Author Topic: It came to me . . .  (Read 1997 times)

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Offline Randy

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It came to me . . .
« on: September 22, 2004, 10:31:58 AM »
I was looking at Steve and DKMís posting on the new thin crust and it came to that they is but a few people in this world who can make great pizzas outside of the tried and true pizza joints and most are on this forum.  I base this on the number of recipes that are on the web that lack the instructions and ingredients list to separate them from all the rest.  It is indeed the attention to detail that separates good pizza from the bad.

Randy


Offline DKM

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Re:It came to me . . .
« Reply #1 on: September 22, 2004, 12:59:04 PM »
Randy you certainly have some of the best recipes on this forum, and I couldn't agree with you more.  Attention to details, caring about the product, look for and accepting the input of others is what makes the difference.  I'll always be thankful Steve started this (irony being I was looking for a thin crust recipe) and several of the regualr contributors.

DKM
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Offline Steve

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Re:It came to me . . .
« Reply #2 on: September 22, 2004, 01:09:18 PM »
This site wouldn't be what it is without all of you.  :-*

My biggest peeve is unreproducible results. I am a stickler for exact measurements and procedures. If someone says to use a cup of flour, I want to know exactly how much flour to use. 4 oz? 5 oz? It makes a big difference!

So, that's what I'm striving for here with this website. The recipes must be presented in such a way that anyone... and I do mean anyone... can make them and have them turn out great.
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Offline Steve

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Re:It came to me . . .
« Reply #3 on: September 22, 2004, 01:15:25 PM »
Oh yeah, and this site was born out of total frustration.  ;D

99% of the recipes on the Internet and in cookbooks are centered around the home cook and produce very average pizzas.

I could not understand why I could not make a professional tasting pizza at home. And I was very frustrated as to why no one made commercial recipes available to the general public.

So I put this website online in hopes of drawing in people like you.  8)
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Offline Randy

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Re:It came to me . . .
« Reply #4 on: September 22, 2004, 01:42:56 PM »
I remember posting to Steveís guest book before the forum and like Steve I had been on the hunt for a couple of years trying one useless recipe after another.  Most likely I would have never tried a Chicago or a thin crust if I hadnít found this site.
 8)
Randy

Offline DKM

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Re:It came to me . . .
« Reply #5 on: September 22, 2004, 02:01:39 PM »
I had bought 4 books and they all made the same pizza and used almost the same dough for every style.

DKM
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Offline Pierre

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Re:It came to me . . .
« Reply #6 on: September 22, 2004, 06:45:20 PM »
here in Germany, it was the lack of a really good pizza that inspired me to try making my own. Most of the chains here have mediocre style pizzas and a great lack of consistency in quality and taste .

Of course I had many drawbacks and my first 15 or 20 pizzas were less than satisfying. I often thought I would not be able to make a satisfying Pizza in a home kitchen situation and was close to giving up. One day, while looking on the internet I stumbled upon Steve's site, back then "the Pizza Archives" and saw the pictures of his New York Style pizza which gave me even more inspiration to continue my efforts. I didn't even notice that there was a forum (I'm not even sure if there was one back then?).  I also realized, I was not the only one out there trying to achieve this.

I noticed very early on that almost all the recipes I found on the internet were lacking accuracy in their ingredients causing inconsistent results, just as everyone else in this thread mentioned. That is why I decided to measure the ingredients by weight and since then I have been able to improve my recipe step by step. I believe that is where I then placed my first post and started contributing to the forum .

And here we are now, all together, a small group.... sometimes belaughed at by our friends or neighbors.... :) with some of the damn best pizza in town.

Pierre

Online Pete-zza

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Re:It came to me . . .
« Reply #7 on: September 22, 2004, 08:34:37 PM »
This is a nice thread because it highlights the passion side of pizza making, not just the mechanical, robotic aspects of pizza making.  

When I was considering joining the forum, I indicated in an early posting that I discovered that most people were more interested in eating pizza rather than making it or understanding it, and that I tended to do it in reverse--understanding pizza, making it, and then eating it.  I don't know that I would have joined the forum were it not for the fact that Steve was behind it.  I had read about his work with multiple pizza stones and had concluded that he had to be an extremely passionate and dedicated pizza "nut" to go to the extremes he did to try to perfect pizza in the home.  And to create a forum no less to share his passions with others of like mind.  I voraciously read as many of the postings at the forum as I could and concluded that there was no other place where people could assemble with the goal of making the perfect pizza.  

Like many of you, I had searched for good pizza recipes over the Internet and elsewhere but usually came away disappointed.   I had done a fair amount of research on the subject of pizza, and concluded that most recipes evolved as much by accident as by design.  Errors and poor science probably creeped into the recipes over time and were repeated time and time again over the years.  To this day, I deem most pizza recipes found over the Internet, and many in pizza cookbooks, to be deficient or suspect in one way or another, as Pierre has correctly pointed out.  And the results that you can hope to achieve are often misrepresented or greatly exaggerated.  Under these conditions, you have to take matters into your own hands.  You either learn the right ways or you are relegated to a pizza world of mediocrity.  Or you move onto another hobby.

I also believe  that you have to strive for consistent, reproducible results.  Otherwise, each pizza you make becomes a "mystery" pizza.  I don't need consistency like professionals do, but I still want to know what to expect when I make my pizzas.  That's why I believe it is important to have access to the knowledge and experiences of others, such as at this forum, whose sole objective is to make the best pizzas possible and who are unrelenting in achieving that objective.  In the final analysis, it's about passion and, like passion in many other facets of our lives, it ultimately pays off.  

Peter    

Offline DKM

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Re:It came to me . . .
« Reply #8 on: September 22, 2004, 10:34:49 PM »
Actually I almost never weigh or pay real close attention to the messurements when I make my doughs.  I'm very much a look a look and feel person.  Of course first I had figure out what was the correct look and feel.  But again it is the passion and desire.  Read the Pizzera Bianco section in the first part of American Pie (page 71 in my copy)

DKM
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Offline RoadPizza

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Re:It came to me . . .
« Reply #9 on: September 23, 2004, 01:46:25 AM »
This is a nice thread because it highlights the passion side of pizza making, not just the mechanical, robotic aspects of pizza making.  

I also believe  that you have to strive for consistent, reproducible results.  Otherwise, each pizza you make becomes a "mystery" pizza.  I don't need consistency like professionals do, but I still want to know what to expect when I make my pizzas.  

It definitely is about passion.  I'v found that I can teach new hires how to make pizza in about two weeks, but they don't really get to be GOOD until about 6 months into it.

At first, they're mostly still trying to learn the "hows" and develop that mechanical, robotic aspect you describe.  But later, they start to develop an appreciation for the art of it.  They start to experiment once they've developed the confidence (that they know they won't ruin the dough during stretching or burn the pie during the cooking) and THAT'S when they really come into their own.  By that time, they become better than me and I start to learn from them and what they discover.  The stuff they discover is what I add into what I teach the newer guys.

This forum is like that.  I've learned a lot from your posts and I've tried to share some of the things I've discovered on the way.


Offline Arthur

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Re:It came to me . . .
« Reply #10 on: September 23, 2004, 10:14:21 AM »
For me, making pizza is both a way to bring me back to my youth and way to strive for my own perfection with something in life.

When I was younger growing up in Brooklyn, eating pizza was almost a daily event at the local pizza place.  After getting $1.00 every now and then from my mother, $.45 a slice, $.25 for a coke or ices in the summer and $.25 for the video game (pac man, etc) - and $.05 to spare.  It brings back great memories of a time when life was so simple.

With so many complicated things in this world, making pizza seems to be a refreshing goal - although (as we all know) even with so few ingredients the task is quite difficult.  I, personally, strive for the best NY Style pizza and never stray from that.  The pizza with the thin candy-like sort-of burnt crust, with rich sauce, light refreshing cheese and fresh basil.   I only use exact measurements and just build on my knowledge from the week before continually striving for that "best" pizza.  I will never get there, but then again it was never about getting there in the first place.

Offline Foccaciaman

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Re:It came to me . . .
« Reply #11 on: September 24, 2004, 01:06:59 PM »
Wow, this thread is great reading.

Like so many have said before when they first joined the forum "I am so glad I found this site" or "I have finally found other people like myself passionate about pizza". Many of the things mentioned in this topic, about recipes all being the same, not giving measurements, generic recipes, frustration with the lack of true pizza recipes. This shows me that we are are all even more similar than we thought. It is always funny when you hear the story of how one of us has jumped through the same hoops and obstacles trying to make better pizza.

I also have to say that Steve starting the site was one of the best things done for homemade pizza. I know that there are many pizza sites out there, but we all know which is the #1 choice.  ;D
I have no idea where my pizza making would be right know had it not been for this site. I thank all of you. :)

The Pizza Making Three Ring Circus

Ring # 1     Science--The science of baking

Ring # 2     Creativity/Art--Making of sauces and combination of toppings

Ring # 3     Passion--Love of great pizza and the search for better

These are the things that I believe makes many of us different.
Besides not many things that we eat require all these skills to come together to make a great meal.
Great pizza requires dedication. And that is shown by those who joined the forum and stayed.

I know you pizza making lurkers are out there. Please don't just read the forum, join in and share what you know. :)
« Last Edit: October 05, 2004, 01:33:52 PM by Foccaciaman »
Ahhh, Pizza The Fifth Food Group

Offline DKM

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Re:It came to me . . .
« Reply #12 on: September 24, 2004, 02:12:55 PM »
I also have to say that Steve starting the site was one of the best things done for homemade pizza.

I think that is an important key.  I make homemade pizza.  I make DKM pizza.  When I developed my deep dish recipe, it was copy Uno or Gino's East or others.  I wanted to make a pizza in their style that was for me (and family and friends).  It's a process that never ends.

DKM
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