In The Kitchen

Dough Doctor: Dough mixing and pizza ovens

2013 May: Dough Doctor

Q: How do I know when my pizza dough is properly mixed? A: Most pizza doughs as we know them are under mixed in regard to full gluten development. The only real exception is commercially made frozen pizza dough which is almost universally mixed to full gluten development. For the retail operator, though, a doughMore »

The hottest ingredients for 2013

2013 May: THE IN CROWD

Today’s pizzeria customers are savvier than ever thanks in part to a growing trend in upscale options. Sure, pepperoni and cheese are still king in this industry, but customers looking for fresh, organic and locally grown toppings now have more choices than ever. Add in the rise of Neapolitan and artisan focuses, and the pizzaMore »

Master Of The Pan

Photo by Josh Keown

Pizza pans matter when it comes to creating the perfect crust, flavor At an old used restaurant warehouse in West Virginia, I stared into a dark corner at several three-foot stacks of blue-steel pizza pans piled like greasy towers. Their thick, bumpy sides indicated that they were at least 15 years old, probably older. WithMore »

Dough Doctor: Wood vs. Metal Pizza Peels

2013 April: Dough Doctor

Q: I was recently looking through a catalog that I got at the last Pizza Expo and I saw both wood and metal peels being offered by the different companies. Do you have a preference in one over the other? A: My preference is to use a wood peel as a prep peel — theMore »

The Dough Doctor takes a look at using herbs in dough

2009 December: Dough Doctor

Herb infused doughs are one of those things that seem to come and go. It gets popular for a short time, and then it disappears, only to come back again after a few years. For some of us, though, it has found a home on our menu boards as a variation to regular pizza crusts.More »

Gourmet toppings next wave of pizza trends

gourmet toppings

Gourmet toppings for pizza? Where do I begin? I suppose I could start by recounting something I read recently about a pizzeria in New York City that is big on seasonal gourmet toppings such as Brussels sprout leaves, shaved porcini, black truffles and exotic cheeses. If that’s not gourmet, I don’t know what is. IMore »

2009 December: Pasta Primer

2009 December: Pasta Primer

Rigatoni with Chicken & Ricotta The idea behind this delicious pasta dish is that the ricotta is actually the sauce that coats the pasta. To this end, I like to add a tablespoon or two of the hot water from the pasta pot to thin the sauce just a touch. Various steps can be preppedMore »

2009 November: Pasta Primer

Spaghetti and Meatballs

Spaghetti with Meatballs This recipe is very close to how my mother did her meatballs, but there are as many recipes for meatballs as there are Italians. This recipe makes 18 meatballs, each about 2 inches in diameter. Makes 6 servings (scale up in direct proportion) 1⁄2 pound ground pork 1 pound lean ground beefMore »

Dough storage can make or break your operation

2009 October: Dough Doctor

Dough storage –– this is one of those topics that I continually get questions about, so it’s probably time that we go back and revisit the basics. The way in which we store our dough has changed over the years. Back in the 1950s it was common to allow the mixed dough to remain inMore »