I made pizza tonight and thought it would be nice to share my tips for getting a perfect pie at home! Nothing crazy or fancy going on here. Just the right tools, best ingredients and tried and true methods that will help you make your own best pizza too!
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1. Dough. My first choice will always be to pick up a dough from our favorite local pizza shop. They sell us a large dough for A DOLLAR. Crazy right??! It’s perfect handmade pizza dough without the fuss of actually hand-making pizza dough, ha. Cut me some slack, it’s a weeknight! I usually get 2; one for the girls and one for Brandon and I. If I don’t have time to run out to the pizza shop for whatever reason, I use Pillsbury Pizza Dough (the classic crust) right from the fridge section of the grocery store. I think it works perfectly and still requires very little fuss from me. My third choice, believe it or not, ISN’T making my own dough, (nope, still not doin’ it) – it’s just to use Indian flat bread called Naan! So much flavor and ready to go right out of the package.
2. Pizza Tools I Can’t Live Without. I’m not joking when I say these are musts in our kitchen. We use each of these items constantly (and for things other than pizza sometimes!) so I strongly believe they are worth the investment. There’s some kind of phrase I think… an artist is only as good as his tools? Is that it? I don’t know. But I know a meal is only as good as the tools you used to prepare it and having the right ones for pizza making is essential!
This pan ensures a nice crispy crust. It allows hot air to reach the bottom of your pizza and ensure even cooking.
I’m definitely a stone bakeware LOVER. This square stone is very versatile and works for all shapes of pizza dough as well as baking all kinds of other stuff in the oven. It gets really hot and is non-stick!
My Dad got me this thing a long time ago and we love love love it! I am kind of obsessed with how the wheels come out of the handle to wash easily. And the fact that it has two blades (one stainless and one silicon) make it ideal for different pans/stone. I don’t like to use sharp metal on my pizza peel because it cuts through the beautiful wood. But I DO like to use the stainless blade on the stone or right in the metal pan if there is enough room on it to cut.
We got this as a wedding gift along with a pizza cookbook and pizza stone. It’s so handy to take pizzas out of the oven that we cook right on the oven racks (my favorite kind of frozen pizza haha) but also a great place to slide your fresh pizza to get it off the hot stone or pan. We tend to remove burning hot pans from our counter asap with all the little kids around. No burns on little fingers. Nope nope nope.
3. Toppings! I love love love creating different kinds of pizza. Lately I’m not in the mood for sauce- just tons of veggies with bacon or prosciutto…yum! The pizza pictured in this post has crushed garlic sprinkled on the par-baked crust (I bake my fresh dough at 425 for 8 minutes BEFORE adding any toppings) mozzarella, parmesan, fresh chopped arugula, fresh diced tomato (I squeeze the juice off the tomatoes before adding them so my pizza doesn’t get soggy), cooked sweet and spicy italian sausage crumbled (the pizza pictured has 2 links worth of sausage on it- 1 sweet and 1 hot), sliced red onion, feta and goat cheese. My advice is to always cook your meats ahead of time and add tomatoes last if you want to preserve a fresh flavor and texture. A sprinkle of a good melting cheese on top also does wonders for holding tons of toppings on!
4. Baking. So I mentioned a bit about baking above. Pizza won’t stick to a baking stone, but it might stick to a pan so I always spray mine with olive oil using this Olive Oil Sprayer before it goes into the oven. I always use a preheated 425 degree oven. Par-baking your crust ensures you get a crispy foundation for your toppings and you don’t end up with soggy dough. Once your toppings are added, it’s safe to pop that baby back in the oven until the crust browns to your liking and the cheese is gooey and melted. Keep an eye on your crust though; if it’s browning too quickly cover your edges with foil OR just turn the oven down to 400 for a few minutes while your cheese melts. I also let me pizza cool just a tad on the pizza peel before cutting it- I feel like that gives it a chance to first up a bit and be less likely for all those amazing toppings to come off!
THATS IT! So easy right?!