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Qapla

Making Pizza

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I have been making homemade pizza since I was very young. I also worked for a chain pizza place for 15 years (off and on, but usually full time for multiple years in a row then a year or so away). I still make pizza at home.

 

When I say homemade, I am talking the dough and the sauce. I do not make my own pepperoni or cheese (not yet, anyway)

 

I was just wondering, if you make your own pizza. how do you make it. Not every detail .... in particular, I was thinking about two aspects:

 

  • Do you use cooked or uncooked sauce
  • How do you make the dough, particularly as to fermentation (yeast)
    • Same day room temp fermentation
    • Same day cold fermentation
    • Multiday cold fermentation

 

 

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I usually buy a bag of dough at Trader Joe's. My husband has made his own dough in the past; I think he left it in the fridge overnight. 

 

I don't use sauce, just olive oil. Onions, basil, olives, sliced tomato and fresh mozzarella, if I have any. 

 

My husband puts the cheese first, (well, after the tomato sauce) then the toppings. I had never heard of that but it does seem to cook the toppings better.

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2 hours ago, boodles said:

My husband puts the cheese first, (well, after the tomato sauce) then the toppings

I like the idea... it's good to experiment to achieve personal preferences result...

I don't eat pizza often but when I do I like ingredients to be well cooked (more crispy) not just covered in cheese.

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Most of the chains put the sauce on the dough (skin) then the cheese followed by the ingredients.

 

This is actually a common way to build a pizza.

 

There are some who put the cheese directly on the skin, then the sauce and ingredients - perhaps followed by additional cheese.

 

putting the cheese on the top not only keeps the ingredients from cooking, it also allows the cheese to burn if the pizza takes long to cook since, depending on the style of the pizza and the temperature of the oven a pizza can take from 3 minutes to 30 minutes to cook.

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3 hours ago, boodles said:

I usually buy a bag of dough at Trader Joe's. 

 

Is TJ's dough any good?  I love a thin, crispy crust--much like a cracker. 

 

I prefer a cooked sauce to a fresh/raw sauce. 

 

My favorite is canned crushed tomatoes with paste and herbs. Sauté shredded carrots and zucchini and sweeten with honey and a little brown sugar in the sauce. Use whatever toppings and buffalo mozzarella and grated Parmasean.  I like them woodfired ! 

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I like a really thick, yeasty crust, -like deep dish- so my ideal dough might be different. We've tried both kinds of dough from Trader Joe's and I like the "green" one more than the plain. It's not real thick but I think it has garlic, so I like it. 

 

We have trouble getting the dough to cook thoroughly. We might need to up the oven temp. Pizza is not easy to make well!

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I love pizza. I grill my pizza for a crisp, thin, crust. I make my own crust and sauce, but I am lazy, so the recipes are quick and simple. 

I use a recipe from America’s  Test  Kitchen. It calls for a dough fermentation of 1 1/2-2 hours.  There  are a 3 different sauces that I use, 

a spicy garlic oil, a traditional red sauce, and a barbecue style sauce.  I could eat pizza every day. 

 

 

 

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Back when I was 19 I got a job at a pizza place. :chef:

One of the perks was that the food was free. I was a regular pioneer so, that was a big plus. 

 

I did eat pizza every day! :eat:

 

We had a thin crust pizza and I would eat a 13" pizza each day I worked - and I worked 4 days a week. Later, when I was no longer pioneering, I Worked full-time, 5-6 days a week, and I still ate a 13" pizza every day.

 

I still like pizza :thumbsup:

 

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You were living the dream! 

1 hour ago, Qapla said:

Back when I was 19 I got a job at a pizza place. :chef:

One of the perks was that the food was free. I was a regular pioneer so, that was a big plus. 

 

I did eat pizza every day! :eat:

 

We had a thin crust pizza and I would eat a 13" pizza each day I worked - and I worked 4 days a week. Later, when I was no longer pioneering, I Worked full-time, 5-6 days a week, and I still ate a 13" pizza every day.

 

I still like pizza :thumbsup:

 

 

Edited by Hanah45

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On 10/26/2017 at 5:17 PM, Qapla said:

I have been making homemade pizza since I was very young. I also worked for a chain pizza place for 15 years (off and on, but usually full time for multiple years in a row then a year or so away). I still make pizza at home.

When I say homemade, I am talking the dough and the sauce. I do not make my own pepperoni or cheese (not yet, anyway)

I was just wondering, if you make your own pizza. how do you make it. Not every detail .... in particular, I was thinking about two aspects:

  • Do you use cooked or uncooked sauce
  • How do you make the dough, particularly as to fermentation (yeast)
    • Same day room temp fermentation
    • Same day cold fermentation
    • Multiday cold fermentation

 

 

I stopped eating commercial pizza years ago for health reasons...but I still love the taste.  Since I bake my own breads, I use the dough to make pizza also (as well as strombolis and calzones when I have time).  My method:

 

- I prepare my own pasta sauce for the pizza, using 8 medium-size tomatoes (+ other ingredients) cooked down.

- I've used same day and multi-day fermentation, but my preference is overnight fermentation so the yeast dough will double in size.  (This creates two 9" or (23 cm) size dough.)

- I'll use one half dough for pizza and freeze the other half for up to 10 days to quickly make something else on a weeknight.

- Ingredients: homemade sauce, two kinds of cheeses, peppers/onions, mushrooms and pepperoni.

 

Bro. John, two questions: can you explain "cold fermentation"?  I've read and been told that dough needs a "warm" environment to rise.  And two, how does one get elastic dough to "cooperate" when trying to roll it out on a work surface? This is the most challenging even though I have a pizza roller.  (It frustrates me each and every time.)

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Cold fermentation is exactly what it sounds like - almost.

 

While it is true that yeast need some warmth to get started, it does not have to stay warm to continue. The longer a dough spends fermenting, up to a point, the more elastic it is. That is why a fresh dough is not so elastic. In addition to time, dough also needs "gas" to stay elastic.

 

If you "roll" the dough, nothing wrong with that method, it pushes more gas out of the dough - making it less elastic. Hand stretching the dough keeps more gas in the dough.

 

As to how to ferment. First, you don't want the dough to warm from the start. If you are using water around 100-110 degrees (F) to start the yeast, you are already starting with a very warm dough because the process of making the dough, especially if you use a mixer, makes the dough even warmer, due to friction.

 

To get a "New York" style dough, the dough should only be about 85 degrees or so when you are finished making it.

 

Then, you let the dough have a "first rise" at room temperature as a "whole lump". Then, you portion it into the sizes for your pizza making. Roll them into tight balls and place them individually in a plastic bag, like a bread bag that a loaf of bread came in, or a container. Close the bag with a "ponytail" twist or place a lid or plastic on the container. However, you do NOT want the bag or container to be "airtight" - gas needs to be able to escape.

 

Place the balls in the refrigerator for 24-48 hours. WHen you take them out to use, let them sit at room temperature for 1-2 hours before shaping.

 

Hope this helps.

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21 minutes ago, Qapla said:

By Hawaiian Style - do you mean it has pineapple or SPAM on it? or some other definition?

 

My daughters like pineapple on theirs, along with ham

Pineapple and Canadian Bacon. Yummy.

 

My next favorite is with sausage and black olive, with mushrooms and a white sauce. 

 

I can't really handle too much red sauce,  it gives me heartburn. .

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17 hours ago, tekmantwo said:

The way I make pizza, 867-5309, PizzaMan, he delivers..

I buy Amy's organic gluten free pizza at our health food store. Her spices are perfecion, and the crust is a rice crust. She uses a small amount of red sauce and organic mozzerella,  so no problem with acid. I add organic peppers, onion, garlic powder and cooked brocoli and bake less than 15 minutes at 400°. The pizza comes frozen and only takes less than 15 minutes to cook. I have added hormone free pepperoni also.:uhhuh:

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Pizza is such a touchy subject for me. It can either be terrible or my favorite food, depending on how it’s made. 

Of course New England pizzas (especially Boston) is the best pizza in the world.

Does that make me bias?  :whistling:      

The “Chicken bacon ranch” is outstanding here. 

But even a plain cheese pizza is great here. It’s all about the sauce and the crust. 

Theres something about the brick oven too. I can’t duplicate it at home so I just spend the money and eat out.

But to each his own. :D

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Mmm...I love homemade pizza...and I take it to heart!

I use 00flour and I follow Reinheart's recipe. I do a series of folds rather than kneading. I cold ferment for a minimum of 24 hrs and up to 72 hrs. The longer fermentation also make for a tastier crust. But too long just spoils it. I find the optimum to be 36 to 48 hours.

I find it is necessary to keep the hydration just right too. This helps when stretching to form paper thin crusts that get so cracker crisp on a hot stone (ok...I'm done for it... I'll be making dough today). So I measure everything by weight and I use a scraper when folding my dough so I don't have to add flour.

Then I heat my stone in the oven for at least 2 hours at the highest oven temp I can achieve. OR the best is when I can heat my stone on my charcoal grill at its highest temperature (exceeding 600°F on a hot day and a strong bed of coals). It's the next best thing to a wood fired oven.

At these temps I have to keep the toppings thin because they cook real fast.
If I want more than just cheese and pepperoni then I heat at a lower temp so I can bake them a little longer.

I prefer making my own sauce. Canned tomatoes, lots of oregano, some basil and hot pepper flakes, and some olive oil, salt & pepper. I don't exactly cook it. I just heat it enough to release the oils in the pepper flakes.

I also prefer fresh mozzarella and a sprinkle of more oregano on top of the toppings just before cooking.

Something that I've done a few times now is to mist the crust part of the pizza with a touch of water just before baking...I find this helps to get more oven spring to achieve a nice puffy ring around those yummy toppings.


After writing this I'm realizing why some are weary of inviting us for meals because they think we are "foodies"40fb81a01246c4767778e0c5d67c6e16.jpga47c388b9f1073814f8bcff93edd87e7.jpg79a79550d34e937ab313f5b199c771f6.jpg

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Sounds like you may read the same pizza forum I do ......

 

I don't have a stone, but I do have some really old pizza pans from Pizza Inn that I can cook on.

 

I agree that my sauce is better than anything I could buy. I actually don't mind low-moisture mozz in place of fresh. I like my whole pie covered with the cheese not just "dotted" with chunks of fresh mozz

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I do not always make it the same, I sometimes use an uncooked sauce and sometimes a cooked sauce.

 

I also "shoot from the hip" as I do not measure anything and do not follow an exact recipe.

 

Basically, I start with petite diced tomatoes and add some tomato puree or tomato paste. I add a little sugar to help cut the acidity. I season with "Italian Seasoning" if I have it - I like the brand Walmart sells as their discount one ... I like the combination of spices they have in there - If I need to, I will season it myself with oregano, sweet basil and thyme. 

 

Either way, I add onion powder, salt, if needed and a good dose of black pepper and a shake or two of crushed red peppers.

 

I tend to like the sauce with a medium thickness .... I don't want it runny so that I need a paintbrush and I don't want it so thick I have to trowell it on.

 

Hope this helps.

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