Who doesn’t love to have a hot spicy home-made pepperoni pizza for dinner? However, the majority of domestic kitchens lack a pizzeria type wood-burning oven that is able to shell out a crispy pizza crust. It’s widely believed that a minimum cooking temperature of 600°F is required for pizza-making. Today we are going to explain how you can prepare a restaurant-style pizza at your home with your regular oven only with some basic tools. So, without further ado, let’s get started.
How to use a pizza stone
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One way you can make a delicious gourmet pizza is by using a hot pizza stone to bake the pizza which will essentially turn your regular home-oven into a wood-burning oven if you don’t have access to one. The rough clay top of a pizza stone spreads the heat evenly that ensures a crunchy crust. Here’s how to do it.
First, take the dough out from the refrigerator and let it sit at room temperature. Now, while the dough is waiting, put the pizza stone on the bottom rack of your oven and wait for 30 minutes to get the pizza stone heated sufficiently, and ready to start the baking process.
By now, your dough is not cold anymore and it’s perfectly ready to be baked. You must make sure the dough is not cold while placing it on the hot pizza stone as it can result in a cracked pizza stone due to sudden change in temperature.
As the pizza stone has a porous surface, it will get dirty and stain easily. You shouldn’t use soapy water though, warm water coupled with baking soda would be enough to keep your pizza stone clean for next baking.
Check our best pizza stone recommendation which can tolerate a super-high temperature of 2000°F and still won’t crack, thanks to its superior-quality materials with the finest craftsmanship.
How to use a pizza peel
The most common type of pizza peels for home use is basically a wooden paddle which is used to transfer a pizza to the pizza stone. If you’re using a pizza peel, avoid making large family-sized pizzas, and instead go with smaller ones as it will be a lot easier sliding a small pizza from the peel.
If your pizza recipe requires a dough of 12 ounces, you want to divide it in half and roll a 10-inch circle with one piece of dough. Now, take a pizza peel, and dust it with cornmeal, and transfer your crust to it. Here, turning the edges down will create a rim. Now, use half of your toppings on it and it’s time to bake the pizza. You can use additional cornmeal on the peel if you feel it’s required to make the dough slide comfortably.
If the pizza stone is heated already, open your oven and place the pizza peel on it accordingly. Now start pulling the peel and the pizza will slide on the stone. Shut the oven promptly. As you’re using stone for baking, it will take 8-10 minutes to maximum, which is shorter compared to a pizza baked on a pan.
At this point, you can start making next pizza while waiting for the first one to be baked in the oven. When removing, take a metal spatula (which should be wide to handle the pizza appropriately) and use it to slide the baked pizza on a pan or peel.
Don’t want to make a mess of your wonderful creation while transferring the dough from the countertop to your oven? Make sure you purchase the best pizza peel that comes with an innovative design and non-stick coating for effortless sliding.
Differences of a Pizza stone vs a pizza pan
To be honest, it’s a matter of an individual’s preference. Some love to bake their homemade pizzas using a pizza stone, and some like their trusted pans. However, we can tell you some primary factors that should be considered if you want to know which will be the best option for you depending on your requirements.
A pizza stone would require you to use a pizza peel and some extra effort compared to a pan. Stones are heavy too, and they get sticky and cleaning them is a real hassle. Furthermore, they needed to be pre-heated as well. So, if you’re a beginner, it will be wise to use a pizza pan and leave the stone until you’re confident to use one efficiently.
- Baking time and quality:
Although it needs to be preheated, pizza stones bake thick crusts better and faster while enhancing the taste at the same time. The same thing can be said for those thin and soft crusts which get baked perfectly and even more quickly without causing any issue with your toppings. So, if you can overlook the convenience part, you’re going to have an overall better quality homemade pizza in less time with pizza stones.
Best oven settings for pizzas
Many different opinions you’ll hear on this subject depending on the individual’s preferred pizza style, and sometimes what kind of toppings they love on their homemade pizzas. Their advice can range from 600°F to as high as 900°F. With such wide temperature variation, the baking times also vary. While on the lower side of temperature, it can take as long as 10 minutes, the highest band could make your pizza ready to eat within just one and a half minutes.
Now, you may wonder why you always see a minimum of 4 minutes baking recommendation in most of the pizza recipes if it can be cooked within just 90 seconds. It actually depends on the amount of sauce and toppings. The heavier the sauces and toppings, the more time it requires at a lower temperature to ensure the adequate cooking time for all the ingredients.
In this hard time of quarantined life under the threat of mighty Covid-19, nothing can beat the best pizza oven for countertops if you’re craving a quick load of delicious carb.
How to use a pizza cutter to slice your homemade pizzas
Traditional wheel-shaped pizza cutters are inefficiently designed and their flimsy build simply unable to give you a clean cut through the crust to make a precise slice even if you apply additional force. They are barely practical; hence here we are not going to recommend you one of such kind.
Instead, have a look at the rocking pizza cutter that comes with an extended arched blade attached with handles in both sides. The process of cutting a pizza with this simple yet amazing tool is straightforward; push the blade down by grabbing both handles. Unlike the wheel-shaped ones, here the force is directly applied to the pizza as you’re rocking the blade, giving you an easy and cleanly cut slice with least effort. Hence, if you’re looking for the best pizza cutter, we can recommend this one safely.
Wrapping it up
For pizza lovers around the world, it’s not merely a food – it’s something much more than that which can’t be explained with a few words. While pizzerias are good enough to feed your heart as much as you can, taking things into your own hands and coming up with an amazing piece of homemade cheesy wonder, which we love to call pizza, is simply an out of this world experience. We hope this guide will help you to win some hearts with your homemade pizzas.