A dough docker is one of the stranger looking tools that you might find in your kitchen. The docker, which is also known as a rolling docker, is a small, spiky rolling pin that is attached to a small handle that makes it easy to roll. Docking is the process of creating small vents in dough to prevent it from blistering and rising in large, uneven pockets during baking. This docker is used to easily and quickly allow bakers to dock doughs just by rolling the spiked portion with firm pressure over dough. Pastry dough, tart dough, pie crusts, flatbreads and pizza dough are some of the most commonly docked doughs because bakers typically want them to bake as evenly as possible (particularly if there are toppings or fillings involved) in the oven. The rollers come in various lengths, and while 4-6-inches is common, you can find some that are only an inch or two wide and professional models that are a foot long.
Not everyone needs a rolling docker in their kitchen, although they do make very quick work of docking. If you don’t have one, you can also dock your dough by pricking the dough all over with the prongs of a large fork. The docker does take the guess work out of docking, however, since you don’t need to wonder whether you’ve added enough holes to your dough or whether it is evenly marked.