Monday, July 03, 2006

Camp -- Pizza Night

As I write kids are screaming up in the amphitheater (do you see a common thread developing here!). It's Fear Factor...

Tonight was pizza night. This in one of the items that I love to prepare from scratch. Since I couldn't find the dough hook or the rolling pin, I mixed and kneaded a double recipe by hand. I know that these items were around last year, because I used them for the pizza dough and the cinnamon rolls.

I found the dough hook deep behind the mixer stand, almost under the ice machine (the two are located side-by-side). The rolling pin was buried under the large center work table that's in front of the range. My first though was that the camp had disposed of these items. I had visions of rolling pizza dough with a can or bottle!

At the suggestion of my second cook, we prepared these pizzas this year:

4 cheese pizzas
3 chicken pizzas
3 combination pizzas

Unlike past years, we didn't prepare pepperoni pizza tonight. It was time for a change. Three to five pounds of pre-cooked chicken is sufficient for the three pizzas. We buy a Sysco product that comes packed two 5-pound bags per box. The pizzas are cut 4x5. Off 200 servings, 23 were left oven. This meal is the most popular of the week.


2-3/8 ounces active dry yeast
1-1/8 cups warm water
1-1/2 quarts cold water
6-5/8 pounds bread flour
1 ounce salt
2-1/3 ounces sugar
1-1/2 cups olive oil, divided
1 gallons pizza sauce
4 pounds mozzarella cheese, shredded
1 pound sliced pepperoni
7 ounces Parmesan cheese

Sprinkle yeast over water. Do not use temperatures above 110 deg F. Mix well. Let stand 5 minutes, stir. Place water, flour, salt, sugar and olive oil in mixer bowl in order listed. Add yeast solution. Using a dough hook, mix at low speed about 8 minutes until dough is smooth and elastic. Dough temperature should be 86 deg F to 88 deg F.

Divide dough; shape into 4 (2-pound 2-ounce) balls. Cover; let rise in warm place 1 to 1-1/2 hours or until double in bulk. Coat bottom and sides of each pan with 1 tablespoon olive oil.

Place dough balls on lightly floured working surface. Roll out each ball to 1/8-inch thickness. Transfer dough to 18x26-in sheet pans pushing dough slightly up edges of pan. Using 1 tablespoon oil per pan, lightly brush dough. Gently prick dough to prevent bubbling.

Spread 1 quart sauce evenly over dough in each pan. Sprinkle 1 quart shredded cheese over each pan. Thinly slice pepperoni; evenly distribute 4 ounces over cheese in each pan. Sprinkle 1/2 cup grated cheese over mixture in each pan.

Using a convection oven, bake 8 minutes at 450 deg F on high fan, closed vent or until crust is browned and cheese starts to turn golden. Cut each sheet pan 4 by 5. CCP: Hold for service at 135 deg F or higher.

Serving Ideas: This recipe prepares 5 (18x26-in) sheet pans. For 150 campers, prepare 9-10 sheet pans. Serve 1 slice for firsts before calling seconds. Acceptability is approx 115-120%.

This recipe takes about 3-4 hours to set the dough, let it ferment, punch it and roll out the pizzas. You should have sufficient time to work the dough if you activate the yeast at 2:30 p.m. for a 5:30 p.m. dinner. Do not activate the yeast any later than 2:30 p.m. It will take 2 batches as the mixer cannot accommodate any more than 1 recipe. Prepare 1 full recipe for each batch. Each recipe will yield 4-1/2 to 5 sheets of pizza, depending on how efficiently you work.

For cheese pizza, omit the pepperoni.

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