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  1. Figured I’d share a before and after of one of my early pizza cooks. Basic pizza dough receipe at around 500 for 7 minutes or so.
  2. Last night was my first attempt at pizza on my new Pit Boss. All I can really say is: It was amazing!!!! So here we go: Set-up: Pit Boss factory deflector legs down Both racks installed Pampered chef pizza stone on top rack 550 F lower vent: one mark from wide open (3/4 open) Top vent: wide open So I picked up fresh dough from grocery store and spent a fortune at the anti-pasta bar on sun-dried tomatoes, artichoke, olives. etc... Prepped my first pizza with keeping dough really thin on my wooden pizza peel. With my Kamado cruising at 550F I sprinkled some corn meal on pizza stone and threw the pizza on. Since this was my first pizza, I decided to use a timer to get a feel for things. At the 5 minute mark I took a peak and it was almost there. Closed the lid and decided in an attempt to raise the deck temperature to finish off the top of pizza, I closed the top vent to just slighter below 1 for an additional minute or 2 and the pizza top finished off perfectly. It was such a success in my house I ended up making 2 more pizzas. For those wondering about the corn meal, well I've been doing this for years. It serves a couple purposes; it creates a small layer between stone. So if you have any hot-spots the Pizza is easy to spin around. It also reduces the chance of burning the bottom of pizza in the event your too hot or leave it too long. Try it out! Hope you enjoy the pictures.
  3. I have read the Ken Forkish "The Elements of Pizza" book cover to cover and I'm ready to try my second pizza from his techniques. I have started rebuilding a sourdough starter with his technique that I'll use next week sometime to make a pizza but this project is starting today with the 48-72 Hour Biga Pizza Dough recipe on page 120 of the book. A "Biga" is another term for a preferment but this preferment is done with commercial yeast. The preferment process is a simple procedure where you take some of your flour and water from the overall recipe and add a tiny bit of yeast and let that 'ferment' for a period of time in which the yeast multiplies and builds flavor character. When the preferment is done (12-14 hours in this case) you add the rest of your flour, water, and salt to the Biga and mix your dough. I will be modifying the recipe in the book because the book recipes are tailored for cooking in a home oven at 500-550 degrees. Most of the doughs in the book are made at 70% hydration which is perfect for that temperature range. I plan to cook these on my Blackstone oven at a much higher temp so I will be reducing the hydration of this dough to 60%. This recipe makes enough dough for 3 pizzas of approximately 12" in diameter. 48 hours before you plan to cook your pizza: Mix the Biga: 140 grams 95°F Water 250 grams flour (preferably 00) .2 grams yeast If you can't weigh .2 grams, this is approximately 1/5 of 1/4 teaspoon. So divide 1/4 tsp into 5 parts and one of those parts is how much you need for this Place the yeast in the water and give it a gentle stir and let the yeast dissolve for a minute or two. Add the flour and mix by hand until all the flour is incorporated and there is no dry flour left. Stretch and fold the dough several times and then place in a 6 quart container with a lid and let sit at room temperature for 12-14 hours. The Biga should triple in size and be visibly gassy. 8pm Wednesday Evening: 250 grams of Antimo Caputo 00 Pizzaria Flour 0.2 grams active dry yeast 140 grams 95°F water 6-quart Cambro... add the water and swirl the yeast in it until it's fully dissolved... Dump in the flour... Work the flour by hand to get the flour and water completely incorporated... folded and stretched several times during the process... Put the lid on the container and will let this sit for 12-13 hours before moving on to the next stage. For those interested in the time factor, it took about 10 minutes to weigh out my ingredients and get to the point of letting this sit... After about 12 hours of rest we have this... This biga has risen and gassed up nicely... Time to move on to the rest of the dough... Another 250g of 00 flour... 13g of fine sea salt... 160g of 95°F water in the dough tub... Add the salt to the water in the tub and swirl until it's dissolved... Add the 250g flour... Mix by hand until you have a unified dough mass... Add the biga... Wet your hands to keep the dough from sticking and combine the two dough masses by squishing them together for several minutes to make sure they are thoroughly incorporated. Cover and let rest for 20 minutes. After it has rested covered for 20 minutes, turn it back out onto a lightly floured work surface... Knead by hand for about 30 seconds and then form into a dough ball... At this point, you can clean your tub or switch to a clean tub... lightly oil the tub... Place the dough ball in the tub seam side down and cover with a lid and let rest for another 45 minutes. After 45 minutes, remove the dough to a floured surface and dust it lightly with flour... I used my bench knife to segment the dough into three equal parts... I then stretched/folded each segment several times and then formed into a dough ball... I covered this with plastic wrap and it will now sit on the counter for two hours... At the end of the two hours, this will go into the fridge where it will stay until friday evening when I'm ready to make the pizzas. This will be about 32 hours away. I will remove the dough from the fridge 90 minutes before I am ready to start making the pizza to let it come to room temp. Here are the final photos: These were cooked on the Blackstone oven at 900°F - These were my best tasting pizzas to date. This crust is seriously delicious. I can't wait to try the same recipe using the sourdough starter. Hopefully I'll get to try that one in a couple weeks. The taste is perfect. My shortcoming now is my ability to properly stretch and shape the dough into a proper pizza crust. I need some practice with that and will keep working on it. I may make a double batch of this dough next week and just use it to practice shaping crusts...
  4. This weekend I tested making Butter chicken recipe from Milk Street Book, ‘Fast and Slow’ by Christopher Kimball. Only change I made was use roasted garlic. I made the Naan Dough with Poolish method. I used a portion of Naan dough to make a Butter Chicken pizza. Here are the pictures of the final result, Both where very delicious.
  5. Most failed pizza cooks are for the same reason when it comes to kamados and blackstone ovens. There is a relationship between cooking temperatures and your dough recipes that must be understood. Rule #1 - stay away from store-bought pizza dough. Those doughs are designed for cooking in your kitchen oven at lower temperatures. They have sugars and oils that will scorch easily at the temperatures you are going to see on your Kamado and the Blackstone oven. Rule #2 - Great pizza takes some patience to make. Make your dough from scratch and the only ingredients that should go in it until you have your process down pat are flour, water, salt, and yeast. Rule #3 - Higher cooking temperature (700+) = lower hydration dough - Lower cooking temperatures (500-600) = higher hydration doughs (see recipes below) You need to understand baker's percentages for this process. Most pizza doughs are between 60 and 70 percent hydration. This means that for every kilogram of flour in the recipe, there will be 600 to 700 grams of water, depending on your recipe. If you are cooking on a blackstone oven at 800 degrees or higher, you should have a dough that is about 60% hydration. These pizzas are going to cook very quickly. They should not have an overabundance of toppings in order to have the toppings AND the crust properly cooked. If you are cooking on a Kamado at 500-600 degrees, you should have a dough that is about 70% hydration. The higher hydration allows you to cook longer without scorching the crust. You can also cook on the Blackstone at these temperatures using 70% hydration doughs as well. Now I will probably get chastised for saying this but it needs to be said.... The Kamado ain't the greatest tool in the shed for baking pizzas. The kamado can work very well for pizza, but there are some issues that make it difficult to tame sometimes. The problem in the kamado environment is that the pizza stone can get too hot for the temperature in the dome. If stone is 700+ degrees and the temp in the dome is 500 or less, it can create some issues with burning crusts before the toppings are done. The kamado loses a LOT of dome heat when you open the lid to put the pizza on. By nature, the ceramic kamado grills recover that lost heat quickly but in the case of a super hot pizza cook they may not recover it quickly enough. We are looking at pizza cook times here that are just a few minutes long. Third party products like the Pizza Porta can help with this. There are other add-ons that allow you to have a pizza stone under and over the pizza that help as well. At any rate, if you plan to master pizza on the kamado, my recommendation is to do it at lower temps where the stone and the dome temps are in the 550 degree range and use 70% hydration ( or possibly higher in some cases) dough recipes. Setting up the kamado for proper pizza cooking is important also. You need your heat deflector at the top level... it can be sitting on your cooking grate. The pizza stone should be on top of the heat deflector with a gap between them that can be created with anything fire proof that will give you at least a half inch gap between the heat deflector and the pizza stone. This process will help you keep the pizza stone from overheating. The fire in your firebox is raging hot if your dome temperature is 500+ degrees. This gap helps keep the temp of the pizza stone under control. Learning to get the pizza on the stone quickly and without fully opening the dome lid is also a beneficial trick to learn. SUPER TIP: When learning to make great pizza at home, start out cooking them in your home oven rather than a kamado or other pizza oven. This will give you the opportunity to learn the pizza making process with one less variable in the loop. Your home oven may not be your favorite choice of tools for cooking a pizza, but I can tell you that it will cook at a consistent and easily reproduced temperature setting. When you master a particular pizza recipe in your home oven give it a try in the kamado! As I have recommended to many before... go buy this book: The Elements of Pizza This book teaches you a LOT about the art of making great pizza. I also recently picked up this book: The Pizza Bible The philosophies in these two books are a little different but the are both beneficial books if you wanna make great pizza at home. Some dough recipes to get you started: 60% and 70% Hydration Simple Pizza Dough (with multiple techniques for flavor enhancement) : This is enough dough for three 11-12" pizzas... 500 grams Flour (all purpose flour or 00 italian style flour) = 100% 350 grams water @ 90-95 degrees = 70% (300 grams if making 60% dough) 13 grams fine sea salt = 2.6% Instant dried yeast (see below for quantities based on your technique) QUICK DOUGH: In a large mixing bowl, dissolve 2 teaspoons of yeast in the warm water. Add the flour and salt and mix by hand until the flour is completely incorporated and no dry flour remains. Cover the bowl and let rest for 20 minutes. Remove the dough to a floured surface and divide into three equal parts. Shape each part into a dough ball with a tight skin across the top. Place the dough balls on plates and cover with plastic wrap. Let rise at room temperature for 2-3 hours or until at least doubled in size. After the dough has risen, shape the dough balls into a pizza crust and top with whatever you like, remembering that less is more on a pizza like this Cook this on a preheated pizza stone in your grill or oven at 500-550 degrees until done. ONE TO TWO DAY DOUGH: Change the yeast quantity to 1.5 grams (3/4 of 1/2 teaspoon) This process works the EXACT same was as above with a minor change. When you form your dough balls and put them on plates with plastic wrap covering them, place them in the refrigerator for 24 to 48 hours. After you remove them from the fridge, let them sit out at room temperature for four hours before shaping into pizza crusts. This slower cold ferment process will improve the flavor of your pizza crust. If you don't use all of your dough balls, you can vacuum seal them and put them in the freezer after the ferment process. When you are ready to use them remove from the freezer and let them come to room temperature on the counter for 5-6 hours before forming your pizza crust.
  6. Did this on the dojoe, between 550°-600°. I used the Forkish Saturday recipe, but popped it in the fridge for 26 hours after the 2 hour bulk ferment, before dividing and shaping. Fantastic crispy outside, chewy yet pillowy inside. Buffalo Mozz and salami. So good.
  7. Pizza tasted very good. I used my Joe Jr. to Roast the Chicken Reshmi Kebabs and used my vision Classic B to bake the individual pizza. For the cheese I used paneer cheese, extra old cheddar and pizza mozzarella. The sauce for pizza was the serving sauce for Chicken Reshmi Kebabs. This pizza will now be part of my pizza repertoire.
  8. Saturday pizza has become a regular thing at our house, per my son’s request. I had a good thing going with the KJ Classic and a 15” stone setup, down to a science. But a few weeks ago decided to change it up and try pizzas on the Akorn Jr, half to use less charcoal on the high temp and half cause I had a steel I’d never used. And half just for the challenge....okay that’s three halves. But I digress....first couple weeks went okay, a little learning curve with the AkJ getting to temp MUCH faster and the possibility of overshooting temp, coupled with the steel getting and retaining heat much easier than the stone. Last weekend I burnt the crap out of the bottom of three of four pies (finally got it to cool down a bit by the last one...should have given more time after I charred the first). Having to wait a week for redemption is killing me, but I ordered the canning rack I’ve seen many use on here for the Junior setup, so fingers crossed tonight goes better. And I’ll definitely be watching my temps and shooting the steel with an IR thermometer. I’m hoping more separation of the steel and deflector in addition to getting the stew up higher in the dome makes the difference.
  9. hey guys, Ive had a few pizza sessions on my kj classic 2. Although the last time i warped the steel firebox ring so not sure that should count as successful! I thought it aould be good to ask a kj specific question. My set up is deflectors on the grill in top position. Spacers on top of that with pizza stone then on top. So my question/s is when doing high heat cooks: 1. How long do u let the kj heat sink for? I have just opened the vents and let it ride. When up to 650/700 put pizzas on. 2. Where do people set their vents? How open is the bottom and top? As above i nlrmally just open them up and stick the pizza on at above the 650/700 mark. 3. How long should this sort of temp last or is safe for the kj? If i had a pizza party how long could this keep up for eg. Any advice or thoughts is welcome? Cheers Nathan
  10. Best one to date. Pictures of just taken off the grill and then added some arugula and sprinkle of EVOO and pecorino romano.
  11. I have an Akorn. I cook pizza like other people. Place deflector on the grill grate, put stone on top of it and make sure there is around 1-2 cm gap between them. I am still new in cooking pizza. After 6 times tries, I want to share some idea. 1. The temp is between 300-350°C is all right. When someone say, the best temp is 300, whereas the other says 350. They may not consider the stone temp. See below. 2. If you just cook one pizza, that's fine. Tonight I cook 4 pizzas for my family. I see a problem, when I cook the first pizza, the kamado reaches 300°C, in theory, it is a good temp to cook, but the base is white, the second is perfect, the base is lightly smoke, the third one is terrible, the base is burned. The fourth one I close both vents, it still in between 300-350. the base still burns, but not as heavier as the third one. Because the stone's temp doesn't climb as fast as kamado's temp, the base cooking is faster than the topping cooking, that's why the first base is undercook and the last 2 are overcook. I make a dough with 500 grams flour and split into 4 pizzas. I cook them one by one. To next time when kamado reaches 300°C I will wait a couple of minutes until the stone temp goes up. For the rest of the pizza, I may check the base during the cooking, once the base looks perfect but the top doesn't, I will place something flat like cast iron crepe pan in between stone and pizza until the pizza fully cooked. Does anyone cook more than 1 pizza and have the same problem? What's your solution?
  12. Have been busy with my other toy projects so the pellet Akorn has been cold for a while. Today kids want to eat pizza so I fired up the pellets akorn. It heats up to 500+ degrees in less than 10 min and the pizza was perfect. I fitted a WiFi PID controller and was going to tweak the algorithm but...too many projects! Right now the temperature overshoots 50-80 degrees if set below 300 degrees, but gets better as it goes higher. Anyway here is the pizza and the good looking grill haha.
  13. Decided to fire up the KJ for my first pizza cook last night. We had a bad stretch of storms come through and were under a tornado watch...but I was hungry so we made it happen Made my own crust using John's recipe. Toppings consisted of sausage, banana peppers, spinach and a honey drizzle once I took it off the grill. Decided to label this one "Sweet Heat." Had some trouble getting the KJ up to 900 but seemed to work fine at 750. Overall, it was really good. Can't wait for our next pizza night!
  14. On New Year’s Eve we had our friends over for dinner. They were getting up early to go to the Rose Parade so the evening ended early but we still had a great time. I made 2 pizzas. The first was a Hawaiian Pizza with red onion, black olives, Canadian bacon and pineapple. The second was a Meat Lover’s Pizza with red onion, black olives, peperoni and Italian sausage. Both were delicious but I have to say the Meat Lovers was my favorite. Thanks for looking.
  15. 300℃ and 10 minutes, the skills is how to put the pizza upper on the paddle :))
  16. While visiting Dallas, I discovered an awesome pizza place called Cane Rosso. We had a Honey Bastard Pizza with homemade mozzarella, honey habanero, prosciutto crudo and bacon marmalade. I've scoured the web for instructions to make myself. Does anyone have a recipe to share?
  17. I got a bonus at work (a lot more than I expected, woot!) and I ordered me a Baking Steel. It is about 1/4" thick plate steel, and it is supposed to be great for making pizza. Tonight I put it to the test. Grill: Kamado Joe Classic III Charcoal: Lazzari Fuel Lump Mesquite (I used to use this when I was a professional chef, cooks clean and HOT) Dough: Ken Forbish's Overnight Pizza, from Flour, Water, Salt and Yeast. Sauce: fresh Maranzano tomatoes, some EVOO, with salt, pepper, and some basil and oregano. Topping - Pizza 1: Whole Milk Mozz, Sausage and Pepperoni Topping - Pizza 2: Buffalo Mozz, Proscuitto Cook temp 650F The first pizza burnt a bit on the bottom. The steel cooks hotter than a pizza stone, so I am chastised. As a pro, I used to cook in a pizza oven at 625, but it was a standard pizza oven with a refractory brick baking surface. Not ruined, but not perfect. The second pizza was perfect. After a minute or two on the grill, I added a pizza pan under it to prevent the heat of the steel burning the bottom. Both pizza's: The crust was chewy, with great open crumb. Cheese melty and delicious, and awesome. Dinner: Success.
  18. I have done NY style crusts successfully recently but really wanted to try my hand at achieving a Neapolitan style pizza. I used the recipe found at https://amazingribs.com/tested-recipes/pizza-and-flatbread-recipes/neapolitan-style-pizza-dough-recipe However, I did deviate a bit as I don’t have a scale and couldn’t measure by weight. I also used White Lily bread flour as I couldn’t track down any “00” here locally. 10” stone + 1” ceramic spacers (3) atop the KJ deflector. KJ big block and Togo premium as full as I could get it safely. The recipe calls all’s for a surface temp of 600° and that’s most likely accurate. My first pie was a bit over cooked but still good at a surface temp of around 650°. After getting the temp down closer to 600°, they did much better. I did a Canadian bacon/shredded Italian cheese mix for my two boys, a traditional mozzarella/basil for me, and a pesto/goat cheese for my wife. Everybody was happy. Anyway, here they are: not everything went to plan though... This one didn’t cooperate coming coming off the peel.. so so I got an undercooked loaf of bread. :D
  19. I’ve made this pizza at least 10 times as it is my favorite. This morning I made up some pizza dough. Around 3:00 I prepped my kamado for pizza and lite it up to preheat. Around 3:30 I brought out my dough and all my ingredients. I applied a thin layer of BBQ sauce and some red onion. Then some red bell pepper and cilantro. Then some chicken breast I’d mixed up with some BBQ sauce and finally, the cheese. Placed it on the pizza stone in the kamado for approximately 8 minutes at 400 degrees. Here’s the result. As always, it was delicious. Thanks for looking
  20. Hi everyone, another pizza cook on the DoJoe. This time i back hydration down to 65%. I made a mistake with the yeast, added to little (.03% vs .3%) and didn’t compensate with more time on the 1st rise. Ended up over proofing the dough on the second rise. so it was a little flabby to work with. Still not bad, still tasted pretty good. Dojoe got to 550, pies took about 8 minutes (cooked 3) Im going to try to bring it up to 650 next time, get more spring in the crust and cut the time down a bit.
  21. Below are the results of my first cook on the DoJoe. Did two pies, the dough was the Ken Forkish 24 hr dough. No real modifications except i combined the initial dough in the food processor. The grill toped out at about 575. 8 min cooks. 1 rotation half way. Lessons learned: I used some leftover charcoal (maybe 1/4 basket) from a previous cook. Going to try to ramp the heat to 650 by using all new lump. I also lit in a single spot from below like i normally do using a couple of KJ starter cubes. I think next time im going to try to light in 3 spots up top. Also going to back the hydration down to 65% to try and get some more lift in the crust. No undercarriage pics. That’s my bad. If anyone has any suggestions would love to hear them. Happy to answer any questions. Not a bad first cook overall, but more to be desired.
  22. Hi All, has anyone used a 1/4 piece of steel as their top stone. If you have how did it go? Im wondering if it would help the undercarriage cook faster. Similar to this: https://shop.bakingsteel.com/collections/steels/products/baking-steel-round Sorry if it’s been covered, I tried doing a search but didn’t have much luck.
  23. Earlier this year I bought camp chef explorer 2 from Cabela’s when they had a good sale. I also bought the Camp Chef italia Artesian pizza oven 60 accessory. I have practiced using the pizza accessory the past 2 months making pizza on it, to understand how to use it effectively to get my desired look. I wanted a portable option for making pizza while going car camping. On a cold day with high winds I made some calzones and I struggled to keep temperature over 350F in high winds with single degrees C temperature while keeping setting of burner at medium. I didn’t take any pictures because although the calzones tasted good, I didn’t have the colour on top that I wanted, Yesterday was also single temp C temperatures but this time no wind, I was able to use same settings and maintain 600F temperature. The Pizza was hit at the lake with my friends. Photos I have attached are from tonight’s run. Today one of my sons requested pork lovers sourdough pizza. I used fried up medium Italian sausage, chopped up Black Forest ham and chopped upApple smoked Bacon which I had crisped up. The cheese I used was extra old cheddar cheese with my homemade crushed tomato pizza sauce. It turned out as good combination. I would highly recommend the camp chef oven with the pizza accessory. It is a nice option if you like pizza. I still have to try planked fish on it. I recommend practicing with it to understand how to get results you desire for pizza before taking it camping. One of the things I need to do to get cheese browned was after bottom of pie done, that I had to lift pie up close to dome for a couple of minutes. I never had to do this in my kamado. Glad I now have pizza option for car camping and that I practiced using it to understand how to be successful. Here are some pictures from tonight pizza.
  24. I have a Louisiana grills K24 and I am not sure if I can cook pizza directly on the heat deflector or need a separate pizza stone. Also interested to know which side of the deflector is up for normal grilling. Thanks!
  25. Tried out a new recipe for dough this weekend that said it should be spread on a cold stone well covered in oil so we decided to give it a try when hosting a family over for lunch what we ended up making was BBQ pulled pizza lol as the crust became so attached to the stone there was no getting them off at least up to this point they looked good ... tell me I’m not alone with big fails lol
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