#1  
Old 06-17-2007, 09:02 PM
Apprentice
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Keller TX
Posts: 127
Default Large Pizza Party!

Yesterday was our first large party with our Artigiano. Made about 12 pizzas, very well received. The oven performed beautifully and was a big hit.

Oven:
* Did a "pre-heat" cycle in the morning, about 9 am, bringing it up to pizza temperature and letting it go out.
* Shoveled out coals about 2:30 pm (for a 4 pm party start) and started a new fire. WOW, did the fire take off with the hot oven as a starting point. Lesson learned -- probably could have started the main fire later (or not done the pre-heat earlier).

Dough:
* Made dough the day before, the Napolitano recipe from the Reinhart American Pie book (Tipo 00 flour, not Caputo, but a different brand).
* Dough rose overnight in the fridge. Took the dough out about 2 PM and made 6 balls out of each batch, keeping them in a rectangular plastic pan with lid. Lesson learned -- I like keeping the balls separate in plastic bags since they don't spread into each other and stick together.

Pizzas:
* Made 2 at a time, prepped pizzas on wood peels (easier to handle in the kitchen) and transferred onto the metal peels outside before loading. The floor stayed very hot, threw a new log on after each few pizza batches to keep the flame going.
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  #2  
Old 06-18-2007, 06:23 AM
james's Avatar
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Location: Pebble Beach, CA
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Default Re: Large Pizza Party!

Way to go Mark.

Who made the pizza bases? Did you do them all, or did you let your guests do it. I think there is a serious quality-fun trade-off when you let your guest DIY. They have fun, but the pizza seriously suffers.

Would do you the pre-heat fire again? It definitely takes out any risk that the oven won't be ready -- but do you think it was useful? That's an interesting idea.

Do other folks do an early pre-heat fire?
James
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Old 06-18-2007, 06:35 AM
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Location: Keller TX
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Default Re: Large Pizza Party!

Quote:
Originally Posted by james View Post
Way to go Mark.

Who made the pizza bases? Did you do them all, or did you let your guests do it. I think there is a serious quality-fun trade-off when you let your guest DIY. They have fun, but the pizza seriously suffers.

Would do you the pre-heat fire again? It definitely takes out any risk that the oven won't be ready -- but do you think it was useful? That's an interesting idea.

Do other folks do an early pre-heat fire?
James
I made all of the pizzas myself, but people got to watch and request toppings, which was cool. I was able to educate people about that "weird" mozzarella (the fresh variety, not bagged shredded).

I probably wouldn't do the pre-heat again. I had read about that on here, someone who had done a pre-fire the night before. Probably not necessary, but I figured the experiment wouldn't harm anything (other than some wasted wood).
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  #4  
Old 06-18-2007, 07:28 AM
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Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Brazil
Posts: 306
Default Re: Large Pizza Party!

Mgraban:

Great job!
Next time could be not necessary to pre-heat the oven. This action could be useful if you have an high density oven.
You would like to divide the pizza dough in individual ones before to refrigerate.
Puntata-staglio-apretto: rest new dough from half to two hours, divide it, put into the refrigerator. From to refrigerator could be better to left the individual dough to ambient temperature from 2 to 8 hours depending from the formulae.

Luis
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  #5  
Old 06-18-2007, 07:45 AM
Apprentice
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Keller TX
Posts: 127
Default Re: Large Pizza Party!

Thanks Luis. I've tried letting the dough rise overnight in individual dough balls (in bags) and rising as a full batch in a large bowl. Haven't seen a major difference in dough performance either way. I did let the dough rest at room temp about 2.5 hours before the party started, that helps the dough get stretched out very evenly.
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  #6  
Old 06-18-2007, 09:23 PM
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Location: Mississippi
Posts: 931
Default Re: Large Pizza Party!

I also recommend refridgerating the dough after shaping into balls. You can allow your dough the original 2 hour fermentation and then shape them and refridgerate. I think you will like the results, I know I did and I used to do what you are doing, flavors will be profound. Another advantage is...in the event the rounds don't fully reach ambient temperature they still hold well through stretching and make a really good pizza. Sometimes when they are cold they are even easier to handle.
Best
Dutch
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  #7  
Old 06-19-2007, 04:24 AM
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Default Re: Large Pizza Party!

What is the consensus on the best way to store dough balls in the refrigerator?

A proofing tray, in individual Tupperware-like containers, or in a ziplock?

I hearing a poll coming on.
James
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  #8  
Old 06-19-2007, 08:07 AM
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Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Brazil
Posts: 306
Default Re: Large Pizza Party!

The professional operators use the stacked or cross-stacked trays, since they have big thermal cameras and a lot of free space.
Any one of these could maintain from 9 to 16 individual pizza dough in it.
Because the number of backed pizzas by hour they need the effectiveness of the tray.
For the home bakers, the round containers helps to maintain the roundness of the dough, however, the containers need more space than the ziplock bags.
I had used either ziplock or containers depending on the quantity of dough to be used and the resting mode. Few dough = container, more than six or eight dough = ziplock when using refrigerator.
When the rest is at ambient temperature (same day pizzas, resting 12/24 hs) I prefer to use containers.
Few dough, same day resting, the balls are arranged over a wood table (wood to maintain the circumferential shape – in granite or ceramic or plastic, the dough slide to flat) and are covered with plastic wrap or humid cloth (depending the local wheater)


Luis
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