Hello, pizza mavens!
I've visited the forum from time-to-time since about 2006. Thought I'd registered at one time, but apparently not! Well, I've corrected that and this is the obligatory 'getting-to-know-you' message.
I'm a 60-year old guy whose fondness for pizza goes back to the late 50s, when it was still fairly new to the southeast Detroit area. As I read in another user's post, our family's first experience with making pies at home was with those horrid Appian Way
mixes that tasted more like a cardboard pizza box than the crust that was contained within.
My wife and I have experimented with making pies at home during our 40 years of marriage, sometimes with satisfactory results, but nothing that really stood out or equaled what you could get at a pizzeria. In most cases, these experiments utilized dough made in our breadmaker, using 'bread techniques' rather than pizza dough technology, which I've learned about first from the Beverly Collins
book & DVD that I obtained online several years ago.
Since then, I've learned about proper flour types, low & slow refrigerator proofing, etc. I have an oven that heats up to 550 degrees and bake my pizzas on a screen that sits on a stone, beneath a layer of clay tiles on the top oven rack. They turn out very well and our granddaughter raves about our Tuesday 'pizza nights'.
Speaking of that, today is Monday, and I didn't get around to making the dough for tomorrow's pizza this past Saturday. So I logged on here with the intent to try my first cracker-crust pizza, which only needs to proof for 24 hours. It's in the fridge now, and I'm looking forward to seeing how it stacks up against my beloved Pizza Hut Thin & Crispy!
As far as commercial pizzas go, favorites have come & gone over the years. Some that stand out in my memory are:
- Curly's -- a local pizzeria in the Columbus, Ohio area, where I went to school from '69 - '72. I think it was a one-off store, not a chain.
- Shakey's -- a name that's familiar to many of you. They weren't in our area for a long time, but while they were, they served creamy Stroh's Dark beer with their pies. Mmmmmmmm.... It had the consistency of A&W Root Beer...
- Pizza Hut -- it was also in Columbus that I had my firstThin & Crispy. Love at first bite...
- The Lamplighter in Ann Arbor, MI made a great pie that had green olives as one of the toppings. We used to wash those down with a pitcher of Harvey Wallbangers, with that yummy Galliano floating on top. Damn, I'm not only hungry -- now I'm thirsty, too!
We also like the current Jet's Jet 10
, which has a deep-dish like buttery crust. Heck -- I don't think I've every had a pizza I didn't like.
Looking forward to reading and learning from those of you have gone before, and to help out where I can.