2013: The Year of the Pizza

I decided at the beginning of the year that this year I would finally overcome my pizza block. I have never been able to make a pizza that I have been happy with. I have always just blamed the oven. You see the temperature in a “real” pizza oven runs between 800 to 1200 degrees. This heat allows for the crust to cook and everything to be done before things start to dry out. However, I recently learned a method that works around the problem of your “low-temp” oven.

Using a huge slab of plate steel!! I read about the process and I knew I had to try it. It’s similar concept to searing a steak on a cast iron skillet.


The dough: adapted from @seriouseats

Ingredients serves makes enough dough for three 12-inch pies, active time 30 minutes, total time 24 hours
22.5 ounces 638g (about 4 1/2 cups) bread flour, plus more for dusting
.5 ounces (about 1 1/2 tablespoons) sugar
.35 ounces kosher salt (about 1 tablespoon)
.35 ounces (about 2 teaspoons) instant yeast
2 ounces Extra Virgin olive oil (about 3 tablespoons)
15 ounces lukewarm water
Mix the dry. Add the wet (water and oil in this case)

Mix until everything comes together. The dough is still a little lose when it is done. Put on a well floured board and knead until it doesn’t stick to your hands.

Put in a plastic container (bag) and move to the fridge overnight or up to 5 days.


Round 1
6.5 oz/184g fresh ground whole white wheat flour 16 oz bread flour + 1/4 to tighten the dough
1/4 cup semolina flour.
Round 2
18 oz/510g bread flour
4.5oz/128g fine ground whole-wheat flour
2 Tbls sugar
3tsp yeast.
1 Tbls butter
Round 3
3tbls sugar
No butter
1 Tbls powdered milk
1 tsp citric acid

The method:

Pre-heat the oven at 500 for 1 hour with the steel on the top shelf. When it is time for cook switch the oven to the broiler. Yes this makes it screaming hot. The idea is that you are hitting your pizza with two super hot sources.

Once the heat is ready build your pizza on a “peel” dusted liberaly with cornmeal and slide it directly onto the steel surface. Let it cook until everything is bubbles and brown. :). Using the peel slip it to a heat resistant plate (read not plastic) let it sit for a couple of minutes then dig in.

The results:

This was a copy of one of my favorite pizzas. Sliced proscuitto, Artichoke hearts, green and klamata olives, with feta and mozzarella cheese.


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