According to Zagat, the majority of Americans eat pizza at least once a week. With as much pizza as Americans consume on a regular basis, it’s essential to learn about the best ways to create an incredible pizza pie at home. Homemade pizza can taste spectacular and is bound to save money by avoiding the cost for weekly pizza takeout. The following are the top five secrets of making mouthwatering pizza.
Get the Dough Just Right
One of the biggest mistakes new pizza makers do when creating their pizza pies is to use any old flour. Or worse yet, they don't make the dough from scratch. Instead of using all-purpose flour, home cooks should get bread flour or pizza flour. These flours have extra protein for a better crust. The flour should be blended with extra virgin olive oil, water, and yeast to create the dough. Hot water is preferred with the temperature around 100 degrees Fahrenheit. The warm water helps the yeast rise. Also, if the dough is refrigerated, it should be placed at room temperature for at least an hour before baking.
Making homemade pizza sauce is an easy way to upgrade the taste of the pie. A delicious and rich pizza sauce can be created with plum ripe tomatoes, roasted garlic, parmesan cheese, and a small amount of fat from oil or butter. Too much sauce ruins both the taste and texture of homemade pizza pies. Only a thin layer should be spread over the top of the rolled out dough. Cooks that use tomato slices instead of sauce should have the tomatoes sliced thinly.
Full-fat cheeses are preferred for topping any pizza. Low-fat cheeses won’t melt well and end up having a rubbery texture after baking. Mozzarella is a popular choice, but cheeses like provolone can add more flavors to the pie. Since cheese adds moisture to the dough, cooks shouldn’t go overboard on the cheese since that causes the pizza to get soggy. One cup of shredded cheese should suffice for each pie.
Experiment and Experiment Some More
Get pizza inspiration from cities across the USA. A secret for pizza success is thinking outside the box and adding alternative toppings over traditional choices like pepperoni. For instance, Charleston, South Carolina pizzerias like to include interesting toppings such as balsamic chicken and bleu cheese on top of their pies. In Fayetteville, Arkansas, a local pizzeria draws in crowds by creating a pie that includes caramelized onion marmalade, gorgonzola cheese, fresh mozzarella, and homemade Italian sausage.
A pizza stone is an essential kitchen gadget for any home chef. Without a stone, the pizza will cook unevenly with a burnt top and undercooked bottom. Place the pizza stone in the oven while pre-heating. Pizzas should be baked at high heat, at least 550 degrees Fahrenheit.
Pizza making at home requires some trial and error. The key takeaway is to keep it simple. Overloading the dough with too much sauce, cheese, or toppings will only conceal the deliciousness of the pizza’s simple flavors.
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