Author Topic: working dough & peel related questions  (Read 1607 times)

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Offline inclement nimbus

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working dough & peel related questions
« on: July 09, 2012, 11:33:08 AM »
Hello pizza enthusiasts! I have a feeling I am making mistakes so i thought I would check with the pros.

I've been buying premade dough from a grocery store. I've been working it on the counter first. Then when I get it to the size I want I transfer it to the pizza peel which is already coated with cornmeal. (I've had problems with sticking prior). I then start building from there.

I've thought I read that people are working the dough on the peel itself. Would that be correct? In my newb mind I am not understanding that. Isn't the dough going to stick to the peel. Even if I coated it with cornflour isn't there going to be spots that stick? I've had part of a pizza stick before because I didn't coat the peel properly with cornmeal.

Also since the Peel was on the mind... do different Peels really make a big difference in terms of material? Is one better than another or does the community seem to favor a particular model/brand?

Thanks in advance for any insight! It's amazing to see how little I know!   8)

Offline anton-luigi

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Re: working dough & peel related questions
« Reply #1 on: July 09, 2012, 12:37:41 PM »
This certainly depends on your hydration and dough handling proficiency.  I form skins on the counter,  and transfer to my peel for building,  I use only lightly floured wooden peel.  light shaking between each step in the building,  is crucial to avoid sticky spots.  At present,  my dough hydration is basically 62%,  and relatively sticky,  so time is important here,  after skinnning and transfer to the peel, build and launch times are roughly 45 seconds I'd say.  I have watched many people skin, build THEN transfer to the peel,  but my thick wooden peel is not appropriate for that.  I used to use cornmeal as well,  but prefer light flour at this point,  that is up to you.
« Last Edit: July 09, 2012, 12:40:01 PM by anton-luigi »

Offline weemis

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Re: working dough & peel related questions
« Reply #2 on: July 09, 2012, 12:59:02 PM »
keeping a pizza from sticking to the peel require a little practice, but you'll get it. i also use a light coat of flour on a wooden peel. if a corner sticks (usually due to moisture), you can slightly lift the stuck area and throw some flour under it. a little shaking should do the rest. there's also a technique where you lift the skin on a side and blow a little air under it. think air hockey for launching your pizza.

Good luck!
Nick Gore - just a dough eyed wanderer

Offline moose13

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Re: working dough & peel related questions
« Reply #3 on: July 09, 2012, 02:00:46 PM »
I have always stretched the dough on the counter top or metal pizza tray. Then transfer to the peel.
Can't say i have ever heard of someone stretching on the peel itself.
I use cornmeal instead of flour. I don't like the loose flour on the bottom of the finished product.
Try this. Form your skin, lay on peel with flour and or cornmeal. Shake to make sure its loose. Add sauce, shake.
Add cheese , shake. Add toppings, shake, then a good shake right before launching it in the oven. Work quickly between steps as the longer it sits on the peel the more likely it will be to stick. I always have all ingredients ready before i stretch and throw on peel. I started with a $10 wooden peel. It does the job but is not very good quality and not very smooth. I recently ordered a better quality wooden one that is sanded nicely and is very smooth, seems to help.
« Last Edit: July 09, 2012, 02:11:48 PM by moose13 »

Offline inclement nimbus

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Re: working dough & peel related questions
« Reply #4 on: July 12, 2012, 02:07:51 PM »
Thanks for the replies! I appreciate it  :)

Sounds like I'll keep stretching it on the counter. I wanted to make sure I wasn't developing bad habits


Offline The Dough Doctor

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Re: working dough & peel related questions
« Reply #5 on: July 12, 2012, 03:21:55 PM »
If you are using only corn meal for your dusting flour you might want to add some semolina flour to it to help dry the dough surface. Everybody has their own favorite blend for a dusting/peel flour. Mine is equal parts of corn meal, semolina flour and my regular pizza flour. Drop your dough ball into a bowl of your dusting flour, then place on the counter top with more of the dusting flour and proceed to open the dough ball into a pizza skin, then transfer the opened skin to your peel which has been lightly dusted with either corn meal of your blended dusting flour (works well as a peel dust too), then be sure to shake to make sure it is not sticking to the peel, as you dress the dough skin give it an occasional shake. With time and experience you will soon learn how often YOUR dough needs to be shaken on the peel.
Tom Lehmann/The Dough Doctor