Author Topic: Tommy's Pizza (now Pizza L'oven) circa 1960's Exeter PA (NEPA) redo!  (Read 43911 times)

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Offline LPcreation

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Re: Tommy's Pizza (now Pizza L'oven) circa 1960's Exeter PA (NEPA) redo!
« Reply #40 on: March 20, 2008, 10:43:19 AM »
Flour (100%):
Water (62%):
IDY (.33%):
Salt (2%):
Total (164.33%):
Single Ball:
600.37 g  |  21.18 oz | 1.32 lbs
372.23 g  |  13.13 oz | 0.82 lbs
1.98 g | 0.07 oz | 0 lbs | 0.66 tsp | 0.22 tbsp
12.01 g | 0.42 oz | 0.03 lbs | 3.53 tsp | 1.18 tbsp
986.58 g | 34.8 oz | 2.18 lbs | TF = 0.12
493.29 g | 17.4 oz | 1.09 lbs

One more quick question SD girl.  According to the above, my dough ball should be 17.4oz or 1.09lbs correct?

Does the recipe you listed provide more than 1 ball?  Sorry for the bombardment of questions, I'm new to this stuff.  :)


Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Tommy's Pizza (now Pizza L'oven) circa 1960's Exeter PA (NEPA) redo!
« Reply #41 on: March 20, 2008, 11:37:51 AM »
sourdough girl,

Can you tell us how you came up with the numbers for the dough formulation you originally posted (which is reproduced by LPcreation)? In particular, were the ingredient quantities based on using a 14.5" x 9.5" pan and using the Rectangular feature of one of the dough calculating tools?

Thanks.

Peter

Offline sourdough girl

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Re: Tommy's Pizza (now Pizza L'oven) circa 1960's Exeter PA (NEPA) redo!
« Reply #42 on: March 20, 2008, 03:41:43 PM »
LP,

This formulation makes two dough balls, 1.09 lbs ea, which is enough to make two pans of pizza in my particular pans, which are 14.5 X 9.5, inside measurements.  Normally, I make one pan, which is enough to feed DH and me with a couple of "cuts" left over for my breakfast!   ;D  If you need to make only one ball, or your pan is a different size, see my response to Peter below...
No worries about questions, I'm more than happy to help any way I can!

Peter,

I used the Lehmann dough calculating tool (for any newbies reading this, the "dough tools" link is found on this site's homepage) and used the rectangular pan feature.  The flour for this particular recipe is GM AP.  I just revisted my notes... I have played with the GM Harvest King bread flour but had to increase the hydration.  I really didn't care for the finished crust using HK, it was a little too dense.  So, I switched back to the AP but left the hydration the same.  It was on the mark from what I remember from Tommy's, lighter with a very slight chewiness and crisp on the bottom from the Classico oil in the pan.  My pan was dark to start with (very heavy "Baker's Secret" cookie pan with half inch deep sides) which has become well seasoned.  Also, the 2% salt is Diamond Crystal kosher, which I like because it is just salt, no additives. 

~sd

EDIT:  changed my response to LP based on Peter's response below. 
« Last Edit: March 20, 2008, 06:25:46 PM by sourdough girl »
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Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Tommy's Pizza (now Pizza L'oven) circa 1960's Exeter PA (NEPA) redo!
« Reply #43 on: March 20, 2008, 05:39:09 PM »
sourdough girl,

I hope I am not confusing matters, but when I used a thickness factor of 0.12 and pan dimensions of 14.5 x 9.5 in the Lehmann dough calculating tool at http://www.pizzamaking.com/dough_calculator.html, I got:

Flour (100%):
Water (62%):
IDY (0.33%):
Salt (2%):
Total (164.33%):
285.17 g  |  10.06 oz | 0.63 lbs
176.81 g  |  6.24 oz | 0.39 lbs
0.94 g | 0.03 oz | 0 lbs | 0.31 tsp | 0.1 tbsp
5.7 g | 0.2 oz | 0.01 lbs | 1.02 tsp | 0.34 tbsp
468.63 g | 16.53 oz | 1.03 lbs | TF = 0.12

When I used the same numbers but for two dough balls, I got:

Flour (100%):
Water (62%):
IDY (0.33%):
Salt (2%):
Total (164.33%):
Single Ball:
570.35 g  |  20.12 oz | 1.26 lbs
353.62 g  |  12.47 oz | 0.78 lbs
1.88 g | 0.07 oz | 0 lbs | 0.62 tsp | 0.21 tbsp
11.41 g | 0.4 oz | 0.03 lbs | 2.04 tsp | 0.68 tbsp
937.25 g | 33.06 oz | 2.07 lbs | TF = 0.12
468.63 g | 16.53 oz | 1.03 lbs

I thought from your earlier posts you made two pizzas, with each one presumably using around a pound of dough.

Peter

Offline sourdough girl

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Re: Tommy's Pizza (now Pizza L'oven) circa 1960's Exeter PA (NEPA) redo!
« Reply #44 on: March 20, 2008, 06:20:04 PM »
Peter,

 :-[  You're right!  The confusion on my part was from the fact that I usually cook for 2, but the formula I posted was actually for 4 of us when I was testing my Tommy's recipe on my mother, so I made two pizzas instead of my normal 1 pan.  I'm glad you caught that or poor LPcreation would be completely confused!!  I'm going to edit my response to him so that the confusion is minimized.

I appreciate your dedication to keeping us all on the straight and narrow!  A second set of eyes (beyond my trifocals!!) is a good thing!

~sd
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Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Tommy's Pizza (now Pizza L'oven) circa 1960's Exeter PA (NEPA) redo!
« Reply #45 on: March 20, 2008, 06:55:57 PM »
Fir LPcreation's purposes, if he plans to use a different size pan, the dimensions of that pan can be entered into the Lehmann dough calculating tool along with the 0.12 thickness factor and the same baker's percents as used in sourdough girl's dough formulation, and the tool will spit out all of the required ingredient quantities for that particular size pan. I usually use a bowl residue compensation factor of around 1.5%, but that is optional.

Peter

Offline LPcreation

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Re: Tommy's Pizza (now Pizza L'oven) circa 1960's Exeter PA (NEPA) redo!
« Reply #46 on: March 20, 2008, 06:56:34 PM »
Thanks to both of you.  Sourdough, what are you trying to do?  Throw the rookie a curveball?  :-D

(it would also explain why my pizza crust was so thick)

Offline sourdough girl

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Re: Tommy's Pizza (now Pizza L'oven) circa 1960's Exeter PA (NEPA) redo!
« Reply #47 on: March 20, 2008, 07:53:31 PM »
LP,

I apologize!  I guess I was so excited by my mom's reaction to the pizza that, when I posted it, I forgot to change the recipe to only one dough ball!  It's been too long to modify my original post, but I just read it and I DO mention that I made two pizzas when we visited her, one sauce and cheese only and one with other toppings as well, so at least I didn't completely mess up and say I made only one pizza!  WHEW!!   ::)   :P   :o    :-D   (It's hell to get old!!   ;)  )

I hope you will try it again with the single dough ball and let me know how you like it!
Like Pete-zza says, it's easy to modify the recipe to one pan of pizza by using the calculating tool he gave the link to, a couple of posts prior.  I use this tool a lot, not only for my Tommy's pizza clone but round pies as well.  It is ingenious and has made experimenting SO much easier!

~sd 

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Offline November

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Re: Tommy's Pizza (now Pizza L'oven) circa 1960's Exeter PA (NEPA) redo!
« Reply #48 on: April 16, 2008, 11:35:04 AM »
But still, it makes me wonder if anyone has had their pizza catch fire?

Yesterday I had a (grilled/broiled) cheese quesadilla catch fire.  It was quite a spectacle as the entire surface burst into a magenta colored flame.  The wheat tortilla used was 7.25% fat by final product weight, and was positioned three (3) inches from the broiler for less than two (2) minutes.  It burst into flames around the time I had been pulling them out of the oven, so it wasn't like I had left it in too long that time.  It seems conceivable that those who choose to place their pizza near a broiler element while their dough has high fat content and low moisture could face similar consequences.

Offline KC Tom

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Re: Tommy's Pizza (now Pizza L'oven) circa 1960's Exeter PA (NEPA) redo!
« Reply #49 on: May 03, 2008, 04:55:18 PM »
Sourdough Girl, I also have fond memories of Tommy's pizza from visiting my grandparents in Exeter long ago.  I haven't had real pizza since then.  And since I live in the Kansas City area, all we have are the big chains - not what I'd call real pizza at all.

I tried the recipe I found here and know I need to work on it.  This was my first ever attempt to make pizza at home - or bake from scratch for that matter.  The crust was OK but didn't seem to rise much in the pan - the dough was real soft.  And I used too much sauce ( 1 1/2 cups)  and way too much cheese ( 8 oz mozzarella, and 5 oz each provolone and fontina).  But the result wasn't that bad, and is in the right direction.  Next time I'll try for a little stiffer dough, use less sauce and cheese.  I do know the fontina adds the right flavor - I just have to work on the balance.  How much cheese do you use when making your pizza? I bought a stone and pan especially for this, to reduce the variables to just me. On the plus side, my wife and I enjoyed it and I finished the last two cuts for lunch the next day.  Thanks for sharing your recipe.



Offline scott r

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Re: Tommy's Pizza (now Pizza L'oven) circa 1960's Exeter PA (NEPA) redo!
« Reply #50 on: May 03, 2008, 08:36:31 PM »
Just found this thread, and I have to say the pies are looking good!  I had Galleria Umberto and Victory Pig within the same week recently and they were both great.  They are very similar in the crust, almost exactly the same, but I really don't think Victory pig was mixing in any smoked provolone.  Good luck everyone!

Offline sourdough girl

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Re: Tommy's Pizza (now Pizza L'oven) circa 1960's Exeter PA (NEPA) redo!
« Reply #51 on: May 04, 2008, 03:27:30 PM »
KC Tom,
Welcome to the forum!  I'm glad to hear from someone who also has fond memories of Tommy's!   

Are you measuring the flour and water by weight or by volume?  At 62% hydration, the dough should not be terribly soft, even after 3 days in the fridge.  In fact, I felt it was just a touch too dry, so, as noted in a later post, I raised the hydration to 63% and just that small change helped.  I also see in my early notes that the only real rise this dough did was oven spring.  I then decided to leave the dough at room temp for just over 5 hours instead of 1.5 before baking and liked that better, too.  A bit more rise on the counter and the oven spring made for a lighter yet still slightly chewy crust... less bready. 

As for the sauce, I use a shy cup for my pan size, which is 14.5" X 9.5" interior.  I use a total of 12 oz of cheese, 4 oz each mozz, prov and fontina.  I'm really glad to hear that you also think that the fontina is correct.  I also tried white cheddar and white american in the mix, but fontina gives the creaminess and a slight tang that the others lacked. 

I also want to note that my pan is dark, not shiny.  When I first started this process, before I found this site, I used a larger, shiny aluminum pan and was NOT happy with the results.  This site, and especially Pete-zza, has taught me so much... and the first thing I did was ditch the shiny pan!  Just changing that one thing improved the pizza 100%!

I am certainly glad to hear that you enjoyed the pizza and are learning to bake from scratch!  It is SUCH a great hobby... and addiction!

scott r... thanks for the kind words!  I actually started this process with a recipe for "authentic" Victory Pig pizza that I found on the internet.  That recipe confirmed what my cousin said:  the sauce is just tomatoes, chopped fresh onion and salt.  One recipe I found said that the cheese was muenster only and another said "pizza cheddar".  Not sure what "pizza cheddar" is, but muenster alone didn't taste right (too bland), plus I don't remember any orange from the rind on Tommy's pizzas.  I may try leaving the smoked prov out of the mix in the next iteration or possibly trying a non-smoked version.  Thanks for your comments!

november...  did you eat the quesadilla flambe?  Or was it burned to a crisp and inedible?  Never thought about tortilla catching fire!  Guess I'll stick to making my quesadillas in the frying pan!

~sd
Never trust a skinny cook!

Offline November

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Re: Tommy's Pizza (now Pizza L'oven) circa 1960's Exeter PA (NEPA) redo!
« Reply #52 on: May 04, 2008, 03:36:59 PM »
november...  did you eat the quesadilla flambe?  Or was it burned to a crisp and inedible?

If you're familiar with tortillas, you know that they have a layer of air trapped between each surface, so when it's exposed to intense heat it inflates to some degree.  The separation of the two layers as a result prevents the bottom layer from being affected by the heat, so I only had to scrape off the charred top layer to transform it into something edible.

- red.november

Offline jpevear

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Re: Tommy's Pizza (now Pizza L'oven) circa 1960's Exeter PA (NEPA) redo!
« Reply #53 on: May 12, 2008, 11:51:18 AM »
Hi sourdough-

I'm a former NEPA resident living in Virginia Beach who often craves for many of my favorite pizzas located throughout the 'valley'.  My favorite being Pizza L'oven with Sabatini's in second place. I actually was head pizza maker at Sabatini's in the mid-nineties while I attended LCCC. [worked at the Dough Company as well]

Anyway, I make a similar pizza, or at least it looks similar to the one you have taken photographs of, but I find that I can't mimic the crust from that of Pizza L'oven.  I find it resembles an Old Forge Style taste and texture, which is good, but I prefer the Pizza L'oven style. 

Does your crust taste and feel like Pizza L'oven?  If so, I am definitely going to give it a shot this weekend. My only problem is I have a dark pan with a 12" x 12" x 1' dimension and would need to figure out how to tailor the recipe to fit my pan...

I'm not any good at doing the math or understanding the ratios involved in pizza making - Is there anyway I could use the Lehman calculator to tailor your recipe to fit my 12x12x1 pan?

I will be going up to NEPA for Memorial Day..  I will be hitting up several pizza joints in my 4 day weekend.  Can't wait!

Thanks for your help!!

And if you are interested in my Old Forge recipe, let me know and I'll post it. [it's for the 12"x12" pan I mentioned]

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Tommy's Pizza (now Pizza L'oven) circa 1960's Exeter PA (NEPA) redo!
« Reply #54 on: May 12, 2008, 02:47:26 PM »
I'm not any good at doing the math or understanding the ratios involved in pizza making - Is there anyway I could use the Lehman calculator to tailor your recipe to fit my 12x12x1 pan?


jpeavear,

Try this. Go to the Lehmann dough calculating tool at http://www.pizzamaking.com/dough_calculator.html and 1) select the Thickness Factor option and enter 0.12, 2) select the number of dough balls you want to make, 3) select the Rectangular pizza shape, 4) enter the 12" x 12" dimensions of your pan, and 5) enter the set of baker's percents previously mentioned by sourdough girl in her opening post in this thread (http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,5656.msg47944.html#msg47944). With the above entries, you should get a listing of all the ingredients and their quantities for the dimensions of your 12" x 12" pan. I usually use about 1.5% as the bowl residue compensation to compensate for minor dough losses during the preparation of the dough.

Peter

Offline jpevear

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Re: Tommy's Pizza (now Pizza L'oven) circa 1960's Exeter PA (NEPA) redo!
« Reply #55 on: May 12, 2008, 07:22:34 PM »
jpeavear,

Try this. Go to the Lehmann dough calculating tool at  and 1) select the Thickness Factor option and enter 0.12, 2) select the number of dough balls you want to make, 3) select the Rectangular pizza shape, 4) enter the 12" x 12" dimensions of your pan, and 5) enter the set of baker's percents previously mentioned by sourdough girl in her opening post in this thread . With the above entries, you should get a listing of all the ingredients and their quantities for the dimensions of your 12" x 12" pan. I usually use about 1.5% as the bowl residue compensation to compensate for minor dough losses during the preparation of the dough.

Peter

Thanks very much..
Using that calculator isn't as bad as I thought it would be. I just hope my scale, non digital, is accurate when I weigh out my ingredients..

Flour (100%):      907.75 g  |  32.02 oz | 2 lbs
Water (62%):     562.81 g  |  19.85 oz | 1.24 lbs
IDY (.33%):               3 g | 0.11 oz | 0.01 lbs | 0.99 tsp | 0.33 tbsp
Salt (2%):          18.16 g | 0.64 oz | 0.04 lbs | 3.78 tsp | 1.26 tbsp
Total (164.33%):1491.71 g | 52.62 oz | 3.29 lbs | TF = 0.1218
Single Ball:         497.24 g | 17.54 oz | 1.1 lbs

I based mine on 3 dough balls. 

I'm used to measuring my ingredients by 1/2, 1/4's, 1/8's - not by weight.  This may take some practice for me.

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Tommy's Pizza (now Pizza L'oven) circa 1960's Exeter PA (NEPA) redo!
« Reply #56 on: May 12, 2008, 08:17:04 PM »
jpeavear,

You did well using the Lehmann dough calculating tool. I see that you also used the 1.5% bowl residue compensation.

It sounds like you have an analog scale. If so, I think you should come close enough. You really only need to use it for weighing the flour and water. Just remember to use the tare feature. For the rest of the ingredients, you should use the volume measurements noted. They can be approximate (e.g., 0.99 oz. is 1 oz. and 3.78 t. is a bit more than 3 3/4 t.).

If your scale doesn't work for some reason, we may be able to convert the flour and water to volume measurements. To do this, we will need to know the type and brand of flour you will be using.

Peter

Offline jpevear

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Re: Tommy's Pizza (now Pizza L'oven) circa 1960's Exeter PA (NEPA) redo!
« Reply #57 on: May 12, 2008, 09:12:31 PM »
jpeavear,

You did well using the Lehmann dough calculating tool. I see that you also used the 1.5% bowl residue compensation.

It sounds like you have an analog scale. If so, I think you should come close enough. You really only need to use it for weighing the flour and water. Just remember to use the tare feature. For the rest of the ingredients, you should use the volume measurements noted. They can be approximate (e.g., 0.99 oz. is 1 oz. and 3.78 t. is a bit more than 3 3/4 t.).

If your scale doesn't work for some reason, we may be able to convert the flour and water to volume measurements. To do this, we will need to know the type and brand of flour you will be using.

Peter




Thanks Peter.  Yes, I have a 15 dollar, 11 lb Chef Mate analog scale. I've tested the accuracy with some 5 lb and 2.5 lb weights and it was off by 8 ounces. -However, 2 cups of water weighs out to be 1 lb [16.6 oz] - which is correct.  I'll do my best with this recipe.

If you ever have the chance to make it to Hanover Twp, PA  - I urge you to go.  There is no other pizza like it in this world.  I had the fortunate pleasure of growing up 1 mile away from the restaurant and would do anything to recreate this recipe.

Thanks for all of your help!!

Offline sourdough girl

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Re: Tommy's Pizza (now Pizza L'oven) circa 1960's Exeter PA (NEPA) redo!
« Reply #58 on: May 12, 2008, 10:27:07 PM »
Hi sourdough-

I'm a former NEPA resident living in Virginia Beach who often craves for many of my favorite pizzas located throughout the 'valley'.  My favorite being Pizza L'oven with Sabatini's in second place. I actually was head pizza maker at Sabatini's in the mid-nineties while I attended LCCC. [worked at the Dough Company as well]

Anyway, I make a similar pizza, or at least it looks similar to the one you have taken photographs of, but I find that I can't mimic the crust from that of Pizza L'oven.  I find it resembles an Old Forge Style taste and texture, which is good, but I prefer the Pizza L'oven style. 

Does your crust taste and feel like Pizza L'oven?  If so, I am definitely going to give it a shot this weekend. My only problem is I have a dark pan with a 12" x 12" x 1' dimension and would need to figure out how to tailor the recipe to fit my pan...

I'm not any good at doing the math or understanding the ratios involved in pizza making - Is there anyway I could use the Lehman calculator to tailor your recipe to fit my 12x12x1 pan?

I will be going up to NEPA for Memorial Day..  I will be hitting up several pizza joints in my 4 day weekend.  Can't wait!

Thanks for your help!!

And if you are interested in my Old Forge recipe, let me know and I'll post it. [it's for the 12"x12" pan I mentioned]

jpevear,
Welcome to the forum!
I wish I could tell you whether my recipe is true to Pizza L'oven's but, unfortunately, I have never tasted their pizza.  I've never had OF pizza, either, although from what I've read, it's not as close to Tommy's as Victory Pig's recipe.  I'm trying to recreate a childhood memory from the original owner, Tommy's on Wyoming Ave near Schooley St in Exeter in the late-50s, early 60's (yes, I'm old!)  The only thing I have to compare to is.... closing my eyes and recreating the pizza in my head.  I feel like clicking my heels at the same time... to be transported back to Tommy's!
I searched the internet and the closest thing that I could come up with was Victory Pig's recipe, which, while I'm sure it's not the same, was at least a good place to start.  Sadly, I'm not sure I will ever absolutely nail the complete flavor experience... the "zeitgeist", if you will... of that pizza because there are just too many variables (and years) in the way.  The total recipe, (crust, cheese and sauce) are VERY close, I think...

I would really love it if you would try my recipe and tell me what you think!  I would certainly appreciate any insights you might have!

Peter, thanks for jumping in with the dough calculator help!  I honestly don't know what this forum would do without you!! 

~sd
Never trust a skinny cook!

Offline jpevear

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Re: Tommy's Pizza (now Pizza L'oven) circa 1960's Exeter PA (NEPA) redo!
« Reply #59 on: May 13, 2008, 12:05:30 PM »
jpevear,
Welcome to the forum!
I wish I could tell you whether my recipe is true to Pizza L'oven's but, unfortunately, I have never tasted their pizza.  I've never had OF pizza, either, although from what I've read, it's not as close to Tommy's as Victory Pig's recipe.  I'm trying to recreate a childhood memory from the original owner, Tommy's on Wyoming Ave near Schooley St in Exeter in the late-50s, early 60's (yes, I'm old!)  The only thing I have to compare to is.... closing my eyes and recreating the pizza in my head.  I feel like clicking my heels at the same time... to be transported back to Tommy's!
I searched the internet and the closest thing that I could come up with was Victory Pig's recipe, which, while I'm sure it's not the same, was at least a good place to start.  Sadly, I'm not sure I will ever absolutely nail the complete flavor experience... the "zeitgeist", if you will... of that pizza because there are just too many variables (and years) in the way.  The total recipe, (crust, cheese and sauce) are VERY close, I think...

I would really love it if you would try my recipe and tell me what you think!  I would certainly appreciate any insights you might have!

Peter, thanks for jumping in with the dough calculator help!  I honestly don't know what this forum would do without you!! 

~sd

Well, unfortunately I am too young to remember Tommy's on Schooley Street but I do remember Tommy's Pizza Corner in Kingston.  Any resemblance? 

And yes, it is unfortunate that you haven't tasted Pizza L'oven.  It's unfortunate for anybody who hasn't tasted this one of a kind pizza.

I will give your recipe a try after Memorial day and let you know of the results.  Thanks very much to you and Peter for your help.


 

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