Finally checking back in. Both pizzas this time around were much more successful. I couldn't really be all that methodical when prepping the first one as I was making dinner for the girl and I and she was late getting here. By the time she arrived the dough had been sitting out longer than I had wanted it to so I had to sort of rush through things when the time finally came. I opted for cornmeal on the peel instead of the white flour I had been using. it seemed to do a better job of keeping it loose for me. Since it sat longer than we discussed it was still a little unruly to deal with, but not as much as the previous batch. I managed to successfully get it on the stone and off this time, so thats alerady a much better start. The flavor wasn't bad at all, but since the whole prep process was so rushed I didn't really slow down enough to think critically when I was eating it.
The second, I did when I was home by myself. I let the dough sit out for roughly an hour and a half since it was such a hot day here (high 80s) and even that may be too long on that sort of day. I'm going to try a shorter rest period next time around. I took my time experimenting a little with this one. There are very few good pizza places in Memphis, but my favorite so far is a little 7 table place called Mama Mia's. I used to know a girl who worked there and she told me that they brush their crust with garlic infused olive oil and sprinkle Parmesan cheese around the edge. Since I wasn't feeling so rushed I decided to give it a try. I lightly brushed the whole surface with the oil and sprinkled the cheese around the rim. Then spread the 6in1 sauce on, and finally some sliced whole milk moz from Whole Foods mixed with another softer brand that I had left over. Its getting too hot this time of year to use my stone. Letting the oven sit for an hour plus to preheat just makes the kitchen unbearable, so I used my trusty screen right from the start. It baked up beautifully. Since I had the luxury of time I allowed it to cool a bit before eating so the flavors came through more than the heat. This was by far the best pizza I've made to date. This time around the rim was much more airy and had just enough chew. I also really liked the touch that the garlic EVOO added to it. After the fact I wished I had taken some pics to share.
That said I don't think I'm done yet so I'm about to go mix up another round. I do have a couple of quick questions I'd like to throw out for anyone who might want to answer:
1. When my dough is ready to go into the fridge I generally put it in Pyrex bowls which have been sprayed with olive oil and then covered with plastic wrap. After sitting for a few days I'll pull it out, put it on a plate, sprinkle a little flour on the top before covering it with plastic. When the time comes to stretch it out the bottom is always overly tacky which makes it difficult to manage. Am I putting too much olive oil on the bowls, or am I not doing something right when I removed it from the cold?
2. Is there a reason that the stone is so vastly preferred over a screen? I've been very happy with the results from the screen and haven't really ever detected that much of a flavor difference to make the hassle of the peel and long preheat worth it.