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Old 06-07-2014, 01:07 AM   #1
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3 questions about pizza.

Alright, first off, this is my first post, so woo! Anyways, my questions are:
1. Would it be worth it for me to try to build a yeast starter? I'm in Alabama, and I'm not so sure about the wild yeast that grows around this area. For all I know, the yeast around here could taste like bunions.
2. How would I approach seafood on a pizza? I'm not talking about a couple of anchovies, I mean straight up red sauce, cheese, shrimp, tuna, mussels, etc. If anyone here has been crazy enough to think about this like me, what combination of sauce, cheese and seafood has worked out for you so far? I'm starting to think that I may have to approach it as a N'awlens style gumbo pizza instead of straight up Italian.
3. Speaking of heresy, how does a pretzel pizza sound? I may have referred back to my college self to think about this, but I'm starting to think that this is a really good idea. The bottom and the crust could be all brown and delicious like a pretzel, and the top could just be fluffy like a regular pizza.
Please weigh in on this conversation, as I'd love to hear comments/concerns/death threats/etc!

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Old 06-07-2014, 09:25 AM   #2
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There's nothing wrong with making your own starter. Depend, I guess, on how prominently the bread/crust figures in your pizza. (I like just enough to be a base for the rest.) But leaving wet dough out to see what agents of corruption land in it isn't likely going to produce anything worthwhile. May indeed smell (and taste) like feet. There's a difference between leavened and gone bad.

(But if you try it and like it, think of how much money you can save on wine by leaving grape juice out for a couple of weeks.)

The problem with seafood is that it mostly is subject to being over cooked, and it's not line sausage. It doesn't just get dark and crispy. It gets tough and tasteless. So you might consider prebaking the crust and any other base components that can stand it and then topping it with seafood before a short trip back to the over. For gumbo pizza (hummmmm), you would have the gumbo cooked and strained down to mostly solids before you added it and heated the whole thing. Someone here has probably done it.

I'm not sure how to do pretzel crust pizza-like objects, but I suspect it's a matter of the right consistency dough and a baking situation that crisps the bottom properly. Maybe look to these guys for inspiration:

http://www.pretzelandpizzacreations.com/index.php?p=1

And oh look. There's a pretzel pizza.

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Old 06-07-2014, 09:43 AM   #3
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Seafood pizza sounds good.

I think GLC is on the right track about cooking the parts of the pizza that take the longest and then adding the seafood components for a shorter cook time.

Perhaps precook the seafood and then just a short toss in the oven to warm them up.

Good luck with your experimentation. That's 1/2 the fun of cooking.

Welcome to DC and keep us informed with your results.
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Old 06-07-2014, 05:08 PM   #4
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I know this is not the sort of seafood pizza you have in mind but one of my favorite pizza's is made with pizza sauce, capers, lemon zest and drained, flaked tuna (the kind packed in olive oil.) No cheese except a light sprinkling of parm. It's yummy.

Welcome aboard. Have fun experimenting with your pizza creation and share the results.
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Old 06-08-2014, 03:04 AM   #5
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Pizza is supposed to be pizza. No fancy foods on it, just a lot of Italian spices, or a bit of sauce, some great cheese, maybe mushrooms and Italian sausage, add onions, peppers, a few other veggies and call it a day.

It's no longer a pizza when other 'stuff' is added.
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Old 06-08-2014, 06:48 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shopping View Post
Pizza is supposed to be pizza. No fancy foods on it, just a lot of Italian spices, or a bit of sauce, some great cheese, maybe mushrooms and Italian sausage, add onions, peppers, a few other veggies and call it a day.

It's no longer a pizza when other 'stuff' is added.
Take hands, find head and remove from hole in sand. What century are you living in? I love the crawfish pizza and prosciutto with fig jam pizza we make.
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Old 06-08-2014, 09:38 AM   #7
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There is a wonderful pasta dish whose name escapes me right now. But it is made with a zesty marinara, with mussels, clams, and shrimp thrown in for wonderful flavor. You could also add clams. When I made it (with help from my son who is a professional cook), we saute'd the shrimp in butter and garlic until just done, and added that to the sauce when we plated the pasta. The mussels and clams were cooked in the sauce. The result was spectacular.

For your pizza, I would do the same, but pre-bake the crust, top it with sauce and shrimp, then cover it all with Parmesiano-Regiano, and pop it into the oven just long enough t melt the cheese. Serve hot.

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Old 06-08-2014, 11:09 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chief Longwind Of The North View Post
There is a wonderful pasta dish whose name escapes me right now. But it is made with a zesty marinara, with mussels, clams, and shrimp thrown in for wonderful flavor. You could also add clams. When I made it (with help from my son who is a professional cook), we saute'd the shrimp in butter and garlic until just done, and added that to the sauce when we plated the pasta. The mussels and clams were cooked in the sauce. The result was spectacular.

For your pizza, I would do the same, but pre-bake the crust, top it with sauce and shrimp, then cover it all with Parmesiano-Regiano, and pop it into the oven just long enough t melt the cheese. Serve hot.

Seeeeeeya; Chief Longwind of the North
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Old 06-11-2014, 01:49 PM   #9
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Hi Lizarday and welcome to DC. I cannot address the latter two but have made scratch pizza crust for years. I used to make it with my own sourdough starter but now substitute plain Greek yogurt for the sourdough because I cannot tell much difference between the two.

For yeast, I used Eagle brand dry yeast. Here are my "estimated" measurements for pizza dough starter because I seldom make it the same way twice:

2 cups warm water (depending on how many crusts you want to make)
1 tbsp. dry yeast
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup olive oil
1 tbsp. salt
1 small cup plain greek yogurt

Whisk all of the ingredients together until all are thoroughly dissolved into each other.

Add flour by the cupful until the dough becomes elastic/tacky and can be handled
Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead thoroughly. Place back in a LARGE covered bowl with a dampened towel over the top. Let double in size. Empty dough back onto thoroughly floured surface and using your pizza pan for size, roll out slightly larger than the pan with rolling pin. (I used aluminum air bake pans that are perforated with holes) Roll out as thin or thick as you like, then fold into quarters for easier handling and gently fold out in the pan. Let the dough rise in the pan until you can see it visibly rising again. This is the touchy part: pre-bake in the oven at about 450 degrees for not more than SIX minutes. From here, you can prepare the dough with ingredients. I bake a pizza for about an additional 15-17 mins and if baking TWO pizzas, switch the pies from top to bottom shelves half way through the baking process. This dough does NOT make a thin cracker-like crust but gives an excellent texture and subtle flavor.

I'll reiterate the 6 critical starting ingredients are not exact measurements but will take some adjusting/tinkering for the results you like.

Sourdough pizza crust is for another post....
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Old 06-12-2014, 06:22 AM   #10
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Shrimp, cherry tomato, red onion, jalapeno, scallion, yellow curry sauce, cilantro & thai basil garnish
Escargot, leek, garlic, morels, ricotta, saffron-cream sauce, parseley
Shrimp, bacon, mozzarella, green bean-mustard sauce, spicy peach salad garnish
Crab, spam, roasted corn, grilled pineapple, black pepper, mozzarella, teriyaki sauce
Crab, cream cheese, green onion, pineapple-soy drizzle, crispy wonton garnish (crab rangoon pizza mmmmmmmmmmm)

I have no idea if any of these are good. I just made them up right now. I'm iffy on the teriyaki and mozza combo but it could work. Good luck. I don't think there are enough "traditional pizza flavors" to properly highlight the many types of seafood. I'm not sold on the idea of fleshy fish on pizza. I think cephalopods, gastropods, and arthropods are best seafood pizza toppings.

I think a pretzel might be good for a pizza crust.
When I worked at a pizza shop, the pretzels and pizzas were made from the same dough. *shrug*
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