Author Topic: 1st Attempt - Advice Please :)  (Read 3035 times)

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Offline RobDude

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1st Attempt - Advice Please :)
« on: April 25, 2010, 12:30:48 PM »
I took my first stab at making a pizza this weekend!  Actually, it's really my first time cooking anything :)

I was using the 12" PSTK pan from PizzaTools.com (with the sloped edge) and following DKMs recipe found on the 'Recipes' page on this site.

If the pictures show up - you'll see that the bottom of the crust got awfully black.  I placed it on the lowest rack in my electric oven, set at 450 degrees for 20 minutes.  I think if I just place it higher up in my oven - it will cook the outside of the crust slower?

Or is that an indication that I coated the pan with the wrong kind of oil?  I used 'Star Extra Light (in flavor) Oil'. 

Anyway, I didn't put nearly enough pepperoni on, and my girlfriend thought the sauce had 'too much tomato flavor' but all in all - it was a good pizza.  Thanks to everyone who helps make this site so awesome.
« Last Edit: April 25, 2010, 12:36:13 PM by RobDude »


Offline loowaters

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Re: 1st Attempt - Advice Please :)
« Reply #1 on: April 25, 2010, 01:42:17 PM »
Good first effort.  Get that pie up off the lowest rack, a middle rack position will do just fine.

What did you do for sauce?

Loo
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Offline Randy

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Re: 1st Attempt - Advice Please :)
« Reply #2 on: April 25, 2010, 01:46:04 PM »
Great looking pie for sure.  Loo answered the crust question.

If you are adding salt to your sauce, that may be the source of a harsher tomato flavor.

Randy

Offline RobDude

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Re: 1st Attempt - Advice Please :)
« Reply #3 on: April 25, 2010, 01:49:16 PM »
Good first effort.  Get that pie up off the lowest rack, a middle rack position will do just fine.

What did you do for sauce?

Loo

The sauce was just 6-in-1; a little bit less than the whole can (maybe 20-22oz) and then we sprinkled some Parmesan cheese and some generic Italian seasonings.

The cheese was 8oz of Boar's Head Mozz and 4oz of Boar's head Provolone.  We both thought the cheese was really good; I want to try some other brands just to compare - but I was pretty happy with it.

Offline loowaters

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Re: 1st Attempt - Advice Please :)
« Reply #4 on: April 25, 2010, 02:03:41 PM »
First, I'm not knocking the 6-in-1s, I use them a lot, but not for my deep dish pies.  I hand crush Cento Italian Peeled Tomatoes after coring and de-seeding.  I like to season with salt, pepper, some minced garlic and just a bit of extra virgin olive oil.  That's not much but it does give it something else.  I also top with some parm before it goes in the oven.

Your cheese blend is fine and a 50/50 mozz/prov blend is used by plenty of people for all kinds of pizza.  A full pound of cheese for a 12" is a lot of cheese but that's OK, you probably won't get complaints for too much cheese. 

Loo
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Offline Randy

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Re: 1st Attempt - Advice Please :)
« Reply #5 on: April 25, 2010, 04:10:09 PM »
Ya, drop the Italian seasoning.

You are really close, so keep trying.

Randy

Offline RobDude

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Re: 1st Attempt - Advice Please :)
« Reply #6 on: April 25, 2010, 06:50:06 PM »
Thanks for the posts all.

I'm really looking forward to my next attempt; just finished mixing the dough ball.  I increased the flour weight (I'm not sure if that's the correct term; but I've got a 2% larger dough ball this time) just a tiny bit, I'll cook it higher in the oven, and probably double the amount of pepperoni. 

The sauce - I'll probably leave until next time; only because I don't know what coring or deseeding really means :)  But I'm sure I'll be able to figure it out.

I might try changing the ratio of the cheese to be 50/50; but using the same brand.

Offline DKM

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Re: 1st Attempt - Advice Please :)
« Reply #7 on: April 25, 2010, 08:15:09 PM »
The sauce was just 6-in-1; a little bit less than the whole can (maybe 20-22oz) and then we sprinkled some Parmesan cheese and some generic Italian seasonings.

I use that combination quite often and it is normally a big hit.  Did you drain the can?  My one suggestion here is use less.  For a 13" pan I only use about 2/3 of a can.

DKM

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Offline DKM

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Re: 1st Attempt - Advice Please :)
« Reply #8 on: April 25, 2010, 08:26:55 PM »
my girlfriend thought the sauce had 'too much tomato flavor' 

What did you think?  Rethinking it I'm not sure either recommendation from Loo or Randy would solve the issue of too much tomato flavor.

If it needs to be toned down I would recommend simmering the tomatoes with whatever seasonings you like and a touch of sugar for about 10-15 minutes then letting it cool and putting it in the fridge.
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Offline loowaters

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Re: 1st Attempt - Advice Please :)
« Reply #9 on: April 25, 2010, 08:30:42 PM »
I'm sorry Rob, I misread, you are at 8 oz. mozz. + 4 (four. FOUR!) oz. of prov. which, IMHO, is just right for a 12".  If you'd like tinker with the ratio, by all means, experiment.

Loo
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Offline RobDude

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Re: 1st Attempt - Advice Please :)
« Reply #10 on: April 25, 2010, 09:05:57 PM »
What did you think?  Rethinking it I'm not sure either recommendation from Loo or Randy would solve the issue of too much tomato flavor.

If it needs to be toned down I would recommend simmering the tomatoes with whatever seasonings you like and a touch of sugar for about 10-15 minutes then letting it cool and putting it in the fridge.


I was actually pretty happy with it.  It's been a number of years - but it reminded me very much of the Lou Malnati's sauce I used to get in Schaumburg, IL (minus the occasional large chunk of tomato). 

Her and I were talking about it yesterday, and neither of us are very good at 'tasting' food.  We either like something or we don't, but we're not very good at saying 'why'.  She described it has just having 'too much tomato' but I wouldn't be surprised if it's actually another quality of the tomato sauce that doesn't agree with her.  Ultimately, I think it'll just be a lot of trial and error on some of this stuff - but it should be a lot of fun.


Offline RobDude

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Re: 1st Attempt - Advice Please :)
« Reply #11 on: April 25, 2010, 09:08:50 PM »
I use that combination quite often and it is normally a big hit.  Did you drain the can?  My one suggestion here is use less.  For a 13" pan I only use about 2/3 of a can.

DKM



Drain?  No - I didn't! 

How does that work exactly - use a strainer?

Offline DKM

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Re: 1st Attempt - Advice Please :)
« Reply #12 on: April 25, 2010, 10:24:42 PM »
Her and I were talking about it yesterday, and neither of us are very good at 'tasting' food.

It can be nothing more than personal taste.  I also don't like a stong tomatoe taste most of the time.  I have adapted over the year of making pizza.


Drain?  No - I didn't! 

How does that work exactly - use a strainer?

Yep, just a strainer over a bowl.
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Offline BTB

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Re: 1st Attempt - Advice Please :)
« Reply #13 on: April 26, 2010, 08:57:21 AM »
Drain?  No - I didn't!  How does that work exactly - use a strainer?
Very nice job, RD.  Good cheese selection.  Boar's Head is among the best on the market IMO.  I'll never understand your earlier statement, tho, about your girlfriend thinking that the tomato sauce had too much of a "tomato flavor" to it, so I won't touch that one.  It is likely, tho, that you used a little too much. 

On draining, yes, you best drain just about all canned tomato products (for deep dish), min. 15 min. to max. of approx. 2 hrs. -- I prefer 20 min..  I realize that with so much content here that it does get overwhelming or confusing, but all have long advised to drain the tomato products used for Chicago Style deep dish pizzas (but I do little to none for thin crust pizzas).  And if you want something close to Malnati's (that's commonly available) the picture below of 6 in 1 and Muir Glen diced tomatoes is what I like and have been very satisfied with -- altho, I've been happy with Ed's (vcb's) suggestion for San Marzano's, too.  Like most Chicago pizzerias, I rarely cook the sauce.  But experiment and see what you and yours' like the best.  Everybody will settle on their "own thing."

Offline RobDude

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Re: 1st Attempt - Advice Please :)
« Reply #14 on: April 26, 2010, 11:36:48 AM »
Thanks so much everyone.

So basically - I'll dump the sauce into the strainer and let it sit for 15-20 minutes.  Then, when I come back - I'll throw away whatever is left in the strainer?

That's probably a stupid question - I'm sure it'll make sense when I do it.

Thanks again.

Offline loowaters

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Re: 1st Attempt - Advice Please :)
« Reply #15 on: April 26, 2010, 01:03:13 PM »
ROB!!! DUDE!!!  You KEEP what's in the strainer and can do whatever you like with the water/juice drained out into the bowl.

Loo
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Offline BTB

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Re: 1st Attempt - Advice Please :)
« Reply #16 on: April 26, 2010, 01:20:00 PM »
My wife uses the water/juice that gets strained for salads and other things, but if it were up to me I would just discard it.  I just got an email from Malnati's advertising their new canned tomato product, which I imagine is only available in the Chicago area.  Looks interesting.  I see Loo and Ed have reported on it on other threads.  See http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,8592.msg96643.html#msg96643.                                                                                                          --BTB

Offline RobDude

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Re: 1st Attempt - Advice Please :)
« Reply #17 on: April 26, 2010, 02:37:09 PM »
ROB!!! DUDE!!!  You KEEP what's in the strainer and can do whatever you like with the water/juice drained out into the bowl.

Loo

Sorry! 

Thank you for clarifying.  I guess the sauce is thicker than I'd realized.  Anyway, I need to pick up a strainer from the store; but I think this is going to help a lot.

Offline vcb

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Re: 1st Attempt - Advice Please :)
« Reply #18 on: April 26, 2010, 02:39:57 PM »
Sorry! 

Thank you for clarifying.  I guess the sauce is thicker than I'd realized.  Anyway, I need to pick up a strainer from the store; but I think this is going to help a lot.

I hang on to the strained juice and add some of it back to the sauce if it looks too dry, right before I bake it.
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Offline RobDude

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Re: 1st Attempt - Advice Please :)
« Reply #19 on: April 26, 2010, 10:42:50 PM »
Okay - after draining the sauce it was painfully obvious what to do :)  I was expecting it all to just go right through that metal wire; but nope - it worked great.

Cooked it in the middle of the oven; and it was a major improvement.  Draining the sauce helped a lot - I sorta randomly tried mixing a tomato paste in with it too.  The GF liked it better; I wasn't sure.  Reminded me of Rosati's Stuffed Pizza this time; but not quite there; just sorta similar.

Thanks again for all the help everyone - certainly beats McDonalds