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TylerDavis 01-15-2011 05:36 AM

I can't get my pizza off my peel
I generally use a dough recipe for 1/2 whole wheat 1/2 white flour from Peter Reinhart's book Artisan Breads Every Day. The dough is tacky but not sticky as he suggests and shapes very well. I make about a 10" diameter pizza and put it on my aluminum placing peel. I add toppings and try to insert it in my heated oven.

And it's stuck.

I try to "schuss" it off by acceleration. So hard in fact that the toppings fly off, but the dough stays in place. I have experimented with adding flour to the peel surface before placing the dough on it, but the small amount I use doesn't help. If I use a lot of flour it embeds in the dough and chars black.

Any tips on how to lube the peel, or getting high-hydration dough to slide more easily?

Faith In Virginia 01-15-2011 05:59 AM

Re: I can't get my pizza off my peel
I like to use rice flour it's like Teflon for your peel. Flour your peel with the rice flour work your dough give the peel a shake to ensure it has not stuck. As you work your toppings give it a little shake and make sure everything is free.

TylerDavis 01-15-2011 07:19 AM

Re: I can't get my pizza off my peel
good tip - hadn't thought of rice flour

how much do you use? do you coat the entire surface, or just sprinkle sparsely?

kmrice 01-15-2011 07:57 AM

Re: I can't get my pizza off my peel
Rice flour works great. I use a mix of half rice flour and half wheat flour (rice flour is pretty expensive) and that works great, too. I sprinkle it, fairly generously, but my aluminum peel is holes in it, so alot of the flour falls through (and can be reused).

Rice flour will almost surely work for you. If not, try making the pie on parchment paper.


chainfall 01-15-2011 08:50 AM

Re: I can't get my pizza off my peel
I know this is an older thread but I wanted to add my technique here.

I will use either a fair amount of cornmeal or semolina flour on the peel. The semolina doesn't burn so much as the corn meal.

If you have a pizza already on the peel and you know it's stuck, slide a piece of dental floss under it. That has saved me a bunch of times.

Tman1 01-15-2011 09:14 AM

Re: I can't get my pizza off my peel
pages worth of answers...

another possibility..

Happy reading!

dmun 01-15-2011 03:39 PM

Re: I can't get my pizza off my peel
Makers don't usually build on metal peels: that may be part of your problem. You may not be able to get enough releasing agent between the skin and the peel to do any good. If you're using a metal placing peel, the pizza is usually built right on the stone counter, and pulled onto the metal peel to place it. Most home makers build on wooden peels, and there the rice flour works like a charm. If you're using a wooden peel, it helps to keep it sanded from time to time with fine sandpaper.

TylerDavis 01-15-2011 05:09 PM

Re: I can't get my pizza off my peel
OK, I'll switch to building the pie on the laminate counter top, then sliding the aluminum peel underneath and quickly transferring to the oven.

Should I use the rice flour to lubricate the counter-top?

dmun 01-15-2011 06:42 PM

Re: I can't get my pizza off my peel
I don't use this method, but I think most people who do just use the bench flour to keep it from sticking to the countertop.

nissanneill 01-15-2011 07:26 PM

Re: I can't get my pizza off my peel
another method that I use is to sprinkle the peel with a little salt, which act like ball bearings. This does not burn on the hearth like any of the flours and I have not tasted any difference.
Another way I encourage newbies to the art, is to stretch their dough and place it on a release (oil) sprayed aluminium foil which after around a half of the cooking time (when you need/should turn your pizza) lift it off and place it directly on the hearth. This method also keeps your hearth cleaner (as I realise that you burn it off on your next firing but can also get very messy with those less experienced in the art of pizza baking).
I also use round pizza trays and lift the half cooked pizza off when the dough base is ready to turn and is a lot stiffer.


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