A Swing and a Miss
August 31, 2009, 2:08 pm
Filed under: Main Dishes, Pizza Sundays

For a wedding gift from my brother-in-law Keith, we received a very nice pizza stone and an awesome pizza cutter.  The second we opened it I exclaimed to D.Jones “Oh, how perfect is this!?  We’ll use this all the time!”  That was in May of 2005.  Yesterday, which of course, would be August of 2009, I decided to try it.  The stone, that is.  The pizza cutter has actually gotten a lot of use.

I looked up easy pizza crust recipes and decided to do some slight modifications to the Smitten Kitchen’s “Really Simple Pizza Dough“.  I shouldn’t have.  Well, modified it that is.  I have no doubt that the pizza crust would have turned out perfectly had I followed the recipe as intended.

Who knows why I thought I would be some sort of expert at pizza crust making when it’s never even occurred to me to do so until moments prior to dumping some white whole wheat flour in my mixing bowl, but I did.  The result was a dough that was way too wet, so I started adding in more flour until I thought it was a good consistency.

I read that the pizza stone should be fully heated and the dough should be laid upon the pizza stone as it’s hot to achieve a perfectly crispy crust, so I heated up my stone as my dough was rising and I thought everything was good-to-go.

Now, stretching and rolling out pizza dough was more difficult than I imagined it would be, so I was getting frustrated, which helped nothing.  I ended up tearing the dough on more than one occasion and had little Cooper Jones been within earshot, he’d have some choice new vocabulary on his hands…just in time for preschool to start on Wednesday.

I sprinkled some corn meal on my pizza stone as someone else had recommended on another blog, and then finally was able to get my dough onto the stone.  It even looked reasonably okay.

On went the toppings, which I decided to keep basic for my first attempt.  Shredded mozzarella, sliced green olives and sliced red onions, with some homemade sauce, which I made out of tomato sauce, tomato paste, Italian seasoning, 3 garlic cloves and some fresh ground pepper and some red pepper flakes.  All to taste, really.  I measured nothing, and the sauce, I must say, turned out wonderfully!  I’ll include it in an actual recipe in the future, when I make attempt #2, which will be soon.

Here’s how it looked going in to the oven….


And the finished product…


Not bad looking, but it had some issues.  First, the crust was too soggy for me in some places, and the thicker parts of the edge were way too doughy.  Ick.  The other problem was that much of the crust stuck to the actual stone, which was frustrating and made clean up hellish.  The flavor was pretty good, but it seemed to be lacking something.  Not sure what…

It’s a good sign that my husband took the leftovers to work today anyway, so I guess it was okay, but not what I had hoped for.

It is kind of fun, though, and so satisfying to see it baking away in the oven.  I’m gearing up for my second attempt and will keep you posted.  If I feel it’s more successful, next time you’ll actually get recipes.  Until then, I’m proud that I finally gave it a go, and that pizza stone is finally going to get some much deserved attention.


3 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Having made some homemade pizza on a stone several times, here is my two cents worth.
First, your stone needs to be “seasoned”. Try baking something pretty oily on it several times, like store bought “tube” biscuits. There are other ways to season it with vegetable oil, but I would have to look it up. Secondly, try baking the crust for about 10 minutes BEFORE you put toppings on. The crust will crisp up. Then put toppings on and bake until cheese is bubbly. My stone is my most used piece in my kitchen. Cookies, chicken nuggets, dinner rolls, garlic bread. The more you use it, the better it gets!

Comment by Kristine

Oooh! Good tips, Kristine! Thank you~ And, an excuse to buy a little roll of those horrible-for-you biscuits that I secretly love. 🙂
If you have a good recipe for crust, send it my way!

Comment by whatsupwiththejoneses

A total cheat on the dough… go to your local bakery and buy it there. Ours has it already bagged and ready to go, and it’s only $0.75.

Comment by Alicia

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