Ever thought of making your very own pizza recipe at home? Before you even think about putting on your apron, you should first have the right tools and equipment to make your pizza-making life easier. And even if you do so, you should also ask yourself questions such as how to use wooden pizza peel and how to care for your pizza stone to make sure that you are knowledgeable enough to attempt making homemade pizza.
What is a Pizza Peel?
A pizza peel is a simple tool designed to transfer and retrieve a pizza in and out of the oven without having to deal with the heat or experiencing burns. Like the shape of a shovel, the pizza peel has been developed greatly. Now, there are several variants depending on the material used, shape and size of the flat surface, and even the handles’ length.
Types of Pizza Peel
As mentioned above, there are different types of pizza peels, depending on various factors. Considering that a pizza peel is an essential tool to safely and conveniently transfer and retrieve your pizza from the oven, it is important that you know the different types of pizza peels and their characteristics even before we start answering questions of how to use wooden pizza peel:
Metal Pizza Peels
Metal pizza peels are either made with aluminum or stainless-steel material. Compared to wooden pizza peels, this type of pizza peel is relatively more durable and requires less care. They are also thinner and lighter than wooden pizza peels. That is why it ideal for pizzerias that lunge pizzas left and right. However, metal pizza peels are much more expensive than wooden pizza peels and are more likely to stick to the pizza.
Wooden Pizza Peels
Wooden pizza peels are considered as the traditional and classic version of a pizza peel that has been used for years. It is generally a thick slab of wood that is carved into a shovel-like shape. One benefit of wooden pizza peels is that the pizza does not stick to it as much because it has a rougher and more uneven surface. Furthermore, wooden pizza peels are notably cheaper and easier to find. However, this type of pizza peel requires a more tedious cleaning process and maintenance in order to keep the peel in tip-top condition.
Using a Wooden Pizza Peel
Using the pizza peel to transfer your pizza onto the oven may sound fairly easy. But there are some steps and factors to consider that would make the process a whole trickier than you thought it should be. Now, here are some tips and tricks on how to use wooden pizza peel properly:
- You have to cut the pizza the second it’s out of the oven. Many restaurants use this technique. It adds to the slicing efficiency because Before transferring your pizza onto the oven, make sure that your pizza peel has the appropriate size to hold the pizza before and after it is cooked.
- Make sure not to put too much topping on the pizza. Having the topped pizza unnecessarily heavy may lead the dough to stick onto the peel and ruin the pizza’s shape once you try to put it into the oven.
- Remember not to use any form of moisture onto the peel, such as ketchup or sauce, as it will most likely lead to sticking.
- Rather than using oil or any form of moisture, dash your peel with some cornmeal or flour to prevent the dough from sticking onto the peel.
- Now for the tricky part, to put your pizza onto the oven, use a swift back-and-forth wrist action to drop the pizza on the stone. Make sure not to let the dough’s edge get caught on the hot pizza stone first, or it is likely that your pizza will trip over, and the toppings will fall off.
- Mastering this technique will take a bit of time, so try practicing the motion with your wooden peel when you have the time to slowly build your confidence.
- You can practice using a folded tablecloth as an alternative to the dough and master the flick of the wrist and successfully transfer the pizza onto the oven completely.
How to Clean a Wooden Pizza Peel
As mentioned earlier, wooden pizza peels require better care and attention in order to maintain its condition. So, after you learn how to use wooden pizza peel properly, it is time to learn how to care and maintain your wooden pizza peel.
- Don’t cut your pizza on the wooden peel in order to avoid scratches.
- Avoid using too much water and keep the peel from hot water to keep the wood from warping or cracking.
- Instead of putting it in a dishwasher, use a nylon brush or wet cloth to gently clean the wood surface.
- Make sure to wipe off any extra water before storing the wooden peel in a cool, dry place.
- To make your wooden peel last longer, it is encouraged to apply a type of mineral oil that is food-safe and will allow the oil to stay hydrated and avoid the possibility of it warping and cracking. Simply pour about 1 to 2 tablespoons of mineral oil according to your peel’s size and spread it using a tablecloth. Ideally, you would have to re-apply oil to the wooden pizza peel at least every three months.
The pizza peel is an essential tool needed to keep your pizza-making journey free from burns or any other injury when you try to transfer the pizza in and out of the hot oven. Whatever type of pizza peel you have, it is important to make sure that you know how to properly use, care, and maintain your pizza peel. Especially for wooden pizza peel, it is important to make sure that you know how to use a wooden pizza peel and maintain it properly to make the most out of the baking tool. Here’s how to learn more about pizza peels.