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Yummy pizza dough but not crispy bottom

tones's picture

I made the Reinhart potato dough pizza last night and it was great!  Thank you everyone for the advice on the potatoes.  Did anyone making this or any pizza use the convection mode?  I did and heated the oven for 45 mins. at 525 and then turned it down to 425 when I put the pizza in.  I'm wondering what I needed to do to get the bottom of the pizza crispy.  I used a baking stone and like I said it was heated for at least 45 mins. 


The recipe did not call for prebaking the crust, but because I have done that in the past, I did put the crust in without any toppings for about 3 mins.  Then I added the toppings after the crust cooled a bit and cooked the pizza for about 5-6 mins. at which time the crust edges were nicely browned and the cheese was starting to brown.  The pizza was soooo good, but I wish the bottom of the crust had lightly browned.  I did have the stone in the bottom 3rd of the oven.  Are people still making this dough as pizza?  I am going to make the bread loaves next.  Thanks. 

TracyK's picture

(post #37080, reply #1 of 27)

Hmmm... next time you could brush the pizza with some olive oil before pre-baking the crust, then flip it over once you take it out to put the toppings on. The thin coating of olive oil might help brown and crisp the bottom crust.


Other than that the only thing I can think of is that maybe your oven temp isn't correct? It should have been pretty browned and crispy heated at that temp, and with the preheated stone...


Edited to add: Sugar also helps promote browning... you could add a tsp of honey or sugar to the dough. Wouldn't be enough to taste it, but it might help the crust brown.



"The happy StairMaster president is on his way to a mansionette in Dallas, to be the decider of where to put the sofa."
                                                            --Garrison Keillor


Edited 2/12/2009 12:33 pm ET by TracyK

tones's picture

(post #37080, reply #3 of 27)

Those both sound like good suggestions, Tracy.  I did notice when I made the dough that it didn't call for any sugar and one recipe that I've made in the past had a tiny bit of sugar.  I was making 3 pizzas last night and once, in trying to find a place to set one of the pizzas to start another, I flipped the prebaked crust over and I actually did have the olive oil side on the bottom when I put it back in the oven.  It still was not browned but I think it was not as soft as the first one.  I also think the oven had waited for about 10 mins. before adding the next pizza so I don't think it was a matter of the oven losing some heat. 

KarenP's picture

(post #37080, reply #22 of 27)

 I would take the oven off convection, preheat the stone as you did, make sure it's in the bottom of the oven, not the floor, just low.
   The pizza screens that someone else showed you are GREAT!  If you have them, you can start one pizza high in the oven and finish it on the stone for some crispness.

tones's picture

(post #37080, reply #24 of 27)

What is the reason for not wanting to use convection?  It may cook the toppings too much too quickly?  I do have my stone on a rack in the bottom 1/3 of the oven.  Again, what would be the advantage of cooking the pizza in the beginning higher up?  Thanks for joining in.  I appreciate everyone's thoughts.

KarenP's picture

(post #37080, reply #27 of 27)

  The advantage of cooking one higher up is only that if you have a house full of people, you have more than one pizza done in close proximity.  The top is done and you'd only be crisping the bottom.
  My convection fan blows from the back of the oven, I would prefer the heat to come from the bottom for the crust.  The topping cooking too fast I don't believe would be a issue.  
 

Sondra's picture

(post #37080, reply #2 of 27)

Leave the oven temp on 500-525.  Place pizza stone on lower third oven rack, not in middle.  And I always use these pizza screens (Amazon or kitchen supply stores), they are awesome for getting crispy crust.  Pizza takes about 6-8 Mins, by the way at 500.


Winware Seamless Aluminum Pizza Screens

tones's picture

(post #37080, reply #5 of 27)

Thank you, Sondra.  I have never seen those screens and thank you for the picture.  You set the pizza right on the screen?  I usually use parchment paper under my crust and move both over to the stone.  Do you use parchment paper?  Maybe I should be removing the paper as I slide it onto the stone.  How do you get the pizza onto the screen?  Also, I made my pizzas about 14 inches around.

TracyK's picture

(post #37080, reply #6 of 27)

Aha! That would definitely do it!


I put my pizzas into the oven on the parchment, wait about two minutes, then pull the parchment out (kind of like the tablecloth under the dinner dishes magician trick, except much easier, lol). I finish the baking with the dough directly on the stone.



"The happy StairMaster president is on his way to a mansionette in Dallas, to be the decider of where to put the sofa."
                                                            --Garrison Keillor

tones's picture

(post #37080, reply #10 of 27)

Oh...that is what I will do for sure from now on!  Thanks so much.

Sondra's picture

(post #37080, reply #15 of 27)

Parchment paper fine, just bake for about 5 mins, and then remove paper, finish baking.


I love the screens because you don't have to remove like parchment.  Just set the blob of dough in the middle of the screen.  (First time working with, spray screen with Pam, just in case.)  Then lift the edge of the dough from underneath (1/4 of dough circle, more or less), stretch slightly, release back onto screen, turn a quarter turn, repeat.  Repeat the stretching until the dough covers the screen, top, and slide into oven with pizza peel.   Remove with pizza peel  (metal's the best), set on baking rack to cool a minute, slide pizza peel between pizza and screen, wiggle a little, and move to wherever you're going to cut the pizza.


Don't press the dough into the screen ever, it will for sure stick.  It does still stick on occasion, however, depending upon wetness of dough.  If that happens, let it sit on the cooling rack another minute until the dough starts to cool a little, and it naturally pulls away from the screen.

MadMom's picture

(post #37080, reply #16 of 27)

I noticed the people at Costco using the screens the other day.  They sort of flattened the dough first, then put it on the screen, then pulled it until it was the right size.  Interesting.



Not One More Day!
Not One More Dime! Not One More Life! Not One More Lie!

End the Occupation of Iraq -- Bring the Troops Home Now!

And Take Care of Them When They Get Here!

Gretchen's picture

(post #37080, reply #17 of 27)

Does the screen help in not letting the dough shrink back? Sort of catches it? That would be a big plus.

Gretchen

Gretchen
knitpik's picture

(post #37080, reply #18 of 27)

If you let the dough rest it won't shrink back. Sometimes if I let
it rest too long I get a XXL pizza. LOL

Gretchen's picture

(post #37080, reply #19 of 27)

Yes, I know that. I was just interested in the screen and whether it obviated that. ;o)

Gretchen

Gretchen
knitpik's picture

(post #37080, reply #20 of 27)

You need it, you want it, you must have it. ;-)

Sondra's picture

(post #37080, reply #21 of 27)

It does sort of catch it, yes. 

tones's picture

(post #37080, reply #23 of 27)

How do you spell crispy bottom crust?  Preheated 545 degree convection oven for one hour, pull out parchment paper after 2-3 mins. and then top pizza, use regular mozzarella, and then cook at same temp. for another 4 mins.  Fantastic!!!  Yea...thanks everyone!  You all helped me.  I will look for the screen because it sounds interesting.

butterscotch's picture

(post #37080, reply #4 of 27)

Toni--For what it's worth, I recently made focaccia for the first time in a black metal pizza pan.  This is the kind of pan that comes in two pieces.  The bottom part is a round pan, maybe 4 inches deep, that can be used to make deep dish pizza. Then there is piece that fits over the top of the pan--very shallow and perforated all over--that can be used to bake a thin crust pizza.  I used the deep pan for the focaccia and got a bottom crust that was a little too dark for my liking. The pan conducts heat very well, and I think I caused the problem by not reducing the oven temperature specified in the recipe.  I should have used a lower oven temperature to compensate for the higher heat absorption of the dark pan. 


Anyway, you might try one of these black metal pans. They're inexpensive and both the top and bottom parts produce darker custs than I get with a baking stone.

tones's picture

(post #37080, reply #9 of 27)

Interesting, butterscotch.  I know that I had a black, inexpensive pizza pan with holes in it years ago, but currently I thought the stone was supposed to be the best in terms of cooking pizza.  Any thoughts from others?  Do you use a pan under the pizza, only the stone, and how many use parchment paper to easily move the pizza to the oven?  I always cut away most of the outside paper once the pizza is on it but I leave the paper in the oven under the pizza.  Is that going to keep the dough from crisping?  My pizza peel is not big enough to make the pizza on it and then slide onto the stone.  But if others recommend it, I would slide the pizza dough off the partchment onto the stone leaving only the dough on the stone.  Thank you, again, butterscotch.

MadMom's picture

(post #37080, reply #11 of 27)

I cook mine on a stone, with parchment paper, but contrary to some, I just cook for a couple of minutes to firm up the crust.  Then I pull it out, discard the parchment, add toppings, and put it back in.  I agree about the temp.  Turn the oven as high as it will go and preheat for at least an hour.



Not One More Day!
Not One More Dime! Not One More Life! Not One More Lie!

End the Occupation of Iraq -- Bring the Troops Home Now!

And Take Care of Them When They Get Here!

tones's picture

(post #37080, reply #13 of 27)

Thanks, MM.  Tonight I am going to make the pizza that I did not cook last night.  I don't think that I could have pizza burn-out for a long time.  I will do the parchment paper pull-out after 2-3 mins. and then put the toppings on.  And I am going to keep the oven hot hot hot! I am excited to see what happens tonight.  Stay tuned...


Edited 2/12/2009 2:56 pm by tones

roz's picture

(post #37080, reply #14 of 27)

Thanks. One more idea, especially since you are going to do pizza again tonight. Make small pizzas, use your pizza peel and don't use too much in the way of toppings. Less is best.

Be impeccable with your word. Don't take anything personally. Don't make assumptions. Do your best. Don Miguel Ruiz
CookiM0nster's picture

(post #37080, reply #7 of 27)

I've never had any trouble with soggy crusts with this. I don't prebake, but I also leave the oven at 475.

tones's picture

(post #37080, reply #25 of 27)

I'm glad that you commented, CookiMOnster because I had another question for you, if you don't mind.  A year ago, when you started the thread on the potato bread pizza dough, you mentioned that you made the loaves of potato bread and that because you had extra biga and potatoes, you made another recipe of the dough mixture to make pizza.  I am thinking that means you used 1 1/4 cups of the left over biga and made a whole recipe of the potato dough as in Rinehart's recipe. (Just as written in the book.)  Well, along comes Toni...with thoughts of making only pizza dough out of the recipe. I used one recipe of biga (2 1/2 cups) and didn't think about it and made the recipe of the potato bread as is.  That is 2 times the amount of biga called for to make the bread.  I did not double the other ingredients when I mixed together the potato bread ingred.  I formed the dough into 4 rounds.  I cannot say one thing bad about the dough in my pizzas.  It was great...and crispy tonight.  Do you think it really didn't matter much that I used double the biga because it is all just about the same dough?  Maybe I should do it correctly next time to see if there is much difference in the outcome. 


Do you still make this dough for pizza?  I had one son and his wife for pizza last night and one daughter and family for pizza tonight.  They loved it!  Thank you for sharing your ideas.  See, even after a year has gone by, your ideas are appreciated.

CookiM0nster's picture

(post #37080, reply #26 of 27)

No, I don't think the extra biga would matter much.

Yes, I do still make it. It's still my favourite pizza dough ever.

I'm so glad you're enjoying it too.

roz's picture

(post #37080, reply #8 of 27)

I am no pizza expert, but don't turn your oven temperature down. Max it out! Preheat the stone at least an hour, put dough directly on the pre-heated stone and pray!

I cannot get my oven any hotter than 500F max. In my next life, I want to be able to have a wood burning oven for pizza!

Be impeccable with your word. Don't take anything personally. Don't make assumptions. Do your best. Don Miguel Ruiz
tones's picture

(post #37080, reply #12 of 27)

Oh, I think you do sound like an expert...especially the part about praying.  Will do all that you suggest, and thank you, roz.