Daring Bakers Toss Dough!! Pizza Time

by Holly on October 29, 2008

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For the very first time, the Daring Bakers have taken on the challenge of making pizza! Specifically, “Pizza Napoletana” from Peter Reinhart’s “The Bread Baker’s Apprentice” which Rosa, of Rosa’s Yummy Yums, says “yields a beautifully tasty, thin, crispy, yet chewy pizza crust” – and it did! By the way, did you know that Mr. Reinhart has a blog?? Probably, but I didn’t! Now I do. How fun!

Anyway, I have wanted to try making this kind of pizza crust ever since there was an extensive article in one of my copy of Cuisine at Home several years ago. The longer fermenting period and the idea that I could toss pizza at home was too fun. For some reason though I just always never found the time. Now I don’t know why. The actual ‘active’ time that this recipe takes is so minimal. I think the problem for me is that when it comes to meals I haven’t always been very good at planning ahead. Now, I am working at that more, and with the nudge from the DB challenge – the time of the tossing of dough in our house had finally arrived! I can’t wait to see how the other Daring Bakers fared with tossing their dough.

As part of the challenge we were given the task of providing a photograph of our dough tossing experience and were challenged to try it with at least three of the dough balls. Well, I was determined to try it so I actually tossed all of them (especially since we didn’t get much lift-off until the third round). It will be really fun to practise my technique and get better at this. My five year old thought it was the coolest thing he had seen me do in a long time. We usually make homemade pizza a couple of times a month so it would be really fun to incorporate this tradition into our routine.

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After two not so good attempts at tossing the dough – it just stretched over my knuckles – I finally got my third dough ball into the right texture to give it a few tosses. It was a kind of giddy feeling and experience.

The only piece of specialty equipment I didn’t already have was a pizza peel. I have wanted to get one for a long time, but just never have. I thought about trying to get one this time, but they were almost $30 and that just wasn’t happening. So, I spent $1.50 instead on a nice, rectangular, clean piece of cardboard – a big sheet cake board. It worked perfectly. I just set the parchment onto the cake board and put the cornmeal on the parchment. I would still like to have a peel, but in the meantime, this works just fine.

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For our toppings we didn’t really get creative, because, well, this is what my son likes and it was just the two of us – cheese and pepperoni (aside from our usual bbq chicken and bacon topping) and this was a quick to put together dinner the other night. I did try to be a little creative though and I made my own ‘stuffed crust’ pizza. I used some pieces of string cheese, pulled into about three pieces so they weren’t super thick, and wrapped them in the edge of the crust (sorry, no pictures of the how-to). It turned out really good and helped solve the problem for those who don’t always like the crust edges (I do, but the five year old doesn’t).

Thanks as always to Lis and Ivvone for creating this dynamic group and letting us all be a part of it. I know I don’t get around to comment much, but I am seeing how you did and it is alot of fun! Anyway, I hope everyone else had as much fun as I did this month! Thanks to Rosa for a great challenge – you can find the recipe and directions for your own toss worthy dough on Rosa’s blog and of course in Peter Reinhart’s “The Bread Baker’s Apprentice”!

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{ 26 comments… read them below or add one }

Manggy October 29, 2008 at 7:29 am

Niiiice! I find it so adorable that you did the stuffed-crust thing (okay, maybe I’m not licensed to say that cos I’m younger, but it IS!); I am sure Aiden was extremely happy! I know I sure would be to be on the receiving end of that pizza! (I’ll bring the veggies, lol.)

I got my peel in California for $10. You could also use a rimless baking (cookie) sheet 🙂

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Mary October 29, 2008 at 7:40 am

I love your stuffed crust idea.

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Cristine October 29, 2008 at 8:34 am

I will have to try the stuffed crust next time! Looks yummy! Wasn’t this such a fun challenge?

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FoodieFroggy October 29, 2008 at 9:20 am

Stuffed crust ?!! Incredible ! Great challenge !

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Isabelle October 29, 2008 at 12:04 pm

beau travail 🙂 c’est super réussi !

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Mary October 29, 2008 at 12:53 pm

Stuffed crust! Aren’t you fancy! It looks really delicious!

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Di October 29, 2008 at 1:48 pm

Your pizza looks delicious! I love the stuffed crust idea–I bet my 5yo would really enjoy it. I usually stretch my dough, but I didn’t get quite to the point of tossing it. Maybe I need more practice.

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Lori October 29, 2008 at 1:51 pm

Love that first shot of the thin crust!

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~Amber~ October 29, 2008 at 2:03 pm

Your pizza looks amazing! Stuffed crust is like heaven. Excellent job with the challenge.

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The Bentley Family October 29, 2008 at 2:46 pm

That looks awesome Holly! Is there anything you can’t do! I would never have thought of using string cheese for the stuffed crust. You are so creative! You will have to teach me how to make this one. I’ll add it to my list! =)

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Gretchen Noelle October 29, 2008 at 2:57 pm

Great idea to roll the string cheese right into the crust. Perfect! Your pizza turned out lovely!

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jen October 29, 2008 at 5:47 pm

love the idea with cardboard and parchment paper. I too don’t want to dish out all that cold hard cash for a pizza wheel/stone yet. I just used my jelly pans.

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Tammy October 29, 2008 at 11:28 pm

great tossing! and I love the look of that stuffed crust!!

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Heather B October 30, 2008 at 1:13 am

I love stuffed crust! Great job on your pizza! Looks delicious!

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Erin October 30, 2008 at 1:56 am

This looks great! I love the stuffed crust idea!

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Shari@Whisk: a food blog October 30, 2008 at 2:06 am

I love your idea of using just plain old clean cardboard as a pizza peel! Genius!

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steph- whisk/spoon October 30, 2008 at 3:34 am

ohh…stuffed crust. my husband wishes he’d married you instead. 🙂

your dough looks great–nice and puffy!

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Holly October 30, 2008 at 11:42 am

Oh my god, stuffed crust! I’m so trying that with the last piece of dough that’s parked in my freezer!

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Lynnylu October 30, 2008 at 12:24 pm

Very innovative-stuffed crust pizza. Looks great!

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Engineer Baker October 30, 2008 at 1:08 pm

Ooo, stuffed crust. Fabulous. Kudos on actually tossing – mine all stretched like crazy!

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Allergy Mom October 30, 2008 at 5:19 pm

I’m so jealous of your stuffed crust! (Can’t do that at my house.) Your pizza looks classic.

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Fuji Mama October 30, 2008 at 8:59 pm

Stuffed crust, oh yum! Can’t tell me hubby about that one or else he’ll be jealous that I didn’t do it with ours!

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Deborah October 31, 2008 at 10:30 pm

Oooh, I love the stuffed crust!! I’m a crust person myself, but my husband isn’t, so I always end up eating all of the crust!

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Clumbsy Cookie November 1, 2008 at 5:02 pm

Stuffed crust sounds like heaven to me!

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TeaLady November 2, 2008 at 10:42 pm

Phenomenal Pizza Phemom. And stuffed crust. Wowie! Glad you tossed this recipe. HeeHee!! Really, great job on this one.

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Jenny November 7, 2008 at 12:30 pm

Stffed crust is a great idea!

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