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Pizzaguys - The definitive "Making pizza at home" thread (1 Viewer)

Steve Tasker

Footballguy
This one has become my go-to pizza for the past few years - https://www.abeautifulplate.com/the-best-homemade-margherita-pizza/.

I'm a bit of a bread/dough nerd and it took awhile for me to find a solid pizza dough that I really enjoy - this one is as simple as it gets if you want a thinner-crust pizza.  I've experimented with all sorts of pizza variants over the years, and this recipe is a simple "weeknight" pizza that takes minimal effort.

 

mphtrilogy

Footballguy
nice thread, I make pizza every Friday night for the family, I use a pizza stone and an iron skillet, I usually make 3 pies for the family.

I make my own dough, once you get the hang of it, it's super simple and super cheap. I usually make it at lunch time as I usually work at home on Fridays. 

Using the kitchen aid with the dough hook:

  • 2 1/3 tsp yeast (I buy the big RedStar package from Costco, for about $8-10 will last over a year)
  • 1 1/3 cups warm/hottish water (usually 45 seconds in the microwave)
  • let sit for 5 mins...
  • add 2 tablespoons of olive oil and about 1tsp of salt, mix it up in the kitchen aid...
  • add 3 1/2 cups of flour and stir it up, add a touch more flour until you can poke the dough and it's not super sticky.
  • I usually pre-heat the stove while I am doing this, to get the stove top warm to set the right conditions for the dough to rise. Once the stove preheats I shut it off.
  • coat a metal bowl with some olive oil, then drop the dough in a rolled up ball in there.
  • cover with saran/glad wrap and a dish towel, I also usually put a baking sheet on to keep the heat in.
  • Put it on the pre-heated warm stove top (oven should be off) and let it sit for a few hours.  In the cold winter you may need to blast another preheat for 5 mins to get the stove top warm, but depends on your home temps...


  • When I am ready for Pizza time I put the Cast Iron Skillet and the pizza stone in the oven at 550' and let it preheat, once it is preheated with the stone and skillet I will get the dough out of the bowl.
  • When its ready, I will flour my countertop and make sure the dough can be rolled out with ease.. I cut it in three pieces and roll one for the pizza stone first, I get that first one in the oven and like to cook the "rolled out dough only" for two minutes on the stone, I like the pizza dough on the crisper side so this gives it a bit of a crunch and easier to cook through imho... After two minutes I will take it out and apply toppings.
  • then I  will roll out the iron skillet dough, this one comes out closer to a deep dish style so I will usually preheat that 3-5 minutes and I usually make that one a meat option.
  • The third pie I will roll out when the first cheese pie is in the oven, I usually make the third pie a wild card and my Wife and daughters will make that a pesto, ricotta pie or just another cheese pie.
  • I like to use Costco shredded Mozzarella (part skim) saves me a ton of time, I Sauce the pie, then put parmesan cheese then Mozzarella.  For the Skillet pie, i will apply meatball or sausage etc... parm it then mutz it... the skillet can cook at the same time as the stone pie on the top shelf of the oven.
  • The pies usually takes about 7-8 minutes in the oven after the crust has been preheated.  The cast iron pie can cook at the same time as the pizza stone, so it saves time if you need to make more than one pie like myself...
I then take the $20-30 I would have spent on takeout pizza and buy some records for my growing vinyl collection ;)  

 

Ministry of Pain

Footballguy
-My only contribution will be the sauce which I think many of you are way over complicating. 

28 oz can of San Marzano, but there is room for plum tomatoes if you prefer the taste. 

There are only 2 other ingredients, sorry 3 ingredients...

-1/2 stick of real butter, cut it into small squares and place them on top of the tomatoes, do not smash those san marzanos yet...you want the butter to melt right on top of the tomatoes as they begin warming and cooking up, creates a velvety tomato and taste. 

-Cut an onion in half from the North Pole to the South Pole, place each half on opposite sides of the pan standing upright and yes they are going to absorb some of the tomatoes but you need the onion for flavor. 

Rolling boil at first then quickly cut the heat to a simmer or low/med and as the butter melts and the tomatoes heat up, about 10 minutes in you start hammering those tomatoes and stir it up, leave the onions alone but stir the tomatoes back and forth until a lot of the chunks are smoothed out, total cook time is about 30 minutes, 45 if you really want to cook them longer.

You can add salt to whatever your tastes are, I typically add it right on to the tomatoes when I start cooking them up.  

All the extra seasoning I am reading, changes the tastes of the tomatoes and I prefer to throw a little seasoning on top of the cheese before I put it in the oven or even after before i serve or eat the pizza. That's where I find an Italian herb mix works well.

I use same sauce for spaghetti/pasta and pizza. 

 

Ministry of Pain

Footballguy
For whatever reason, I find ground sirloin or a quality ground beef browned up in a pan and then mixed with Italian herbs to make an almost sausage like taste and then use that as the meat topping. I've never found a pizza joint that can recreate this and it's how my mother used to make pizzas at home when I was a young'n. 

Sausage from the Italian Butcher market always seems better than what I get at the grocery store, still usually go with ground beef and use sausages for side meats with pasta. 

 

Osaurus

Footballguy
I use a pizza stone in my Weber Genesis from time to time. I’ve made all kinds of pizzas, but this one is my favorite by far:

Skirt Steak/Chimichurri

Dough (whatever you want)

Chimichurri as the sauce (plenty of recipes out there)

Sliced Skirt Steak (grilled)

Red onions (grilled, but can be caramelized)

Queso Fresco (I use handfuls, but don’t cover the entire pizza)

 
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streamkeeper

Footballguy
Sweet thread and those pics make me want pizza now.

Haven't cooked much pizza because it's just so easy to get great pizza delivered, but it's on my radar.  Wife and I will be upgrading to a bigger home in the next year, and one of my first priorities is buying and installing one of these babies in the backyard. 
Scoresman,  I am knee deep in a Forno Bravo oven build right now.  I went with the Casa 100.  The foundation is poured and I am awaiting delivery.

For years I have grilled pizza on my Green Egg, but I just can't seem to get the sustainable temps I desire for good crust.  This is my Covid project.  I'll let you know how it turns out.

 

Spike

Footballguy
Good info here: How to stretch pizza dough 

Here's a tip for those using pizza stones:

Use parchment paper. Make your pie directly on the paper and on your peel. It will slide right off the peel onto your stone, then after about a minute when the dough sets, you can pull it right out from under the pizza.

I found this is a great way to avoid using flour or corn meal to keep the dough from sticking, and it keeps the pizza shape perfectly. I had a 14 inch pie stick to my peel a bit and it turned out egg shaped,  and I had to redistribute the toppings once the pie was on the stone, which also made my grill temp drop due to the lid being open longer than it needed to be. No bueno.
I would like to second the use of parchment paper when cooking in the oven on a pizza steel. 

I use a “Dough Joe” steel I bought on Amazon and am very happy with it. The first few pizzas burned in the bottom, which necessitated the parchment paper. 

I cook at 500 degrees (with the oven on for an hour before I put the pizza in the oven) and cook for 5 minutes. 

I use store-bought dough and sauce. 

 

Brony

Footballguy
Store bought dough is fine.

I thnk you need to up your game though and make your own sauce
or make your own dough and go with a white pizza.  

I've done both store-bought and DIY dough.  I've found the DIY much easier to work with and get thin crust.  YMMV.   Taste wise, it's not a huge difference aside from the thicker crust with store bought.   Store bought dough is dirt cheap so that's not the driver, but after doing DIY a few times, I'm not going back.  It's pretty easy if you have food processor or mixer. 

 

Wingnut

** Inactive **
Pulling dough out of the freezer tonight, gonna do three 12-13" pies tomorrow night on the Akorn - one Margherita, one pepperoni, and was TBD.

This will be my 2nd time doing pizza on the grill/stone. Im expecting some improvement over my first time. 

 
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Cowboysfan8

Footballguy
Saw Bobby Flay make this once, going from memory and don’t have measurements but they’re not necessary 

White Clam pizza

brush dough with olive oil

sprinkle with minced garlic, then a layer of mozz

add canned chopped clams, sliced black olives, cooked crumbled bacon 

Sprinkle with parm, a little oregano and drizzle with olive oil then bake 

so good 

 

Wingnut

** Inactive **
Just got done with dinner, I did 3 pizzas tonight. I made the dough earlier this week and froze the balls. Put them in the fridge last night and let them sit out for about 2 hours before I cooked the pies. Did all 3 on parchment paper with no issues. The dough stretched beautifully and was easy to shape into nice circles.

I did learn a couple of new lessons. I cooked all 3 on the stone at 690-710°...going forward, I need the stone at 750°+ to get the crust a little darker and crisper. Easy fix. I also bought a block of mozzarella and shredded it myself. I feel the cheese had too much water in it, next time Ill use Sargento whole milk off-the-block shredded mozz...it worked better last time than the freshly shredded did tonight. The pepperoni pizza had cheese lava running over the crust halfway thru the cook...I had to pick up the sides and kind of reshape the edge twice. Easy fix there, too - make the edge a bit wider.

I also built all 3 before the stone was up to temp...next time Ill build then cook one at a time.

All that said, all three pies were absolutely delicious. On the kalamata/portobello and margherita pies, the dough was brushed with fresh pesto under the pizza sauce. The pepeproni was traditional with no pesto.

pepperoni

kalamata/mushroom

margherita

Crust

crust bubble

Next up: gonna try NY style dough on the stone in the oven.

 
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Wingnut

** Inactive **
So I tried a NY style dough made with all purpose flour to cook in the oven instead of the grill. The crust didnt cook like I wanted, but the pies were still delicious. 

The first one was cooked on the stone on the highest rack...the toppings cooked way too fast, which was part of the problem. For the 2nd, I moved the stone to the bottom rack and it turned out better but still not how I was hoping. I may just stick with neapolitan style on the grill.

pizza #1

pizza #2

 

Major

Footballguy
A bit off thread but what are the best frozen pizzas out there?  I can't see myself taking the necessary steps to make one from scratch.  Lately I've been going with Newman's Own or Amy's but always looking for other recs.  Caulipower is also surprisingly good for a cauliflower crusted pizza.  Red Baron's Brick Oven is great for a budget $4 pizza.  DiGiorno is trash.  

 

Scoresman

Footballguy
A bit off thread but what are the best frozen pizzas out there?  I can't see myself taking the necessary steps to make one from scratch.  Lately I've been going with Newman's Own or Amy's but always looking for other recs.  Caulipower is also surprisingly good for a cauliflower crusted pizza.  Red Baron's Brick Oven is great for a budget $4 pizza.  DiGiorno is trash.  
Tombstone

 

Wingnut

** Inactive **
A bit off thread but what are the best frozen pizzas out there?  I can't see myself taking the necessary steps to make one from scratch.  Lately I've been going with Newman's Own or Amy's but always looking for other recs.  Caulipower is also surprisingly good for a cauliflower crusted pizza.  Red Baron's Brick Oven is great for a budget $4 pizza.  DiGiorno is trash.  
Home Run Inn if you can find it is pretty good.

 
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Jaysus

Good times!
A bit off thread but what are the best frozen pizzas out there?  I can't see myself taking the necessary steps to make one from scratch.  Lately I've been going with Newman's Own or Amy's but always looking for other recs.  Caulipower is also surprisingly good for a cauliflower crusted pizza.  Red Baron's Brick Oven is great for a budget $4 pizza.  DiGiorno is trash.  
Newman's Own is well regarded... skip to the end of this video for a recent ranking of several frozen pizzas

 

Major

Footballguy
Newman's Own is well regarded... skip to the end of this video for a recent ranking of several frozen pizzas
Vast list you posted, unfortunately most of those brands are regional or need to be express shipped (not really a fair comparison IMO).   I thought I was on my own with Newman as I haven't heard much about their pizza offerings.  I think they may be the highest rated pizza on that list for those available at grocery stores.  

 

Pipes

Footballguy
A bit off thread but what are the best frozen pizzas out there?  I can't see myself taking the necessary steps to make one from scratch.  Lately I've been going with Newman's Own or Amy's but always looking for other recs.  Caulipower is also surprisingly good for a cauliflower crusted pizza.  Red Baron's Brick Oven is great for a budget $4 pizza.  DiGiorno is trash.  
Lotzza Motzza on sale quite a bit around here and really, really good.  Not sure how wide their distribution is

https://www.bernatellos.com/brewpub

 
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Wingnut

** Inactive **
Firing up the grill tonight for some pies. This'll be my 3rd time I think and Im feeling more confident. Dough has been cold fermenting for 4 days and sauce is made. 

Stay tuned for pics/reviews

 

cactus

Telepathic Stuntman
I've been working on my sauce and Marg pizzas for years and this is my go-to these days:

Pour 28oz can of San Marzano tomatoes into a strainer and let the water drain out (about ten minutes or so)

Add about a tablespoon of tomato paste for some body, and about a teaspoon of Anchovy paste for unami. Puree with an immersion blender. Done.

I get my dough from a small Italian grocer in the neighborhood.

Toss the dough a thin as possible, ladle on some of the sauce - not too much. Tear up one ball of fresh motz. Cook at 500 for ten minutes.

While piping hot just out of the oven, tear up some fresh basil, drizzle some really good EVOO and liberally sprinkle flaky sea salt (I use Achill Island salt from Ireland).

So GOOD!

 

Steve Tasker

Footballguy
I'm a big fan of the "pantry" fried rice or "pantry" hash, where I just take whatever I've got lying around and make something delicious.  Didn't feel like going anywhere yesterday so I came up with a "pantry" pizza.  We happened to have a pound of good ground pork, a can of store brand tomato sauce, and like 6-7 oz of fresh mozzarella lying around....so I made some some basic ground Italian sausage, some dough, caramelized an onion, minced a few cloves of garlic, and came up with this:

Piece 1

Piece 2

Side view

Thought about throwing some basil or a fried egg on it, but didn't want to overcomplicate things.  

 

Wingnut

** Inactive **
Tried a different crust tonight, more of a NY style...followed this recipe, but let it bulk ferment for about 28 hours. Made two 16 inch pepperoni pizzas. Put em on the stone when it was about 650°, rotated them after about 2 and a half minutes, and pulled them off after about 4 and a half minutes.

They turned out pretty darn good! I could taste the olive oil in the crust, which isnt a bad thing...it was subtle but it was there. The bottom crust was thick enough not to flop over when holding a slice and the edge crust had a nice crispness. 

pizza 1

pizza 2

 

Wingnut

** Inactive **
Made a few pies today on the Akorn. Dough was cold fermented for 4 days, each ball weighed 220 grams and made a 12 inch pie.

I did 2 pepperoni and one prosciutto & artichoke hearts that got topped with sliced banana peppers after the cook.

I'm loving making pizza at home, we haven't went out for any since I started. Its seriously as good as any place around. 

Pepperoni

Prosciutto & artichoke hearts

Bit-O-Char

 

Ron Swanson

Footballguy
@WingnutNice! I made a Varasano's dough last weekend but didn't plan out far enough to do a cold rise so went warm. Dough was tasty but waaay too wet  so was really hard to work with. I did try the San Marzano only sauce you recommended and that was a winner...you've converted me.

 

Brony

Footballguy
I posted this in another thread here somewhere but I have had great success with this pizza oven that sits atop my Napoleon NG grill.  Easily hits an even and consistent 700-800 degrees with the grill burners on 3/4. The turning tool is awesome.

https://shop-usa.bakerstonebox.com/Pizza-Oven-Boxes/Original-Series-Pizza-Oven-Box-Kit.html
Finally got this and tried it out last night.  Very happy with the crust results and the temperatures.  It looks like there is a little learning curve to move the pizza mid-cook to get even cooking throughout. Also, I've been using parchment paper to date as crutch to easily move uncooked pizza from counter to oven... that stuff went up in flames before I could blink.   I'll figure this out. Overall though, the box is ample size and pretty easy to work with throughout each cook (size and ease of use were my 2 concerns).   

 

Ron Swanson

Footballguy
Brony said:
Finally got this and tried it out last night.  Very happy with the crust results and the temperatures.  It looks like there is a little learning curve to move the pizza mid-cook to get even cooking throughout. Also, I've been using parchment paper to date as crutch to easily move uncooked pizza from counter to oven... that stuff went up in flames before I could blink.   I'll figure this out. Overall though, the box is ample size and pretty easy to work with throughout each cook (size and ease of use were my 2 concerns).   
Exactly.  Once you figure out how and when to use the turning spatula thingy and get that dialed in it gets much easier.  I also use the oven for other things like stuffed roasted peppers, etc. For that I put them in the oven on a thick small cookie sheet and turn it with grill/welders gloves. it will temporarily warp even the thickest cookie sheets but don't let that bother you.  They go back to normal when they cool.

 

Ron Swanson

Footballguy
Thinking about pulling the trigger on the Ooni Koda 16. Think it would be fun and good and generally worth the money.
If were buying a stand alone pizza oven I would buy their wood pellet version so the pizzas might get a bit of that wood/coal oven taste.  I'm not sure how viable 16" Neopolitan pizzas really are or if at that size you are best off using a tray. I have no experience with larger pies but it strikes me that the larger peel, dough, etc. might be a bit of a chore in a home environment.

 

whoknew

Footballguy
If were buying a stand alone pizza oven I would buy their wood pellet version so the pizzas might get a bit of that wood/coal oven taste.  I'm not sure how viable 16" Neopolitan pizzas really are or if at that size you are best off using a tray. I have no experience with larger pies but it strikes me that the larger peel, dough, etc. might be a bit of a chore in a home environment.
Thank you for the advice. Back to the research.

 

CletiusMaximus

Footballguy
Jacob Burton from the Stella Culinary School talks Pizza

honestly, this guy is insane, but if you are way into making pizza you will probably learn something new from him

Introduction

• 1:56 - How this lesson on pizza will be influenced by past bread baking episodes.
  •  SCS 018 | Four Pillars of Bread
  •  SCS 019 | Twelve Steps of Bread Baking
  •  SCS 020 | Bread Classifications
  •  SCS 021 | Sourdough Starters and Pre-Ferments
  •  SCS 022 | Let's Bake Some Sourdough
• 4:05 - There are false pizza recipes on the internet and you shouldn't trust most of them. The dough is what makes the pizza.
• 6:20 - It's important to understand how various ingredients influence your dough, and how that can inform the formulation of your own, unique pizza dough.

Discussion Segment

• 9:05 - Brief history of pizza.
• 12:20 - Chris Bianco, of Pizzeria Bianco, Phoenix, Arizona

Neapolitan Pizza - 12:30

• Vera Pizza Napoletana
  •  VPN Regulations (link to PDF)
• 14:40 - What VPN regulations say about how a good Neapolitan Pizza should look, smell, and taste.
• 15:45 - Neapolitan Pizza Dough
  • 00 Pizza Flour - A finely ground flour used for making Neapolitan Pizzas baked in a hot, wood fire oven.
  • 17:30 - Why bread flour shouldn't be used when making a Neapolitan Pizza dough (it gives a bitter, burnt, flavor).
  • 18:40 - It's difficult to get a Neapolitan Pizza to brown properly in a home oven.
  • 19:45 - Jacob gets pedantic and starts splitting hairs on the definition of sea salt.
  • 20:10 - The proper type of yeast to use when creating a traditional Neapolitan pizza.
    • Cake Yeast / Fresh Compressed Yeast
  • 21:50 - NO FAT!
  • 22:05 - Proper hydration rate of Neapolitan Pizza Dough, and why it contains less water than other, standard pizza doughs and breads.
  • 25:25 - The importance of long, slow, fermentation, and why it's important when working with a low hydration dough like Neapolitan pizza dough (besides the fact that slow fermentation creates a better flavored pizza crust!).
  • 26:40 - Quick refresher course on mixing dough and using the autolyse step.
  • 27:55 - The fermentation process.
    • Bulk Fermentation = 16-14 hours
    • Proofing = 1-2 hours at room temperature, or ###### in fridge for up to 24 hours.
    • If retarding dough, allow to come to room temperature for at least 1 hour.
    • 29:55 - The effects of water & room temperature on your doughs proofing time.
    • Bulk ferment until 2-2.5 X original volume, proof until 1.75 - 1.9 X original volume.
    • 32:50 - Neapolitan Pizza Dough workflow from start to finish.
    • 35:30 - Hydration rate of Neapolitan Pizza = 55-59% (based on the  Baker's Percentage)
    • Video:  How to Make Neapolitan Pizza Dough
• 36:15 - How to stretch dough by hand and why you should never use a rolling pin or mechanical sheeter.
  • 36:55 - Jacob does an awful job of pronouncing 'cornicione,' the pizza's outer crust or edge.
    • Here's how you actually pronounce it.
  • 38:00 -  How to hand stretch pizza dough (Technique Video).
• 43:25 - Neapolitan Pizza Toppings
  • Sauce - Fresh tomato, only the following variations can be used: San Marzano dell'Agro Sarnese-nocerino D.O.P., Pomodorini di Corbara (Corbarino), Pomodorino del piennolo del Vesuvio DOP".
  • Cheese - Fiori di Latte (fresh cow's milk mozzarella), or Buffalo Mozzarella, (certified mozzarella di bufala campana, D.O.P).
  • Toppings -  Oil, oregano, basil, cheese (grated hard cheese), garlic
  • 45:35 - Sounds like Jacob say's "San Marzano Tomatoes are grown in Volcanic Oil," but chef mumble mouth really meant to say "Volcanic Soil."
  • Video:  How to peel and blanch tomatoes
  • Video: How to make pizza sauce
  • 47:45 - Properly topping a Neapolitan pizza.
• 48:10 - Let's talk wood fire ovens and how to properly fire it for Neapolitan Pizzas.
  • This is the butane torch  chef Jacob uses to start his fire.
• 52:00 - Video:  How to Bake a Neapolitan Pizza in a Woodfire Oven
• 53:50 - Video:  Neapolitan Pizza Work Flow
  • Wooden Pizza Peel for Offloading
  • Metal Pizza Peel (Palina) for turning and lifting pizzas in the wood fire oven.
• 59:45 - The two true VPN Recognized Neapolitan Pizzas.
  • Marinara
    • Canned, peeled tomatoes
    • Olive Oil
    • Garlic
    • Oregano
    • Salt
  • Margherita
    • Canned, peeled tomatoes
    • Olive Oil
    • Mozzarella / Fior di latte
    • Fresh Basil
    • Hard Cheese (grated)
    • Salt
• 1:01:20 - Remember, it's all about the crust! You're toppings are just a garnish to enhance the dough.

New York Style Pizza - 1:02:00

• Book: American Pie by Peter Reinhart
• 1:03 - Reinhart and Jefferey Steingarten eat New York Style Pizza
• 1:03:45 - Genaro Lombardi opened up the first pizza restaurant in 1905, and launched the style of New York Pizza.
• 1:04:40 - Old School veresus modern New York Pizza Ovens.
• 1:06:06 - New York Pizza Dough Formulations
  • 1:06:15 - Why bread flour is used in New York Style Pizza Doughs
  • Oil - Aids in browning and exstensibility of dough. Also gives a little bit of softness, and keeps the dough from drying out during re-heating when sold by the slice.
  • Sugar - Enhances flavor and assists in browning.
  • Sauce - Kenji from the Food Lab describes a good New York Style Pizza Sauce as "Emphatically Tomatoey, with the slightest hint of herbs and alliums."
    •  Kenji's New York Pizza Lab article
    •  Kenji's New York Tomato Sauce Recipe
  • Book: The Pizza Bible by Tony Gemignani
  • 1:11:00 - Understanding the pizza dough ingredients and hydration rate (we use the  Baker's Percentage in this discussion).
  • 1:11:00 - Why oil and fat is used in dough.
  • 1:12:25 - Diastatic Malt Powder
    • Helps convert complex starches in flour to simple sugars. This enhances the dough's ability to rise, and adds a sweet, wheaty aroma.
  • 1:14:30 - Salt, and why it's important in pizza dough that is tossed and spun.
  • 1:16:20 - The Mixing and Proofing of New York Style Pizza Dough.
• Video:  How to Make New York Style Pizza At Home
• Tools you'll need:
  • A Baking Steel (preferred) or Baking Stone
  • Wooden Pizza Peel
  • Metal Pizza Peel
  • Chef's Knife, Pizza Wheel, or Rocking Pizza Knife

Chicago Style Deep Dish Pizza - 1:24:32

• Chicago style pizza, just like all pizza, is all about the dough!
• Video:  How to Make a Chicago Style Deep Dish Pizza
• 1:27:00 - Fat makes the dough.
• 1:27:25 - Cornmeal in the crust? Yay or nay?
• 1:28:50 - Chicago Dough Formulation
  • 1:30:45 - The Maillard Reaction and how it effects the formula for Chicago style deep dish dough.
  • 1:32:45 - Why Jacob's Chicago Style Dough has a high fat percent and low hydration rate.
• 1:40:00 - Building a Chicago Style Pizza
  • What type of cheese should you use for a Chicago style pizza?
    • Sliced (not shredded) high fat / low moisture mozzarella and provolone.
  • 1:40:40 - Should you pre-cook you're Italian sausage?
  • 1:42:05 - Chef Jacob's Italian Sausage recipe that he uses in his Chicago Style Pizza.
  • 1:42:30 - Chicago sauce is really just seasoned, diced tomatoes. A classic choice is 6-in-1 Brand Tomatoes.
  • 1:43:40 - Cooking the Chicago Style Pizza.
[\spoiler]
 

Donk711

Footballguy
Do you use the pizza kettle kit so you can slide the peel in or do you take the lid off?
I'm a little late to the game but.....I've been working at perfecting this for a couple of years and have a process that works for me.  I use the PizzaQue (cheaper version of the Pizza Kettle) for my Weber Kettle which allows enough air to get into the kettle to keep that charcoal burning hot while keeping the heat in to cook the top of the pizza.  To get the kettle hot enough, I use 2 full chimneys of lit charcoal.  15 min to fully light, dump into the kettle, and wait 15 min for the pizza stone to come up to temp.  Thermometer pegs out between 800-900 degrees.  While pizzas are on the stone, I will also add a small wood chunk to get that lick of flame up to the top of the kettle.

My first attempts were OK, but the crust was always getting done before the top of the pizza was ready.  The breakthrough for me was the addition of pizza screens.  It lifted the crust off the pizza stone enough so that the top of the pizza would get done at the same time as the crust.  Using the pizza screens, I can cook about 10 10" pizzas in about an hour.  We'll have the neighbors over and do it Blaze-style so everyone gets their individual pizza with desired toppings.  I do babysit the pizzas while cooking, turning every minute or 2 with a steel pizza peel that came with the Pizzaque kit.

I've not ventured into making my own sauce yet, but will absolutly try some of the recipes on here.  I do make a pretty simple bread machine dough using 00 flour that allows me to get the volume of dough needed for the larger quantity of pizzas.

PizzaQue -http:// https://www.amazon.com/PizzaQue-Deluxe-PC7001-Kettle-Silver/dp/B00PP47H4S

Pizza screens - https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000SBPYEI/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1

 

Tiger Fan

Footballguy
Any recommendations for those who don’t have a stone and just want to cook pizza in the oven once or twice a year so don’t want to spend the money on a really good one?

 

Hawks64

Footballguy
Thinking about pulling the trigger on the Ooni Koda 16. Think it would be fun and good and generally worth the money.
If were buying a stand alone pizza oven I would buy their wood pellet version so the pizzas might get a bit of that wood/coal oven taste.  I'm not sure how viable 16" Neopolitan pizzas really are or if at that size you are best off using a tray. I have no experience with larger pies but it strikes me that the larger peel, dough, etc. might be a bit of a chore in a home environment.
I have the Ooni (the original pellet version) and it's great, gets up to 750+ degrees (I can only measure to 750). Makes really good Neapolitan pizzas, the only draw back is that it really only accommodates a 12" pie. For me that's not a big deal since the dough recipe I use makes 4 dough balls for 12" pies. I have a turner and I do a half turn about 30-45 seconds in for another 30 seconds or so, works great since it's 9" and the handle is only ~30".

 

Tiger Fan

Footballguy
Great thread idea!  I'll second the tomato sauce (especially no sugar!) and pass along my variation. 

1 28 oz can of San Marzano whole Tomatoes

6 cloves garlic, sliced thin, Goodfellas style

2 sprigs Basil

1 teaspoon crushed red pepper

Oregano to Taste

Salt and Pepper to Taste

In large nonstick skillet heat olive oil and add garlic slices. Cook until fragrant but not brown, just a minute or two.  Add can of tomatoes. Rinse can about halfway with water and add.  Crush tomatoes in pan with wooden spoon or non-metallic masher and add whole sprigs of basil, crushed red pepper, oregano, and S&P to taste. Slowly simmer and reduce down until desired thickness achieved. Remove basil.
Really liked this recipe...very simple and tasty.  :thumbup:

Heads up for those who might use it in the future...if you like a thicker sauce, either allow a good hour or so to simmer or go without the water.  I was a little rushed, and I ended up having to drain some of the water out b/c it was a little too thin.  Next time I do it, I'm going to make the sauce way ahead of time and simmer super low and slow.

 

Ron Swanson

Footballguy
Really liked this recipe...very simple and tasty.  :thumbup:

Heads up for those who might use it in the future...if you like a thicker sauce, either allow a good hour or so to simmer or go without the water.  I was a little rushed, and I ended up having to drain some of the water out b/c it was a little too thin.  Next time I do it, I'm going to make the sauce way ahead of time and simmer super low and slow.
Glad you liked it.  I'm usually drinking when I make it so it is certainly possible it takes an hour to simmer.  I consider long simmers (or really any long slow cooking process) a bonus when I'm cooking.

 

Wingnut

** Inactive **
Ive been trying different home made sauces the last few times I've made pizza...for neapolitan pies, the sauce Ive settled on as my go-to is the most simple.

A can of crushed tomatoes (fire roasted is preferred), a clove or 2 of minced sauteed garlic, a large pinch of sea salt, and a chopped leaf or 2 of fresh basil (I always have fresh basil in the garden)

I use an immersion blender for about 15-20 seconds to break up the chunks, and I dont cook it. It takes like 4 minutes total to make.

Bright, fresh, and the girlfriend really loves it. She will have a side of sauce with her pizza to dip the crust in - room temp, uncooked sauce - and now I do the same thanks to her. So good.

 

Tiger Fan

Footballguy
Glad you liked it.  I'm usually drinking when I make it so it is certainly possible it takes an hour to simmer.  I consider long simmers (or really any long slow cooking process) a bonus when I'm cooking.
No doubt...just did a bad job on my timing yesterday!

 

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