On Pizza and ‘Pizza Stones’

I received a double pizza oven (makes two pizzas) for Christmas. It’s awesome.

BUT

I really really don’t get making pizza with pizza stones. And that’s what this oven came with.

Any advice?

My DH grew up working in a pizzeria, and when I asked him for help, me told me the stones are crap, and I should buy screens to use in my oven.

But I see food bloggers EVERY.DAY. using pizza stones successfully. So how?

Here’s what I had trouble with:

1. My dough recipe (included below and FAN-FREAKING-TASTIC) says to ‘make’ my pizzas on parchment covered in corn meal, and slide the pizzas onto the hot stones.

– Yeah. This is epic fail waiting to happen. I had plenty of corn meal — those puppies weren’t sliding. Is there another trick?

2. DH claims you must make a pizza on the surface you’re baking it on — because the dough is too hard to transfer. This probably goes with #1. I can’t exactly heat up a pizza stone and then build pizza on it!

3. If the stone isn’t hot (i.e., I build the pizza on it then pop it in the oven) the purpose of it being a stone is lost, correct? It’s just a really heavy cookie sheet at that point.

4. Finally, my pizza oven goes up to 800 degrees Farenheit. And the heating element is on the top portion of each oven…does this affect how I make my pizza?

Any answers would be truly awesome.

You’ll see my cheese is a bit burnt — this was our first go in the oven and it was a bit of a trial by fire. šŸ™‚

Awesome, Best-Pizza-Dough-Ever Recipe
( Yum.)

Super easy to work with, and deliciously light in texture. Yum!!

1/2 cup warm water (about 110 degrees F)
2 1/4 tsp breadmaker instant yeast (Can use 1 envelope instant yeast)
1 1/4 cups water, room temperature
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
4 cups bread flour, plus more for dusting
1 1/2 tsp salt
olive oil or nonstick cooking spray to grease the bowl

Directions
– Measure the warm water in a large (at least 2 cup) liquid measuring cup and sprinkle in the yeast. Let stand 5 minutes, or until yeast dissolves.
– Add the room temperautre water and oil; stir to combine
– Place the flour and salt in the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle and briefly combine your dry ingredients using low speed
– Slowly add your liquid ingredients and continue to mix on low sped until a cohesive mass forms
– Stop the mixer and replace the paddle with the dough hook
– Knead the dough until it is smooth and elastic; approximately 5 minutes
– Form the dough into a ball and put it in a deep, oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap
– Let the dough rise until doubled in size (should take 1 1/2 to 2 hours), then press the dough to deflate it
– Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and divide the dough into two equal pieces
– Form each piece into a smooth, round ball and cover with a damp cloth for 10 minutes (but no longer than 30 minutes)
– Working with one piece of dough and keeping the other one covered, shape the dough and transfer it to a pizza peel or round of parchment dusted with semolina or cornmeal
– Top as desired
– Use other ball of dough, or freeze for later use

**The original website includes instruction about heating your pizza stone in your conventional oven and cooking times for conventional ovens. Since I used my ‘pizza oven’ all of this was thrown out the door.

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4 Responses to “On Pizza and ‘Pizza Stones’”

  1. bensbaby116 Says:

    I love using my pizza stone. I usually preheat the oven with the stone in the oven, and then take it out of the oven (put it on the stovetop or on a trivet usually) to put the rolled out dough on the stone. Then I add the toppings and return the stone to the oven.

  2. Kelly Says:

    We slide the pizza on and off of the stone with a pizza peel, with cornmeal on it. We got ours at BB&B for about $8.

    It has worked well for us!

  3. Menu Mondays « Kelly Cooks…and other Amazing Feats Says:

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