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Old 09-23-2009, 12:30 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shuiend View Post
Maybe I am just lazy, but I use this to make my pizzas.

Thanks. I've lost my appetite.
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Old 09-23-2009, 12:46 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by shuiend View Post
Maybe I am just lazy, but I use this to make my pizzas.

I use something like this:
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Old 09-23-2009, 12:50 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mach929 View Post
...which ingredient is giving me the high school cafeteria taste.
How would you describe "cafeteria?"

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Originally Posted by Mach929 View Post
is it the premade dough, the sauce, or the cheese? I've added garlic and pepper and that helped a lot but it's still bland
Could be all three. As Y8S indicated, pizza sauce and marinara are not the same. Good pizza sauce in a can is like a buck and perfectly adequate. Get the one with the old broad with a basket of tomatoes (might be regional).

As others have indicated, get a wad of dough from a pizza joint.

Any hard motz will work. Until you get your technique down, I'd stay away from the fresh motz (which btw is almost never made with buffalo milk in the states).

But I think your real problem here is lack of salt. You mentioned pepper, but I think you really need to salt that thing. Garlic salt is nice.

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Originally Posted by Mach929 View Post
i'm actually leaning towards the cheese, i think i need to experiment with combining different cheeses
Yeah, good thinking. A ratio of 3:1 motz/jack is nice. But too much jack can get greasy. Also, right before you eat it, a grating of hard cheese is good. But good parmesan is $20/lb... but you only need a little

Few things to keep in mind:
Always use a stone.
Your oven cannot get too hot (the best pies are cooked in less than 10 mins)
Less is more. Keep toppings to a bare minimum
If you decide to use meat, pre-cook it to get grease rendered before it goes on pie
Room temperature dough is much easier to work with
Don't forget salt, ever.


I made this pesto bastard a few nights ago...

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Old 09-23-2009, 12:54 PM   #24
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Old 09-23-2009, 02:16 PM   #25
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I don't know how to describe the "cafeteria" taste but it's what i remember school food tasting like back in the day, figured maybe others could relate to it. Kind of plain tasting and the cheese had a fluffy and uniform texture to it. But yeah i thought about more salt but the pizza sauce i bought had tons of salt in it, it's not just marinara sauce btw. Good call on the temp i think i'll go hotter next time, it took 20mins at 350. and i do have a stone.

Now that i think about it, i'm betting on the cheese because my pizza had no grease whatsoever like you'd expect from a pizza shop. do i really need mozzarella made from buffalo milk?

also i'm not going to bother with toppings till i get results i'm happy with
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Old 09-23-2009, 02:42 PM   #26
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The buffalo milk stuff is usually found stored in liquid and is really good if your not cooking it like in a caprese salad. For a pizza though I find it too watery when it's melted. I prefer the texture of low moisture cheese usually found in shrink wrapped *****.
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Old 09-23-2009, 02:44 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by Mach929 View Post
Good call on the temp i think i'll go hotter next time, it took 20mins at 350
you want 500F if you can get there. With a thin pie, at the right temp, we're talking 7 mins max.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mach929 View Post
Now that i think about it, i'm betting on the cheese because my pizza had no grease whatsoever like you'd expect from a pizza shop. do i really need mozzarella made from buffalo milk?
You don't want grease. But in general, motz is fairly flat in its flavor profile so to add jack at about 25% will give much richness. Or if you're wealthy, a nice italian hard cheese at about 10% can be awesome. And NO, you don't need buffalo motz. It's good stuff, but hard to find, expensive, and very melty. Not good unless you have fresh tomatoes and basil and you're technique is dialed in. Go for the cheapest "low moisture" motz, $4/lb at most.

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Originally Posted by Mach929 View Post
also i'm not going to bother with toppings till i get results i'm happy with
Good thinking. Toppings just make life harder, especially when involving raw veggies and stuff. Do not want. It's about dough, cheese, the end. More intel: I don't fool with a peel. I pull my stone out of the oven (once it hits 505F) and build the pie quickly on the countertop. Then whack it back in the oven. No peel needed. By the time the next beer is cracked, pie is golden. ANd learn to throw your dough. Throwing the dough is not just an exhibition... it concentrates dough mass to the outside so you get a nice crunchy rim and even thickness in the field. IT's not hard to do and it works wonders. Also, two stones are nice. One to put the pie on and one above it too (on a rack of course). This helps browning and even cooking.
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Old 09-23-2009, 02:57 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Oscar View Post
make sure you use proper mozzarella made from buffalo milk, not the cow's milk knock-off crap
So we should use buffalo milk mozzerella, just like the Italians used when they invented the cheese?

Pretty sure the Buffalo/ Bison is native to North America, not Europe.
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Old 09-23-2009, 03:09 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boileralum View Post
So we should use buffalo milk mozzerella, just like the Italians used when they invented the cheese?

Pretty sure the Buffalo/ Bison is native to North America, not Europe.
Mozzarella di bufala campana (PDO 1996) is a particular type of mozzarella, made from the milk of water buffalo raised in designated areas of Lazio and Campania; some consider it the best for flavour or quality. Unlike other mozzarellas, 50% of whose production derives from imported, and often semi-coagulated milk,[7] it is protected by European PDO. It is a raw material in Italian style Neapolitan pizza - rather than mozzarella made with pasteurized cow's milk.
(...)
Mozzarella is traditionally produced solely from the milk of the domestic water buffalo. After curdling the product is drained and the whey discarded. The cheese is then stretched and kneaded to produce a delicate consistency -- this process is generally known as pasta filata. According to the Mozzarella di Bufala trade association, "The cheese-maker kneads it with his hands, like a baker making bread, until he obtains a smooth, shiny paste, a strand of which he pulls out and lops off, forming the individual mozzarella." [8] It is then typically formed into ball shapes or in plait. In Italy, a "rubbery" consistency is generally considered not satisfactory; the cheese is expected to be softer.

Source: Mozzarella - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


The Water Buffalo or domestic Asian water buffalo (Bubalus bubalis) is a large bovine animal, frequently used as livestock in Asia, and also widely in South America, southern Europe, north Africa and elsewhere.
(...)
American bison are known as buffalo in parts of North America, but not normally in other usages; bison are more closely related to cattle, gaur, banteng, and yaks than to Asian buffalo.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Water_buffalo



The American Bison (Bison bison) is a North American species of bison, also commonly known as the American Buffalo. "Buffalo" is somewhat of a misnomer for this animal, as it is only distantly related to either of the two "true buffaloes", the Asian Buffalo (or "Water Buffalo") and the African Buffalo.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_bison


Water Buffalo:





American Bison:




Felis Catus (with Cottontail rabbit):


Last edited by Joe Perez; 09-23-2009 at 03:27 PM. Reason: fixed links
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Old 09-23-2009, 03:32 PM   #30
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Always informative.
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Old 09-23-2009, 04:00 PM   #31
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LOL THANKS JOE!
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Old 09-23-2009, 04:08 PM   #32
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I've been making my own pizza for a few months now. Started out with the crap store bought dough, moved on to fresh dough from a local pizza parlor, which was a big improvement, and then started making my own dough using a bread machine and Mario Batali's recipe. I add a tablespoon of Italian seasoning and it's great.

The bread machine method is easy as pie. It takes about 2 minutes to get everything in the bucket, and 90 minutes later you've got kick *** dough. I cut the dough ball into thirds and make the pie as thin as possible.

I use my gas grille. You need high heat to make a proper pie, and most home ovens just don't cut it. The grille can be tricky, and I still occasionally burn a pie.

If you're going to make pizza, take my advice and try it on a grille, it's worlds better than in an oven.

--------------------------------------------------------
This is from an email I sent a buddy back in May.

First Pizza on the grille this year. I had to watch it like a hawk to keep it from burning. A pizza stone is on my to-get list.

Fresh dough from the local pizzeria. Fresh Mozarella, sauce from my mom, garlic, basil, and some sesame seeds. Cornmeal on the board, and the pizza slides off like it's on ball bearings. (I have a proper pizza peel now, it's much easier transferring the pie to and from the grille)
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Got the grille screaming hot, and rubbed some oil on the grates.
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Turn the burners down to low so the dough doesn't burn. This is where a pizza stone would really help, it should allow me to keep the burners at 100%, and cook the pizza faster, without burning the crust. This is at about 3 minutes
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This is perfect. Some char on the bottom really adds a nice flavor. Total time on the grille is maybe 4 to 5 minutes.
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C
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Old 09-23-2009, 04:53 PM   #33
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how much does your local shop charge for dough? i've seen them making them into *****, are those ***** the right amount for one full sized pie?
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Old 09-23-2009, 05:11 PM   #34
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Couple of bucks. They'll sell you the same size they use to make one pie. I make mine smaller and thinner.

C
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Old 09-23-2009, 07:09 PM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Perez View Post
Mozzarella di bufala campana (PDO 1996) is a particular type of mozzarella, made from the milk of water buffalo raised in designated areas of Lazio and Campania; some consider it the best for flavour or quality. Unlike other mozzarellas, 50% of whose production derives from imported, and often semi-coagulated milk,[7] it is protected by European PDO. It is a raw material in Italian style Neapolitan pizza - rather than mozzarella made with pasteurized cow's milk.
(...)
Mozzarella is traditionally produced solely from the milk of the domestic water buffalo. After curdling the product is drained and the whey discarded. The cheese is then stretched and kneaded to produce a delicate consistency -- this process is generally known as pasta filata. According to the Mozzarella di Bufala trade association, "The cheese-maker kneads it with his hands, like a baker making bread, until he obtains a smooth, shiny paste, a strand of which he pulls out and lops off, forming the individual mozzarella." [8] It is then typically formed into ball shapes or in plait. In Italy, a "rubbery" consistency is generally considered not satisfactory; the cheese is expected to be softer.

Source: Mozzarella - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


The Water Buffalo or domestic Asian water buffalo (Bubalus bubalis) is a large bovine animal, frequently used as livestock in Asia, and also widely in South America, southern Europe, north Africa and elsewhere.
(...)
American bison are known as buffalo in parts of North America, but not normally in other usages; bison are more closely related to cattle, gaur, banteng, and yaks than to Asian buffalo.

Source: Water Buffalo - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia



The American Bison (Bison bison) is a North American species of bison, also commonly known as the American Buffalo. "Buffalo" is somewhat of a misnomer for this animal, as it is only distantly related to either of the two "true buffaloes", the Asian Buffalo (or "Water Buffalo") and the African Buffalo.

Source: American Bison - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


Water Buffalo:





American Bison:




Felis Catus (with Cottontail rabbit):



lol
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Old 09-23-2009, 08:18 PM   #36
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lol
I love your avatar, incidentally.
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Old 09-23-2009, 08:32 PM   #37
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Its amazing that a thread about homemade pizza can end up with a picture of a kitty eating the face of a rabbit. That rabbit is twice that kitty's size, too!
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Old 09-23-2009, 08:35 PM   #38
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I just put a Trader Joes pizza in the oven.
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Old 09-23-2009, 11:02 PM   #39
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Originally Posted by Mach929 View Post
how much does your local shop charge for dough? i've seen them making them into *****, are those ***** the right amount for one full sized pie?
I also cut them down a bit to make two smaller pies, around here its <$5.
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Old 09-23-2009, 11:04 PM   #40
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I built a wood fired, outdoor pizza oven several years ago and I learned a lot about pizza making. I only took it down this past year but now can duplicate that pizza in regular ovens.

If you use an electric oven, use a "screen" type pizza dish that the dough will cook on.

If you use a gas oven, use a flat pan that you typically see used at pizza places.

All fresh ingredients have a lot of water in them so it is important to slice or dice thinly and use sparingly or the dough will absorb the moisture and be soggy.

When using black olives, squeeze the moisture out. I just use the can lid and press it real hard inside the can to squeeze the moisture out, then put the olives on some paper towels to absorb the remaining moisture before cutting.

Find a regular bread recipe and add double or triple the salt or the dough will taste bland, you can substitute olive oil for butter in the recipe.

If you like Domino's pizza, make the dough days ahead of time and store it in the refrigerator, this gives it a chewy, some would say tougher, crust.

If you like more of a fresh gourmet type of crust, make it and let it rise just once or twice, beat it down, and you are good to start forming your pie.

When making your dough, inside room temperature, humidity, etc, can have an effect on how much flour per wet ingredients is needed, but what you are looking for is a texture that is not as firm as what is needed for loaves of bread but just slightly tacky to touch.

Cover the dough with a wet warm towel and let stand until dough doubles in size.

In order for the dough to not stick to the counter top, sprinkle a little flour on the table surface and turn once in while, gently kneading the dough to form a flat circle, with the outer edges always thicker. Try to toss it as it helps form a thinner crust and looks professional.

Never try to use a bread roller, it kills the texture of the pizza crust.

For sauce,
Mix one can of whole tomatoes with 2 tablespoons of minced garlic, add salt to taste, 6 table spoons of Oregano, 3 tablespoons of onion flakes (helps absorb excess moisture from canned tomatoes and adds flavor) maybe a teaspoon of sugar to cut too much acid taste. Blend using a slow mixer to a consistency that still has some small pieces of tomato in it, I hate the pureed look. Let stand for about an hour. You do not need to warm or simmer this and never put a too warm of sauce on the dough, it should be at max room temperature or it will make the pizza soggy. You can also take it from your refrigerator and put it on, the colder the ingredients, the less soggy the dough.

I crank the electric oven to 550 and wait for the light to indicate the oven is hot and goes off.
Then work your dough on the counter with some flour so it doesn't stick, and in the case of an electric oven, put the dough on the screen type of pan, ***** the dough with a fork (keeps from getting large air bubbles while it is cooking).

Put on sauce, less than what you think you need, followed by cheese and then your other ingredients. Do not put a lot in the middle of the pizza as the ingredients tend to migrate towards the center anyway. Most people put too much toppings on their pizza and the dough can't support it, especially if it is a thin crust.

I use a long handled pizza paddle to put the pizza in the oven and that paddle can also be used to scrape the pizza from the screen when it is done.

The pizza takes about 7 minutes and will cook evenly on the top as well as the bottom with the screen (electric oven).

If you have a gas oven, heat the oven to the max, use a solid pan, coat with vegetable oil, and repeat above process.

For what its worth, if I keep the toppings simple, I can have a pizza in less than an hour from scratch (out of the oven). It is not absolutely necessary to have the dough rise completely, and the suace cooks when it is in the oven.

Enjoy,

Jim

Last edited by driverdog; 09-23-2009 at 11:20 PM.
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