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Pizza--Cook-Off 8


Chris Amirault
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Paul:  "Let's have pizza tomorrow night."

Diana:  "Yes, let's grill pizza.  Mom and I have been talking about it."

Paul:  "I'd rather have delivery.  I don't want a charred bit of dough."

The gauntlet has been tossed down.  Now, my last grilling pizza experience was less than successful, but the weather wasn't cooperating, it was in the middle of a blog, etc., etc., etc.

But, I have a Weber Kettle.  I can grill and smoke meat with the best of them.  I come with a "Please.  Help.  Give me advice."  I could use advice on how to best bank the coals, or should I slope them?  I have to shine tomorrow, I really do.

On the PBS series "America's Test Kitchen", they just did a grilled pizza. As you can read by the episode synopsis in the link provided, they changed the dough recipe for better grilling. They also discussed the coal situation. I have the cookbook at home and could post more tomorrow if you're interested in what they had to say (anyone else who has this season's cookbook, feel free to chime in).

 

“Peter: Oh my god, Brian, there's a message in my Alphabits. It says, 'Oooooo.'

Brian: Peter, those are Cheerios.”

– From Fox TV’s “Family Guy”

 

Tim Oliver

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Every time I think I mastered pizza dough I gotta screw around some more. So much that I can't recall my original recipe. In the 90's I was trying to duplicate Pizza Hut's pan pizza's fried crust. This year it's Papa John's thin crust.

This is where I'm at now:

16 oz Gold Medal AP flour

9 oz warm water. For high gluten flour use 10 oz.

1.5 tsp sugar

1.5 tsp salt

1 T olive oil

1 tsp instant yeast (if you want to make it today), 1/2 tsp if you wish to retard the fermentation.

In the K.A. mixer, I add all ingredients except flour. Mix for 10 seconds then add 12 oz of the flour (75%). Mix on second speed for 5 minutes. I'm sort of "autolysing" while kneading.

After the 5 minutes, change to the dough hook and slowly add remainder of flour. Knead until dough forms a ball about 2 minutes.

Divide into two balls. Let them rise.

Tomato, basil, mushrooms, Tabasco and S&P

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Baked @525F for 7 minutes on the middle rack. No baking stone.

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Sauce, cheese, pepperoni, mushrooms, onions and red chilies.

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Baked @525F for 7 minutes. Check out the height of the crust.

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The bottom, brown and firm.

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A slice

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Finally, an oven thermometer that is easy to read. It's transparent, $11.99, made by OXO.

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Marlene, you gotta do what you gotta do for pizza:)

Restorer: that's a good idea. I'm interested to see how that works....hrm.. thats a really good idea. The only pain in the butt part is putt in the dome on and off. Let me know how that works.

True. I don't recall using a stone when I grilled pizza, and I seem to recall that the top got done just fine, but I'd have to go dig out the pictures!

Marlene

cookskorner

Practice. Do it over. Get it right.

Mostly, I want people to be as happy eating my food as I am cooking it.

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Marlene, when you grilled pizza, you did NOT use a stone. For anyone interested in novices grilling pizza in the rain, start here and scroll down.

Hmmm. I think I'll try grilling pizza again after Labour Day weekend.

Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"
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On the PBS series "America's Test Kitchen", they just did a grilled pizza. As you can read by the episode synopsis in the link provided, they changed the dough recipe for better grilling. They also discussed the coal situation. I have the cookbook at home and could post more tomorrow if you're interested in what they had to say (anyone else who has this season's cookbook, feel free to chime in).

Well, I am perplexed. While I just saw their grilled pizza episode on "ATK", the recipe isn't in the 7th season cookbook or DVD set. Unless that episode is part of the new season I can't explain why it's MIA. :huh:

edited to add: I just discovered why it's MIA. The episode and recipe is from season 6, not season 7 (the current season). :angry:

Edited by Toliver (log)

 

“Peter: Oh my god, Brian, there's a message in my Alphabits. It says, 'Oooooo.'

Brian: Peter, those are Cheerios.”

– From Fox TV’s “Family Guy”

 

Tim Oliver

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  • 1 month later...

Pizza cook-off this weekend: White pizza with Alaskan salmon and king oyster mushrooms, Spinach with roasted garlic, feta and king oyster mushrooms, and meatball with marinara and baby mozzarella. (As you can see, we belong to the thin-crust-lots-of-toppings club. :raz: )

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Edited by kbjesq (log)
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  • 4 months later...

Pizza night yesterday (Saturday). I used the thin-crust recipe from the ATK Family Cookbook and rolled the dough. We like really thin crust and I can never get it thin enough without a rolling pin. Not traditional, I know. Anyhow, after rolling paper thin on parchment, I give the crust a second rise in a 110F oven for 10 minutes, then top, and bake on a stone in a 475F oven for 8 minutes. That produces the thin, but airy, crust that we like, and it's strong enough to hold a lot of toppings (again, family's preference).

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Here's a pizza I made about a month ago. I posted it on the 'Dinner' thread and forgot to post it over here. For the crust, I used the 'Artisan Bread in Five Minutes' dough recipe that is posted over in the baking forum. The dough bakes into this oddball shape with all sorts of pockets and crevices-and a crispy outer coat.

The toppings were prosciutto, kalamata olives, chopped tomatoes and buffalo mozzarella. I always wait until the pizza comes out of the oven before Isprinkle on some freshly shredded basil. Enjoy.

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I've got a question about amount of dough an how large (as in inches of diameter) of a pizza I should expect from.

My pizzas are typically pretty puny looking. When sliced, the slices looking a little silly. I made one last night, but didn't take pics. I have one portion of dough left, so when I try this time, I'll take pics.

I *THINK* the problem is that my dough isn't relaxed enough. It's doesn't want to stretch easily, and when it does, it tends to snap back. I make the dough a day in advance. Then it goes in the fridge for close to 24 hours before I actually make a pizza. Pull out the dough, divide it into portions, form one into a ball, then let it rest for at least an hour before shaping.

Do I need to give it MORE time to relax? I suspect the second portion will work better if I were to make it today, since it will have been about 48 hours since the dough was actually made.

But back to the ounces to inches thing. Lets say I wanted a 12" pizza. I think that might be the biggest I could make given the size of my peel. How much dough do I need? I like the crust to be thin,, New York style.

Jeff Meeker, aka "jsmeeker"

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  • 2 months later...
I've got a question about amount of dough an how large (as in inches of diameter) of a pizza I should expect from.

My pizzas are typically pretty puny looking.  When sliced, the slices looking a little silly.  I made one last night, but didn't take pics. I have one portion of dough left, so when I try this time, I'll take pics.

I *THINK* the problem is that my dough isn't relaxed enough. It's doesn't want to stretch easily, and when it does, it tends to snap back.  I make the dough a day in advance.  Then it goes in the fridge for close to 24 hours before I actually make a pizza.  Pull out the dough, divide it into portions, form one into a ball, then let it rest for at least an hour before shaping.

Do I need to give it MORE time to relax?  I suspect the second portion will work better if I were to make it today, since it will have been about 48 hours since the dough was actually made.

But back to the ounces to inches thing. Lets say I wanted a 12" pizza. I think that might be the biggest I could make given the size of my peel.  How much dough do I need? I like the crust to be thin,, New York style.

Based on discussion on this thread Pizza Dough, I'd say you need 10 to 11 ounces of dough for a 12" pie.

Regarding the problem you are having with dough elasticity, try these two things:

1) Divide the dough before fermenting. Dividing before forming, you are working the dough and it won't relax easily specially if it's cold.

2) If you must retard, allow the dough to come to room temperature before forming. If it feels cool to the hand, don't work it.

Hope this helps.

We made these today.

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I've been making my own pizza for about a year and a half but just started making them with a pizza stone. I've tried both wheat semolina and corn meal to slide the pie from the paddle to the stone. They both work great but burn quite fast.

So my two questions are:

- Is there a way for any of them not to burn?

- When I cook a second pizza right after the first on, do I just leave the burnt semolina on the stone or get rid of it? And if so, how do I go about doing that besides scraping it to the bottom of the oven and having it catch fire just as it did tonight?

Thanks!

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We made a couple of pizzas tonight, both cooked on cast iron griddles. My husband was fussing, as usual, about transporting them to the pans, the necessity of very high heat, the stick factor.

Duh, I'm just a baker. I recommended moving them on parchment paper, and cutting off any paper that peeked out over the edge of the pizza. (We've had parchment paper burn at 500.)

He said I was a genius. A second generation Toscani doesn't say that often.

Margaret McArthur

"Take it easy, but take it."

Studs Terkel

1912-2008

A sensational tennis blog from freakyfrites

margaretmcarthur.com

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I've been making my own pizza for about a year and a half but just started making them with a pizza stone.  I've tried both wheat semolina and corn meal to slide the pie from the paddle to the stone.  They both work great but burn quite fast.

So my two questions are:

- Is there a way for any of them not to burn?

- When I cook a second pizza right after the first on, do I just leave the burnt semolina on the stone or get rid of it?  And if so, how do I go about doing that besides scraping it to the bottom of the oven and having it catch fire just as it did tonight?

Thanks!

I use cornmeal on a wooden paddle. The trick is to not use to much, and as you are making the pie, shake it gently , a few times to make to make sure its not sticking to the paddle. I get very little residue. I haven't measured, but probably use less than 2 tsp for a 13" pie.a few small sharp shakes to get the pie to "float" on the meal is required to get it in the oven..

Bud

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  • 2 months later...

I've made pizzas at home many times. I've used a few different dough recipes for the crust, but when it comes to topping it, I've kept really static. And pretty "traditional" Always Muir Glenn canned sauce. Pepperoni slices. Mozzarella cheese. frequently, some parmesan. Maybe some sliced mushrooms. But that's it. It's never been different from a typical pepperoni pizza from a local pizzeria.

But it was time to experiment. Change things up a bit. Because I love Mexican food, I decided a "mexican" pizza might be good. I wanted to keep the crust the same, making the focus on the toppings. First, I needed a sauce. I still wanted a tomato sauce, but it needed to have a Mexican slant to it instead of an Italian one. After some thinking, I thought a red enchilada sauce might be the ticket. So, I went to a enchilada sauce I had made before. It came from one of Rick Bayless's books. Called for canned fire roasted tomatoes, dried guajillo chiles, some garlic. a bit of cumin. salt. Run it through a blender until smooth as you can get it. Stain. Cook in a sauce pot with some olive oil. I cooked this down thicker than I would have if I were actually using it to make enchiladas. I think it turned out pretty well, actually. Seemed to be the "right" consistency. And it had a nice kick to it.

now that I had the sauce down, I thought up toppings. I like meat on my pizzas, so I decided to use fresh Mexican chorizo. Browned in a skillet, then set it aside. Another thing I think that is important in pizza is to keep it simple with the toppings. Too many is no good. So, I figured I would just do the chorizo and cheese. For the cheese, I thought the Chihuahua type cheese would be really good.

So, that's what I went with. My standard dough, my "enchilada" sauce, the chorizo, and the Chihuahua cheese. I think it turned out great!

So, help me expand the varieties I can make here. I have dough left, and plenty of sauce. For now, I'll keep the sauce the same (though there is plenty of room for change when I make my next batch by using different chilies and spices). What other toppings? What would be good for a meat? Some leftover carne asada? Would you suggest different cheeses? I am thinking I could finish with queso añejo after it came out of the oven, just prior to serving. What if I wanted to add some "veg" to it? I guess onions should work. I like 'shrooms on my pizza when I make it "traditional", so what would be a good type of mushroom to use here?

I'm Looking forward to the ideas people have.

Jeff Meeker, aka "jsmeeker"

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This is a great time to use caramelized onion on pizza because fresh sweet onions are at the farmers' market. Cooked slowly in a cast iron pan until dark, they are fantastic on any pizza. And fresh tomato slices could certainly work with any Mexican ingredients. If the tomatoes are very juicy I slice them and drain briefly on paper towels before topping. Also any kind of peppers would be appropriate too. I like to mix types/colors, sautee them quickly in olive oil and add to the topping. Roasted pasillas would be great.

With the exception of already cooked meats and fresh tomatoes, I generally like to pre-cook my toppings, and that includes mushrooms. I frequently sautee radicchio or chard or dinosaur kale for toppings. I would think greens would be easy to incorporate in a Mexican flavor pizza. And how about corn? I've never put corn on pizza, but I suppose if it's tender and fresh you could cut it off the cob and sprinkle on a pizza without any pre-cooking. Corn would be yummy with a sprinkle of that crumbly Mexican cheese. Fresh tomato, garlic, roasted pasilla chiles and a flurry of queso and cilantro would be like a salsa pizza.

I suspect I am in the minority--at least in upscale pizza circles--but I really like pineapple pizza, with or without ham (no, I don't precook fresh pineapple.) If I do it veg I like fresh tomato slices as well. I actually prefer Mexican pineapples to Hawaiian, and I always think of pineapple with red chile sprinkled on it when I think of Mexican street food. So maybe pineapple could be encorporated into a south-of-the-border pie.

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ah... thanks! good idea on caramelizing the onions first. I actually did that for some tacos I made over the weekend. Maybe I could roast some poblanos, too. Something else I did for my tacos. Oh, and you are not alone in liking pineapple on pizza. I like too.

Jeff Meeker, aka "jsmeeker"

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