A particular kind of pizza crust (chewy)
November 25, 2017 4:25 PM   Subscribe

Hello! The weather's cold (in some places), so let's preheat our ovens to Hell and make some pizza.

I am seeking a recipe for the thin, chewy crust that I associate with upscale pizza establishments. I have had it all around this great nation. It turns a light brown on the edges but is otherwise pretty pale. It is even the tiniest bit sweet, but likely not from added sugar. Do you know the kind I mean? Is it semolina flour that does this? Or what? Chewy is the operative word.

My standard crust recipe, from the Silver Palate, comes out crisp and/or bready, depending on how thick I roll it. Adding wheat gluten does not make it more chewy, so I stopped doing that.

Thank you for any ideas!
posted by 8603 to Food & Drink (13 answers total) 10 users marked this as a favorite
This is the recipe I use (https://www.101cookbooks.com/archives/001199.html - sorry, on my tablet so I can't link better than this) and it turns out just how you describe, so long as you follow his instructions and use a baking stone. It's Peter Reinhardt - he is my bread guru...or was before I went gluten free. :-(
posted by guster4lovers at 4:32 PM on November 25, 2017 [3 favorites]

Best answer: Sounds like you're describing Neapolitan style? If so, certainly no semolina, and no rolling it out.

Peter Reinhardt, as mentioned by guster4lovers, is great. These days my pizza bible is pretty much Serious Eats. Here's their "Three Doughs to Know" including their version of Neapolitan. Day-to-day, I usually use Jim Lahey's no knead recipe because it's easy and good.
posted by primethyme at 4:59 PM on November 25, 2017 [2 favorites]

If you want a shortcut, many pizzerias will sell you a ball of raw dough.
posted by quince at 5:04 PM on November 25, 2017 [1 favorite]

Are you using a pizza stone? I've found that has a significant effect on the texture.
posted by blurker at 8:30 PM on November 25, 2017

I use this recipe. It's Neapolitan pizza and I think it's what you're describing. It uses 00 flour and comes out chewy but light, light brown and bubbly on the edges and is best pizza I've ever made.
posted by Polychrome at 3:59 AM on November 26, 2017 [2 favorites]

This roundup on Serious Eats will give you the lowdown on three pizza dough styles and what makes them different, as well as links to recipes.

Neapolitan pizza is not what I would call chewy. But a lot of the neo-Neapolitan places are using what is effectively a New York dough, which is chewy.
posted by slkinsey at 5:48 AM on November 26, 2017

Maybe try a sourdough base recipe? I don't have one to recommend, but sourdough pizza is lovely and chewy and what I associate with nice pizza here (UK).
posted by corvine at 10:35 AM on November 26, 2017

1.5 cups water
2cups white whole wheat flour
2 cups bread flour
1/2 cup sourdough starter
Mix and knead
Roll in olive oil
Let sit around for 12-48 hours
Divide into four pieces and pull/roll out into thin circles.
Preheat grill to 500
Grill each pizza on one side for 4 minutes (lid clos d)
Pull off the grill and put toppings on already grilled side and return to the grill got 4 minutes lid closed).
Pull off grill and cut into sections
Enjoy your chewy pizza
posted by songs_about_rainbows at 2:44 PM on November 26, 2017

Another sourdough option:

1 cup sourdough starter, unfed (straight from the fridge) (about 250g)
1/2 cup water
2 1/2 cups bread flour
1 teaspoon salt

Mix then knead for a few minutes. Toss into a plastic container and stick into the fridge until doubled in size (~24hr). Punch down, divide into 3 single serve sized pizza, can then be frozen until needed. Roll out, top with tomato paste and other toppings, stick in the oven at 200C for about 30 min.

Seriously tasty and pretty forgiving. I try to keep at least one portion in the freezer for Friday night dinners.
posted by kjs4 at 3:34 PM on November 26, 2017

I also use the recipe from 101 Cookbooks. I definitely ticks all the boxes for what you're describing.
posted by slogger at 5:40 AM on November 27, 2017

Response by poster: Risking now the wrath of God by preparing pizza on the holy sabbath, I have returned from the thrift store with a pizza stone and am about to try the Jim Lahey recipe that primethyme recommends. I'll report back!
posted by 8603 at 2:38 PM on December 8, 2017

Response by poster: Success! For those keeping score at home, I used the Jim Lahey recipe, left to rise for about 24 hours. I used Hodgson Mill all-purpose white flour (it's expensive for flour, but cheaper than ordering out) and a Pampered Chef pizza stone (I'm sure there are cheaper ones out there).

I preheated the oven + stone to 500 for about an hour, stone on bottom rack but not the oven floor, gas oven, and used the floured back of a cookie sheet as my "peel." Damn near set fire to my arm, but, you know.

I look forward to trying the Peter Reinhardt recipe--and Polychrome's recipe, once I get a dairy cast iron skillet--but this is a fantastic minimal-effort option.
posted by 8603 at 4:15 PM on December 8, 2017

Response by poster: Live update: pizza stone just broke, so DON'T go with Pampered Chef!
posted by 8603 at 4:35 PM on December 8, 2017

« Older Where is the Metafilter of food blogs?   |   Origin of the cover art for Magnetic Fields'... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.