Almost every Friday I try to have "pizza and movie night" at home with my kids. So each week I keep working to improve my pizza-making technique. I almost dare not say it, but yesterday I think I finally reached perfection (or at least as close as I can get without a wood-burning oven.) Gasp!
After my great composting adventure in the morning, I had a few friends and their kids join us for an expanded version of our usual family pizza night. Since we had a small group I decided instead of just making my usual one large pizza I would make a variety of smaller pizzas--tomato and mozzarella, pesto and mozzarella, potato with prosciutto and fontina, and pear with gorgonzola.
Over the years I've experimented with various doughs but a few months ago I decided that Peter Reinhardt's was by far the best. (For details see my previous post on breakfast pizza.) Then last month I read an article in the LA Times about how to make a better pizza by transforming your home oven with firebricks. The idea of a crude DIY home project with a culinary slant made the idea irresistible!
A few weeks (+ $10 and a trip to the local building supply company) later, I had my firebricks in hand and was ready to try out the new cooking technique. Last night was the virgin run and did not disappoint. I used one full brick on each side of my trusty pizza stone and laid six split bricks on the rack above.
With this makeshift brick oven set at 550F I was able to crank out perfectly crispy thin crust pizzas every eight minutes. Definitely the best pizzas I've ever made at home. We gobbled up six of them before we knew it. Now my mind is spinning about all the future pizza possibilities!