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Pizza bottom not cooked

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  • Pizza bottom not cooked

    My ovens dome was completely white and the fire red hot. I put my pizza on the oven floor and it started to sizzle immediately. The top was done in 90 seconds but the pizza bottom was not. What did I do wrong? What are the optimum oven temperatures to get more even cooking. My dough was 21 oz King Arthur pizza flour, packet of yeast, 1 1/2 cups water, I TBS EVOO. Help!

  • #2
    Re: Pizza bottom not cooked


    Welcome to the Forum.

    Do you have an IR thermometer to check the oven floor? You can sprinkle flour on the flour to judge the temperature. I think it should turn brown but not burn.

    How much insulation do you have under the floor?

    My floor is 550 to 600 when I cook Pizza. I have had the fire burning for about 90 minutes.



    • #3
      Re: Pizza bottom not cooked

      If you cast some semolina flou r(about 1/4 tsp) into the centre of the floor after pushing aside the fire and blowing away the ash, the semolina should turn black suddenly after 3 secs. If it takes 4 the floor is not hot enough if it takes 2 the floor is too hot. It will usually be to hot for the first pizza so cook that one nearer, or halfway in the entry where it will be a little cooler. Push subsequent pizzas further in.
      Maybe your floor is still wet. Is your oven pretty new?
      Kindled with zeal and fired with passion.


      • #4
        Re: Pizza bottom not cooked

        In my oven, for a 90 second bake, the floor would probably be ~800-825F. I usually run 850F on the floor and 950F-975F on the walls furthest from the fire and bake times time run 55 seconds +/-


        • #5
          Re: Pizza bottom not cooked

          What is your floor made of?


          • #6
            I'm actually having the same issue. I built a pretty sizeable fire brick oven, with fire brick floor that sits in refractory cement. I also have an iron door with the thought of keeping in the heat. I'm still getting familiar with how to regulate the heat and fire, but am able to get it to around 650 degrees. I'm not sure if I'm doing something wrong, there is a construction/design flaw, if I'm not preheating the oven long enough, or if I shouldn't close the door while cooking. My top and side of crust is cooking much faster than the bottom. The top will burn, but the bottom will be barely cooked (but not crispy). I preheated the oven for about an hour, maybe 90 min. Is that not enough? The oven is a decent size like I was saying. With the fire on the side against the wall, it can easily fit 2 pizzas, if not 3. Here is a picture. Appreciate the feedback!


            • #7
              Mfacchini , you picture didn't post, so that might help, but what we really need are some construction details about your oven. The floor bricks are embedded in refractory cement - is there insulation under the floor or can heat bleed into the sub-structure?
              My build thread


              • #8
                You need a strong fire to preheat the oven, but while baking pizza, the flames should be very moderate.

                Either heat the floor hotter, by burning longer and move your fire around, or (probably the easier fix) keep a lower fire while baking pizza.


                • #9
                  Heat travels slow. Preheat 1 h per inch of mass to saturate. I usually burn 2.5-3 h for a 2" dome and 2" floor mass thickness and it always works. I cook at 850-900 F.


                  • #10
                    Here is my two cents for what it is worth and i hope it helps.

                    I learned that if the oven dome is white its hot build up to a decent fire for an hour or two before this can happen.

                    Move the fire around to make whole dome white and have a decent fire going, ( You will need alot of coals laer)

                    When you have 1 or 2 decent size charred logs left and buch of coals while the dome is white. move the plie of coals over the area of the oven you want to cook the pizza on.... wait 15 or 20 min...
                    push it all to the back.
                    Have the two large coals/logs on top of the small coals, with some fire still to them, as far back as you can get them all against the wall.
                    clean the floor of ash where the coals were and where you want to cook.

                    place pizza on the hot coal are you just cleaned close to the fire.

                    rotate and it should could in 2 to 5 min depending .

                    ( also use corn meal ( not the super fine stuff ) for you pizza peal, it helps to slide it off much more easily for where you want to put the pizza )

                    Attached Files
                    A Link to my Pompeii Build - " Mountain Mamma" "


                    • #11
                      You also need to maintain an active fire because, with the door open and the very high pizza temperature, the temperature will drop if there's no fire to keep it up there. It is far easier to have this fire on the side because it's closer to the door to feed. I like to shift the coals to either the right rear or the left rear, this way, when the floor temp drops off you can shift the coals to the other side, blow the ash away and you have a new hot spot. This technique allow continuous cooking with crispy bottoms.

                      Italian wood fired pizzas ar sparse with toppings on top because anything that's overlapped does not get a decent roasting when it's only been in the oven for 2 mins. For this reason the cheese should always go on first as well. Also an overloaded pizza tends to create a soggy base in the middle. Another cause is too much sauce on the pizza base.
                      Kindled with zeal and fired with passion.