With all the bread baking that has been going on, I have had pizza on my mind again. I don't think it ever has gone away though. It just lies resting for when my spurts of inspiration come. Since I have a baking stone for my oven I thought I would try making a thin crust pizza. I haven't made one for well over 2 years now I think. The last time was the final winter break of my college days. I hardly remember how those turned out. I was wearing a blue sweater that day. The pictures reminded me of that.
In theory my oven can get very hot. I'm not sure the reality of what this temperature means. It says over 600 degrees but I'm still skeptical. The biggest problem is that the oven wasn't designed with the kind of baking I have in mind. I make do and I'm still happy most of the time. So the stone gave me the inspiration to go ahead and try a thin crust out. Lots of heat is needed to crisp the crust properly. I think that is the most hit or miss aspect. Might have some to do with the dough as well. I went back to my archives and pulled out the dough recipe for thin crust. I never really made this correctly in the past. It was always too chewy and tough. I made sure to make it right this time and I was quite pleased.
I made three crusts on Friday and left them in the fridge overnight. This is how they did it back at my good old job. The thickness is probably off but I'll get that over time. Pepperoni is nonexistent here it seems and I wanted meat this time around so I made some Italian sausage. The spices are simple. Fennel, salt, black pepper, and whatever else you feel like. The fennel really gives it that sausage smell and taste. I made six patties. One used for pizza and the others I froze.
The rest of the ingredients are typical. I usually make pizzas with green pepper and onion because I like the combination and it's the most readily available ingredients. I hate not having mozzarella but I have found a cheese that I prefer for pizza making. Other generic melting cooking type cheeses have a strange taste and smell. Plus, the waxy coating to prevent clumping looks gross after cooking when the food has cooled for a few minutes. The kind I get is superior in taste and cooking ability. If over baked it can get a bad taste but ever since using it, it's hard to use another brand.
When putting together these pizzas I have many nostalgic memories ranging from diagrams of a strip club drawn in corn meal in the kitchen at the pizza restaurant to feeding my friends my pizza failures and successes. I feel happy when I make things. So into the oven the pizza went. About 8 minutes later a nice looking pie emerged.
It didn't crisp up on the bottom though. That was a bit disappointing to say the least. I saved one dough for tomorrow. I'm going to put the baking stone on my grill and get the heat cranked to hades level. This will probably work great. I believe I wanted to see if my oven was capable which it kind of is. Still, not good enough for exceptional level pizza. Oh smokey Joe don't let me down.
Overall a great success today. But why do I have to work tomorrow? And parents will be there. And it's the second grade class. And those kids are good for nothi............