Good Pizza Starts with the Dough
Now matter what city you reside in people are always talking about how hard it is to find good pizza. Have you ever asked yourself what is good pizza? Everyone appears to have their own definition of good pizza so I won’t get into the specifics but there are some basic factors that define a good pizza.
When it comes to making some really good pizza the process starts with the dough. Making pizza dough is fairly simple process but it’s the little things that can make a difference. The main ingredients in pizza dough are water, flour, salt, yeast, sugar and oil. Now some pizzerias may add things like garlic or basil but that begins to drive up the cost of the pizza and garlic and basil are not necessary to make pizza dough.
How to Make Good Pizza Dough
First let’s start with the water; most people will think that any water will do for pizza dough. This is not the case, depending upon the city you are located the quality of water may differ. In some cities the water is very hard which would explain why water softeners are so high in demand. When making pizza dough you want to start off with good quality water, if you are making pizza in city that is known for its hard alkaline water then you need to invest into a water softener of use bottled water. Never underestimate how the quality of water can affect the final pizza product.
Next the flour is important as well, most pizzerias will use high gluten flour which allows the dough to stretch and not tear. That is how pizza makers can throw the dough in the air and catch it and it never breaks apart. Keep in mind you can use bread flour for pizza dough but it is harder to work with and does not cook the same. In my opinion good pizza is made with high gluten flour.
Now we come to the yeast, there are two types of yeast used for making pizza dough. Some pizzerias will use wet yeast and other will use instant dry yeast. Wet yeast is harder to work with as its can spoil quicker and requires the individual dough balls to be covered in plastic wrap. I myself prefer the instant dry yeast as it easier to use and I personally do not notice a difference but that is just me.
Is Making Good Pizza Easy?
To achieve the best results when making pizza dough it is best make the dough the night before you plan on using it. Most pizzerias will make their dough in the evening after they close then let it set in the walk in refrigerator overnight. When the pizzeria opens at11 amthe dough is ready to go. Sometimes a pizzeria will have a busier than expected night and begin to run out of dough forcing them to immediately make dough and use it the same night before it is fully ready. They may make this emergency dough with hotter than normal water hoping it will rise quicker but it is always a risk. Also sometimes a pizzeria has slower than expected business for the night and has extra dough that sits in the walk in refrigerator for more than a day or two which may not cook the same.
Oil and sugar are added to the dough not necessarily for the taste but the oil helps keep the dough from drying out and the sugar helps the pizza crust turn to a nice golden brown color while baking. Adding too much or too little oil and sugar can create a bad looking pizza. The pizza crust may not brown right or it could crack as it cooks this creates an unappealing presence and that may create a perception that the pizza is bad.
You can see a simple process as making dough attribute to making good pizza. If a pizzeria makes a bad batch of pizza dough and has to use it their next 50 pizzas could be all unsatisfactory. Want really good pizza, it all starts with the dough.
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