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  • Making pizza ahead of time

    So i have about 100 pizzas to make thia weekend and my wife usually helps out but we may not have chikdcare so i may be on my own.

    In the past ive tried making a number of pizzas before putting them in the oven but i find they dont slide off the peel as good as when i make 1 at a time and immediately put it in the oven. Ideally id make 8 or so then cook them bwfpre starting to make more. I find im not quick enough to do both maling pizzas and managing the oven at the same time and it results in burnt pizzas


    Any tips on how to make pizzas ahead and then cook them? For reference i use the FB pizza dough recipe.

  • #2
    Ahoy ThebigT ! Wow--talk about getting under the gun...100 pizzas by yourself...oh, my

    I don't know what you're using between the peel and pizza skin, but my favorite hands-down is rice flour. I put it in one of those stainless steel or plastic confection sprinkler cans so I can easily and fairly evenly put it on my peel. Pizza & breads slide off like a dream for me.

    If I was going to do a production line by myself I'd think about 3-4 types of pizzas that are the most popular and focus only on that limited menu. If you try to do 100 custom pies it will stress you out to the max. Prep your ingredients in containers, so that you can place them side by side (possibly grouped by pizza type). Make sure you have some backup filled topping containers of the most used items. Grouping containers will help you make consistent pies and if you run out of a topping you simply switch it out with your backup container. Plan a couple breaks into your schedule for taking shi-shi breaks, getting your fire back up to speed, using coals to clear the hearth floor, and replacing container ingredients that weren't backed up adequately.

    1) Flip over some cookie sheets (see #4 below) & sprinkle them with rice flour

    2) Place the stretched pie skin on the cookie sheet & with a brush give the top a light swipe of EVOO (keeps the dough from getting soggy from the sauce as it sits)

    3) DON'T put a lot of toppings on...less is more and the more you stack on a pie, the more likely it will either spill over and stick to the cookie sheet and/or peel or all slide off & feed the oven

    4) Make only twice what you normally fit on your hearth (If you usually cook two pies at a time, prep 4 at one time...you'll need to let the hearth recharge its heat anyway)

    5) Always shake the prepped pizza around to make sure it's "loose" on the peel or sheet before a transfer. Slide the prepped pie off the inverted cookie sheet onto the rice floured peel & then into the oven. Remember that you really don't need to use a peel to deliver your pizza and if you're doing two pies at a time, slide one deep with the peel and one in up front directly from the cookie sheet.

    6) Check for any spilled sauces or other toppings on the peel or sheet and clean them off immediately. Anything other than the rice flour on the surface will most likely "grab" the next pizza and cause you grief.

    7) If you are using a banjo peel (metal) to work the pizzas, have a bucket of water close by that you can dip the banjo head into. My experience is that the metal peels can get quite hot while you're turning & working/doming the pizzas near the fire and it's really nice to be able to cool them down before they become uncomfortable to hold. (I know they have plastic or wood handles, but I find myself grabbing the metal tube as I set the peel down or out of the way.)

    8) Have a chair and adult beverage nearby for emergencies

    I hope this diatribe helps at least to get you thinking about the task ahead from a different point of view (mine...)

    Good luck and be sure and report things that worked AND didn't work in your fun weekend.
    Mike Stansbury - The Traveling Loafer
    Roseburg, Oregon

    FB Forum: The Dragonfly Den build thread
    Available only if you're logged in = FB Photo Albums-Select media tab on profile
    Blog: http://thetravelingloafer.blogspot.com/

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    • #3
      Originally posted by thebigt View Post
      So i have about 100 pizzas to make thia weekend and my wife usually helps out but we may not have chikdcare so i may be on my own.

      In the past ive tried making a number of pizzas before putting them in the oven but i find they dont slide off the peel as good as when i make 1 at a time and immediately put it in the oven. Ideally id make 8 or so then cook them bwfpre starting to make more. I find im not quick enough to do both maling pizzas and managing the oven at the same time and it results in burnt pizzas


      Any tips on how to make pizzas ahead and then cook them? For reference i use the FB pizza dough recipe.
      I made a pizza ahead of time, when there is a party I freeze the dough so it is easy for me to make a pizza.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by SableSprings View Post
        Ahoy ThebigT ! Wow--talk about getting under the gun...100 pizzas by yourself...oh, my

        I don't know what you're using between the peel and pizza skin, but my favorite hands-down is rice flour. I put it in one of those stainless steel or plastic confection sprinkler cans so I can easily and fairly evenly put it on my peel. Pizza & breads slide off like a dream for me.

        If I was going to do a production line by myself I'd think about 3-4 types of pizzas that are the most popular and focus only on that limited menu. If you try to do 100 custom pies it will stress you out to the max. Prep your ingredients in containers, so that you can place them side by side (possibly grouped by pizza type). Make sure you have some backup filled topping containers of the most used items. Grouping containers will help you make consistent pies and if you run out of a topping you simply switch it out with your backup container. Plan a couple breaks into your schedule for taking shi-shi breaks, getting your fire back up to speed, using coals to clear the hearth floor, and replacing container ingredients that weren't backed up adequately.

        1) Flip over some cookie sheets (see #4 below) & sprinkle them with rice flour

        2) Place the stretched pie skin on the cookie sheet & with a brush give the top a light swipe of EVOO (keeps the dough from getting soggy from the sauce as it sits)

        3) DON'T put a lot of toppings on...less is more and the more you stack on a pie, the more likely it will either spill over and stick to the cookie sheet and/or peel or all slide off & feed the oven

        4) Make only twice what you normally fit on your hearth (If you usually cook two pies at a time, prep 4 at one time...you'll need to let the hearth recharge its heat anyway)

        5) Always shake the prepped pizza around to make sure it's "loose" on the peel or sheet before a transfer. Slide the prepped pie off the inverted cookie sheet onto the rice floured peel & then into the oven. Remember that you really don't need to use a peel to deliver your pizza and if you're doing two pies at a time, slide one deep with the peel and one in up front directly from the cookie sheet.

        6) Check for any spilled sauces or other toppings on the peel or sheet and clean them off immediately. Anything other than the rice flour on the surface will most likely "grab" the next pizza and cause you grief.

        7) If you are using a banjo peel (metal) to work the pizzas, have a bucket of water close by that you can dip the banjo head into. My experience is that the metal peels can get quite hot while you're turning & working/doming the pizzas near the fire and it's really nice to be able to cool them down before they become uncomfortable to hold. (I know they have plastic or wood handles, but I find myself grabbing the metal tube as I set the peel down or out of the way.)

        8) Have a chair and adult beverage nearby for emergencies

        I hope this diatribe helps at least to get you thinking about the task ahead from a different point of view (mine...)

        Good luck and be sure and report things that worked AND didn't work in your fun weekend.
        So I keep neglecting to report back on this. I managed to really luck out and my brother ended up coming to help me which was awesome since I ended up making a 127 pizza's total.

        That being said this post was really helpful. I've had a few pizza's stick to my wood peel I use to load the pizza's and never considered sauce getting on them as the culprit but I had no issues this time as I wiped it off if it go messy.

        Also grouping items in bowls is great advice and worked extremely well. I'm not sure what EVOO is so I'll have to look that one up.

        We've been doing small orders since June but they keep getting increasing higher in numbers so I did learn early on to limit it to 2 kinds plus I'll make plain cheese. As my orders have gotten to abiut 100/month I'm trying to find more efficient ways to make my dough. I make 24 doughs at a time by hand but now I think I'm going to need a mixer as its taking me hours to manually knead the dough by hand.

        Comment


        • #5
          ThebigT,

          If you've done the search, by now you know that EVOO is extra virgin olive oil. I am no expert on bread, pizza dough, or bread mixers. But, I was having a difficult time with making large batches of dough myself. I found that the mixing was worse than the kneading. I looked in to buying an electric mixer and got scared off. First by the prices, and then by the consumer reports on the best models. I found an antique hand mixer on ebay and started looking into them. I took a chance and bought a vintage model. Not an antique but, still a well made hand crank dough mixer. I was surprised how much easier it made my dough making. No gears to worry about stripping and it still works when the power is out. I even use it for most of the kneading. I've got 3 of them now. I got the first one for 80 bucks on ebay. Below, is the pic that the seller furnished. Over time, I got the next two for considerably less without the origional boxes and recipe booklets. There is usually one or two of one brand or another on ebay from time to time. They usually run in the $45 range for an all metal vintage mixer. Stay away from the antiques (cast iron). They are too expensive and are just meant to be looked at. And, I wouldn't even think about the new plastic models that are out there. Also, mine are not for sale .

          Joe Watson, "A year from now, you will have wished that you had started today"
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