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Advice on Pizza

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
I just got my first head chef position at a brand new experience is all in fine dining, but am taking on a pizza/burger/grill joint because the owners share my passion for fresh, local and sesonal ingedients. I need help on dough, specifically recipe ideas, as well as storage. Based on our fresh ideas, we will not have a walk-in, only reach-in refrigerators.

support your local farmer!!!
post #2 of 12
seen a lot of techniques for dough storage most of them involve a walk in at some point for storage just because of the quantity of dough for starters and the lower temp to keep the yeast slow. Coolest setup i ever saw was on food network during some pizza marathon. The restaurant had large wooden bins, after letting the dough rise, they would beat it out , and portion out dough balls and place them in the bin with a nice coat of olive oil, then stack another bin on top. They said it works due to the form fit of the bin locking out air that the dough rose very slowly and didn't become to gassy to bake properly. Also when making Scarpini (I think) at Renaissance Faires I had a 50lb doughball that after rising i would divide into to two 5 gallon buckets and seal off with wrap and shove into a fridge. Granted the fridge had no shelves, but it was still just a fridge.

As far as a dough recipe, first pick any 3-4 pizza dough recipes you find on line, then buy the flour(s) you might be interested in using. Experiment, it's been my experience that doughs change by source, altitude and extra ingredients (say a rosemary infused crust) and finding the right mix is something to experiment and write notes till you got the recipe you need.

Best of luck
"In those days spirits were brave, the stakes were high, men were real men, women were real women, and small furry creatures from Alpha Centauri were real small furry creatures from Alpha Centauri. "
"In those days spirits were brave, the stakes were high, men were real men, women were real women, and small furry creatures from Alpha Centauri were real small furry creatures from Alpha Centauri. "
post #3 of 12
What kind of pizza? There's a lot of variation in type, and they all use different types of dough. Check out -- it's a pizza trade mag, and has quite a lot of information. Read everything Tom Lehman has to say.

Pizza dough is typically made the day before, and left to rise in the cooler. So you need a fair amount of space in the cooler, and it needs to be able to pull the temperature down quickly. You may have to adjust recipes to account for your coolers not being able to do that.
post #4 of 12
I make a great dough:
3 cups ap flour unbleached
1/2 cup semolina flour
1/2 to 1 tsp kosher salt
buzz this in a food processor really good
dissolve 1 Tb yeast in 11/4 cup warm H20
pour into flour mix and process until it just start to mass
check consistancy, I usually need more H20, I like my dough soft, pluse a few more times turn out and knead, it will always have a very slight stickiness,

Let rise on counter then put into a greased bag and let rise in refer, I have used this up to four days later (just keep punching it down, it gets more flavor) and it makes a great chewy pizza.

A great combo: extrta virgin olive oil, goat cheese, dried calamarina (SP?) figs, carmelized onions, and prociutto , parbake with the crust just brushed with the xv oil then take out and smear with goat and add other ingredients. PUT BACK IN JUST UNTIL IT MELTS A BIT A FRIZZLES THE PROCIUTTO.
post #5 of 12
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the replies..

and thanks to those that are just looking. I am pretty set on my flavor combinations, most of my worries lie in the acutual progression in a very small kitchen. When and where is the dough roled, and by whom, then sauced, topped, etc?. This style of food is very new to me, although our menu is very california. Its what i have always wanted to do (all the while working for beard award winners), my roots i tried so hard to escape, yet i am still a little bit scared. Any more thoughts?

Think local!!!
post #6 of 12

not local but

Batali supposedly does a pizza on a flat top grill thats a big hit in NYC. Just a thought, GRILLED PIZZA!

"Grilled" - that says California, right?
post #7 of 12
We do a smoked duck pizza. Caramilized onions, a little brie, some diced & roasted red bell peppers. We top it with a sprinkle of rosemary.
Preparing a fine meal with quality ingredients is the most practical way we show our love. How we plate shows the depth of our caring.
Preparing a fine meal with quality ingredients is the most practical way we show our love. How we plate shows the depth of our caring.
post #8 of 12

More thinking

I worked in pizza last year during the summer (in college) and I can't see not utilizing a walk-in.

I don't know how you would do it with reach-ins, please elaborate on the plan for storing the dough.

Sounds cool
post #9 of 12
Hey Mis,
How big a place is this??? How many pies are you going to serve? Are you going to use a pizza oven or a regular oven lined with tiles???
There will need a dedicated pizza person if you are going to do a lot of them, You can make fresh dough everyday as needed ( i think it tastes best 1-2 days after it is made, the fresh batch can go into a warm ice chest to rise, punch it down portion and bag and either put into a iced ice chest or a free reach in)I don't think it takes up that much room. Make your sauce fresh every day or two as herbs and garlic get off flavors really fast sitting in a batch of sauce. Best of luck, sounds like a great place, where are????
post #10 of 12
Oh yeah the pizza is rolled sauced and topped by your dedicated pizza cook, as ordered, right in front of the oven preferably, pizza only takes a few minutes to cook, you don't want your pizza cook down the line from the oven.
post #11 of 12
Re recipe ideas for crust:

I like to make pizza dough from either a biga or sour starter. Upside: Better taste. Signature better, even. Downside: These things are like animals, they need care and feeding. They also need a strong dose of "plan ahead" and knowing what kind of business you're going to be doing in a couple of days.

I make pizza crust with a good shot of olive oil as part of the liquid portion. I find it makes the dough easier to handle, taste better, and holds it down a little better. Downside: none.

I like to knead a little garlic and a few herbs in there. I've done very well with roasted garlic -- but the whole roast garlic thing is getting a little cliched. I'd consider offering an herbed crust as an option. Downside: PITA.

Best pizza I ever ate (or made for that matter): Bagel dough. Downside: Major PITA. Upside: Well worth the trouble. Big signature item. The starter is aged like a biga, but wet like a poolish. Again with the care and feeding. The starter can (and must) live outside the reefer for long periods -- which may be an upside in your case.

Big fave: Sesame seeds around the edge.

Want more details? Just ask.

post #12 of 12
I am not a professional but lots of recipes and techniques here Pizza Making Forum - Index

my favorite is a cracker style crust that sits at room temp for 24 hours.
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