Top tips for baking a Neapolitan pizza at home

Top tips for baking a Neapolitan pizza at home

These are my top tips for making and baking your pizza at home.

  • Don't forget to take the dough out the fridge to rest before using. If it's around 20°C (or lower) in the kitchen, take the dough out 5 hours before using, but if it's a very hot day, take it out 4 hours before and keep it somewhere cool, ideally around 19-20°C
  • Heat the oven for at least 45 minutes on maximum heat. Make sure the stone, steel, or tray you're going to bake on is in the oven during this time so that your pizza is being put onto a hot surface. Finish the pizza under a hot grill for a minute to brown the crust
  • The base needs to be thin in order to cook properly. A thick base will be doughy and will ruin your pizza. Watch a couple of the videos on stretching and get your bases thin. If you tear a hole in the base, watch this video to see how to repair it
  • Moisture results in a soggy base. If you're using buffalo mozzarella, drain it (covered) for a few hours before using it to release the liquid. Break chunks off with your hand and place it on the pizza skin side down to prevent the soggy side touching the pizza base
  • Next to salami, mushrooms are the most popular pizza topping, but make sure they're not watery. Sautéd mushrooms are great, cook them on a high heat and don't touch them for the first few minutes as this releases more liquid. Only salt them close to the end as this prevents them releasing excess liquid. Sautéd in butter, garlic and parsley is great, but even better, make some garlic confit and confit oil to sauté them in
  • This one's more about preference, but don't overload the centre. It's tempting to put cheese and toppings in the centre, but doing so will make the slices floppy at the end and more difficult to hold. The largest part of each slice is at the crust end, so that's the better side to focus your toppings on
  • Less is more. Focus on just a couple of really tasty toppings and don't add too much. If you add a lot of toppings, the flavours will blend together and overpower more subtle flavours

That's all for now, have a great week!

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