Tuesday, November 13, 2007

always striving towards the perfect pizza

I've been on a streak of cooking good food recently--which is great because I almost killed Tavo with my last streak of failed recipes.

During October, somehow, I made 3 bad soups in a row--and that's rough because we end up eating the soup every day for work. And if it's bad on the first day--you don't even want to know what it tastes like by the third! So, failed gnocchis, bad bean soup and an unrisen loaf of bread now behind me--I went on to tackle my favorite food of all time.


Now--other than last week's loaf, I am a bread maker extraordinaire. I have no problem whipping up any variety of bread--vegan, vegetarian, flavored, potato based, rye, wheat, pumpernickel--I've got it. Pizza? There's a trick to making pizza. Super, duper high heat.

You see--in order to get that super delicious, crispy thin New York style crust--you need an oven that reaches at least 800 degrees. I'm used to working with ovens like the one above. I've seen the brick fire ones--and while those are quite pretty--seems a bit temperamental and lots of room for error in just your typical monday night pizza making.

I just have a standard electric oven. Now, I've read about how you can "trick out" your oven to heat to 800 degrees--but I'm kind of afraid that I'll blow up my house. And I really like my house. So I settle on cooking as high as it'll go--500 degrees--and a little extra with the broiler. And it turned out good pizza. A little chewier than your restaurant version--but not too shabby. Here it is:

Artichoke hearts, tomatoes, spinach, fresh basil and mozzarella. Half wheat/white dough, homemade sauce heavy on the garlic and onions.

It'll do for now...that is until I get my tricked out oven...


doggybloggy said...

WOW..that looks excellent and I think 500 degrees is plenty hot ..though 800 sounds good - I am also happy with the 500 I can crank...that pizza is amazing, when did you make the dough?

Tavolini said...

thanks doggy! I usually make bread on sundays--so I just chopped off part of the dough and stuck it in the fridge overnight so I'd be set on Monday. Just your basic lighter wheat bread, nothing fancy.

Sprocket said...

looks delicious

pinknest said...

this looks so gourmet!! so excellent! so i want!! i'd be terrified of heating my oven to 800degrees. terrified.

buffalodickdy said...

Looks like a great crust! 800F is a good tempering temperature for tool steel!

Crabby said...

Big baker here too. This time of year especially. I take the summers off. Too much to do outside. But come fall and winter. I love the smell of baking bread, pies, cobblers, you name it.

I'm linking you so I don't lose track of you. LOL!

Tavolini said...

Sprocket--I've got to make pizza for all of us one night

Pinknest--me too! One wrong move and I assume the glass on the door would shatter!

Buffalo--hey, I can get my forging done, too. I like the efficiency of it all :)

Crabby--thanks! Yeah, baking is great for the winter, and keeps the house warm!