Reply Wed 1 Sep, 2004 08:10 am
Hi, I am thinking of getting my son some pizza accessories for his brtthday. He doesn't particularly like to cook but loves Pizza. So I hope to entice him into the kitchen to create one of his favorites.

I was thinking of a pizza stone, cutting wheel and a couple of pans. ( I'll get a bunch of recipies printed out off the net, too.) My questions are, Do you bake a pizza directly ON the stone (in a standard oven) or on a pan? If on a pan, what kind? Heavy duty, light aluminum, disposable, one with holes in it, teflon??? And what about that board ( peel?) that I see professionals use on TV when the put pizza into their large brick ovens?

I think if he could impress his friends with a bit of a "show" he would learn to have fun in the kitchen!

When I make pizza, I just shape my dough to fit a regular cookie sheet, and that works pretty good. But I usually just buy frozen and pop it into the oven.

Comments, Ideas, Answers, Killer Recipies???? Thanks.
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Reply Wed 1 Sep, 2004 08:53 am
If you bake a pizza on a stone, you get a crispy crust. If you bake it in a pan, you get a less crispy crust, and the "crispiness" will be determined by how long it is baked. I have a "teflon" pizza pan (although the coating is not actually the Teflon brand), and like it a great deal. You have to be good to use stone, because undercooked, it is unpleasantly chewy, and overcooked, you are likely to burn it. If he has sufficient enthusiasm, though, it might be a good learning experience for him. In your home oven, i doubt that you would need a peel, as my experience of the stones (i once worked in a restaurant equipment warehouse) is that they come in small squares, which can be assembled in a sheet pan, as well as coming in the large commercial oven size. Check out various options for the use of your stone.

I think it's a good idea, if you can interest him in it.
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Bella Dea
Reply Wed 1 Sep, 2004 09:00 am
My pizza stone is big and heavy and gets really freakin' hot. It is kind of hard to work with but the pizza it even for frozen pizza's!
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Reply Wed 1 Sep, 2004 09:47 am
A stone is nice for a show indeed. You preheat it, then slide the raw pizza onto it. The pans with the holes in it aren't bad, but if you make a lot of pizza, they can buckle on you, if made of aluminum. While not 'showy', I make my pizzas in a regular baking tray, at severly high temeperatures, and they always come out fine.
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Grand Duke
Reply Wed 1 Sep, 2004 09:56 am
I used to work at Pizza Hut and they used 2 differnt types of pan, depending on the base. There were round thick steel pans, with 2" raised edges. These were given 1/2" of vegetable oil before the dough was put in, so the bottom of the pizza is 'deep-fried' and comes out crispy. This is for Grand Pan bases. The Italian bases (thin & crispy) were cooked on thin round perforated trays, which were sprayed with aerosol oil to stop it sticking. After topping, the pizzas are cooked at a high temperature (not sure exactly what) for 7.75 minutes. The oven has conveyor belts to make the whole process idiot-proof.

And all pizzas made in Pizza Hut (in the UK at least) use frozen dough.
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Grand Duke
Reply Wed 1 Sep, 2004 09:59 am
PS. As Pamela would probably like her son to make proper pizzas, please ignore what I wrote above... Pizza Hut pizzas are not real pizzas.
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Pamela A
Reply Sat 4 Sep, 2004 12:26 pm
Thanks all! These are exactly the kind of comments I had hoped for. I have a month before his birthday, so there will be plenty of time to shop here in town or even on line.
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