Whenever we move to a new town, the hunt begins. You might expect that we would be seeking out the nearest hospital, emergency response unit, or grocery. But no, the hunt is on for something else… pizza. This is the important stuff.
There is something about really good pizza.
Pizza at home is easier than you think. Like most things, once you have the right tools and you are armed with some good information you will find it easy to tackle. With that in mind, I must say that you should be comfortable with a failed attempt or two. After all, that is how we grow. I have made many mistakes and will try to pass along some advice to help you avoid some pitfalls.
savour… hot and cheesy
MAKING PIZZA AT HOME
What you need:
- A pizza stone – don’t try to do this any other way. It is the only way; get one. Pizza stones can stay in your oven even when you are not making pizza. They do double duty to help regulate the temperature. Pizza stones are to get seasoned much the same as a cast-iron skillet or wok. Don’t fret over spills or burns; brush away stuck-on-food and leave the rest alone. Do not wash your pizza stone. This is likely to be disastrous.
- A cooking thermometer – this will totally take the guesswork out of whether or not your yeast will rise. You will find many other uses for this gadget. To calibrate it, make a slurry of water and ice. Place the thermometer in the glass and make sure it reads 32 degrees. If not, adjust according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Cornmeal – You might have thought that this was on the bottom of the best pizzas for flavor. It does add a small amount of flavor and some texture, but primarily it is meant as ball bearings to keep the pizza moving freely.
- A peel – wood is better in my opinion. Trying to get the pizza in or out any other way is futile and dangerous, to boot.
- A pizza cutter – what can I say? They are the perfect tool for the job. Using a pizza cutter is one of the best parts of making it at home.
- Cutting board – this is for obvious reasons.
- A rolling pin – if you can master the pizza crust toss you might not need this. For the rest of us, this is a must to get consistent pizza crust.
- Pastry brush – this is for brushing the crust with olive oil.
- Bench scraper – this tool is good to have around in general, but in the case of pizzas, it will help you move the dough around handily.
What you should know:
Don’t take on this endeavor unless you have some time.
The good news is that if you make enough dough, you can freeze some and cut your time the next time you want to make it.
This is a great meal to make with the family. It is a good way to get everyone in the kitchen.
Almost all of these items are available at your local discount store or kitchen store. In fact, you probably have most of them already. In order to make a delicious pie, get the remaining tools, and meet back here tomorrow when we take on the perfect basic pizza at home.