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Author Topic: Putting pizzas in the oven without a peel or screen in a pizzeria?  (Read 658 times)

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Offline Elevatedpizzaco

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Hey guys so currently at my pizzeria we use a mesh pizza screen on which we stretch the dough by hand to fit the exact screen. After the pizza is finished being prepared we put it into our stone deck oven for 4 minutes, remove the screen and let it finish on the stone for another 4 minutes. It comes out great and the process is efficient.

However recently i was experimenting using a wooden pizza peel and dusting flour on the bottom before stretching, then once prepared slide it onto the stone deck. For some reason the difference in crunch and texture is drastic compared to the 4 minutes on screen and 4 off like we always do. I quite like it better and wish we could do this for all the pizzas we do. However the few times ive had the pizza stick to the peel or having the toppings fall off into the oven have been a nightmare. Not to mention having to make individual pizzas 1 by 1 on the peel then transferring to the oven.

Does anybody know a more efficient and quick way to produce the pizzas and get them into the oven without screens?

i see some youtube videos of pizzerias sliding a perforated pizza peel underneath?

Thank you!

Johnny
« Last Edit: November 20, 2019, 06:03:41 PM by Elevatedpizzaco »

Offline The Dough Doctor

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Re: Putting pizzas in the oven without a peel or screen in a pizzeria?
« Reply #1 on: November 20, 2019, 09:11:25 PM »
If you are using your regular flour for a peel dust you might try using find corn meal, semolina flour, rice flour, my personal favorite is a blend of equal parts of fine corn meal, semolina flour and my regular pizza flour.
There is also a little "knack" to peeling pizzas into the oven. You will want to shake the peel just before dressing the skin to make sure it's still free from the peel, then shake it again after dressing the skin (better to know the skin is sticking to the peel before the oven surprise).
One more thing, it's common to open the skin on the table and then pick it up and transfer it to the peel for dressing and peeling it into the oven as opposed to opening the skin right on the peel.
There has been a lot of discussion on how to peel a pizza into the oven here.
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Offline Brent-r

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Re: Putting pizzas in the oven without a peel or screen in a pizzeria?
« Reply #2 on: November 21, 2019, 09:15:22 PM »
We're pretty new at this and improvising and learning

Stuck on the peel ?  What we find works well ...  If you give the pizza a shake like to suggests above, and it is stuck to the peel,
get a long flat spatula, the blade on ours is about 9",  sprinkle some flour on the peel just at the edge of the pie.  Use the spatula to push a bit of the flour (semolina or whatever you use) Short strokes under the pie all around pushing the flour under it until it comes loose.
Brent

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Putting pizzas in the oven without a peel or screen in a pizzeria?
« Reply #3 on: November 22, 2019, 11:13:04 AM »
Johnny,

I recall years ago reading how some members of the PMQ Think Tank used parchment paper to help load their pizzas into their deck ovens. I am not suggesting that you do so, and I will confess that professionals almost never use parchment paper to facilitate loading their pizzas into deck ovens, but it was a solution for some pizza operators. I discussed this method at Reply 20 at:

https://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=53604.msg539054#msg539054

You will note in the above thread that several of our members did not take kindly to the idea of using parchment paper to assist loading pizzas into deck ovens. However, we have many members who do so in their home ovens to minimize losing their pizzas to mishaps like dough sticking to the peel during loading, even when a peel dust might have been used. In my own case, more than once I used parchment paper pretty much automatically once the dough hydration got to around 65%, on the theory that it is better to be safe than sorry  ;D.

Peter

Offline Brent-r

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Re: Putting pizzas in the oven without a peel or screen in a pizzeria?
« Reply #4 on: November 22, 2019, 11:33:47 AM »
parchment paper works great ... to a point

that point is about 500 degrees where it will char / blacken, lose all strength and become flaky, making it nearly impossible to control when pulling the pizza out. 

I read a comment somewhere here that someone was putting the pizza in on parchment just long enough to cook the bottom, then pulling it out on the paper and putting it back in without the paper.

My suggestion, use the jiggle test to make sure it is not stuck.  If it does stick, push some flour under with the spatula as I commented above.   The jiggle test is just a couple of short maybe 1 or 2" quick moves.
Brent

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Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Putting pizzas in the oven without a peel or screen in a pizzeria?
« Reply #5 on: November 22, 2019, 01:41:03 PM »
Brent,

My practice has generally been to remove the parchment paper once the pizza sets even though the parchment paper can remain for the entire bake in my home oven. That may not be the ideal way to go with a commercial oven since early removal can cause a loss of oven heat when opening the door. One of our members, enchant (Pat), who makes pizzas both at home and commercially away from home, typically leaves the parchment paper in his ovens for the duration of the entire bake. And he can get two uses of the parchment paper when using his commercial oven (I believe it is a Blackstone) or three uses when using his home oven. So, either way, there is an added expense that most likely exceeds the cost of using a peel dust.

Pat generally discusses his use of parchment paper at Reply 22 at:

https://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=6708.msg61864#msg61864

Pat also made a video to show how he does it, at Reply 3 at:

https://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=53604.msg538322#msg538322

Peter


Offline RedSauce

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Re: Putting pizzas in the oven without a peel or screen in a pizzeria?
« Reply #6 on: November 22, 2019, 04:23:56 PM »
The shop I once worked for had what I've seen elsewhere as a generally standard method which I've adopted with almost constant success:
Tilt the peel downward at an angle toward the leading edge as you advance into the oven. Over time, you'll get a feeling for how much you can tip the pizza without it or the toppings sliding off. Set the leading edge on or close to the oven floor and give it a couple of quick jerks backward as the pizza begins to slide off. With the front of the pizza catching onto the oven floor, you'll be able to start to level off the peel and withdraw it from the pizza. With practice, you'll be able to do this all in a few seconds. I think some people don't tilt the peel or not enough and then run into problems. Let gravity work for you. I like to use corn meal to dust the peel before putting the skin on it - really helps it to roll off.

Offline Buck47

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Re: Putting pizzas in the oven without a peel or screen in a pizzeria?
« Reply #7 on: November 22, 2019, 05:39:12 PM »
The dough I'm making now is at 63% hydration. Oven temp 550 / 6 - 7 min bake.   Most often I use a screen, but when I want a crisper bottom I launch directly onto the stone. 

I open the skin using a bench flour made from 2/3 rice flour 1/3 pizza flour. And I hand slap the skin, removing most of the bench flour.

Then a very light shake of bench flour on the peel rubbed around by hand.

After topping I always shake the wood peel to make sure the dressed pie is lose.  If not I lift an edge of the dough and blow under the skin lifting the pizza like magic.  Another shake to make sure the pie slides on the wood peel - open the door and slide the pie onto the stone with a few quick pulls.  The wood peel is at about a 20 to 25 degree angle to start the slide and is lowered as the peel is pulled out.

The blowing trick has saved me many a disastrous launch.   Hope this helps.

Regards: John




 
« Last Edit: November 22, 2019, 06:13:06 PM by Buck47 »
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Offline The Dough Doctor

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Re: Putting pizzas in the oven without a peel or screen in a pizzeria?
« Reply #8 on: November 22, 2019, 06:16:57 PM »
The "blowing trick" while effective, doesn't always set too well with the customers in a pizzeria operation.
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Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Putting pizzas in the oven without a peel or screen in a pizzeria?
« Reply #9 on: November 22, 2019, 06:25:38 PM »

After topping I always shake the wood peel to make sure the dressed pie is lose.  If not I lift an edge of the dough and blow under the skin lifting the pizza like magic.  Another shake to make sure the pie slides on the wood peel - open the door and slide the pie onto the stone with a few quick pulls.  The wood peel is at about a 20 to 25 degree angle to start the slide and is lowered as the peel is pulled out.

The blowing trick has saved me many a disastrous launch.   Hope this helps.

Regards: John
John,

As I noted in a post before, I once saw a pizza operator at LaGuardia blow under a pizza. The post, which also includes a link to another post by Tom Lehmann on the practice, is at Reply 35 at:

https://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=55656.msg566281#msg566281

More recently, I saw a video here on the forum featuring Jeff Varasano, who owns at least two pizza places, and where he mentioned blowing under a pizza to help get it off the peel and into the oven.

I don't think anyone is likely to have a problem if one blows under a pizza that is to be consumed only by that person.

On the other hand, people have been blowing out candles on birthday cakes forever, and not always in a horizontal plane but rather from above.

Peter

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Offline The Dough Doctor

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Re: Putting pizzas in the oven without a peel or screen in a pizzeria?
« Reply #10 on: November 22, 2019, 06:57:15 PM »
Peter;
I was once told that "perception is reality and reality is just a perception", perception and reality don't always go hand in hand though. You're right, blowing under a pizza to help release it from the peel is perceived as one thing (almost like coughing on the pizza to some) while blowing out birthday candles on a cake is yet another thing entirely (in this case the cake is more dangerous than the pizza due to lack of a post "blowing" kill step which the pizza will receive. Then too, how many times have you seen someone wipe their hands on an apron or towel tucked into the apron ties (think Emeril Legasse), and then handle your food? BAD IDEA! Most people never give it a second thought but if you're in food safety it makes you cringe. Fifty years at AIB taught me a lot about food safety, but reality has taught me if it doesn't kill me it will only make me stronger, now if we can just convince our customers of that.
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Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Putting pizzas in the oven without a peel or screen in a pizzeria?
« Reply #11 on: November 22, 2019, 07:30:04 PM »
Tom,

I agree, it is largely a matter of perception, and that a birthday cake where the person blows out the candles is likely to be more dangerous whereas a pizza will be subjected to oven heat that will kill anything that might be harmful. Offhand, I do not ever recall someone refusing to eat a piece of a birthday cake because the person blew onto the cake when blowing out the candles. It's also quite natural that a person such as yourself who has been sensitized to the many unhealthful practices in the food industry over most of your life and work career, along with endless regulations, to be more careful, and also more aware, than most of the population.

Peter

Offline Yael

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Re: Putting pizzas in the oven without a peel or screen in a pizzeria?
« Reply #12 on: November 23, 2019, 02:56:32 AM »
I'm very careful about hygiene, and the first time I blew on the rim to remove dust flour I inauspiciously blew some spit, which I realized immediately. The pizza was for me so it wasn't such a big deal, but I'm thinking about other people who don't necessarily think as much as me  :-X
I still do it sometimes but knowing that (the unwanted lil' drop of spit that goes along with the blowing), I'm very careful when doing it. If you pay attention and the blowing is clean, there are IMO many worse other things to worry about - like simply talking above a pizza, except if you provided you're pizza with an umbrella  :-D (the birthday cake is also a good example!!)
“Learn the rules like a pro so you can break them like an artist” - Pablo Picasso

Offline Fiorot

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Re: Putting pizzas in the oven without a peel or screen in a pizzeria?
« Reply #13 on: November 23, 2019, 11:51:16 AM »
parchment paper works great ... to a point

that point is about 500 degrees where it will char / blacken, lose all strength and become flaky, making it nearly impossible to control when pulling the pizza out. 

I read a comment somewhere here that someone was putting the pizza in on parchment just long enough to cook the bottom, then pulling it out on the paper and putting it back in without the paper.

My suggestion, use the jiggle test to make sure it is not stuck.  If it does stick, push some flour under with the spatula as I commented above.   The jiggle test is just a couple of short maybe 1 or 2" quick moves.
I thought the idea of Parchment Paper was used only to launch the pie not cook with it???

Offline Brent-r

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Re: Putting pizzas in the oven without a peel or screen in a pizzeria?
« Reply #14 on: November 23, 2019, 02:05:22 PM »
yeh but ...
if the preparation procedure makes the pie so moist that you need the parchment paper then the pie is likely going
to stick to the paper too, so you need to at least partially cook it to pull the paper out before it blackens and loses
its strength.

IMHO the solution is to figure out why the pie wants to stick to the peel and resolve that.  Parchment works but it is
a 'work around'.
Brent

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Offline The Dough Doctor

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Re: Putting pizzas in the oven without a peel or screen in a pizzeria?
« Reply #15 on: November 23, 2019, 05:13:43 PM »
Pizza dough should not be sticky, it can be soft, very soft but not sticky. I have no problem peeling a pizza made on a 72% absorption dough into the oven using fine grind corn meal under it, I've done higher but seldom do I venture into that territory anymore. A common cause of a sticky dough is excessive diastatic malt or in some cases excessive fermentation, if neither of these seems to apply in your case try using an autolyse (1-hour) in your dough mixing procedure, it can help a lot.
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Offline shpedly

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Re: Putting pizzas in the oven without a peel or screen in a pizzeria?
« Reply #16 on: November 29, 2019, 11:20:26 AM »
Using a 50-50 blend of bench flour and semolina, I rarely have a launch problem. Another option is the cotton twine trick. Take 2 pieces of cotton twine longer than the width of your pizza. Tie them together at each end. Dredge the string in a blend of flour and semolina. If the pizza is sticking to the peel, slide the string under the pizza and all the way across till it exits the opposite side. This will release the dough from the peel without disturbing your topping. I saw this done in a pizza shop years ago. Works great and only takes a few seconds. The guy kept the string in a small bowl of flour at the end of his prep table.

Offline Elevatedpizzaco

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Re: Putting pizzas in the oven without a peel or screen in a pizzeria?
« Reply #17 on: December 02, 2019, 02:38:44 AM »
Thanks guys i will try this!

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