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Using Pizza Peels – Pizza Peel Techniques – Forno Bravo

I can across this article and thought it would be good to share at Roam’In Pizza we use the round metal peel with a sliding handle

Should you use a wooden pizza peel to build your pizza and set it in your oven, or should you make it on a flat surface and use a metal peel to place it in your oven? There are three schools of thought preparing and placing pizzas; you can try them all and decide what works for you. when you are hosting your own pizza party.

Option 1 – Countertop and Metal Peel-the mainstream method used by restaurants and professional pizzaiolos is to build your pizza on a solid, cool counter (such as marble or granite), then slide a lightly floured, metal pizza peel under the pizza to set it in the oven. Aluminum is the metal of choice for the placing peel you use to set your pizza, as it is slippery, and your bread and pizza will slide right off. If your oven is large enough for multiple pizzas, and you want to put pizzas in the back or sides, you will want a peel with a long handle.

Option 2 – Wooden Peel to Metal Peel-an option used by many homeowners is to assemble your pizza on a short-handled wooden pizza peel, then slide it onto the metal placing peel to set it in the oven. This pizza peel technique takes a little longer and is more cumbersome for a professional, but it minimizes the chance that you, or your guests, will ruin a pizza..  Keep a number of short wooden peels around the house for parties, which guests can use to make their own pizzas. This also works well for kids. Just make sure to put some flour under the pizza and give it a little shake to ensure it is loose before transferring it to the second peel or the oven.

Option 3 – Long-Handled Wooden Peel.  The final option is using pizza peels to both assemble your pizza and slide it into your oven. This pizza peel technique pretty much eliminates the risk of something going wrong, but long wood peels can be difficult to move around the kitchen and it can get crowded with lots of guests and lots of long, wooden peels all converging on the oven. Still, if you are only going to make a few pizzas, it can be a convenient, low stress, method.

General Tips – Make sure your placing peel is large enough to hold your pizza (and the ones your guests make), as an uncooked pizza will sag over the edge of the peel and make a mess.  It can be challenging for the home pizzaiolo to slide a round, or small peel under a pizza that your friend (or child) has lovingly made — sticking is actually pretty common.Avoid putting too many toppings on your pizza (weight can make the pizza stick to the peel. Also avoid getting tomato sauce, or any kind of moisture on the peel. .Many people prefer to use flour on their peel, rather than cornmeal, which is the Italian tradition.. Whatever you use, use it sparingly. Too much flour or cornmeal can burn and become bitter on the bottom of your pizza.

Round Peels Regardless of how you placed your pizza in the oven, you will need a round, metal peel to turn it, and pull it out — it is very difficult to do this with a wooden peel or rectangular metal peel. For turning and moving the pizzas in the oven, use a small, round peel. It can be as small as 8″ which makes it easy to rotate the pizza to cook evenly facing the fire.

Source: Using Pizza Peels – Pizza Peel Techniques – Forno Bravo