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Twice a month, we’re giving readers a chance to ask Food Network Kitchens’ advice about an issue they’re having with a dish. They can’t reformulate a recipe for you, but they’re happy to help improve it.
Question: “How do I get my pizza crust to have that slightly chewy texture and hollow bubbles to obtain that authentic pizzeria-style crust?” — Stephanie.
Answer: The perfect pizza crust can seem like an impossible task for a home cook without a pizzeria-style brick oven. But a few tweaks to your technique can make all the difference. First, look for a recipe that calls for bread flour instead of all-purpose flour. It’s much better for getting a chewy, crisp crust. I also think every pizza maker needs a pizza stone. They create a super-hot surface for cooking your pizza and they absorb some of the moisture from the dough, making the crust crisp up really nicely. Start preheating your oven to 450 or 500 degrees F about an hour before you’re ready to bake — it will take the stone that long to heat completely. To get those hollow bubbles you’re looking for, make sure you’re not pressing all of the air out of the dough as you roll it out. Never use a rolling pin, which will flatten all those pockets; instead, use your hands and fingertips to stretch and gently press the dough into a round. The tiny pockets in the dough will fill with hot air as the crust bakes, making those hollow bubbles. Finally, don’t take your pizza out too soon. Let it bake until the edges are golden brown.