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Pizza questions

Mayberry SmokerMayberry Smoker Posts: 64
edited 2:54AM in EggHead Forum
Going to fix pizza's for the first time Fri. night and have a couple of questions.
1. Going to make my dough from a recipe I got off here, in the recipe it says to let it proof, what does this mean, it also says to put it in the ice box for 4 hrs or more what's the purpose of this.
2. I think I'm going to use parchment paper since this is my first time and that seems to be easier since I don't have a pizza peel, will there be any difference in the crust from parchment paper or no parchment paper.
3.How will I tell when the pizza is done, by color ?
4. At 450 deg roughly how long will it take.
5. When putting the second pizza on I think I read somewhere on here to wipe down pizza stone with a wet rag is this right.
Thanks for the help.


  • Mayberry Smoker,[p]1. Well, I let my dough puff up to twice the volume of its initial size at standard room temperature, like the recipe link below. When you re-pinch it and place in icebox over night, it helps “build” the dough. Just do it. If you actually "proof" the dough in a high humidity 100F place, you'll get more of a chewy crust with a crisp bottom. I do not do this step any more. It’s a pain in the a$$ and I don’t think it’s worth the effort.[p]2. I use the set up detailed in the below link.[p]3. Yes, look at the crust on the bottom of the pie and the toppings. There are several styles of pizza and you need to decide what you like. Recipies, temps and times vary, so be aware. For an example of an "American" style pie, follow the link below.[p]4. I cook my recipe at about 525 for about 8 to 14 minutes. More toppings add to the time.[p]5. Yes, that's what I like to do. Beware that you can kill a rag doing this.[p]BP[p]BP
    [ul][li]Here is my best pizza input[/ul]
  • gmangman Posts: 106
    I don't have the answers to all your questions. But with regards to parchment paper--I dunno about that. I would think it would stick badly.[p]Once I manage to get it on the pizza stone, I let it cook for about 10 minutes without the daisy wheel on top. Then I stand on a small stepstool and shine a flashlight down the hole to see how it's doing. i.e. I base 'doneness' on color of crust and how the cheese is doing without lifting the lid. I think it takes me about 15 minutes or so at 500. But I like thinner crust pizzas.
  • see my recipe at

    i like to use this setup:
    platesetter legs down, then pizza stone on top- heated to 450F
    when ready
    i roll out the dough & place it on a PIZZA SCREEN apply the sauce, cheese & toppings.
    i place the pizza screen on top of the pizza stone & the pizza is ready in about 20-25minutes and no burnt bottoms
    advantages to using pizza screen:
    no burning, crispy crust, pizza slides off the screen
    easy to prep pizza
    easy to place the pizza on the stone
    easy to remove when done
    make several pizzas (using multiple screens)- when one is done you replace it with a new one
    works for me
  • uncbbquncbbq Posts: 165
    Mayberry Smoker,
    As I understand it, the time in the refrigerator slows down the yeast, but doesn't stop it. The flavor improves with this step, as does the handling quality. My favorite pizza dough recipe (Peter Reinhart) also uses this step.

  • 26jan07-003.jpg
    <p />Mayberry Smoker,
    i've only done pizza twice (two pies each time) so this is from limited experience...[p]i used parchment paper on one set and just cornmeal on the other set. it didn't seem to make a difference on the brownness or crispness of the crust. bake time had a larger effect. i didn't like the taste/texture of the cornmeal that stuck to the crust.......
    i hear you can use coarse salt instead of cornmeal, but i haven't tried that yet.[p]if you use parchment paper, trim it to fit your stone because the edges hanging over the edge will burn. i'm not sure if you need to wipe down the stone between pies if using the paper, i didn't.[p]good luck![p]3feb07-007.jpg

  • Mayberry Smoker,
    1) If this is the first time you're making Pizza, you don't have to make the dough too. I like to buy pizza dough ($2) from a local pizza shop and build my pizza on that. They always ask if it's for "now or later" meaning am I going to put it in the fridge or am I going to cook it within a few hours (you can ask about this). It's already made correctly and at the right consistency so it's easy (and fun) to work with.[p]you still have to build it and cook it.[p]2) I don't think there's supposed to be a difference-just trim the excess paper because it will burn.[p]3)As in the other posts, i look through the chimney and judge by color of crust and whether the topping looks done.[p]4) I would use 450 only when cooking a frozen pizza or anything that already has a crust that just needs to be heated up. Otherwise, I do 550-600 and it takes 8 to 15 minutes-usually 12 depending on thickness and toppings. [p]5) I've only done one at a time but that's what I've read and I would do. It's so the stone doesn't heat up too much and burn your crust before the pizza's done.

  • Flashback Bob,[p]I bought a 2nd stone for two reasons: [p]I can either cook in both eggs at the same time or I can constantly have a not 500 degree stone that's ready to go again.[p]I have two large eggs and symetry is important to me.[p]If you are doing multiples, you can accelerate the cooling of the stone by wiping it down several times with a wet cloth. [p]WARNING! That cloth, by the 3rd wipedown, will be nearly as hot as the stone was. So you might need to rotate wet cloths too.[p]See? Symetry. LOL
  • ChuckChuck Posts: 812
    <p />Mayberry Smoker,[p]I think you are referring to my recipe. As to the proofing in the refrigerator, I find the dough easier to work with after it proofs (rises) in the fridge and then warms up a bit. It doesn't spring back as much as a warmer and shorter proof. It isn't necessary, the recipe will work fine with a warm proof, it's just the way I like to do it. I have added a link on "Pizza dough management" that might be helpful. [p]Good luck with your pizza.[p]Chuck

    [ul][li]Dough Management[/ul]
  • Mayberry Smoker,
    Here's a link to my page of hints and tips on pizza. Good luck!

    [ul][li]Pizza Hints and Tips[/ul]
    The Naked Whiz
  • WessBWessB Posts: 6,937
    Very interesting reading...Thanks for the link.[p]Wess

  • Mayberry Smoker,[p]
    Has anybody ever tried cooking the second pie on a seperate stone using the extender?

  • icemncmthicemncmth Posts: 1,160
    Mayberry Smoker,[p]I will chime in on this one...I probably bake more pizzas than
    anyone on this list..[p]I average probably 30+ a month. And I only cook pizza a couple of times a month. The reason I tell you this is some of your questions come up a lot...[p]Proofing in the fridge is just a way to slow down or control how fast the yeast multiplies. When I do 15 pizzas in one night I don't make all the dough at once. I make it in batches and keep it in the fride. Also proofing will give you a better tasting dough. Yeast likes warmth...85 degs will make the little buggers multiply like crazy but it will leave you with less taste. Also proofing lets the gluten in the dough to form. and this gives you a more chewy dough...[p]As for the parchment paper...that is used to keep the dough and or pizza from sticking to the stone. I cook my pizzas at
    700+ deg to keep this from happening..and I use a dough with very hight hydration....(pizza talk)....[p]One thing most people do is not add enough water...When working with flour most use some type of cup for measuring. The problem with that is that if you take a cup of flour one day and weigh it and then a few days later you will probably get different amounts in each up. Flour will absorb moisture in the air..all of my pizza recipes use weights as a way of measuring. So to make a pizza dough easy to work with put more water in in and you won't have a problem with it sticking to the stone if you use cornmeal..[p]I take my pizzas off when they "look" done..cheese melted etc. But you have to watch the dough because the amount of sugar in the dough will determine how brown the crust will be. If you like a brown crust brush the sides with sugar water..Also since you are cooking at 450 deg you won't have a big problem with burning the crust if you leave it in 10 mins or so...I would something and lift the crust and see when it is done....[p]Now your last question is a little harder to answer..the water on the stone will cool the stone a little and add moisture to the do. If you use a "wet" dough like me it would be a waste of time. If your first pizza comes out like a hard cookie with topings then spray the stone with water. the water will aid in keeping the crust chewy...[p]There are several different types of pizza..NY style. Chicago...and the list goes on..[p]So it all depends on what type you like....[p]Just have fun. Pizza is very forgiving..

  • Mayberry Smoker, I don't know much about making pizza's other than I have made several since I purchased my egg. Instead of using cornmeal I have been using cajun flavored fish mix [cornmeal base] as my non stick media. It flavors the crust from underneath and keeps the pizza from sticking. Randy

  • Thanks for all the answers. I couldn't find any parchment paper at the grocery store, will wax paper work, if not I guess I'll try the corn meal.

  • Mayberry Smoker,
    It is my humble opinion that your wax paper would melt and cause you all kinds of headaches. Bucky

  • Mayberry Smoker,
    you should be able to find the parchment paper from "good cook" at kroger's. it's over by the spices, kitchen gadgets, and aluminum baking pans........

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