Ask Big Dave: Employee morale

Photo by Josh Keown

Q: I have a large group meet here on Thursdays, and they spend a lot of money. My staff gets bummed when they come because it’s frantic for a few hours. What gives? A: One of my customer service counter people turned to the kitchen and announced that four carloads and a tour bus justMore »

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 »

Move Over, Main Stream

2013 April: Move Over, Main Stream

As the Pizza Today crew travels the country and interacts with operators at events like International Pizza Expo, there is one trend that shakes the core of traditional advertising. In lieu of radio, television and newspaper spots, many independent operators are gravitating towards innovative solutions that bring pizzerias closer to their patrons and potential customers.More »

2009 September: This Too Shall Pass

2009 September: This Too Shall Pass

I have been asked to summarize many of my beliefs and words of wisdom as if this were my last shot to speak to you. I have had the great honor to intercommunicate with our wondrous industry for the past 15 years. It has been quite a ride, and I would not have traded itMore »

Dough Doctor: How does gluten affect dough?

2009 August: Dough Doctor

Gluten is the one thing that holds our dough together. Without it, the dough would be a pasty mix of ingredients, lacking the capability of being shaped, hand-tossed or slapped. Contrary to what a bag of fl our might say, flour does not contain any gluten. Instead, it contains specific wheat proteins which, when agitatedMore »

The Dough Doctor talks calzones

2009 July: Dough Doctor

From time to time I get requests from readers asking for a dough formula suitable for making calzones. The truth of the matter is that while you can use a specific dough formula for making calzones, your regular pizza dough will work just fine in this application. Let’s start by looking at a dedicated calzoneMore »

Respecting The Craft: Dough Recipes

2013 March: Respecting The Craft

Q: I’m looking for a standard American-style pizza dough as well as a standard Italian-style. Can you help with recipes? A: I sure can! Here you go: Standard Classic America High gluten/ High protein flour 100 percent flour 58-60 percent hydration 2 percent sea salt 1 percent oil 1 percent malt/sugar .50-1 percent yeast StandardMore »

Going Pro

2013 March: Going Pro

Is a professional chef needed in a pizzeria’s kitchen? The performance kitchen at Cane Rosso takes center stage. Built around a wood-fired oven, the workspace is home to leading man Dino Santonicola, the Naples-born master pizzaiolo hired by owner Jay Jerrier to put his restaurant on the map. And he’s not alone –– more attentionMore »

Oversized pizzas can bring in big profits

2010 October: Perfect Pies

There’s something to be said for an over-sized pizza: It’s big. How big? The average size for pizza these days is 14 inches in diameter. Anything around 18-inches in diameter or above is generally considered “oversized.” That said, pizza doesn’t always need to be round. When working with an over-sized pizza, consider going rectangular byMore »