Six hacks for perfect homemade pizza
Before your next attempt at the perfect homemade pizza, check out these six homemade pizza hacks that require no fancy gadgets or complicated dough recipes.
1. Thin crust
Use a large flour tortilla. When heated, tortillas crisp up perfectly and hold up to toppings much better than a dough you stretch thin (and usually tear).
2. Thick, chewy crust
Bypass the refrigerated pizza dough and go straight for the frozen bread dough. It’s heftier, chewier, and once it’s defrosted, it’s simple to work with. Roll it flat to about a 1 -2 centimetre thickness; it will puff up more during the baking time.
3. Cast iron skillet
The best tool for making a perfect homemade pizza is a cast iron skillet. Why? You can heat the bottom of your crust on the stove top, and finish the top in the broiler, giving you that high-heat pizza oven taste in a conventional oven.
4. Pizza sauce
The perfect pizza sauce? An inexpensive can of crushed tomatoes. Chances are, the best pizza you’ve ever eaten had nothing but tomato in its sauce. Got fresh tomatoes? Blanch, peel and seed, and toss them into the blender for the ultimate fresh sauce. If you like herbs, add them before topping with cheese. Fresh basil is especially tasty.
If you’re going to splurge on anything, let it be the cheese. Top your sauce with fresh mozzarella sliced thin, and you’ll never go back to shredded.
6. Toppings and more
A perfect pizza doesn’t need a lot of toppings, but if you do want to dress it up, make sure the meats are fully cooked before using them (cured meats like pepperoni and ham don’t need to be pre-cooked), and saute mushrooms, peppers and onions just enough to pull out some of the juices, so you don’t wind up with soggy slices.
Put your tortilla or rolled-out bread dough in a cast iron skillet and heat over low heat while you spoon on a layer of crushed tomatoes, herbs if desired, and top it with fresh mozzarella (make sure everything is prepped — more than a couple of minutes on the stove top and the crust may burn). If you’re using tortillas, move the pan straight into the broiler for about three to four minutes, until the cheese melts and starts to brown. If using bread dough, stick it in the oven at 450 degrees for about 20 minutes, then finish under the broiler for one to two minutes.