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How to make the perfect homemade pizza

A world-renowned pizza chef tells us how to make a restaurant-quality pizza at home.

Johnny Di Francesco of Melbourne restaurant 400 Gradi is one of the best pizza chefs in the world.

Not only was he the first Australian ever to be trained to make pizza in Naples at the Associazione Verace Pizza Napoletana, his Margherita won him the World Pizza Championships in 2014.

We thought we'd ask him to answer a few lingering questions we had about creating the perfect pizza from our own kitchens. 

1. Which cheese should I use?

Use buffalo mozzarella or fior di latte, which are both traditional cheeses used on Italian pizzas. 

"Both have great a consistency that melts well and brings out the best in other flavours," Johnny told Lifestyle, before warning: "Try to avoid packs of pre-shredded cheese if you can."

2. How do I stop my base from going soggy?

The good news is it's actually supposed to be a bit "soggy"! Real Neapolitan pizza doesn't have a crisp base and is meant to be soft in the middle, Johnny explains. 

"Thin, crispy pizza bases that crunch like toast aren't part of traditional Neapolitan cuisine," he said. "Soft, chewy dough is a thing of beauty when it's done right, so much so that you don't want to overload the pizza with toppings, which can sometimes be the issue."

So, if the base is literally soggy, it's about easing up on the amount of cheese and toppings.

3. What is the ideal number of ingredients?

Johnny likes to keep it between four and five ingredients - including the cheese. The golden rule to making a Neapolitan pizza is quality over quantity!

4. Do I need a pizza oven?

The truth is, it helps. But, as we know, not everyone can have a pizza oven in their home. So if you can't get your hands on a bench-top pizza oven, there is a trick to helping your regular oven to the work.

"Just crank your domestic oven to the highest temperature possible and cook your pizza on a pizza stone," Johnny says. "Around ten minutes should do the trick."

5. Do I really need to make my own base?

We asked Johnny if there was a way to get around this whole "making your own pizza dough" thing, and, sadly, there isn't. 

"I think a lot of people don’t realise the dough is what makes the difference between average and amazing pizza," Johnny told Lifestyle. "Of course it takes a little longer, but it’s worth it."

 
 

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1 comment
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Posted by Stuart210 •18w ago • Report
How to make the perfect homemade pizza? there is no "how to" in this article. In particular, there is the comment "dough is what makes the difference between average and amazing pizza", but there are no details how to make this dough.