Guy’s Crispy Deep-Fried Pizza

Guy Fieri of the Food Network brings us todays video in the form of do-it-yourself fair food: Deep-Fried Pizza! Now I know what you’re thinking, or at least I think I know, and just give it a chance. Check out this three minute video and look at what that final product looks like. It’s actually pretty tasty looking!



  • Canola oil, for frying (amount determined by vessel used)
  • 1 recipe Perfect Pizza Dough, recipe follows
  • 2 tablespoons dried oregano
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil leaves
  • 1 cup pizza sauce
  • 2 ounces whole pepperoni
  • 4 ounces mozzarella cheese, coarsely shredded
  • 1 teaspoon water
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan
  • 8 fresh basil leaves, for garnish


Preheat the oil to 365 degrees F. A deep-fryer is best, but if using a stove top method, fill a cast iron Dutch oven or heavy chicken fryer with oil about 4 inches deep.

Roll dough out and cut it in half. Stir the oregano and basil into the pizza sauce. Slice the pepperoni. Spread half of the pizza sauce on half of each side, of the dough, add the cheese and pepperoni, distributing evenly. Apply a thin line of the water to the edge of the dough and fold each over onto itself and press to seal.

Check the oil temperature and carefully add the pizza pockets. Cook for 2 minutes, turn over and cook for 1 minute more. Remove to a paper towel lined plate. Transfer the pizza to serving plates and garnish with remaining pizza sauce, Parmesan and fresh basil leaves.

Perfect Pizza Dough:

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for bowl
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
  • 1 cup warm water (110 to 115 degrees F)

Combine all the dry ingredients in bowl of food processor or stand mixer. Or if by hand, combine in a medium bowl. Add the warm water to small glass bowl. Sprinkle the yeast over and let it sit for 10 to 15 minutes. Add oil and yeast mixture to dry ingredients and depending on method using, combine until a dough ball forms. For food processor, pulse on dough setting until dough is smooth and elastic. For stand mixer, slow speed until dough is smooth and elastic. For hand method, knead on lightly floured surface until smooth and elastic. Form the dough into a ball. Lightly oil a large bowl, add the dough ball to it, cover tightly with plastic wrap or a well-floured tea towel, and set in a warm place or a 100 degree F oven until doubled, about 1 hour.

Punch down, and let rest for 5 minutes. Divide the dough in half for 2 large pizzas or into 4 equal pieces for calzones or small individual pizzas. Roll the dough into 1/4-inch thick rounds. Cooks Note: Can be made ahead and also freezes well.

Yield: 2 large or 4 small pizzas or calzones

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Inactive Prep Time: 1 to 2 hours

Ease of preparation: Easy

This Curds for You – Making Fresh Mozzarella

So you know how you’ve been futzing over tiny changes in your pizza dough? Or maybe you’ve been looking for that certain something to brighten up your pizza sauce and because it might be a bit dull right now? Well forget that – you’ve stend plenty of time worrying about dough and sauce, but how many sleepless nights have you spent worrying about how fresh your cheese is?? My guess would be less than you would care to admit. Here are two mozzarella making videos that will get you started on a whole new level of “pizza obsession”… whatever that is.


The Elusive Crispy Crust – Tips on Getting a Snap

Reader Aimee writes:

“So how about you tell me why my pizza won’t friggin’ get a crusty bottom!  It tends to be a wee bit on the floppy soggy side.  The top seems to cook the quickest. I tried drying my fresh mozz for a bit and using less sauce, didn’t work. Do you still use pans or do you use a stone now? I use a stone.”

Great questions Aimeee! I think this is probably a big issue for a lot of home chefs for many reasons. Let’s talk about some of them now.

  • Temperature – this is, of course, the obvious first tip to getting crispier results out of your pizza. Many recipes you see – maybe even some recipes on this very blog. Yikes! – will have you preheat the over to 400, 425, 450, something like that. ALWAYS DISREGARD this advice. Commercial pizza ovens operate in the neighborhood of 800 to 1100 degrees, so in order to get even remotely close to the pizza you know and love, you need to crank your oven up to the highest possible setting! For me, this means setting it to 550+. I saw “+” because my oven has a knob which allows me to select “bake” or “broiler” as well as a temperature dial which goes to 550 and then continues on to “broiler.” The double up in terms is a bit confusing, but I think what I’m doing what I set it to “bake” on the mode knob and “broiler” on the temperature knob, I’m asking the oven to try to keep the heating element on as long as it possibly can at the highest temp it possibly can. Goal achieved. Now, because you are running your oven hotter than before, hopefully more liquid will evaporate off your pie and out of your crust which will equal a crispier end product.
  • Preheat – Preheat your oven and let it sit at full temperature for at least 45 minutes to an hour before trying to bake in it. Especially if you are using a pizza stone, this will allow the stone to absorb all the heat it possibly can, as well as the sides of the oven, ensuring that you get the hottest bake out of your oven as possible. I know that my general theme on this blog is that time is the most secret of all ingredients and here it is again – don’t rush pizza, and as Alton Brown says, “your patience will be rewarded.”
  • Baking Stone – This is a big must for a crispy pizza crust. Again, commercial ovens have stone floors in them, not metal, so we can all take a tip from the pros and duplicate this scenario at home. Baking stones are beneficial for two main reasons:1) Baking stones absorb and store heat, so while your oven can only generate so much heat, the stone will store much of that heat and radiate it back out to the surrounding oven space. This will not only allow you to achieve temperature higher than what your oven would normally be capable of, but will also regulate heat loss when you open the oven to check on progress. In addition, it will also regulate how wide of a temperture swing occurs as your oven sycles the heating element on and off. Think even heat.

    2) Baking stones absorb water. They have small holes in the surface unlike metal baking pans, so they have the ability to capture and dissipate water. This is a good thing.

    The quick science behind a baking stone (or pizza stone – same thing) is as follows. The stone is both intensely hot and moderately porous. When the dough hits the stone, the water in the dough instantly wants to turn to steam and get the heck out of there, and since there are small air pockets in the stone, the steam has a space to move into. In essence, the stone both causes, and then absorbs, the steam trying to escape from the dough. Again, less moisture, more crispy. Solid petal pizza pans give the water nowhere to go, so the water is either retained in the dough, or must make its way to the surface of the pie before escaping.

  • Dry your ingredients – This may sound funny, but it really really helps out a lot. Especially when you are trying to make a pizza with a lot of fresh veggies! Vegetables and wet cheeses are notorious for releasing a ton of water once they hit the oven, so simply chop everything up before hand, lay it down on a kitchen towel, and fold the towel over so the water from the fresh cut veggies has somewhere to escape to before it hits your crust. I do this with my fresh mozzarella as well and I even take this theory a step further: One I’ve got everything sliced and drying in towels, I place the towels on top of the range where the radiant heat of the pre-heating oven moves up into the veggies and gives them a more thorough drying. Be careful with oven-drying the cheese though. I got a little careless last weekend with some cheese in a towel on the top of a hot oven and when I went to open up the towel, I found that I had glued it together very thoroughly with six dollars of nice fresh mozzarella! Never got that damn towel clean either!
  • Use less stuff – It is always tempting to over top your pizza, but here is a tip: don’t. In general, take whatever your natural instinct is for topping pizza is, and then consciously dial that bake 30%-40%. Pizza is a balancing act between bread, cheese, sauce and toppings, but zen philosophies aside, you’ll find that if you give everything a little breathing room, your cheese will stick to your crust better (no sliding off with the first bite), your pizzas will be crispier, and most importantly, you won’t be as full after eating a slice which means you can eat more! Who can argue against that??

Finally, let’s address one of Aimee’s specific problems she has had trying to combat the floppy soggy crust syndrome.

  • The top seems to cook the quickest – pay attention to how your oven cooks your pizzas and where you are putting your oven racks. If Aimee seems to always have an overcooked top, and an undercooked bottom, she should consider moving her pizza stone down to the next lowest baking rack. Even though we’re talking about the interior of a 550+ degree oven, the laws of thermodynamics still apply: heat rises. A too-quickly-cooked top means that her pizza is too high in her oven and the heat that pools at the top of it is cooking the top of the pizza faster than the bottom. To learn an oven, I would start the stone at the lowest possible rack setting, and then based on how the bottom of the crust turns out, I might move one or two spots up the next time around.Interesting technique: many home pizza chefs bake with their pizza stones as low in the oven as possible to get the stone as close to the heating element as possible, then, when they have checked the bottom and it is looking nice and crisp, they move the pie to their oven rack which has been positioned at the very highest spot in the oven to finish off the top. This gives you precise control over how done the bottom and top of the pie are when it finally comes out of the oven. I personally use this technique often, but if I could find that sweet spot in my oven where I didn’t need to do it, I wouldn’t

I hope this has been enlightening and helpful and I hope to see photos of reader Aimee’s improved crispy crusts real soon! Please submit any other questions you guys may have and I’ll answer as best I can. If there is any last tip I could leave you with, I would simply repeat myself in saying that time is the only secret ingredient. So many people are looking for quick eats and dinners in 30 minutes or less, but when compared to dinners that took you 3-4 days to prepare, they all start to taste like fast food!

Spend some time with your food.

Talk soon,


Breakfast Pizza and Test Dough

Tonight I was testing a new dough formula (think secret ingredients) and came up with a few simple combinations, and photos, that I hope get your mouth watering and your brain looking around this here blog for a good dough recipe to try out in your own kitchen. One was a simple pie with fresh tomato, provolone, and parmesan. The other was a breakfast pie with my breakfast potatoes from this morning, two raw eggs, ricotta, parmesan, and white truffle oil. There were both fabulous, and we all agreed that the secret ingredient was promising to boot! Here’s to inspiration!


New Pizza Flours from Central Milling

Hello. Have I extolled the virtues of contacting and subsequently ordering fabulous flour from Nick over at Central Milling lately? Well let me tell you, I just received four bags of his latest and greatest “00″ flour – two bags reinforced, two bags normal – and can’t wait to get started putting it through the pizza paces. I’ll let you know as soon as I’ve completed a few test pies, until then, how about to email him and order some of your own?

Talk soon,

Screen shot 2010-08-31 at 8.36.50 PM

My Latest Variation on a Thin Crust Dough Recipe – Bacon Grease Anyone?

Hi Ya’ll,

Just wanted to share with you my latest variation on my dough along with a new little video I shot for you the other day. Things to note in this new variation: Vital Gluten, malted syrup, bacon grease, and a rolling pin! Enjoy.

This video was embedded using the YouTuber plugin by Roy Tanck. Adobe Flash Player is required to view the video.


  • 22.5 oz of flour
    • First put in 2oz of vital gluten
    • Then 20.5oz of all purpose flour
  • 1T malted syrup
  • 2tsp salt
  • 1tsp Instarise yeast
  • 2T bacon grease
  • 1.75c + 1T warm water (’bout 100 degrees)

Toss all the ingredients into your stand mixer and mix on slow ’til everything comes together – should be about 2-3 minutes. Once it looks like a chunky, cohesive mass, turn the mixer off and let the dough sit for 10-20 minutes with a nice clean shower cap over the top of the mixer bowl – many people like to put a towel over the top of the bowl, but many other people claim that the towel absorbs the moisture in the air, which isn’t great for the dough, so I like the shower cap. Reusable as well :) Once at least ten minutes is up, start mixing again on slow for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, turn the mixer off and rest for another 10-20 (remember that shower cap). Finally, pull the dough out and form 4 10oz balls and place into air tight containers (this could be tupperware, plastic bags, etc). Put the containers in the fridge and let them hang out for two to three days. After at least 48 hours, pull the dough out two hours before you plan to bake the pies. One hour before you want to eat, put your stone in the oven, crank it up as hot it will go, and let it pre-heat for the last hour. Lastly, pull your dough out onto a lightly dusted counter, flatten your ball out with your knuckles – try pushing the bubbles that have formed out to the outer rim of the dough. I’ve been playing with a rolling pin recently and liking it a lot, so grab a floured rolling pin and do some rolling out til you get a nice flat disc going. Lastly, pick it up and slap it back and forth to dust off the excess flour, toss it a few times to get that final thin stretch, then plop it on a peel, top it, and slide it in the oven. If your oven gets nice and hot, you won’t need to cook it more than five minutes or so. Enjoy!

Alton Brown’s Latest Wood Fired Pizza Recipe

Alton Brown of the Food Network recently released another episode in which he covers recipe and techniques for making flat, crisp, BBQ’d pizzas. I have to admit, I’ve always loved Good Eats, but for some reason, never really liked his pizza dough recipes. From my point of view, the best dough comes from two to four days of prep time, and I don’t think his half-hour show has the ability to showcase the BEST techniques, so this might explain my WANT to love his pizza dough, and my subsequent let down. I was sad to discover that this recipe, as like the last try, was not a contender to recipes from Tony Gemignani and Peter Reinhart.

Now again, I love that good ol’ Alton, and his show is always chock full of useful knowledge, regardless of whether you like the recipe or not so I still full-heartedly recommend watching the episode (below) and picking up a little pizza science. Also, he did suggest one novel ingredient (novel to me anyways): Malted Barley Syrup. Really enjoying the results from the Syrup so far :)



Dough – Enough for 3 (16-inch) round pizzas:

  • 16 ounces all-purpose flour, plus extra for peel and rolling
  • 1 envelope instant or rapid rise yeast
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 10 ounces warm water, approximately 105 degrees F
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus 2 teaspoons for bowl
  • 1 tablespoon malted barley syrup

Margherita topping – Enough to top 1 (16-inch) round pizza:

  • 1 large tomato, cut into 1/3-inch thick slices
  • 5 to 7 teaspoons olive oil, divided
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/2-ounce grated Parmesan
  • 1 1/2 ounces part skim mozzarella, shredded
  • 4 to 6 large basil leaves, shredded

Date and prosciutto topping – Enough to top 1 (16-inch) round pizza:

  • 3 1/2 ounces fresh mozzarella, cut into 1/4-inch thick slices
  • 3 to 6 teaspoons olive oil, divided
  • 1/2-ounce grated Parmesan
  • 1-ounce prosciutto ham, approximately 3 slices, coarsely chopped
  • 4 whole dates, pitted and finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves

Pizza cracker:

  • 2 to 4 teaspoons olive oil
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Special equipment:

  • Vise-Grips



Combine the flour and yeast in the work bowl of a stand mixer. Add the salt, water, 2 tablespoons of olive oil, and malted barley syrup. Start the mixer on low, using the hook attachment, and mix until the dough just comes together, approximately 1 1/2 minutes. Increase the mixer speed to medium and knead for 15 minutes.

Tear off a small piece of dough and flatten into a disk. Gently stretch the dough until thin. Hold it up to the light and look to see if the bakers windowpane, or a see-through, taut membrane has formed. The dough will be quite sticky, but manageable. Fold the dough onto itself and form it into a smooth ball. Oil the bowl of the stand mixer or other large canister with 2 teaspoons of olive oil. Put the dough in the bowl and roll it around to coat with the oil. Cover with a tea towel or plastic wrap and leave at room temperature to double in size, approximately 1 hour.

Split the dough into 3 equal parts using a knife or dough scraper. Flatten each piece into a disk on the countertop. Form each piece into a ball. Roll each ball on the counter until they tighten into rounds. Cover the balls with a tea towel and rest for 45 minutes.

To shape and cook the margherita pizza:

Heat a gas grill to high and make sure the grill grates are clean and free of debris.

Toss the tomato with 1 tablespoon of olive oil, the garlic, salt and red pepper flakes in a medium mixing bowl and set aside.

Lightly flour the countertop and flatten 1 of the dough balls. Use a rolling pin to roll the dough into a 16-inch round, rotating and stretching the dough as you go. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured pizza peel and stretch to re-shape if necessary.

Oil the grill grates and decrease the heat to medium. Brush the dough with 1 to 2 teaspoons of olive oil and flip onto 1 end of the hot grill, leaving room for the tomatoes on the grate. Put the prepared tomatoes on the grill, close the lid and cook until the bottom of the crust is golden brown and the tomatoes are softened, about 1 to 2 minutes. Brush the raw side of the dough with 1 to 2 teaspoons of olive oil, then immediately flip using the peel. Top with the grilled tomatoes, smashing and spreading the tomatoes to create a sauce. Sprinkle with the Parmesan, mozzarella and basil. Close the lid and cook until the bottom of crust is golden brown and the cheese has melted, another 1 to 2 minutes. Using the peel, remove the pizza to a cooling rack and let rest for 3 minutes before slicing.

To shape and cook the date and Prosciutto pizza:

Heat a gas grill to high and make sure the grill grates are clean and free of debris.

Layer 2 paper towels on a plate and lay the mozzarella slices in a single layer. Top with 2 more paper towels, a second plate, and a 2 pound weight. Set aside at room temperature for 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, lightly flour the countertop and flatten 1 of the dough balls. Use a rolling pin to roll the dough into a 16-inch round, rotating and stretching the dough as you go. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured pizza peel and stretch to re-shape if necessary.

Oil the grill grates and decrease the heat to medium. Brush the dough with 1 to 2 teaspoons of olive oil and flip onto the hot grill. Close the lid and cook until the bottom of crust is golden brown, for 1 to 2 minutes. Brush the raw side of the dough with 1 to 2 teaspoons of olive oil, then immediately flip using the peel, brush with remaining 1 to 2 teaspoons of olive oil, and top with the Parmesan, prepared mozzarella, prosciutto, dates and thyme. Close the lid and cook until the bottom of crust is golden brown and the cheese has melted, about 1 to 2 minutes. Using the peel, remove the pizza to a cooling rack and rest for 3 minutes before slicing.

To shape and cook cracker pizza:

Lightly flour the countertop and flatten 1 of the dough balls. Use a rolling pin to roll the dough into an 11 by 17-inch rectangle to fit a standard, stainless steel cooling rack. Lay the dough sheet onto the rack and gently stretch around the edges, pinching to hold in place. Brush the dough with 1 to 2 teaspoons of olive oil. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Attach the Vise-Grips to 1 end of the cooling rack to use as a handle. Turn a gas burner on high. Hold the rack about 2 inches above the flame, and move back and forth constantly until the bottom is golden brown, about 3 to 4 minutes. Carefully turn the dough over, brush with 1 to 2 teaspoons olive oil and season with additional salt and pepper, if desired. Cook, as before, until golden brown, an additional 2 to 3 minutes.

A Great Pizza Read – Recipes from a Pro

Recently I’ve purchased Peter Reinhart’s fabulous pizza book, American Pie, and let me tell you: best – pizza – book – ever! The book details Peter’s travels through Italy, New York, California, Chicago and other locations in search of his most favorite pizza in the whole world. The first half of the book is his tales of pizza travel. The second half of the book, however, is a giant pizza resource center wherein Peter tries to re-create all of the various pizzas he had across the world and shares his recipes and findings with you. This would be cool enough for me to pick up a copy, but then you consider that Peter is a professional baker AND recipe product developer and suddenly his collection of dough, sauce and toppings recipes seem like the Lost Arc of the Pizzanant! I guess what I’m trying to say is that Peter’s book was not only a mouthwatering good read, but also has become my #1 go-to guide for new dough and sauce recipes.

I wanted to share with you a recent recipe I made from his book, as well as some photos of the results. This dough was much different to work with than my dough that I usually make, but I got the hang of it pretty quickly, and the flavors and texture (not to mention the great big bubbles that formed out on the crown of the pizza) were well worth the learning curve. I would highly recommend you go spend $15 and pick up this great resource!

Peter Reinhart’s Neo-Neapolitan Dough

The dough to use for making New-Haven-style pizza and/or pizzas in the style of Lombardi’s, Totonno’s, or Grimaldi’s. Makes a “thin, crisp crust with airy pockets in the crown”. Slightly sticky and may be tricky to work with. Requires high-gluten flour.

Makes 4 10 ounce dough balls ( but I like to make 13.3 ounce balls)



  1. With a big metal spoon, stir together all the ingredients in a 4-quart bowl or the bowl of an electric stand mixer until combined.
  2. Fit mixer with dough hook; mix on low speed for about 4 minutes, or until all the flour gathers to form a coarse ball.
  3. Let dough rest for 5 minutes, then mix again on med-low speed for 2 more minutes, or until the dough clears the sides of the bowl and sticks just a little to the bottom.
  4. *If the dough is too soft and sticky to hold its shape, mix in more flour by the tablespoonful; if it is too stiff or dry, mix in more water by the tablespoonful.
  5. The dough should pass the windowpane test—snip off a piece of dough and gently tugging and turning it, stretching it out until it forms a paper-thin, translucent membrane somewhere near the center; if dough does not form this membrane, it probably needs another minute or two of mixing).
  6. Immediately divided the dough into 4-equal portions; round each piece into a ball and brush or rub each ball with olive oil.
  7. Place each ball inside its own zip-lock freezer bag; let the balls sit at room temperature for 15 minutes, then put them in the refrigerator overnight or freeze any pieces you will not be using the next day.
  8. The next day, remove the balls from the refrigerator 2 hours before you plan to roll them out to take the chill off.



Perfect Homemade Pizza (dot com)

I’ve recently had the good fortune to be in touch with Chef Vinny from and I just wanted to pass along his site and contact info for any of you who would like a bit more information on how to perfect that perfect pie you have been working on for so long. Vinny’s site has a few good recipes for dough, sauce, and even covers different cheeses and other ingredients. He even sells an instructional DVD where he shows you step by step how to make the perfect pie. Oh, and he is award winning – had I mentioned that?? He has won awards for best tasting pizza up here in Northern California. Quite the accomplishment! Anwho, click on over to or drop Vinny an email at and let me know what you think of his site and DVD.

I, for one, am a fan.

The Christopher Kimball Blog – Pizza Related News and More!

Hi guys,

Just wanted to post a quick note to let you know about this cool blog I just stumbled upon: The Christopher Kimball Blog. He writes directly to you from America’s Test Kitchen, which is super cool in and of itself, but his most recent post is about testing the different pizza stones available to us all. I’m going to subscribe and keep ya’ll up to date on any other pizza related research they put out, but I highly recommend checking out the whole blog. Good info!

Plotting My Next Flour Purchase – Central Milling Here I Come!

So it’s been a long while since I purchased flour, mainly because my last purchase was firect from Central Milling and in the form of two 50lb bags of flour! The other day, I finally cracked into my second 50lb bag and started thinking, what would my next order be? Since Central Milling has always been so good to me, I knew I would definitely stick with them, but as you read on further, you’ll see why I had a bit of trouble deciding. They offer SO many flours in SO many different grades and varieties, the choices are endless! I thought I would share the list with you – enjoy browsing and let me know if you have any questions. If you’d like to contact them with an Order, hit Nick up at, he’ll get it right out to you.



  • Beehive Organic Unbleached Malted All Purpose Flour
  • Artisan Bakers Craft Organic Wheat Flour
  • Artisan Old Country Organic Type 85 Wheat Flour
  • Artisan Old Country Organic Type 85 Malted Wheat Flour
  • Artisan Organic Stone Ground Type 80 Wheat Flour
  • Artisan Organic Old Country Type 70 Malted Wheat Flour
  • High Mountain Organic High Gluten Wheat Flour
  • Artisan Organic Low Ash Flour
  • Organic Unbleached Pastry Flour
  • Organic Unbleached Pastry Flour with Germ
  • Wheatland Organic Unbleached Flour
  • Organic Unbleached Wheat Flour with Germ
  • Artisan Bakers Craft PLUS Organic Wheat Flour with Organic Malted Barley Flour


  • Organic Whole Wheat Flour Fine
  • Organic Whole Wheat Hi Pro Flour Fine
  • Organic Whole Wheat Flour Medium
  • Organic Whole Wheat Flour Coarse
  • Organic Whole Wheat Pastry Flour
  • Organic Hard White Whole Wheat Flour


  • New!!  THE ONE Organic Baguette Mix
  • New!!  Organic Cracked 6 Grain Mix *special order
  • Organic White Spelt Flour
  • Organic Type 85 Spelt Flour
  • Organic Whole Spelt Flour
  • Organic White Rye Flour
  • Organic Whole Rye Flour
  • Organic Crushed Wheat / or Heavy Bran
  • Organic Crushed Rye
  • Organic Spelt Berries
  • Organic Rye Berries
  • Organic Pumpernickel Rye Meal
  • Organic Soft White Wheat Berries
  • Organic Hard White Wheat Berries
  • Organic Hard Red Winter Wheat Berries
  • Organic Dark Northern Spring Wheat Berries
  • Organic Spelt Bran *special order
  • Organic Bakers Wheat Bran
  • Organic Bulk Mill Run
  • Organic Buttermilk Pancake Mix
  • Organic 100% Whole Wheat Buttermilk Pancake Mix
  • Organic Buckwheat Pancake Mix


  • Golden West Bleached All Purpose Flour Enriched
  • Golden West Unbleached All Purpose Flour Enriched
  • Red Rose Bleached All Purpose Flour Enriched
  • Red Rose Unbleached All Purpose Flour Enriched
  • Red Rose Artisan Unbleached Malted Bread Flour
  • Red Rose Unbleached Keith’s Best Malted Bread Flour with Ascorbic Acid
  • Red Rose Electra-Light High Gluten Malted Unbleached Wheat Flour
  • Red Rose Bakers Special Type 70 Malted Wheat Flour
  • Red Rose Bleached Bakers Special Flour Enriched
  • Red Rose Unbleached Bakers Special Flour Enriched
  • Gilt Edge Bleached All Purpose Flour Enriched
  • Gilt Edge Unbleached All Purpose Flour Enriched


  • Golden West Whole Wheat Flour
  • Red Rose Whole Wheat Flour
  • Red Rose High Gluten Whole Wheat Flour
  • Wheatland Whole Wheat Flour Fine
  • Wheatland Whole Wheat Flour Medium
  • Wheatland Whole Wheat Flour Coarse


  • New!! Coarse Cracked 7 Grain Mix *special order
  • New!! Medium Cracked 9 Grain Mix *special order
  • Red Rose Crushed Wheat
  • Red Rose Crushed Rye
  • Extra Fancy Durum
  • Golden West Germade
  • Red Rose Pancake and Waffle Mix
  • Red Rose Chipped Wheat
  • Wheatland Hard Red Wheat Berries
  • Wheatland Dark Northern Spring Wheat Berries
  • Red Rose Raw Wheat Germ
  • Clean Bakers Wheat Bran
  • Bulk Mill Run

Yeast-Free Pizza Dough – Pizza for Restricted Diets

I’ve recently found it necessary to explore yeast-free pizza dough and so I’d like to offer this recipe up as a jumping off point for those celiac disease or are taking Isoniazid. I would suggest using double-acting baking powder as all the chemical leavening may just leave this dough if you let it rest for any amount of time. If you use double-acting baking powder, you’ll get an initial boost of CO2 when the powder is first incorporated into the dough, but you’ll also get a second burst of gas when you apply the heat a couple days later.

  • 2 c. bread flour
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 2/3 c. water
  • 1/4 c. vegetable oil

Mix all of the ingredients together in a bowl or your stand mixer. Mix until everything has come together and looks like a rough dough. Then stop, cover the bowl with some plastic, and let sit for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, start that stand mixer a-mixin again and mix for 5-8 minutes. Then, you guessed it, stop the mixer and re-cover it – let it rest for another 20 minutes. Lastly, place the dough in the fridge and let sit for a day or so – pull it out an hour before baking and let the dough return to room temp. Make a pizza and place it in a 550+ oven for a short amount of time.

The only thing I’m unsure about here is the rest in the fridge. Normally this would give the yeast time to develop flavor and begin to convert the dough into yeast by-product (CO2) but in this case that won’t be happening. My theory is that a day-long rest in the fridge might still be nice for the overall texture of your dough, and if it went into the fridge as a tight, tough ball of dough, the rest should give the gluten network that has formed time to relax and slacken so you can spread/toss your dough more easily. I’ll report on my findings here.

Good luck – and good eats!


I found the proportions for the ingredients listed in this recipe here. Thanks!

The Number One (#1) Secret Ingredient in Pizza Dough – You May Not Like The Answer

For a long time, I was an impatient pizza chef. After all, a recipe that required almost a week to prepare sounded ludicrous! Who could plan their eating habits that far in advance, I wondered? Well my friends, you and I have to become those exact people if we are ever to reach our lofty pizzaiolo goals. Time, after all, is the number one secret ingredient in pizza dough.

There is no one bigger ingredient in a dough recipe that will affect the flavor and depth of your dough. Brand of flour, oil or no, salt or no… all of these options are minuscule compared to the choice you make when you prepare a dough half  an hour before you bake it.

I have found this one rule to be true for almost all home pizza making: If the recipe calls for two hours of rise time in between mixing and baking, place your dough in a covered bowl, place the bowl in the fridge, and leave it there for three to five days. If the recipe calls for twelve hours of rise time, place your dough in a covered bowl, place the bowl in the fridge, and leave it there for three to five days. A long, slow, cold rise time will do wonderful things to your dough. In fact, about a day or so into the rise, pull the dough and and punch it down – then place it back in the fridge of course. This will further develop the flavor and texture (not to mention redistribute the bubbles which have formed in your dough).

So there you have it. I know, it’s kind of a bummer. As you read this article, the spark went off in your head “How about pizza tonight!” But what you need to retrain yourself to think is this, “How about pizza five days from now??”

It’s time to start paying attention to time, the secret ingredient in all pizza dough.

A Great New Use for A Shower Cap – Part II

Okay, so the craziest thing just happened to me. I arrived home to find a padded envelope sitting on my porch waiting for me. I opened up the manila sleeve and to my surprise, a fan of the blog had sent me a SET of “shower caps” which had actually been manufactured for the exact use I was using a real shower cap for! They came in all sorts of fun sizes with all sorts of fun food printed on them.

Come to find out, bowl covers are quite common! In fact, there is even a local company called Green Feet that sells them for six bucks (complete with fun fruit print). Check them out and check mine out below.  Thanks, you North-Eastern pizza fan! And for anyone else out there considering sending me pizza related presents, there’s never been a better time than now – send them my way! I won’t mind :)

A Great New Use for A Shower Cap?

Ever feel weird using plastic wrap for a bit to raise your dough, just to throw it away a bit later? Here’s what you do: take a brand new shower cap, stow it in your cupboard, and when you need to cover a bowl with plastic wrap, just pull that cap out and and strap it down on the bowl! It works like a charm and you can re-use it over and over and over again.

Pizza Sauce Tips from Jeff Varasano Himself

I feel like I’ve published a good many options here for pizza dough, so in an effort to provide you with a more in-depth pizza resource, I will be beginning to bring you sauce tips and recipes as well as any new dough information I may find. Since Jeff Varansano pretty much got me started my pizza journey, I thought I would bring you a small selection from his novelish site on his pizza process dealing with sauce specifically.

Oh! And as an aside, I noticed that Jeff has a photo with Keith Giusto from Central Milling about 3/4 of the way down his page… I told you that Central Milling flour was some good stuff! Take a tip from Jeff and I and pick up some Central Milling flour already!

Please to enjoy, sauce and tomato tips from Jeff Varasano:

  • Always buy Whole Peeled Plum Tomatoes and crush them yourself.
  • Be careful of marketing tricks like cans that say Italian ‘Style’ instead of Italian. Italian Style means nothing. It’s subjective. If I grew tomatoes in Chernobyl I could still claim they are Italian Style.
  • Similarly there’s a San Marzano ‘Brand’ which is grown in CA. I hate marketing gimmicks like that. The put the word ‘brand’ so small that you can barely read it.
  • Shake every can as you buy it. If it sounds watery, it is likely to be more bitter. Try to get cans which sound more viscous.  The sound will vary a bit by season. They try to pick and pack in just one season, but still there are seasonal differences even within the same brand.
  • If you have a local tomato supplier, try those too.
  • One time I bought a jar of tomatoes at a farmers market – no can. These were hand packed and they had no tin can taste. They were excellent but all the major suppliers use cans.  Be on the lookout for jars someday…
  • If you want to go crazy and make your own, try ‘ugly ripe’ heirloom tomatoes. The taste of these are amazing and I use these when I need whole tomatoes.
  • When I open a can I taste it. Every can is a little different. About 10% of the cans I just throw out because they are too bitter and I put too much effort in the dough to waste it on a $2 can of bad tomatoes.
  • DON’T make a sauce. That is, don’t pre-cook the tomatoes. The tomatoes will cook on the pizza.  If you cook a sauce first, it will cook again on the psizza, turning it brown and yucky.  No need to make a sauce.  Look at how overcooked many sauces are. The best places don’t do this. This is actually the one step  in this whole process that you can save yourself some time.
  • I strain the seeds. This is really optional. If you do choose to do it, follow these steps, which seem obvious now, but took me a long time to flesh out:
    • Pour the can out into a bowl
    • Cut the green/yellow stem ends off the tomatoes with your hands or a paring knife, then discard.
    • Squeeze out the seeds into the puree and then Dip the tomato into the puree. You can even cut the tomato open to get out any remaining seeds, by essentially rinsing them with the puree.  This will have all the seeds fall into the puree.
    • Put the flesh back in the can
    • At the end of this process you have a can of flesh and a bowl of watery puree and seeds. Strain this, pouring the puree back into the can.  In the strainer are then 90% of the seeds, all by themselves. Discard the seeds.
  • Now crush the tomatoes. This is one of those areas where I made a recent change for the better and it’s really helped a lot. I used to crush the tomatoes by hand. But it was always a bit chunky. Now I blend them with an  immersion mixer (“boat motor”). I cannot tell you exactly why this has made a huge improvement  in the TASTE of the tomatoes, but it has. I’ve done side by side taste tests. The tomatoes should be crushed but not pur ed. Go Easy. I have nothing against using a food processor or mill, but I will say that you should not crush by hand.
  • Tomato Rinsing: All cans have some bitterness. You need some bitterness and you don’t want to strip all of it out. But if the can is too bitter it’s not good. I have a procedure I call tomato rinsing to remove some of the bitterness. But you have to taste the can and determine for yourself if it needs it. The better brands on my list don’t.  Here’s the Tomato Rinsing procedure: Strain the tomatoes in a fine mesh strainer..  If the mesh is fine, the water will be mostly clear with very little tomato escaping. If the water escaping is very red, pour it back on top of the tomatoes and continue straining. Eventually the water will run almost completely clear.  Here’s the key. The water that comes out is completely bitter. Taste it.  What I do is pour fresh water on top of the strained tomatoes and strain them again. Taste this second batch of water.  It’s also bitter but less so. You are removing bitterness and acid without losing a drop of red tomato. Instead you are replacing this bitter water with fresh water. You can repeat this several times if you like, but once or twice is usually fine. The net result is that what is left over, which is all the red tomato solids, is sooooo sweet and yummy.
  • Here are some other things you can do to remove the bitterness. But don’t go crazy adding tons of spices and things. It’s mostly just tomatoes.
    • Add some grated Romano cheese directly into the tomatoes.  I use Locatelli Romano. Some have criticized this, but I like it.
    • A bit of sugar will also help 1/4 – 1 teaspoon.  Taste and see.
    • A pinch of salt
    • A pinch of dried oregano, crushed by hand to release the oils
    • If you are used to putting garlic in your sauce, try these steps once without it.
    • Taste and taste
  • So you are removing and then adding back water. In the end though you should have less water than you started with. The total weight is probably about 1/3 less than you started with. But the exact amount of water you remove depends on the overall temperature of the oven and the temperature differential in the oven.. There is not much time in a hot oven to evaporate the sauce, so the hotter the oven, the drier the sauce must be going in.  But if the top differential is high, the sauce will evaporate too quickly and needs to start wetter. You have to test. Surprisingly, if the sauce is too dry, it’s not as sweet. You don’t want it soupy but don’t overstrain either. This will take real practice with your oven. Sometimes after the first pie I add more water to my sauce. Again, this is another area where recent improvements have really transformed the sauce. I think that when the sauce is chunky (hand crushed) it’s harder to get the amount of water right.

100 lbs of Central Milling Organic Flour

100 lbs of Central Milling Flour
100 lbs of Central Milling Flour

So about two weeks ago, I took delivery of 100 lbs of Central Milling flour, and wow, 100 lbs is a LOT of flour! It came in two 50 lb bags: One bag of Beehive Organic Unbleached Malted AP and one bag of their Artisan Bakers Craft Organic Wheat Flour. Both flours have produced nothing but amazing results so far, with only one negative side effect: Where does one store a hundred damn pounds of anything in one’s little apartment kitchen?? In the end, I got a great 12 qt glass storage container to store a usable amount on the counter, and I shoved the rest in next to the fridge to use as a refill as my container gets low. I’m happy to have my new favorite flour so proudly on display, and my wife is happy to have those huge sandbag-esque bags of flour out of the middle of the kitchen! It’s a win-win!

So I know, if you read this blog with any regularity, that you know I am all gaga about Central Milling flour. They seem to have a great selection of specialty flours and they are semi local to me so I can pick and choose new flours each time I get a hold of them. I also wanted to let you know that I’ve been making pizzas recently with just the Beehive Organic AP flour

A Basil Extravaganza!
A Basil Extravaganza!

(see Basil Pizza Photo) and I am just so surprised at how well the flour/dough sets its gluten structure up. Because it’s not a bread flour per-se, the dough isn’t rubbery or hard to stretch. But to my surprise, this simple AP flour also holds up really well  to the bubbles and stretching produced by the CO2 from the yeast. It seems to be a perfect blend of a decently high gluten network with the soft, easy to toss feeling you may be looking for in your dough. Just thought you’d like to know WHY I like this flour so much :)

Anyhow, enjoy the photos, enjoy laughing at me and my inappropriately large bags of flour, and most importantly, go out and enjoy making some of the best pizza of your life for yourself tonight, would ya? If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to comment – I’ll get right back to you with some hopefully helpful tips :)

Happy baking!


Pizza Stone Resources

Whether you are looking for square, round, thick, or even made for BBQs, here is a good list of pizza stones you may want to check out.

Baking Stone, 14 x 16 x 7/8 in Thick, No Lead Fire Brick Material – CordieriteLarger Image

Baking Stone, 14 x 16 x 7/8 in Thick, No Lead Fire Brick Material – Cordierite. Perfect for snall restaurants and bars. Ideal where hearth baking is not possible. Keeps pizzas warm in heated display cases. Made of Corderite; a no lead fire brick material. FDA approved for oven use. Perfect thickness and porosity for heat retention.

Old Stone Oven Pizza Grill Stone Shaped For Weber BBQ GrillOld Stone Oven Pizza Grill Stone Shaped For Weber BBQ Grill 4471

Give a delicate crispy, restaurant-quality crust to any pizza, focaccia or bread on your backyard Weber grill using this Old Stone Oven™ Pizza Stone. These were the first baking stones introduced in 1973 and are still considered the best by pizza experts, including Cook’s Illustrated Magazine (October, 2003) where they ranked #1.

Kitchen Supply Company’s Pizza Grill Stone can be used to line your Weber barbecue grill for a true stone hearth effect without the weight of one heavy stone. Brown box includes a recipe booklet.

Kitchen Supply Old Stone Oven Baking Tiles, Set of 6Kitchen Supply Old Stone Oven Baking Tiles, Set of 6

Over 25 years ago the Old Stone Oven Company first introduced the original baking stone for home use, designed by international pizza expert, Pasquale Bruno. It is still the best on the market. It has a porosity and heat retention that is unmatched for giving a delicate crispy, restaurant-quality crust to any pizza, focaccia or bread in a standard home oven. Stone is a pure ceramic product made of clays fired at over 2000-degrees Fahrenheit. Set of 6 Tiles, 6-inch by 6-inch each. Use tiles individually or together for just the right size for you recipe. Can be used in the Oven, Toaster Ovens or can also be used in the microwave by preheating for 5 minutes. Perfect for recrisping last night’s pizza, baking frozen pizza slices or made-from-scratch mini-pizzas. Complete instructions and recipes are included. Made in the USA.

Old Stone Oven 16″ Round Pizza StoneOld Stone Oven Pizza Stone Round

Our Old Stone Oven 16″ Round Pizza Stone is a great choice for making outstanding pizza with a crispy crust. Old Stone Oven Pizza Stones are also great for evenly baking breads, rolls, and even some cookies.

The Official Chuck E. Cheese's Pizza Instructional Video – No Really!

This video is bizarre, but manages to have some interesting information.

Helpful Pizza Dough Spreading and Tossing Videos

I’ve had a couple people ask me for tips on how to properly spread and toss their pizza dough. I always try to explain, but words only go so far. In response to the inadequacy of words, I’ve collected a few videos I think could help be helpful. Check them out and let me know if they help! I know I picked up a tip or two from these guys.


This first video demonstrates how to easily stretch your dough to your desired thickness. It’s nice because he demonstrates two techniques, giving you the option to toss your pie in the air or just do it all on the counter.

This video rocks because he covers stretching on the table, using a peel, as well as rolling dough for thick and thin crusts.

This video concentrates entirely on tossing, but covers it very thoroughly!

This one is cool because it comes from the California Culinary Academy. It’s super instructional and is complete with a dorky soundtrack!

And of course, what would a post about video be without my OWN instructional video. Ok, it doesn’t talk about HOW to toss dough, but it does involve tossing :) It walks you through making the dough, toping the pizza, and cooking it up.
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