Thanks for all the replies. From what I have been reading (as people have pointed out) is using a high hydration dough (around 75%), using a sourdough starter and doing cold rises in the fridge. And there is no substitute for fresh mozzerella in my opinion, plenty of good cheese shops here in Philly. Will there be any textural difference using KA bread flour vs Caputo, I've read that the Caputo is very fine and can give bad results. I am laid off at the moment so I have plenty off time to experiment and eat pizza.
Warren, that is exactly the crust rise/texture I hope to achieve and your comments are greatly appreciated. Yes I am in Philly and have access to those ingredients, as well as the San Marzano and Basil I grow in my garden, well not yet but hopefully weather warms up and I can get planting in the next month. I would love to come to the ECG but have prior commitments, I'll take you up on the offer for next year though. Have you experimented with different tomato brands and found that one the best?
Time to buy a couple more pizza stones and get cracking on this.
I've tried a few. The San Marzanos never did much for me.... I tried a few different brands. The 6 in 1's are made from top quality, vine ripened, California tomatoes which are pretty hard to beat. Try a can.
Also, no one has mentioned it yet, so I will. There's another excellent forum out there, www.pizzamaking.com Tremendous knowledge and friendly people there. Highly recommended for the pizza nuts among us
That is a sweet brick oven up above there, wish I had room in the yard for an outdoor kitchen with intergrated pizza oven, grill, smoker and bar area; guess I can dream.
I've used the Strianese before, I also stock up on 28oz cans of Jersey Fresh crushed tomatoes (have 3 cases in the basement) at the end of the summer, there pretty good if any sees a can give them a try. Def gonna give the 6 in 1 a try.
Got any favorite pizza joints. My go to places are Vince's in NE Philly (local spot, family spinoff of Charlie's if any local remembers the TV commercial), Taconelli's and Osteria (when I want a fancy $$$ pizza), Dilorenzo's and Freddie's in Trenton area. Planning on making a trip up to Pepe's/Sally's in CT when I do a Phils vs Mets roadtrip in NY.
Anyone else having problems with Warren's links? In fact I cant even get on the entire website.
The links are OK, but the website they point to is having problems.
Originally Posted by rahimlee54
dough and kiln shelf
1-1/2 tablespoons instant yeast
1-1/2 tablespoons kosher salt
1 tablespoon sugar or honey
6-1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
2 & 3/4 cups of room temperature water
1/4 cup of olive oil
This is another cold-fermentation recipe, and if that seems like too much yeast for you, use what you want and wait until it doubles before placing the batch in the fridge. Enough for 4 - 10" crusts.
I use an old hi-alumina kiln shelf that had cracked on one end. Chopped off the bad end and keep it in the oven pretty much all the time. I use this same recipe on the grill, and will probably use it in the brick oven too, once it's up and running.
I seldom use a red sauce anymore, preferring slow roasted paste tomatoes, basil pesto or roasted garlic paste, all from stuff grown in my garden.
I agree, San Marzano Tomatoes are a victim of their own success and nowhere near the product they used to be. Most cans I have bought in the last few years contain less tomato and way more juice. Then there is the problem of counterfeit products, believe it or not, and brands that lead you to believe they are genuine by putting phrases like "San Marzano type" on their labels. I always use 6in1 tomatoes from Cali too.
Originally Posted by UnConundrum
Some of my tips for you:
1) I use 00 or at least a high quality bread flour like KA, a fermentation of at least 24 hours in the fridge is necessary to develop the dough.
2) A couple of tablespoons of olive oil in your dough adds great flavor. I make my own chile, garlic and herb oil for this purpose.
3) I also brush this oil on the exposed dough before I put it in the oven to bake, it keeps the crust from drying out too much during baking.
4) I make my pizza on a square of parchment paper, then transfer it onto the stone in the oven with my peel, bake for a couple of minutes, then use the peel to remove the parchment paper and let the pizza sit directly on the stone for the remaining 6-7 minutes of baking time. This is much easier than trying to slide the pizza onto the stone with a floured peel.
5) Match your tomato sauce to the rest of the toppings on your pizza. For example, if I'm making a simple Margherita pizza, the "sauce" will be nothing more than crushed raw tomatoes. However, something more substantial like a sausage and mushroom pizza demands a cooked sauce with a lot of garlic and herbs.
6) Fresh mozzarella, buffalo milk mozza and even burrata are great cheeses to use on your pizza. If I'm making a more North American style of pizza, I will use a 50/50 blend of full-fat and part-skim mozza with some parm dusted on top to help it brown nicely.
I've used parchment paper as well, but have recently transferred my grilled pie techniques to my kitchen oven. I shape the dough, paint on olive oil, pick it up and flip it onto the kiln shelf in the oven. After a few minutes of baking I pick it up with tongs, paint the other side with oil, flip it, top it, and place back in the oven for a few more minutes.
Garlic paste, ham and cheese, sliced potatoes and rosemary.