise and easy way to measure and divide dough portions. This is especially important if you are working in a professional kitchen.
Dough scrapers are an incredibly useful tool for a multitude of tasks. This includes tempering chocolate, making sugar candy, grilling hamburgers, or scraping the grill after cooking. A heat-resistant (up to 500F) dough scraper ensures that the tool won’t melt or become deformed.
Ease of Cleaning
In order to be a truly useful tool, a dough scraper should also be easy to clean. Some scrapers have grooves or nooks that trap food particles, making it hard to wash them out. Look for a dough scraper with a smooth surface.
It will allow liquids and solids alike to rinse off easily without residue. Also, check the manufacturer’s instructions to see if it’s dishwasher safe. Most dough scrapers are.
Bench Scrapers vs. Dough Scrapers – What’s the Difference?
Bench scrapers and dough scrapers are often used interchangeably. Because they look the same, it can be confusing to understand the difference between them. Let me clarify their individual roles in the kitchen for you.
A bench scraper, or bench knife, is used for scraping, chopping, and measuring dough. It has a straight edge and is usually made of metal or plastic.
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On the other hand, a dough scraper is specifically designed for working with dough. From easily handling a sticky dough to tempering chocolate or even frosting cakes, it can do many things.
So, do you need both? It depends on your needs and the type of baking you do. If you frequently work with complex, super fatty, high-hydration dough, a dough scraper is an absolute must-have tool.
Get a bench scraper as well to make the cleaning process a breeze. It’s not super necessary, but it won’t hurt to have one on hand.
To Sum Up
Pizza dough scrapers are essential tools for every pizza lover and professional baker. Not only do they make the dough-making process smoother and more efficient, but they also help you keep your fingers and the counter mess-free.
These versatile tools can also be used for scraping bowls and portioning out the dough.
Plus, think of all the Instagram-worthy pizza perfection you’ll be able to achieve! So, invest in a good quality pizza dough scraper today and elevate your pizza game to the next level. That’s all for today. Happy baking!