The possibilities are endless when it comes to toppings: pepperoni, mushrooms, eggs, bacon, sausage, olives, onions, chicken, and tomatoes are just a few. From BBQ sauce to hoisin sauce, your sauce can be just as varied. There is no right or wrong combination and everyone has a favorite. When eating out, I like supreme pizzas with pepperoni and sausage, green peppers and onions. If I’m at home, I prefer a simple pepperoni pizza with the cheese so perfectly browned that you can hardly wait to cut a slice.
Just like your sauce and toppings, everyone has an opinion on the crust. Some adore thick crust pizza while others will balk at eating anything but a pizza with the thinnest and most crispy crust. I wouldn’t dare to argue the goodness of one type of crust over another, but I will say that the key to a yummy pizza crust is to have at least a little crispiness all over. I like to think about it like French bread. Sure it can be deliciously chewy on the inside, but you want a little crunch when you bite through the crust. It’s easy enough to get crispiness on the outer edge of your pizza, but the bottom of the pizza is a little tougher.
Through trial and error, I’ve found that a properly heated pizza stone is the answer. Whether you are making your own pizza dough or buying a prebaked crust from the store, take the time to preheat your oven and put in the stone in advance. Let the stone sit in the heated oven for at least thirty minutes before you put your pizza on it. When you slide your pizza onto the stone, the heat will immediately begin cooking the bottom of the pizza.
For thin crust lovers, the result will be that every bite will have crunch. For those that prefer a thicker crust, it’s the best of both worlds: a big crunch followed by a chewy inside. Mmmmmm…delicious!