Baking Homemade New York Pizza with the Mighty Pizza Oven – A Review

Being a pizza enthusiast, I am a member of the pizzamaking forum, Silce @SeriousEats and I lurk at other pizza making forum websites on my free time. I met a fellow aficionado, TXCraig1, at pizzamaking forum. He agreed on testing my Mighty Pizza Oven when it was in its prototype stage back in August 2012. He used the Mighty Pizza Oven to create 3 wonderful New York Pizza.

 

New York Pizza using the Mighty Pizza Oven

 

Below is the recipe he used (as he posted in the forum) for the pizza dough. Again, I appended the kitchen scale of the ingredients for our beginner bakers.

 

TXCraig1 created 3 pizzas with different toppings. use your favorite pizza toppings if you wanted to recreate these wonderful New York pizzas. Go crazy with your topping ingredients, but I recommend that you follow the dough instruction below.

New York Pizza Dough Ingredients:

  • 750g all-purpose flour (~4 cups)
  • 495g filtered water (~2 cups)
  • 18.75g salt (1 tablespoon)
  • 15g extra-virgin olive oil (1 tablespoon)
  • 2.25g active dry yeast (~½ teaspoon)

Instructions

Mix together flour, salt, and yeast in a mixing bowl. Add water and mix on low speed until the dough comes together. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and rest for 10 minutes. Mix on low speed again for 10 minutes or until the dough reaches ‘cleaning’ stage (when a big mass of dough is starting to clean the sides of the bowl free of stuck dough). Gradually pour olive oil while still mixing. Continue kneading until the dough is smooth and elastic. Transfer the dough in an oiled resealable plastic bag. Seal the bag leaving only a little airspace. Place the dough inside the refrigerator and store for 1-5 days (TXCraig1 only used 17 hours. Longer fermentation time would lead to better flavor and texture). After fermentation, divide the dough into 3 portions. Roll each portion into 3 dough balls. Place each dough balls in a bowl greased with oil. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to rise for 4 hours at 77oF. Roll the dough balls into 3 13” pizza pies with 0.07 thickness factor (0.07oz per square inch).

 

Decorate your pizza dough with preferred toppings. Bake the pizzas for 3-4 minutes with the Mighty Pizza Oven bottom stone temperature of ~650oF. Rotate the pizzas for every minute.

 

TXCraig1 employed the cold-fermentation method in dough making. Basically, cold-fermentation process involves storing the dough in a cold environment for a long time to slow down yeast activity. This will result in better flavor, texture, and appearance of the dough and is recommended when making thin-crust pizzas like New York style pizza. I will discuss more of cold-fermented dough when I post an article for it. In addition, TXCraig used 670oF baking temperature on his first pizza and 750oF for the second and third pizzas.

 

Below are some pictures provided by TXCraig1 when he posted his review on the pizza forum. It is evident that the Mighty Pizza Oven was able to produce evenly cooked New York pizza crust. The crust is firm and crisp yet flexible enough to be able to lift without breaking it. If you look closely, the crust developed a leopard-spot-like bottom. The pizzas also have large-open bubbled crusts. This is the result of the cold-fermentation when the dough was prepared.

 

 

As a final review of the Mighty Pizza Oven, TXCraig1 stated that, “These pies were really good. They had a nice crunch and better flavor than I expected … I think with a little practice and fine tuning the formula, you could really make a great pie”. Moreover, he also said, “… it (pizza baking) is very even.  It looks like the MPO essentially turned your grill into a high end brick lined deck oven”. This is great to hear from a fellow pizza-lover and an expert at baking pizzas. I was even elated to hear such a good testimonial since the oven I had asked him to review is still on its prototype stage at the time of the review. Way to go Mighty Pizza Oven!

 

If you were going technical with these pizzas, they do more resemble like your Neapolitan pizzas – leopard spots, basic ingredients (NY pizza dough have sugar), and shorter baking time. But does it matter that it is not an authentic New York pizza if what you crafted are as awesome as these?

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